Link: How time in the pocket affects pass blocking stats

Here’s a fascinating study from the guys over at Pro Football Focus, directly addressing one of the admitted potential flaws in their pass protection data:

If a team’s offensive philosophy was to throw screens and quick slants every pass play, then it would make life for the offensive linemen relatively easy.

If that was the philosophy, we could see that the team’s linemen never allow pressure over the entire season. On the other hand, if the quarterback decided to hold onto the ball for four seconds every play, then even the best offensive linemen would allow pressure on a somewhat consistent basis.

Having factored this in, they run the numbers again, giving an insight into which pass blockers would have had even better numbers if their quarterback play or offensive gameplan had dictated getting rid of the ball a lot sooner. You’ll note that Willie Colon and Nick Mangold are both in among the leaders at their respective positions.

Read Bent’s thoughts after the jump.

Bent, TheJetsBlog.com

As noted, this is a really interesting study and well explained in the article.

I really hope they take this to the next stage and investigate some of the players who struggled to see how using these filters would affect the data at the other end of the spectrum. I’d also be interested to see similar data for pass rushers, especially in light of the fact that some teams were avoiding pressure against the Jets by getting rid of the ball earlier than usual.

It’s not a surprise to see Mangold and Colon grading out well in this area and this gives me an ideal excuse to share my epic Willie Colon triple pass block gif:

In 2014, the Jets will be hoping for more consistent pass blocking from the left guard and, if they get it, the interior pass protection will be in excellent shape.




35 comments
Pat d
Pat d

There are so many variables in football. It's not like baseball. In football the stats don't tell the whole story. Yet people continually quote them like they are gospel.

Bent
Bent moderator

The discussion below (great job everyone by the way) reminds me of when I did this BGA post, looking at a simple play and then focusing on each person's role one at a time.  


http://thejetsblog.com/bga/bga-one-by-one-the-running-game/


Maybe I should find another interesting play (on defense?) to do another post of this type at some point.

a57se
a57se

That was a pretty impressive line stunt by TB and the Jets blocked it really well though they did get close to Geno.

WW85
WW85

Awesome stat. Colon is very under appreciated. 

Brendan
Brendan

Interesting read. I like that it highlights just how good Colon is on passes where the QB sticks to the program. Also, epic gif is epic. 

Bent
Bent moderator

@Pat d  Well, this is a step in the right direction, no?  They've identified a factor that could affect the numbers and then taken that into account to improve the stats.


As the linked PFF article says, you should never take these metrics as gospel as there's no substitute for watching every play to form your opinions.


In the wrong hands, data like this is ripe for misinterpretation...but in the right hands, it can be very informative because it's data that simply wasn't available as recently as a couple of years ago.

a57se
a57se

@Bent  

Oh, the Vlad pancake on the first run play!!

Gonna miss Vlad.

Brendan
Brendan

@Bent  Yes!


I could talk about this stuff all day. And somehow 57 and I can disagree about it while still being civil. Madness!

Bent
Bent moderator

@a57se  That pass was completed too IIRC.  Great job by the line.

bobbyj
bobbyj

I don't under appreciate Colon, it's just w/a torn bicep at his age I do wonder how much more u can attempt to squeeze out of him

juunit
juunit

@WW85  

His penalties don't help people's perception of him. 

williamg1
williamg1

@Brendan @Bent  You guys won't keep it civil for long. You two have a special relationship (not a bad thing, either, as discourse makes this more fun). 

a57se
a57se

@Bent @a57se 

Yup.....Vlad had a tough block here because it looks like Brick actually gets in his way a little bit and that lets McCoy get the leverage to turn the corner......

WW85
WW85

@Brendan Also shows that Mangold may not be the #1 center in the NFL anymore, but he's still top 5 probably. The Colon side really blew me away though.

Brendan
Brendan

@a57se Right, which brings us back to "the line blocked that play perfectly, if Geno got sacked it would have been his own fault for holding onto the ball." 


Luckily, this was Good Geno that day. Bad Geno probably takes a sack there, if I'm being honest. 

a57se
a57se

@Brendan @a57se 

No i wouldn't count McCoy as getting a pressure there though if Geno hung onto the ball a split second more.....

Brendan
Brendan

@a57se He got blocked and then flailed at Geno as he released it. Would you count what McCoy did as a pressure? 


That play is designed to get McCoy a single-block with the extra blitzer, so the fact that he got nowhere near Geno until after he released it tells me he didn't do what the play was designed to do (get McCoy single-blocked to create pressure). 


We agree on Mangold/Colon, though. That's just a beautiful two-man game right there. I'd like to see how that stunt works with Winters, so we can get the opposite end of the spectrum and see just how far Winters has to come. 

a57se
a57se

@brendan @a57se 

Oh and Mangold just moves the 2nd guy Colon is blocking (DE)  like he is on roller skates............you look at the lateral movement of COlon and Mangold on that play and it is really impressive.

a57se
a57se

@Brendan @a57se 

I agree but McCoy played it really well, just a testament to how good he actually is.....

Brendan
Brendan

@a57se You guys, that's how you execute pass blocking as a unit, across the board. Without knowing the line calls, I'd say Brick stepped in to help Vlad against McCoy, then when he saw the delayed rusher he broke off to pick him up. At that point, if he surrenders a sack it's on Geno, not Vlad. 


Turning the corner on a G after 3 seconds is not exactly winning the battle from the pass rushing standpoint. 

a57se
a57se

@williamg1 @a57se

I don't see Vlad slowing down any, he was beat on the outside and did what he could to slow down McCoy without holding him.

williamg1
williamg1

@a57se @Bent  Vlad sort of slows down at the end, though. He could have provided a little better effort at the end. 

reprocity
reprocity

@Brendan @a57se I agree the pass protection was perfect on this play. A stunt with a blitz and Geno had time and didn't even get touched! This isn't Madden, ALL pockets collapse at some rate...

Brendan
Brendan

@a57se Brick did exactly what he's supposed to do. Slowed McCoy's progress while keeping his eye on the edge, recognized the delayed blitzed and stepped out on it after one last shove of McCoy. Vlad stopped moving his feet and had to recover as Brick jumped out. 


I agree it wasn't as clean as the perfect play of Colon/Mangold, but it was well done from Brick's perspective and considering the opponent the fact that Vlad stayed with it and finished the play is a positive. Too bad Vlad didn't get to play the full year, I still go back to this game and his play against McCoy and wonder what could have been. 

a57se
a57se

@Brendan @a57se 

I think his 'play' was designed to go that way.....only Mangold was all over the DE coming around and he and Colon were masterful in stopping the game TB played on the right.

Brick and Vlad weren't as clean on the left as Brick got a little too close to Vlad which allowed McCoy to get Vlads' outside shoulder.

Brendan
Brendan

@a57se It's weird seeing you laud McCoy's play, when he basically took himself out of the play with his pass rushing angle and only "turned the corner" and got leverage on Vlad after he was a good 5 yards away from Geno, who was already stepping in to throw. That's near-perfect pass pro from the OL on a tough stunt, with an extra blitzer thrown in at the end. 

a57se
a57se

@williamg1 @a57se

Howards man was a decoy on the play....his job is to get Colon to bite long enough for the end to come around then get out of the way as the other DE swings in behind them. Colon and Mangold worked beautifully together.

Brick was helping Vlad but then released to take on the 5th pass rusher but McCoy played it beautifully to get into position to have outside leverage on Vlad when Brick would have to leave the double team.

williamg1
williamg1

@jetlife @WW85 @Brendan  Colon's health really concerns me. His injury has made it impossible to do much offseason weight training, and that training is needed to prevent injury. Especially for vets. And especially with a vet that has a history of injuries. We really need to have someone ready to step in at RG should Colon go down. 

a57se
a57se

@Brendan @WW85 

Mangold wasn't babysitting in this game, that is Ducasse at LG......

Brendan
Brendan

@WW85 And when you take into account that Mangold was babysitting the entire time, it's solidifies the fact that he is still an elite player. 

jetlife
jetlife

@WW85 @Brendan  Completely agree...I think it is worth noting, however, that was from Week 1. Colon's issues mostly lie in sustainability and health over the course of the season.