Wednesday, October 13, 2010
The below chart shows the correlation between NFL Yardage production and a teams win percentage. The X axis (left/right) shows how many yards above or below the league average a team gives up on defense. The Y axis (top/bottom) shows how many yards above or below the league average a team gains on offense. The size of the circle equates to the teams win percentage. So a black dot is someone who is 0-5 while a large circle is 4-1 or 3-1.
So what is this telling you? First it's telling you that clearly moving the ball isn't everything. The San Diego Chargers sit on their own island when it comes to yardage. The Chargers rank 2nd in the NFL in defensive yards per game and 1st in the NFL, by a wide margin, in offensive yards per game, yet, even with these stats, the Chargers are just 2-3. Meanwhile teams like New England and Tampa Bay are winning in spite of their yardage totals. The Pats are being outgained by an average of 40 yards per game. The Bucs are currently below the league average in both Offensive and Defensive Yardage. Both of these teams sit at 3-1 thanks to things like turnovers and special teams.