Sets, Snaps & Stats: Week 11

Pat Thorman examines the fantasy impact of up-tempo offenses and other emerging trends after 11 weeks of NFL action.

| 3 years ago
phillip_rivers

Sets, Snaps & Stats: Week 11


phillip_riversThe weekly Sets, Snaps and Stats report is a summary of participation, formation, target and other data mined by PFF’s game charters. Used with PFF Fantasy’s own signature stats, our aim – as always – is identifying relevant trends to provide out subscribers with a competitive advantage.

Snaps were up roughly three plays per game from Week 10, despite a few up-tempo squads taking it slow and several dodgy weather situations. In place of the typically no-huddle leaning Patriots, Chargers, and Bills, were the Steelers and Falcons. Pittsburgh went up-tempo on 47.9 percent of snaps and Matt Ryan had Atlanta hurrying-up on 49.2 percent. Both teams skipped huddles throughout, and were able to increase snap output by nine (Steelers) and four (Flacons) over their previous averages.

It did not do Atlanta any good, but Pittsburgh would be an interesting up-tempo team. They have a number of fantasy relevant weapons and a thin defense that should not be put on the field more often than necessary. It is a situation that bears watching, similar to a Titans’ offense that was moving well with the no-huddle before going away from it. After two touchdowns in their first two up-tempo drives they slowed down, to their detriment, with Shonn Greene. Expect Ryan Fitzpatrick to go hurry-up more often down the stretch.

With fantasy trade deadlines upon us, the general snaps and tempo portion of S,S&S will be kept brief so we can get to more player-specific notes.

Ranking

Week 11 Snaps

2013 Snaps (Avg/Gm)

Opponents (Avg/Gm)

1st

Cleveland (79)

Denver (71.6)

Philadelphia (74.8)

2nd

Washington (77)

Washington (71.0)

Dallas (70.3)

3rd

Denver (76)

Houston (70.6)

New England (69.7)

4th

Baltimore (75)

Buffalo (70.4)

Miami (69.0)

5th

KC/PIT (73)

New England (70.0)

MIN/CLV (68.9)

The Eagles’ no-huddle ways (64.5 percent of Week 11 snaps) again yielded their opponent plenty of opportunities, as Washington ran the second most plays of the week. Despite Philadelphia’s improved defensive performance, the high volume of plays surrendered preserves their status as a must-start against opponent for fantasy passing games. A sixth-from-worst pass rush (-16.0 PFF grade) and seventh-from-worst coverage grade (-26.4) drives that point home. They have been stingy against running backs (+21.4; 12th best run stopping grade), but have slipped of late, with an average of 22 points allowed to rushers over their last three games.

The Patriots curbed their no-huddle to the surprise of many, going up-tempo on just four snaps at the end of their barn-burner with the Panthers. The 54 snaps surrendered were a season low, and more than 17 fewer than they were giving up heading into MNF. They were on the road and it was loud, but there is more to it than that. The defense has lost their best lineman and linebacker, was missing a starting cornerback and safety, and was having trouble getting off of the field on third downs. The Patriots’ offense performed well anyway, scoring on four of their five non-turnover/non-blown pass interference call drives. With Denver’s high-volume offense on deck it is fair to wonder if we will see this tactic again.

Ranking

Week 11 Snaps

2013 Snaps (Avg/Gm)

Opponents (Avg/Gm)

32nd

Seattle (50)

Dallas (59.0)

Houston (56.7)

31st

Green Bay (53)

San Francisco (59.2)

New Orleans (58.6)

30th

Tennessee (54)

Minnesota (60.8)

Carolina (59.6)

29th

Carolina (54)

Seattle (61.1)

San Diego (60.7)

28th

NYJ/SF (56)

Atlanta (61.4)

St. Louis (61.9)

The Giants first five games saw them give up an average of 71.8 snaps, a rate that would trail only the Eagles for the season. They have surrendered 59.8 in five contests since then. Enter the Cowboys, who run the fewest plays in the league and probably will not benefit from six New York turnovers like they did in Week 1. Fantasy owners can count on another pass-heavy game plan against a Giants team (+37.4; third highest run defense grade) that has allowed just 2.9 yards per carry over the last seven games.

The Saints held the 49ers more than three plays below their already meager snap average and continue to play excellent complementary football. Just 21 seconds shy of a 10 minute time of possession advantage, they managed to outrush a San Francisco team that has a better run defense and, arguably, rushing attack. The 49ers again abandoned their running game, giving just 13 carries to Frank Gore, and played to the Saints’ strength. After shredding the league-worst Falcons, the Saints’ efficiently synergistic squad will be tested by three games against the Seahawks and Panthers in a four week span.

Now on with the rest of this week’s Sets, Snaps & Stats, after a quick look at notable games from a snaps and tempo perspective:

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Please note that penalty plays are removed from the snap totals and will differ from what is posted in our Premium Statistics game logs.

Pat Thorman is a Lead Writer for PFF Fantasy. You can follow him on Twitter at @Pat_Thorman



Pat Thorman is a lead writer for PFF Fantasy and a Fantasy Sports Writers Association award winner.

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