Sets, Snaps & Stats: Week 12

Pat Thorman examines the fantasy impact of up-tempo offenses and other emerging trends after 12 weeks of NFL action.

| 4 years ago

Pat Thorman examines the fantasy impact of up-tempo offenses and other emerging trends after 12 weeks of NFL action.

Sets, Snaps & Stats: Week 12

olsen-gregThe 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.

After a quick look at some Week 12 snap trends we will jump right into the matchups that stand out from what is finally a full slate of games, including a pair from Thanksgiving Day. Following the player notes section are some thoughts on the benefits and pitfalls of trying to predict game flow, and why we should be thankful for both.


Week 11 Snaps

2013 Snaps (Avg/Gm)

Opponents (Avg/Gm)


       Green Bay (89)

Denver (72.9)

Philadelphia (74.8)


Denver (86)

New England (71.3)

New England (71.2)


New England (84)

Buffalo (70.4)

Minnesota (70.7)


Minnesota (79)

Washington (69.8)

Dallas (69.6)


Chicago (74)

Houston (69.4)

Denver (69.5)

On the surface it is not surprising that Denver and New England both landed in the top five of the weekly snaps list after their back-and-forth meeting went to overtime. What is surprising is that despite the inclement weather and Denver’s constant handoffs, both teams remained on their usual elevated snaps pace. Remove the overtime plays and the Broncos hit their pre-Week 12 snaps average almost exactly, while New England was just a handful of plays ahead. Add in that the typically up-tempo offenses used the no-huddle on just 8.1 percent (Broncos) and 4.8 percent (Patriots) of plays, and their high snaps count becomes more curious.


Week 11 Snaps

2013 Snaps (Avg/Gm)

Opponents (Avg/Gm)


Tampa Bay (49)

San Francisco (59.2)

Houston (57.5)


St. Louis (53)

Dallas (59.3)

New Orleans (59.3)


Oakland (55)

Seattle (61.1)

Carolina (59.8)


NY Jets (55)

Atlanta (61.8)

San Diego (60.5)


Indianapolis (56)

Miami (62.1)

Chicago (62.3)

The Panthers may have been a bottom-third team in snaps per game prior to Week 12, but they demonstrated a willingness and ability to go up-tempo during the opening drive of the second half against a feisty Dolphins’ defense. An 83 yard, 14 play march pulled them within a field goal after they sleep walked through most of the first half. It likely is not the beginning of a trend that will matter in fantasy, but it did demonstrate how an offense seen by many as vanilla is slowly growing more dynamic, along with their much maligned signal caller, Cam Newton. Even though he posted his lowest single game grade of the season (-5.4) by far, he also threw or ran the ball himself on all but two snaps of the 12 play game winning drive late in the fourth quarter.

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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