This Week in Football

Cold, Hard Football Facts for Dec 05, 2008



(Ed. note: Baseball has its TWIB notes while the average CHFF reader made his way through high school and community college thanks to those venerable old Cliffs Notes. In fact, if not for Cliffs Notes, we never would have appreciated the works of Stanley Shakespeare or Edgar Allen Poe, the guy who invented poetry. Now we have our TWIF notes – This Week in Football – our new weekly wrap-up of the best stats, data and facts from the week that was the CHFF. See last week's TWIF notes here.)
 
Our rotund publisher Kerry is a college football junkie, along with a proud Boston College (1992) guy (we're guessing the school does not reciprocate its pride ... but we digress). So we want to give a little shout-out this week to the Boston College football team as it attempts to win the first conference title in school history today against Virginia Tech and go on to the Orange Bowl for the first time since 1943. See our look at Saturday's huge college games here.
 
For a great story about BC quarterback Dominique Davis, thrust into the starting role just two weeks ago, read Bob Albright's piece on Boston's WEEI.com.
 
The 2008 Saints actually pass the ball more effectively (7.89 YPA) than the record-setting 2007 Patriots (7.79 YPA). One problem, though: Passing effectively almost always means a great season – but not this year in New Orleans, as the Saints are a mere 6-6 and in last place in the NFC South.
 
Dallas QB Tony Romo leads the league in passer rating (103.2) and YPA (8.5) this year. More importantly, the team is superior in every way when he plays – as we found out when he missed three games this year.
 
With a likely win over the terrible Bengals Sunday, Dungy will improve to 145-78 (.650) as a head coach (including playoffs) and move past George Seifert into the No. 8 spot on the all-time list of winningest NFL coaches.
 
New England's offense has generated 4.34 yards per attempt each time it runs the ball this year – the greatest output for the organization in 25 years. Give much of the credit to all-purpose superman Kevin Faulk, who averages a career-high 6.1 YPA.
 
Following the Jets' 34-17 loss to the Broncos last week, Brett Favre is 27-48 (.360) over the course of his career when he passes the ball 40 times or more in a game.
 
The Giants beat the Redskins 23-7 last week to secure their No. 1 spot atop our Power Rankings. They sure didn't need controversial, gun-toting receiver Plaxico Burress to get the job done, either, as Eli Manning passed for 305 yards in the win – his first 300-yard effort since Week 6 of the 2007 season.
 
The Bears might want to reconsider the Devin Hester experiment on offense: He scored 11 TDs returning kicks in 2006 and 2007 – but just three TDs this year while being used primarily as a receiver.  
 
Romo averages 8.36 YPA over the course of his career, with 9,673 yards in 1,157 attempts. If he can maintain that pace while reaching the minimum 1,500 attempts needed for official NFL passing records, it would be the third highest average in NFL history, behind only Otto Graham (8.63) and Sid Luckman (8.42). 
 
The 2000 Ravens boasted the stingiest defense of the Live Ball Era, surrendering a mere 10.3 PPG. But even they weren't as good defending the pass as the 2008 Ravens. The 2000 Ravens posted a 62.5 Defensive Passer Rating. This year's club stands at 58.4.

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