3rd Down Offense: NFL Version

A couple weeks ago I took a look at how well the Colts did in situational 3rd down offense, and it was the complete opposite of the defense.  I wanted to find out just how good the offense was at converting 3rd downs.  Here's what I found:

  Colts
Run Pass Total
Short (≤ 3) 10
2
2
Middle (4 - 7) 24(T)
10
9
Long (8+) 23
1(T)
1
Total 4
1
1

The table shows where the Colts rank in each of the situations.  Some points on the Colts before getting to the entire NFL:

  • There's lots of single digits in that table, which is a very welcome sight.
  • Even though it certainly seemed like the Colts couldn't convert a 3rd and short run, they finished 10th in the league (70.3%).  Overall in short yardage, they were 2nd in the league, only bested by the Seahawks (?!).
  • That is not a typo, the Colts were 4th best converting on 3rd down runs.  I guess the OL got it together when they needed to, more than we thought.  That, or everyone else tried way too many runs on 3rd and Middle/Long.
  • The Colts were best in the league at converting on 3rd and long (like I thought they would be), and best in the league converting on passes.  You think that Manning guy had anything to do with that?

The table with all the stats are after the jump (sort them by clicking on the column headers), but I'll draw some conclusions here league wide:

  • The best team at converting 3rd and short runs?  The 0-16 Lions.  At 82.4%, they were best in the league.  The other interesting thing about this situation is the Titans finished 14th, and the Giants finished 18th, much lower than expected. 
  • On 3rd and Middle, the team with the fewest rush attempts?  The Steelers.  That is very surprising, and should be noted going into this weekend's game.  Impress your friends when they don't run the ball in this situation.
  • I mentioned in my last article that I thought the Colts easily would have had the best 3rd and long pass conversion percentage, but I was wrong.  The Patriots actually had the exact same percentage (27/70).  Interestingly enough, the 3rd best team?  Matt Ryan and the Falcons.  Never would have expected that.
  • 3 of the 4 teams that played in the Championship games finished in the top 5 of most 3rd down attempts (Ravens, Steelers, and Eagles).
  • While the Colts destroyed every other team in 3rd down conversions (50.2%), the Saints and Patriots finished very close to each other for 2nd and 3rd (43.6% and 43.2%).

I'm going to attempt to look at past years' data to see how well this year's Colts team did over teams from the previous 5-6 years.  The offense was extremely good on 3rd down this season.  It just sucks that on the biggest 3rd down of the season they couldn't convert.  I guess those are the breaks.

Short (≤ 3) Middle (4 - 7) Long (8+)
Run Pass Run Pass Run Pass
Cvt Att Pct Cvt Att Pct Cvt Att Pct Cvt Att Pct Cvt Att Pct Cvt Att Pct
49ers 11 21 0.524 18 36 0.500 1 4 0.250 28 62 0.452 1 10 0.100 16 65 0.246
Bears 20 31 0.645 9 26 0.346 6 15 0.400 31 75 0.413 0 9 0.000 12 63 0.190
Bengals 11 23 0.478 27 55 0.491 2 6 0.333 25 60 0.417 0 6 0.000 17 86 0.198
Bills 19 29 0.655 17 31 0.548 6 20 0.300 26 49 0.531 2 10 0.200 11 64 0.172
Broncos 24 32 0.750 19 37 0.514 3 6 0.500 26 48 0.542 0 10 0.000 23 67 0.343
Browns 16 23 0.696 12 24 0.500 4 10 0.400 32 75 0.427 0 3 0.000 8 77 0.104
Buccaneers 18 32 0.563 18 39 0.462 0 8 0.000 30 60 0.500 2 13 0.154 20 77 0.260
Cardinals 9 17 0.529 22 34 0.647 2 7 0.286 29 61 0.475 1 12 0.083 20 67 0.299
Chargers 20 27 0.741 16 30 0.533 2 7 0.286 30 58 0.517 0 5 0.000 21 67 0.313
Chiefs 18 28 0.643 18 38 0.474 5 11 0.455 24 54 0.444 3 8 0.375 14 75 0.187
Colts 26 37 0.703 22 33 0.667 1 5 0.200 25 52 0.481 0 4 0.000 27 70 0.386
Cowboys 18 27 0.667 13 28 0.464 3 8 0.375 29 49 0.592 1 6 0.167 27 94 0.287
Dolphins 19 29 0.655 21 38 0.553 0 10 0.000 19 45 0.422 0 8 0.000 12 62 0.194
Eagles 16 27 0.593 24 41 0.585 3 7 0.429 28 66 0.424 0 6 0.000 22 78 0.282
Falcons 25 34 0.735 9 17 0.529 2 5 0.400 28 71 0.394 1 11 0.091 30 80 0.375
Giants 20 31 0.645 14 22 0.636 1 6 0.167 26 65 0.400 0 7 0.000 26 72 0.361
Jaguars 25 35 0.714 15 30 0.500 3 8 0.375 24 55 0.436 0 2 0.000 20 83 0.241
Jets 11 18 0.611 20 42 0.476 3 10 0.300 29 61 0.475 1 5 0.200 17 61 0.279
Lions 14 17 0.824 12 24 0.500 2 4 0.500 15 63 0.238 0 5 0.000 16 92 0.174
Packers 22 27 0.815 17 34 0.500 4 9 0.444 41 74 0.554 1 8 0.125 14 72 0.194
Panthers 20 27 0.741 10 21 0.476 5 15 0.333 25 59 0.424 3 17 0.176 14 57 0.246
Patriots 30 47 0.638 19 32 0.594 1 8 0.125 18 51 0.353 1 14 0.071 27 70 0.386
Raiders 18 31 0.581 14 29 0.483 5 15 0.333 14 54 0.259 3 19 0.158 7 66 0.106
Rams 16 25 0.640 13 31 0.419 1 4 0.250 21 63 0.333 0 10 0.000 18 83 0.217
Ravens 30 38 0.789 10 21 0.476 2 8 0.250 26 64 0.406 4 17 0.235 23 84 0.274
Redskins 18 30 0.600 8 23 0.348 1 6 0.167 25 63 0.397 2 10 0.200 22 84 0.262
Saints 24 37 0.649 21 33 0.636 1 3 0.333 28 56 0.500 1 7 0.143 22 64 0.344
Seahawks 18 26 0.692 15 21 0.714 6 15 0.400 12 45 0.267 1 18 0.056 10 73 0.137
Steelers 16 25 0.640 18 39 0.462 0 2 0.000 31 64 0.484 0 3 0.000 27 91 0.297
Texans 23 34 0.676 16 32 0.500 1 5 0.200 24 48 0.500 3 13 0.231 16 65 0.246
Titans 21 32 0.656 15 35 0.429 4 16 0.250 20 49 0.408 3 17 0.176 15 67 0.224
Vikings 25 35 0.714 13 25 0.520 1 5 0.200 32 69 0.464 2 16 0.125 13 68 0.191

 

Run Pass Short (≤ 3) Middle (4 - 7) Long (8+) Total
Cvt Att Pct Cvt Att Pct Cvt Att Pct Cvt Att Pct Cvt Att Pct Cvt Att Pct
49ers 13 35 0.371 62 163 0.380 29 57 0.509 29 66 0.439 17 75 0.227 75 198 0.379
Bears 26 55 0.473 52 164 0.317 29 57 0.509 37 90 0.411 12 72 0.167 78 219 0.356
Bengals 13 35 0.371 69 201 0.343 38 78 0.487 27 66 0.409 17 92 0.185 82 236 0.347
Bills 27 59 0.458 54 144 0.375 36 60 0.600 32 69 0.464 13 74 0.176 81 203 0.399
Broncos 27 48 0.563 68 152 0.447 43 69 0.623 29 54 0.537 23 77 0.299 95 200 0.475
Browns 20 36 0.556 52 176 0.295 28 47 0.596 36 85 0.424 8 80 0.100 72 212 0.340
Buccaneers 20 53 0.377 68 176 0.386 36 71 0.507 30 68 0.441 22 90 0.244 88 229 0.384
Cardinals 12 36 0.333 71 162 0.438 31 51 0.608 31 68 0.456 21 79 0.266 83 198 0.419
Chargers 22 39 0.564 67 155 0.432 36 57 0.632 32 65 0.492 21 72 0.292 89 194 0.459
Chiefs 26 47 0.553 56 167 0.335 36 66 0.545 29 65 0.446 17 83 0.205 82 214 0.383
Colts 27 46 0.587 74 155 0.477 48 70 0.686 26 57 0.456 27 74 0.365 101 201 0.502
Cowboys 22 41 0.537 69 171 0.404 31 55 0.564 32 57 0.561 28 100 0.280 91 212 0.429
Dolphins 19 47 0.404 52 145 0.359 40 67 0.597 19 55 0.345 12 70 0.171 71 192 0.370
Eagles 19 40 0.475 74 185 0.400 40 68 0.588 31 73 0.425 22 84 0.262 93 225 0.413
Falcons 28 50 0.560 67 168 0.399 34 51 0.667 30 76 0.395 31 91 0.341 95 218 0.436
Giants 21 44 0.477 66 159 0.415 34 53 0.642 27 71 0.380 26 79 0.329 87 203 0.429
Jaguars 28 45 0.622 59 168 0.351 40 65 0.615 27 63 0.429 20 85 0.235 87 213 0.408
Jets 15 33 0.455 66 164 0.402 31 60 0.517 32 71 0.451 18 66 0.273 81 197 0.411
Lions 16 26 0.615 43 179 0.240 26 41 0.634 17 67 0.254 16 97 0.165 59 205 0.288
Packers 27 44 0.614 72 180 0.400 39 61 0.639 45 83 0.542 15 80 0.188 99 224 0.442
Panthers 28 59 0.475 49 137 0.358 30 48 0.625 30 74 0.405 17 74 0.230 77 196 0.393
Patriots 32 69 0.464 64 153 0.418 49 79 0.620 19 59 0.322 28 84 0.333 96 222 0.432
Raiders 26 65 0.400 35 149 0.235 32 60 0.533 19 69 0.275 10 85 0.118 61 214 0.285
Rams 17 39 0.436 52 177 0.294 29 56 0.518 22 67 0.328 18 93 0.194 69 216 0.319
Ravens 36 63 0.571 59 169 0.349 40 59 0.678 28 72 0.389 27 101 0.267 95 232 0.409
Redskins 21 46 0.457 55 170 0.324 26 53 0.491 26 69 0.377 24 94 0.255 76 216 0.352
Saints 26 47 0.553 71 153 0.464 45 70 0.643 29 59 0.492 23 71 0.324 97 200 0.485
Seahawks 25 59 0.424 37 139 0.266 33 47 0.702 18 60 0.300 11 91 0.121 62 198 0.313
Steelers 16 30 0.533 76 194 0.392 34 64 0.531 31 66 0.470 27 94 0.287 92 224 0.411
Texans 27 52 0.519 56 145 0.386 39 66 0.591 25 53 0.472 19 78 0.244 83 197 0.421
Titans 28 65 0.431 50 151 0.331 36 67 0.537 24 65 0.369 18 84 0.214 78 216 0.361
Vikings 28 56 0.500 58 162 0.358 38 60 0.633 33 74 0.446 15 84 0.179 86 218 0.394
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