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Cold Hard Football Facts.com gives SD a blueprint for VICTORY !!!!

Discussion in 'Chargers Fan Forum' started by PhilipRivers#1, Jan 17, 2008.

  1. PhilipRivers#1

    PhilipRivers#1 BoltTalker

    Mar 14, 2006
    Read this Charger fans and BELIEVE !!!! :bolt:

    SD's baby-blueprint for victory
    Cold, Hard Football Facts for January 17, 2008

    (Ed. Note: the author and Chief Troll will join Dennis & Callahan on WEEI 850 AM in Boston Friday at 7:20 a.m. to discuss San Diego’s blueprint to beat New England.)

    By Kerry J. Byrne
    Cold, Hard Football Facts Mike Brady wanna-be

    New England’s opponents this year – not to mention the pigskin “pundits” – have turned into amateur architects over the past few months, searching for the proverbial blueprint to beat the Patriots.

    So far the effort has gone as well as O.J.’s quest for the real killers.

    The best any team has been able to produce is a blueprint for remaining competitive midway through the fourth quarter. And that blueprint makes for a rickety row-house on Victory Lane.

    The best the “pundits” have produced are a list of meaningless and misguided clichés about “aging” linebackers or a “vulnerable” defense. And that argument is imploded by the dynamite of actual evidence. The Patriots, for example, surrendered 288.3 YPG this season, the fewest by a New England team since 1979, while giving up just 8.4 second-half points per game (despite surrendering a lot of garbage-time points while sporting large second-half leads).

    But leave it to the I.M. Pei of pigskin, the Cold, Hard Football Facts, to secure the necessary blueprints for beating New England.

    The blueprint we uncovered tells us that if any team can complete the job, it’s the Chargers. Let’s call it San Diego’s baby-blueprint to beat New England, in honor of the pigskin-pastel of their alternative togs.

    Despite their slow start, the Chargers proved to be one of the most statistically dominant teams in the NFL this year. If you size them up across the board in our Quality Stats, only New England and Green Bay were stronger, and the margin between the three was so slim that O.J.’s buddies use it to jimmy open doors in Vegas hotel rooms.

    -The Patriots ranked an average of 4.44 in our nine Quality Stats
    -The Packers ranked an average of 4.56 in our nine Quality Stats
    -The Chargers ranked an average of 4.67 in our nine Quality Stats
    -The Chargers topped the entire NFL in three of our nine Quality Stats. Only New England itself led the league in more categories (four).

    San Diego’s statistical dominance offers us a pretty definitive guide to why the Chargers can beat the Patriots. We didn’t say will beat the Patriots; we said can beat the Patriots.

    And, certainly, the injuries to key San Diego players Philip Rivers, Antonio Gates and LaDainian Tomlinson (none of whom practiced Wednesday), can shatter the best-laid plans. But if the Chargers do win, only the Cold, Hard Football Facts will have outlined the pattern ahead of time.

    Baby-blueprint: San Diego boasts the best pass defense in football
    The Cold, Hard Football Facts measure pass defenses by Defensive Passer Rating, a “Quality Stat” because it has a direct correlation to winning football games: the top 11 teams in Defensive Passer Rating this year all reached the playoffs.

    And the Chargers topped the list, allowing opposing passers a 70.0 rating this year. Their capabilities were most evident in their league-leading 30 picks, eight more than any other team in football. The 2007 Chargers are the first team in franchise history to lead the league in either category, let alone both.

    The Cold, Hard Football Facts have proven time and again the devestating effect of interceptions in the playoffs. Teams that throw 0 INTs have won 78.6 of their playoff games in the Super Bowl Era. Teams that throw two or more picks in the playoffs win just 23.5 percent of the time.

    We’ve yet to see anybody truly shutdown Tom Brady’s passing attack this year. And, of course, he absolutely shredded San Diego in their first meeting back in Week 2:
    25 of 31 (80.6%) for 279 yards, 9.0 YPA, 3 TD, 1 INT, 123.0 passer rating.
    But these lightning Bolts need only strike once. And if any team in football this year has a shot at humbling New England’s historic attack, it’s San Diego.

    Baby-blueprint: San Diego is the top Big Play team in football
    The Cold, Hard Football Facts measure each team in its ability to make “Big Plays” on both sides of the ball.

    Most NFL contests are wars of attrition in which one or two Big Plays typically prove the difference between victory and defeat (our definition of “Big Plays” can be found here). Our Big Play Index is a hugely important indicator with a high correlation to winning football games.

    Teams that won the Big Play battle this year were a remarkable 180-34 (.841). (Forty-two games featured an even Big Play battle.)

    The "pundits," of course, once again fail to understand even the most basic concepts of football, such as the omnipotence of Big Plays in the NFL. Their "blueprints" to beat New England typically call for teams to "grind out" those "long drives" and "eat the clock." Not only do these arguments represent lazy, cliche-riddled work, it's the equivalent of calling for a Pickett's Charge of pigskin: ordering an under-equipped army to launch a full front assault over exposed territory against a larger enemy force in an entrenched position.

    In other words, the plan preferred by the "pundits" is pure suicide. Their "blueprint" calls for outmanned teams to overpower the Patriots in a war of attrition. Stupid "pundits."

    Instead, the baby-blueprint to beat New England calls for gridiron guerilla warfare, a series of quick, unforeseen (and, yes, even lucky) strikes in the Big Play department: the team that beats New England will strike quickly with Big Plays, and at times and places you could not predict.

    And no team was better in the Big Play wars this year than San Diego. The Chargers led the league in the number of Big Plays they made (69), eight more than second-place Minnesota. More importantly, the Chargers led the league in Big Play differential (+29), two ahead of second place New England.

    All those interceptions, long runs and explosive special teams plays add up to a lot of game-winning moments for the Chargers.

    But the Patriots certainly pose a difficult Big Play challenge. They allowed just 28 Big Plays, fewest in the NFL this year.

    Baby-blueprint: San Diego is the most efficient team in football
    The Cold, Hard Football Facts measure the efficiency of each team’s offense and defense through our Scoreability and Bendability Indices. These Quality Stats have a high correlation to victory because they do not measure offenses and defenses in a vacuum. Instead, they measure how each unit on a team interacts to 1) put points on the board or 2) keep opponents off the scoreboard.

    In other words, they are measures of team-wide efficiency.

    And no team rated more highly than the Chargers: they defined the “bend-but-don’t break” phenomenon on defense this year, with a No. 1 ranking in our Bendability Index. And they were second only to New England in our Scoreability Index. (It's actually quite a tribute to the widely-criticized Norv Turner that his team played so efficiently in 2007; poorly coached teams never rate highly in these indicators.)

    The San Diego defense this year forced opponents to march 18.04 Yards Per Point Scored, or the equivalent of a daunting 126.3 yards for every 7 points they put on the board. It tells us that opponents churned up a lot of empty yards against the Chargers.

    The 30 INTs were certainly a big reason why. And the win over Indy last week provided a perfect example of this “bend-don’t-break” efficiency: the Colts cranked out 446 yards of offense, including 402 in the air. But they produced a measly 24 points – a pathetic number relative to the yards they generated. Two red-zone picks by San Diego were a big reason for Indy's lack of efficiency on offense.

    The San Diego offense, meanwhile, was highly efficient throughout the year. The Chargers needed just 12.24 Yards Per Point Scored in 2007, or the equivalent 85.7 yards for every 7 points they put on the board. It tells us that the Chargers often find themselves in good scoring position, and then take advantage of those opportunities.

    And we don’t want to get any of those “yeah, but” emails that these arguments about scoring efficiency always generate. Yes, special teams and defense have played a large role in San Diego’s scoring opportunities. Yes, we understand that argument. Yes, we understand that other teams were more spectacular on offense, if you compare only the production of those individual offenses.

    But that’s the point, folks. The scoreboard does not care where the points come from. The scoreboad does not care that a big kick return gave the offense a short field. The scoreboard does not care if points came off a pick-six instead of a long offensive drive. The scoreboard is a truly egalitarian place: it treats all points equally. And so should football fans.

    San Diego’s ability to score efficiently, paired with the most efficient defense in football this year – the one defense that makes opponents work harder than any other to put points on the board – spell out one very dangerous team.

    It's a team that clearly offers a blueprint to topple the Patriots powerhouse.

    Click the link to read the rest of the story....

  2. LightningStrikes

    LightningStrikes Well-Known Member

    Apr 6, 2006
    Great read PR#1. Thanks for posting it. :tup:
  3. Electric Chair

    Electric Chair Well-Known Member

    May 23, 2006
    These guys are huge Pats Fans that started this statistical analysis after the Rams lost to the Pats in Super Bowl ???? to try and figure out how the Pats won. Great read, and it started the butterflies churning while reading it.

    We are going to win this game with our D.
  4. RM24

    RM24 BoltTalker

    Jul 27, 2007
    Nice read PR#1. I was just discussing this topic with another hard core Charger buddy of mine this morning. If the guys can make a play when their number is called, LT, VJ, Gates, Rivers, Chambers or even an unlikely player like Naanee, Sproles, Volek, Manu, etc., then we have a chance. Making plays and executing when your number is called is the bottom line. I think we have a chance if we don't shoot ourselves in the foot (turnovers). That team in week 2 better not show up, and don't think they will. We can do this!
  5. chargrgrl55

    chargrgrl55 BoltTalker

    Jan 15, 2008
    This makes me all squishy inside....

    I am on pins and needles waiting for this game....ARRGHHHHHH!!!

    Nothing a couple Blue Moons :icon_party: won't fix in the mean time...

    ACK!!!.... The wait is killing me.....:icon_eyes:
  6. AnteaterCharger

    AnteaterCharger Calibrating Bolttalk, Podcast by Podcast Staff Member Super Moderator Podcaster

    Jan 19, 2006
    interesting ideas and I do agree with him in many regards but we need long drives against the Patriots for no other reason then to wear out their older LBs and wear down their front three.
  7. boltssbbound

    boltssbbound Well-Known Member

    Jun 16, 2006
    As he said in the article, the fact that the Pats defense has allowed less than 9 pts per second half would suggest that their linebackers don't wear down as the game wears on.

    Whether we score on a 1 play, 80 yard drive or on a 12 play, 80 yard drive, we just need to score.
  8. Electric Chair

    Electric Chair Well-Known Member

    May 23, 2006
    He statistically shot that one down. We need to take what is given to us and not be afraid to go downfield should the opportunity present itself.
  9. Buck Melanoma

    Buck Melanoma Guest

    I think that NE's LBs haven't been worn out is because very few teams have taken it to them the way that we're capable of doing. We have many weapons & a LOT of speed. LT/Sproles/MT is a pretty damn good 1-2-3 punch at RB. Large TE's combined with a mix of WR types, all with good speed.

    Weddle draws Welker for the most part, IMO. He's just the type of player who can handle him in coverage & is a sure tackler. Wilhelm & Coop need to make any receiver coming across the middle pay for it. I predict we'll smack Moss around a bit & he'll fold like the sad sacko'**** that he really is. Brady? Get in his face, get your hands up, disrupt his vision & passing lanes. Shaun & Shawne - meat's back on the menu, boys!! :icon_twisted:

    And let's not forget our "secret" weapon - Scifres. Play the ball position/time of possession game. Keep Brady off the field and/or having to drive the length of the field.

    Kaeding - no wide rights (or lefts)!! :no:

    Let's do this thing!! :bolt:
  10. Retired Catholic

    Retired Catholic BoltTalker

    Aug 3, 2006
    The Chargers have been able to get down field on just about everyone. We have mauled just about everyone we played in the second half of the season. We have worn down O Lines and D Line and been dominant in the last quarter and a half. We have done that against both 4-3 and 3-4 defenses and we have shut down running attacks with the exception of the wild anal hair named Adrian Peterson. I think it would be a mistake to get out of character on the defensive side of the ball. Once the players began adapting themselves to Cotrell's schemes and he acclimated himself to the players we solved all the offenses we faced, even when we weren't at our best. On offense, Chambers, VJ, even an injured Gates and the supporting cast that shuffled in and out found a way to get open for Rivers and then moved to the balls he threw, dropping very few. LT, Turner and Sproles have teamed up to get the running yardage we needed to keep people off balance. When I look at the Chargers, I'm reminded of Mongo. All I want to see is us hitting these prima donnas between the runnin' lights. The Pats only advantage right now is that Brady is healthier than Rivers. Well, for me it comes down to one thing. Change that.
  11. Buck Melanoma

    Buck Melanoma Guest

    Love the Mondo reference, RC!! :icon_rofl:

    Seriously - let's just go out & play mistake-free Charger football. Hit 'em right in the pie-hole & keep it up until the 60 minutes are over.

    Go Bolts!! :bolt: This Sunday may be your biggest game ever. No time for a let-down or stupid mistakes. :no:

    Win or go home.

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