Tuesday, April 3, 2012
By the numbers: Draft needs
By Bill Williamson
The tremendous folks at ESPN Stats & Information have passed along some key statistics for each NFL team as we prepare for the draft. Let’s review some of the findings:
Here is one of the reasons why the Broncos’ greatest need is at defensive tackle. Denver had just four sacks from its interior defensive line, all from Ryan McBean, a free agent who is fighting a six-game NFL suspension. Of the 4-3 defenses in the NFL, only Seattle had fewer sacks from the defensive tackle position. It is a good thing the Broncos have a dynamic pass-rushing presence from Von Miller and Elvis Dumervil.
Here is a reason why the Chiefs should consider drafting Stanford’s David DeCastro and playing him at right guard. The Chiefs ran well to the left last season, but struggled running on the right side. They addressed the issue by signing right tackle Eric Winston, considered one of the best at his position. Adding DeCastro, considered one of the premier guard prospects in the past several years, would further help. Kansas City ranked seventh in the NFL running to the left in 2011, but was ranked 32nd up the middle and 31st to the right side.
Oakland cornerbacks had 27 pass disruptions or interceptions last season, which was tied for 21st in the NFL. Fifteen of those big plays came from Stanford Routt, who is now in Kansas City after being a salary-cap dump in Oakland. More cornerback talent may be necessary even though the Raiders signed projected starters Ron Bartell and Shawntae Spencer to one-year deals.
The Chargers rushed four or fewer defenders on 77.5 percent of opposing quarterback drop backs last season. It was the fifth highest in the NFL. However, only Antwan Barnes had success, with nine sacks. The Chargers desperately need another impact pass-rusher.