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Week 14: Colts Defense by the Numbers

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NFL: Indianapolis Colts at Tampa Bay Buccaneers Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

Each week during the season, I will be walking through the data from the previous Colts game analyzing the numbers to form a sort of “what happened” narrative as well as comparing the Colts against all other teams in the league. For a glossary of the stats listed, reference Stats for the 2019 Season. Thanks to Pro Football Reference, NFL.com and the nflSCrapR project for being awesome sources of weekly data.


There’s not a lot to unpack here. In week 14, the Indianapolis Colts defense let the Tampa Bay Buccaneers offense roll them for most of the game.

Despite 4 turnovers (including a pick 6) the Colts could not stop the Bucs. In fact, on the 8 drives that didn’t end in turnovers, the Buccaneers scored on 6 of them, 5 of them being TDs . . . 5!!!

Just look at that chart. When most of your opponent drives end up deep in your own territory that is a crappy defense, I don’t care how many turnovers you get. Tampa Bay earned 29 first downs on their way to a ridiculous 80.6% Drive Success Rate (DSR) and almost 3 points per drive.

Colts defense, I call gloom, despair and agony on thee.


TEAM TOTALS

Mouseover for definitions: Adj PPD, PPG, Yds, P/R%, DSR, xOPPD, Strt Fld, EPA/ply, wTSR, 1st/ply, Pen 1st/ Yds, 3DC, 3rd ytg, Expl Plys, TO, TOP%
The 25th ranked Adj PPD against nets out 7 points for the pick 6 so it’s not quite as bad as it could have been. I guess.

It’s hard to believe that the DSR against isn’t dead last but 26th place is no real prize either. The per play value (EPA/ply against) was a bit higher at a still awful 21st and the rate % stats of wTSR against and 1st/ply against both ranked 27th showing that Tampa Bay had no problem putting up successful plays and earning first downs.

While the Colts did not give up any first downs via penalty, they did give up 9 explosive plays for 239 yards.

That’s criminal. Do not pass go. Do not collect $200.


PASS TOTALS

Mouseover definitions: EPA/db, wPSR Cmp, Att, Yds, TD, Int, Sk, Sk Y, Rtng, 1st/db, ANY/A, NY/A, YPA, Cmp %, aDOT, aYd/cmp, YAC, 20+ #/Yd
Who knew that Jameis Winston was one of the greatest QBs to ever walk the earth? He had no problem throwing first downs as he racked up 24 of them on 50 dropbacks just shy of the 50% mark which was 4th best on the week (1st/db). Similarly he had no trouble gaining yards as he averaged over 9 yards per pass (NY/A) also ranked 4th best on the week.

Think about that. Every pass he threw, on average, gained 9 yards and every other one was a first down or a TD.

His % of successful plays (wPSR) ranked 7th and his average value per play (EPA/ply) came in 10th. And for a QB who averages almost 3 sacks a game, he was only dropped once in this one.

If this were a cartoon, there would be a giant Jameis Winston shaped hole in the wall of our pass defense.


RUSH TOTALS

Mouseover definitions: wRSR, Yds, Car, TD, Fum Lost, RSR, 1st/c, YPC, 10+ #/Yd, 3rd, 3DC

Ready for the good news? We held them to 75 yards rushing. Have at you!

Limiting the Bucs to a 4th worst EPA per carry and a 10th worst rushing success rate (wRSR) is not much of a consolation but it’s better than a stick in the eye.

Think of it this way. The Colts shut down 1 of 2 phases of their offense.


CONCLUSION AND NEXT MATCH-UP

Mr. Eberflus, after very careful consideration, sir, I’ve come to the conclusion that your new defense system sucks. OK, not really but I wanted to slip in a relevant movie quote and the defense really was awful this week.

No problem, I’m sure week 15 will be a turn-around game. . . <checks schedule> . . . crap. The New Orleans Saints offense is ranked 5th by DVOA, which is un-coincidentally the same ranking as their points per drive (Adj PPD).

Their passing game, led by Drew Brees, who is most definitely not Jameis Winston, ranks 5th in passing DVOA and 5th in average value per dropback (EPA/ply). I’m sensing a pattern here. Fortunately their rushing game is much much worse, ranking only 6th in success rate (wRSR) and all the way down to 9th by DVOA.

I’m going to stop writing now.


SEASON TOTALS

Mouseover for definitions: Adj PPD, PPG, Yds, P/R%, DSR, xOPPD, Strt Fld, EPA/ply, wTSR, 1st/ply, Pen 1st/ Yds, 3DC, 3rd ytg, Expl Plys, TO, TOP%
Mouseover definitions: EPA/db, wPSR Cmp, Att, Yds, TD, Int, Sk, Sk Y, Rtng, 1st/db, ANY/A, NY/A, YPA, Cmp %, aDOT, aYd/cmp, YAC, 20+ #/Yd
Mouseover definitions: wRSR, Yds, Car, TD, Fum Lost, RSR, 1st/c, YPC, 10+ #/Yd, 3rd, 3DC

TRAILING 5 WEEK TOTALS

Mouseover for definitions: Adj PPD, PPG, Yds, P/R%, DSR, xOPPD, Strt Fld, EPA/ply, wTSR, 1st/ply, Pen 1st/ Yds, 3DC, 3rd ytg, Expl Plys, TO, TOP%
Mouseover definitions: EPA/db, wPSR Cmp, Att, Yds, TD, Int, Sk, Sk Y, Rtng, 1st/db, ANY/A, NY/A, YPA, Cmp %, aDOT, aYd/cmp, YAC, 20+ #/Yd
Mouseover definitions: wRSR, Yds, Car, TD, Fum Lost, RSR, 1st/c, YPC, 10+ #/Yd, 3rd, 3DC