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Interesting facts about last year's defense.

this is a discussion within the Saints Community Forum; The Saints TEAM allowed 405 points total last year. That gave the defense an average points allowed of 25.3. But even on NFL.com's site, they let you know all these points didn't come from simply not stopping people. They include ...

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Old 07-05-2005, 10:27 AM   #1
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Interesting facts about last year's defense.

The Saints TEAM allowed 405 points total last year. That gave the defense an average points allowed of 25.3. But even on NFL.com's site, they let you know all these points didn't come from simply not stopping people. They include punt returns and kick returns, as well as the opposing team's defense scoring due to a mistake by our offense. Well, that's not really fair, as the defense has no control over that. So I did some figuring. The Saints OFFENSE gave 21 points directly to the D, 2 fumbles and 1 INT returned for scores. That's 21 points. Take this from the team's average, and that drops it to 24 points allowed even. Compare that to a Minnesota who gave up ZERO points off turnovers by the offense, as well as Indy and the Jets, hell, even Eli and the Giants. But Indy and Minny's defenses are ranked close to ours overall, so i'll stick with them. With no subtraction cause of this number, Indy's defense allowed 21.7 points a game, and Minny's 24.7. Now you could suppose at the rate Peyton was throwing TDs last year, the opposing teams were forced to throw early and often to keep up, allowing Freeney and Co. to tee off on QBs, thus not allowing those teams to play their games, thus lowering their scoring numbers, or not. Either way, we just passed playoff Minny in points allowed, and are not that far off Indy.

Now special teams. Each team allowed either a punt return or a kick return. Take ours out, we go to 23.5. Minny goes to 24.25, and Indy is around 21.4 or 21.5. So just taking those figures out, we shaved two whole points off our points allowed. And although I could, I won't even look into the times our offense gave the opposing team the ball in scoring position. Off top, in the Seattle game week one, a pass was intercepted late in the game that gave Seattle the ball inside their own twenty. Not much the D can do about that. But just sticking with this, 2 poins off our average is significant because our offense only scored 21.8 points per game. That's more than only 3 playoff teams, Atlanta, St. Louis, and the Jets. The closest team above us is Seattle, and they scored 1.4 points more per game than us, and it just gets worse for the better teams. But let's look at some other places our offense got points from. They were given credit for points on 2 kick returns(special teams), one fumble return(defense), a blocked punt(special teams), and a safety(defense), which equals 30 points, assuming all extra points were made. That drops their average to 19.9 points per game. That's 4 Tds and a safety, which was about the norm for every team above us who made the playoffs. Some had 5 additional scores, which would subtract 35 points from them instead of 30 like us, and some had way less, like San D with 1 KR, 1 INT return, and a safety. So top to bottom, we stay about the same. And compared to Minny and Indy, whom I compared our defense to cause they were pretty close, our offense wasn't even in the same league.

Basically, if our offense averaged what playoff team's offenses averaged, we would have easily outscored the points given up by the D, even without taking into account the situations like the Seattle game. I think that would have been enough to win one more game for us, and get us into the playoffs, especially since out D was top 10 in takeaways. Fortunately for us, the front office realized this, and made moves that will concentrate on keeping the offense on the field more, and the defense on the field less so we can realize this turnaround. There is no reason our offense can't be more efficient, and help not only our defense, but the TEAM as a whole with this efficiency. When I think of the changes made on the offensive side of the ball, no lie, I get a little excited. Cause I think if we have the type of offense we are capable of having, we will accomplish big things. Just think about all those first quarters we didn't score, and red zone turnovers which leads to zero points. Subtract those, and we are looking at a possibly winning, and very good team. Geaux Saints.
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Old 07-05-2005, 10:35 AM   #2
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Left out another couple -- You need to consider how many times the offense turned the ball over in our territory -- a fumble inside our own 20 means points also -- how many 3 and outs (a defense gets tired)

But really -- the Saints defense was putrid last year -- I don't care about all of the other things the stat that always killed us was the running game -- you don't let the opponent run for over 200 yards at will --
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Old 07-05-2005, 10:50 AM   #3
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Originally Posted by 4saintspirit
Left out another couple -- You need to consider how many times the offense turned the ball over in our territory -- a fumble inside our own 20 means points also -- how many 3 and outs (a defense gets tired)

But really -- the Saints defense was putrid last year -- I don't care about all of the other things the stat that always killed us was the running game -- you don't let the opponent run for over 200 yards at will --
That's true for Saints, but your first paragraph answered your second paragraph. If our offense is significantly better than 29th in TOP this season, has far less three and outs, and doesn't put the D in untenable situations with mistakes, the defense does not gice up 200 yards rushing. With out offense on the filed more, the opposing team's offense is on the field less. That alone reduces yards and points given up.
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Old 07-05-2005, 12:10 PM   #4
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...yeah and if we scored more points than the other team we win more games to... lol.
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Old 07-05-2005, 01:15 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by Euphoria
...yeah and if we scored more points than the other team we win more games to... lol.
In a nutshell, damn skippy Euph.
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Old 07-05-2005, 02:12 PM   #6
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Those are some interesting stats that show a clear path to improvement. That said, I doubt that these numbers are all that unique to the Saints. I'm guessing a lot of teams gave up points on turnovers or gave the ball up in the red zone, or whatever.
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Old 07-05-2005, 02:19 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by WhoDat
Those are some interesting stats that show a clear path to improvement. That said, I doubt that these numbers are all that unique to the Saints. I'm guessing a lot of teams gave up points on turnovers or gave the ball up in the red zone, or whatever.
The Saints OFFENSE gave 21 points directly to the D, 2 fumbles and 1 INT returned for scores. That's 21 points. Take this from the team's average, and that drops it to 24 points allowed even. Compare that to a Minnesota who gave up ZERO points off turnovers by the offense, as well as Indy and the Jets, hell, even Eli and the Giants. But Indy and Minny's defenses are ranked close to ours overall, so i'll stick with them.
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Old 07-06-2005, 09:16 AM   #8
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I understand that Whodi, and I read your post. All I'm saying is that most teams have a fumble or INT or blocked kick returned for a TD in the course of a 16 game season.

What is your point? That if the offense doesn't create turnovers for scores the defense isn't that bad?... the Saints win more games?... what?

You're correct, those numbers need to change. You know what else, the Saints need to improve their efficiency in the running game too. How many teams do you think are saying the exact same thing right now? We need to limit turnovers and big plays. As I said, it's interesting to see the impact, but it doesn't seem all that revolutionary an idea.

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Old 07-06-2005, 12:41 PM   #9
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Nice analysis Whodi.

I thought it quite insightful.

I guess, I agree, though I suspect for slightly different reasons, improving the offense is definitely a requirement. A good offense is most consistent when its OLine is playing well. I am very excited about our upgrades there.

I think that, beyond the stats, as they say, it is critical we improve our run defense. We simply can't win if the other team can keep the ball as long as they feel like by running on us. I'm not going to do a statistical analysis right now, but consider the games you saw. Teams were able to get running games going on us at will - consider the Arizona game. When this is possible it is very hard to win games.

I guess, I still believe that improving the interior of our defense is THE most critical thing left to do for making strides to the playoffs this year!

"... I was beating them with my eyes the whole game..." - Aaron Brooks :cool:
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Old 07-06-2005, 11:12 PM   #10
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all i no is we were last in defence and .500 8-8 THATS ALL THAT MATTERS IS THE WINS !!!!
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