News, Analysis & UpdatesNovember 22, 2004


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Still More Statistical Odds and Ends

By Arlo Vander

Which team hasn’t converted a fourth down? Which quarterback has lost the most fumbles? And what’s up with Tiki “Sure-Hands” Barber? It’s time for another look at stats from around the league!

 
Among players with 20 or more receptions, who picks up the most yards after the catch? None other than running back Onterrio Smith, who has added an average of 11.9 yards after gaining control of the football. Tiki Barber is second at 11.1.

The New York Jets (7-3), Pittsburgh (9-1), Jacksonville (6-4), San Diego (7-3), the New York Giants (5-5) and Atlanta (8-2) have all already exceeded their 2003 win totals.

Detroit’s Eddie Drummond scored his fourth return touchdown this week, a 92-yard kickoff sprint against Minnesota. Drummond needs one more score to tie receiver Roy Williams for the team touchdown lead.

Isaac Bruce may only have three touchdown receptions, but the veteran leads all receivers with 45 first downs.

The only team not to have successfully converted a fourth down this year might surprise you: it’s the Philadelphia Eagles. Apparently, the soaring Eagles offense has no need to take such chances.

Craig Krenzel’s fumble woes continue. The rookie passer dropped two more balls as Chicago fell to Indianapolis. With six so far this year, Krenzel has lost more fumbles than any other quarterback despite playing in only half of his team’s games.

In the Rams’ five wins this year, QB Marc Bulger has been sacked just seven times. In the team’s five defeats, Bulger has fallen to his opponents’ pass rush 24 times. This week, the Bills sacked Bulger a season-high six times. The Rams lost.

Oakland’s Tyrone Wheatley may not have had much success this week against San Diego (42 yards on 12 attempts), but he does have one thing on the Chargers. Two weeks ago, in the first meeting between these two teams, Wheatley broke through for an 18-yard gain, the longest run against San Diego’s defense this season. Every other franchise has allowed rushes of at least 21 yards, and nearly half (15) have given up gains of 50 yards or more.

Miami’s defense is tops against the pass (152.8 yards per game), but ranked only 30th against the run (142.6 yards per game).

In his first career start, Eli Manning completed 17 of 37 passes for a total of 162 yards and a touchdown. He also threw two interceptions.

Speaking of debuts, former third baseman Drew Henson completed all six of his attempts on Sunday, passing for 47 yards and a score. Henson’s QB rating for the day was 138.9. Obviously, six passes do not a quarterback make, but at least his presence behind center made garbage time more interesting. Henson also fumbled once.

Who says cornerbacks can’t be a consistent source of tackles in IDP leagues? Minnesota’s Antoine Winfield now has 66 solo stops, tied with linebackers Danny Clark and Earl Holmes for sixth in the league. Miami’s Zach Thomas leads with a remarkable 93 after recording eight more stops this week.

Tiki Barber Imposter Watch: ten games, no fumbles lost.

Somewhat surprisingly, Green Bay is the only team with a winning record that hasn’t won more than half of its home games. The Packers are 2-3 in Green Bay; no other team with a record above .500 except Jacksonville (3-2) has dropped more than one game at home. It will be interesting to see whether Lambeau’s mystique returns come playoff time.

After Shaun Alexander had become the first player to break the 1000-yard barrier this year, three more backs followed suit this week: Edgerrin James (1081), Curtis Martin (1072) and Tiki Barber (1035).

Peyton Manning has thrown 214 completions this season, the fourth-highest total in the league. However, the Indianapolis defense has allowed opponents to complete 245 passes, the most in the NFL. Manning himself might be more to blame for that figure than the Colts’ secondary, however: with the offense scoring a whopping 33.9 points per game, opponents have little choice but to air it out.

 
Arlo Vander wishes Isaac Bruce’s first downs were worth points in his fantasy league’s scoring format.

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