Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Another Quickie Quarterback Quiz

After three games, Tom Brady leads the NFL in passing yardage by a wide margin, almost 200 yards. But he also leads the league in pass attempts with 133, a pace which would break the single season record for passes thrown of 691 set by none other than Drew Bledsoe in 1994.

Where does Brady's peer among NFL quarterbacks, Aaron Rodgers of the Packers, rank in passes thrown this season?

The answer is 20th. Rodgers has thrown just 91 passes, less than almost every QB who's started all three games for his team. Less than Cam Newton, less than Sam Bradford, the same number as poor Colin Kaepernick. It just seems like more because Rodgers is so good.

If a team isn't passing, it must be running. The Packers have also had 91 rushing plays in three games. They have achieved the perfect balance on offense which used to be considered an NFL ideal. By contrast, the Pats have run the ball 71 times. It is my guess that the increased workload given LaGarrette Blount last Sunday was a demonstration of Bill Belichick's conviction that perhaps his offense, spectacular though it may be, was a little too front loaded on Brady's right arm.

All told, New England has run 25 more plays on offense (that's eight a game) than has Green Bay. The Patriots may have the NFL's most prolific offense. The Packers may have its most efficient. Which is better to have? So far, both.


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