FanPost

Pass Happy League?

We hear so much about the rules favoring the offense (specifically when it comes to passing the ball).  Think back 10 years ago, and if you're like me, you remember the stud runningbacks, the power of the game, and still feel angry at Bill Polian for the pro-pass offensive rule changes to favor the Colts.

However, has the league gone pass happy?  Has the league lost it's balance it still maintained only 10 years ago?  I thought it had, so I started comparing the last 10 years of passing vs rushing stats.  And you know what?  I was wrong.


Passing (Per Game) Rushing (Per Game)
Year Att Comp Yards TD INT Carries Yards TDs
2010 33.7 20.5 221.6 1.5 1 27.1 114.5 0.78
2001 32.6 19.2 205.8 1.3 1.1 27.6 111.8 0.74

 

Not the passing explosion I'd expected.  On average teams are only attempting 1 pass more per game than they did 10 years ago.  The rushing numbers are almost identical.

So why do some (including myself at times) bemoan the death of the running game?  Maybe it's runningback by committee?  Maybe these committees are eating into the main back's carries?

Year 300 Carry Club 15 Carries Per Game Club
2010 7 16
2009 6 20
2008 5 21
2007 6 22
2006 10 28
2005 10 23
2004 9 27
2003 13 21
2002 9 27
2001 10 22

 

I was surprised by the number of backs in the "300 carry club" from 2010.  I didn't think it would only be 3 less than 2001.  The numbers have fallen off since 2001, but since rushing totals (league wide) are the same.  Perhaps this is why we think of the running game falling on hard times.

My last thought was "perhaps the good teams are pass happy".  Maybe since we see and hear more about the pass happy teams we have pass happiness burned into our psyche.


Passing (Per Game) Rushing (Per Game)
Year Att Comp Yards TD INT Carries Yards TDs
2010 33.88 21.13 229.13 1.67 0.84 28.19 117.63 0.83
2001 32.14 19.75 210.52 1.46 0.94 28.81 117.69 0.85

 

Here are only the playoff teams from 2001 and 2010.  Not a huge change - though yardage is up.  However, rushing is just about the same.

So tell me in the comments.  Why do you think most people have the notion the numbers in the running game has gone down?

Also, feel free to answer my poll.  When a quarterback passes 40 times a game what percentage of games will he win?  I was shocked by the answer.

FanPosts do not necessarily reflect the views of the authors of Big Cat Country or SB Nation.

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