FanPost

Too Much Running Down the Stretch? - Production vs the Patriots

Here's a quick breakdown of the productivity of both the Passing game and the Running game of the Jets, sectioned by quarters - penalties were factored in where they could be. I wanted to see how each attack evolved so a logarithmic trendline is also included. The reason I was seeking these trends is that despite the impression that was made that the Jets somehow were getting stronger and stronger in the run as the game went on - and I think it was a fair impression given Ivory's running style and the obvious commitment the Jets were making - I felt like there were several negative and low-yard runs mixed in with the nice runs, and that it was a serious strategic error to go exclusively to the run late - something that harkened back to many Rex Ryan plays for the field goal instead of trying to aggressively win the game. As it turned out the overtime run attack positioned the Jets for a career-tying long Folk field goal that they were fortunate to have a do-over on, a field goal miss that would have put Brady 20 yards or so from winning it himself. I don't say that turning to the run is a bad idea, but the complete disregard for the pass, in particular play action, really put the game in jeopardy. We took a very low percentage path to victory.

I also find it interesting just to look at how each attack evolved in the game. One is often left with impressions after a game because of the drama, but sometimes it is worth while to look back and see the production. The Jets actually had a pretty good 1st quarter rushing the ball, despite the feeling that we may not have started out strong. It should be noted as well that the Hill PI was really the game-turner in this in terms of passing trends. It can be debated - it was a pretty ticky-tack call, but one can see why it was called by the back judge. But if it had been completed the trendline for the passing game late would have been very different (with a 7.0 average per attempt in the 4th). I really love that Mornhinweg keeps going deep, punishing defenses that creep up. you can see that from the big pass plays in the trendline picture.

Jets_pats_passing_yards_per_play_medium

via s22.postimg.org

Jets_pat_running_yards_per_play_medium

via s16.postimg.org

One can see that the Jets did not finish strong in the 3rd and 4th quarters, despite the nobility of their commitment to the run, which a lot of fans have called for. One can argue that these were tough yards and so a productivity level drop could be expected, but this level of production was league-low type yards per carry numbers. The argument against this kind of "tough yards" notion is two-fold. First is that a few more pass action plays could have made those yards easier. Second is, even if they were tough yards the approach basically put the Jets on a very low-percentage path to victory...Folk hadn't attempted a 50 yard kick this year, and last year he was only 2-5 over 50 yards, and this would have been tied for his longest ever. You can blame this on the offensive line, or on Ivory, or both. In any case it wasn't working.

Here you can see the breakdown of production per play by quarter, pass vs. run:

Jets_pats_passing_vs_running_medium

via s23.postimg.org

Of note, the only quarter where the Jets had a higher Run per play average than pass was in the 3rd. Ivory had a nice 17 yard run, but the running attack numbers were really bolstered by two very good Geno Smith runs. In terms of the 4th quarter, even with the Hill PI the passing game had a (slightly) better yards per play average. The Hill PI would have broken the game open.

Going Into a Shell - Don't Lose it vs Win It

What this is really about was that the Jets went into an offensive shell, and took an extremely conservative approach that by percentages probably should have lost the game, but they very likely did this for fear of a Geno Smith turnover. I wrote about the historical importance of winning the turnover battle with the Patriots (as well as keeping yards per completion down below 10, yards per attempt below 6.6). You can see that here: Turnovers & Short Passes - A Look at the 10 Patriots Games in the Rex Ryan Era. It isn't a bit of brilliant deduction to emphasize the turnover battle, but it is of historical relevance to the Jets and Pats games, as the Pats average very few turnovers (less than one a game vs the Jets). Here really the Allen pick 6 INT saved the game, and evened the turnover battle. It was huge. It could very well be that once they had that level playing field, and faced OT they just did not want to risk giving it up. The "don't lose it" mentality though nearly produced a loss.

Below is the historical data on all 11 Rex Ryan Jet games that I wrote about previously, updated. The Jets held the Patroits to the lowest yards per pass attempt in the the history of the Ryan Era. Statistically it was very much like the first game of the year, minus the turnovers, as well as like the first game of the 2009 season.

Jets_pats_history_pass_yards_and_turnovers_medium

via s21.postimg.org

As always these are hand collected stats and there could be errors.


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