Just a precursor, but this post will be long winded. Had to be to...
Originally Posted by KabaModernFan
It's only a myth if you use the law of averages to prove what you're saying kaba, which apparently you have. Defensive football was most definitely not as good last year as previous. The averages may say that, but let's look at how many elite defenses there were versus total suck defenses. The peaks and valleys tell the defensive story, not the average. A larger regression to the mean accounts for the close averages. This is without extrapolation for the loss of manning, or the abnormally high number of rook or 2nd year signal callers. Those extrapolations show in the stats in their reversion to the mean.
An elite defense allows under 5k yards. A garbage defense allows over 6k. There are two watermark data points I will address, '10 vs '11, and pre major rule change vs post major rule changes. The major rule changes began in '09 with the Brady rule, and the defenseless receiver rule. The addition of the spearing/launching rule in '10 and the increased attention to player safety and the increased fines an subsequent suspensions as a result have greatly effected the number of elite defenses, as opposed to garbage defenses. This is before factoring in the new rule about offseason contact. We can assume last year to be similar, since there were no offseason programs. I analyzed '02-'11. A decade of data.
I know offensive philosophy has changed recently, but the stark differences pre and post rule change speak strongly to how the rules shaped the philosophy and the NFL's embrace of pass first systems.
In '10 there were 8 elite defenses and 3 garbage defenses. In '11 there were 5 elite defenses and 6 garbage defenses. The only time in a decade where the elite defenses didn't outnumber the junk ones 3:1 or more sans '09 when it was 2:1. Boatloads of regression to the mean. In one year the garbage defenses doubled and the elite defenses almost halved, based on no offseason contact and the new in season contact rules. you're living in myth world if you think the rules had no effect. Most likely for the first time in HISTORY more teams gave up 6k yards than gave up under 5k yards, and most of the garbage defenses made the playoffs!!!!
This is before I speak about the 7 seasons prior to the rule changes vs the 3 after. It's before we get further and further from live hitting at practice like the new cba states. The further we get from practicing it, the worse it will become. I'll venture to say '11 was the year with the fewest elite defenses and by far the most garbage defenses in the history of the league. I only researched 10 years, but ill bet dollars to donuts there have never been more teams in one season to allow 6k plus yards..
As far as comparing pre vs post rule change defenses, from '02-'08 there were on average 12 defenses that allowed under 5k yards (one under 4k yards '08 steelers ) and on average 1.85 garbage defenses. Post rule changes there have been 6 elite defenses and 4 garbage defenses.
The proof in in the pudding kaba, the cumulative rule changes have halved the elite defenses and doubled the garbage defenses. Hence why your averages seem similar. They aren't, not even close. Elite defensive football has slid into the valley while elite offensive football has peaked. I'm sure offensive trends follow defensive trends. They certainly have to based on your averages. The scary part is in one year so much shifted to the mean. The rules have altered the game greatly, the true extent won't be able to be accurately assessed for a few years. However the one year splits tell a strong story..
Last edited by mikesteelnation1; 04-18-2012 at 03:33 AM.
"If I could start my life all over again, I would be a professional football player, and you damn well better believe I would be a Pittsburgh Steeler." Jack Lambert, 1990 HoF Introduction.