Wednesday, October 16, 2013
Chiefs top Texans at disrupting dropbacks
By Tania Ganguli
HOUSTON -- The Kansas City Chiefs have fielded easily the best pass rush in the NFL this season. Their league-high 31 sacks are just the start of the story. They've been especially good with a four-man rush.
With four or fewer rushers, the Chiefs have allowed the lowest QBR of any team in the league and notched sacks at the highest rate of any team in the league -- 11 percent of the time they rush four, they get a sack -- according to ESPN Stats & Information. The Chiefs are getting a sack, interception or pass breakup on one out of every four plays on which they rush four or fewer.
Kansas City also has the highest percentage in the past five years of pressured dropbacks with a four-man rush: opposing quarterbacks are sacked, put under duress or hit while throwing on 35 percent of their dropbacks. The Houston Texans rank fifth on that list, causing pressure on 30 percent of dropbacks.
I had ESPN Stats & Info check the percent of disrupted dropbacks for the Texans this season, game by game. As you can see in the chart, the Texans' defense did its best work disrupting dropbacks against the Seattle Seahawks and San Francisco 49ers, though the 49ers threw only 15 passes. Remember disrupted dropbacks account for sacks, interceptions and pass breakups.
Rams quarterback Sam Bradford didn't have a single dropback disrupted on Sunday. He didn't throw much, either, but was fairly comfortable doing it. Bradford completed 12 of 16 passes for only 117 yards, but he had three touchdowns and a passer rating of 134.6.