32 Observations: Week 17
It was a long four months, but we have reached the end of the regular season. While the 32 Observations series will carry on into the playoffs, it will focus only on the players who are still playing football. This week anything goes as we have a full season of data, and in many cases we found players putting up numbers that we haven’t seen in the five years we have been recording data. Here are the 32 pieces of information to stimulate your thinking.
Buffalo Bills: Running back C.J. Spiller ended the year with an Elusive Rating of 94.6, which is the highest of any back in the past five years.
Miami Dolphins: Tight end Anthony Fasano had 41 catches and zero drops. That is the most catches by a tight end without a drop in the past five seasons.
New England Patriots: In the games Devin McCourty played mainly at safety, quarterbacks had a 10.1 quarterback rating when throwing his way, which was the lowest for all safeties. In games where he played at cornerback, quarterbacks had a 78.2 rating when throwing McCourty’s way.
New York Jets: For the fourth straight year, Mark Sanchez finished in the bottom two in terms of Accuracy Percentage, at 65.6%. This was the lowest mark of 2012.
Baltimore Ravens: Quarterback Joe Flacco had the highest percentage of his snaps end up as deep passes, at 17.3%. He was tied for the most touchdowns at 11, and of 33 qualifying quarterbacks he was the only one without an interception.
Cincinnati Bengals: Tight end Jermaine Gresham had 414 yards after the catch, which was 49 yards more than any other tight end. Four tight ends had a greater yards after the catch total last year.
Cleveland Browns: Joe Thomas had the best Pass Blocking Efficiency of any tackle over the past five years, at 97.9. On his 618 pass blocks, he allowed just three sacks, three hits and 10 hurries. On average that is 39 pass blocks per game, and just one pressure allowed.
Pittsburgh Steelers: After not having a pass defended in his first four games, Keenan Lewis ended up with 16 passes defended in his last 12 to lead the league.
Houston Texans: Cornerback Kareem Jackson was one of the most improved players in 2012. His catch rate allowed decreased from 61.6 to 47.3, his yards per catch allowed decreased from 17.0 to 13.9, his interceptions quadrupled from one to four, and his pass defensed doubled from five to 10.
Indianapolis Colts: In the base defense, Pat Angerer and Kavell Conner split time all season at inside linebacker. They also allowed the two lowest catch rates by inside/middle linebackers at 53.8% and 55.6%.
Jacksonville Jaguars: Although Paul Posluszny had 74 tackles on run plays, which was within two of the leader Derrick Johnson, he had only 38 stops. That led to a stop rate of 7.5% (once you account for his 509 snaps against the run), which was the lowest for all middle/inside linebackers with at least 50 run tackles.
Tennessee Titans: Defensive end Derrick Morgan was one of the most improved players over the course of the season. Over the first six games he had a pressure on 8.2% of his pass rushes. Over the last 10 games, he increased that to a pressure on 16.7% of his pass rushes.
Denver Broncos: Keith Brooking was the only inside/middle linebacker this season to not miss a tackle. He had 22 tackles in the run game and five in the pass game. He also had the lowest Yards per Coverage Snap for inside/middle linebackers at 0.45.
Kansas City Chiefs: In his rookie season, Dontari Poe had the lowest Pass Rushing Productivity of all defensive/nose tackle, at 2.3. In his 391 pass rushes, he had zero sacks, three hits and nine hurries. The two lowest 3-4 defensive ends included Tyson Jackson at 2.2, and Ropati Pitoitua at 2.3.
Oakland Raiders: Tight End Brandon Myers had 2.61 yards per route run when lining up in the slot. He had 345 yards on 31 catches from his 132 pass routes. That rate is the best of any tight end lining up in the slot in the past five years.
San Diego Chargers: Philip Rivers threw 42 passes away, which was 12 more than any other quarterback. It is more than any other quarterback in a single season over the past five years, and is the third time in five years he has led the league in thrown away passes.
Dallas Cowboys: Anthony Spencer had a Run Stop Percentage of 11.7. This was the first time in the past five years that a 3-4 outside linebacker had a Run Stop Percentage over 11.
New York Giants: Safety Kenny Phillips had the lowest Yards per Coverage Snap of all safeties. In his 171 snaps, he allowed just two catches on seven targets for 16 yards. This resulted in 0.09 Yards per Coverage Snap.
Philadelphia Eagles: Defensive end Brandon Graham had the highest Pass Rushing Productivity for all outside pass rushers while rushing from the defense’s left side, at 17.3.
Washington Redskins: Wide receiver Pierre Garcon ended up second in Yards Per Route Run at 2.93, putting him ahead of each of the wide receivers who made the Pro Bowl in the NFC.
Chicago Bears: Only 30.9% of Adam Podlesh’s punts were returned, which was the lowest rate in the league.
Detroit Lions: The vast majority of teams would expect to get more pressure on the quarterback from their outside pass rushers than their inside ones. However, the Lions are the exception, as their defensive ends recorded 97 pressures on the year, while their defensive tackles recorded 118.
Green Bay Packers: Aaron Rodgers beat out Robert Griffin III for the most accurate quarterback of the year at an Accuracy Percentage of 80.2%. That is the second-best mark in the past five years, just behind Rodgers of 2011 at 80.6%.
Minnesota Vikings: Linebacker Chad Greenway allowed 742 receiving yards, which is more than any other linebacker in a single season over the past five years. This is the third time in five years Greenway has led the category.
Atlanta Falcons: Tight end Tony Gonzalez ended up having 16 players miss tackles on him this year, which was four more than any other tight end, and the second-most for any tight end in the past five years.
Carolina Panthers: On average, Graham Gano’s kickoffs travelled 71.3 yards, which is the farthest in the league.
New Orleans Saints: Cornerback Patrick Robinson allowed nine receiving touchdowns this year, which was the most allowed in 2012, and tied for the most over the past five years.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers: From 2008-2011, the highest Run Stop Percentage any 4-3 outside linebacker had was 11.7%. This year, Lavonte David had a Run Stop Percentage of 14.6%, which was 4.0% higher than any other 4-3 outside linebacker.
Arizona Cardinals: Cornerback Greg Toler allowed a catch rate of 41.5%, the lowest for all cornerbacks this year.
St. Louis Rams: Cornerback Janoris Jenkins missed 18 tackles on the season, which is tied for the most for all cornerbacks.
San Francisco 49ers: Tight end Delanie Walker had 220 receiving yards on deep passes, which led the league. In second place was teammate Vernon Davis at 175 receiving yards.
Seattle Seahawks: Tight end Zach Miller had the highest catch rate for all tight ends with at least 10 targets with 82.6%. He caught 38 of the 46 passes thrown his way.
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