Stats & Info: Tarvaris Jackson

With Donovan McNabb headed to the Minnesota Vikings, the hope is that he can bring stability to a position until first-round pick Christian Ponder is ready to take over as the team's starting quarterback of the future.
Donovan McNabb

The Vikings used three starters in 2010: Brett Favre (5-8), Joe Webb (1-1) and Tarvaris Jackson (0-1). Inconsistency at quarterback is why Minnesota's 67.7 passer rating in 2010 ranked 30th in the NFL. Only the Arizona Cardinals and Carolina Panthers had lower passer ratings than the Vikings.

According to the Elias Sports Bureau, few teams in recent history had a larger decline in production from the quarterback position than the Vikings from 2009 to 2010. Minnesota's passer rating went from 107.3 in 2009 to 67.7 last season. That decrease of 39.6 points was the largest for any team since the 1974 Atlanta Falcons, who had a drop of 47.7 points from the previous season.

McNabb saw his completion percentage, passer rating and yards per attempt drop against added pass rush last season, but that might not be as much of an issue in Minnesota. Excluding the Vikings, NFC North defenses rushed 5+ defenders on only 28.0 percent of dropbacks, well below the league average of 33.4 percent.

McNabb's move to Minnesota can't be any worse than last year's lost season in Washington. In fact, McNabb has shown during his career that he's put up better numbers indoors than outdoors. He has a 96.3 passer rating in games played in domes, which ranks fourth among active quarterbacks who have attempted at least 400 passes indoors. What's more, the Vikings play 10 of their 16 games this season indoors: eight at home plus road games against Detroit and Atlanta.

McNabb also will have the luxury of having one of the top running backs in the game to hand the ball to in Adrian Peterson, who has rushed for at least 1,200 yards in each of his first four seasons. Since McNabb became an everyday starter in 2000, he's had a running back rush for at least 1,000 yards only three times: Duce Staley in 2002 and Brian Westbrook in 2006-07.

One more from the Elias Sports Bureau: if McNabb starts Week 1 for Minnesota at San Diego, then it will be the third different team in the last three seasons that he's started for on opening weekend. The only other quarterbacks who have done that since the merger in 1970 are Jim Harbaugh (1997 Colts, 1998 Ravens, 1999 Chargers), Kurt Warner (2003 Rams, 2004 Giants, 2005 Cardinals) and Favre (2007 Packers, 2008 Jets, 2009 Vikings).
A statistical look at tonight's game between the Minnesota Vikings and the Philadelphia Eagles.

• The Eagles have won five straight against the Vikings and eight of their last ten games overall. Philadelphia is 5-0 in primetime games this season (4-0 in starts by Michael Vick).

The Vikings haven’t been so lucky in primetime games. They are 0-5 in primetime games this season and 1-6 in primetime games since 2001 when kickoff temperature is below 40 degrees.

• Vick has been one of the top deep passers in the league this season, but his production has dropped off in recent weeks.

Three of Vick’s four interceptions in the last three weeks have been on passes thrown at least 15 yards downfield.

• Vick has been under a lot more pressure as of late -- the Eagles QB has been forced to scramble 40 times in the last seven games compared to just 11 in his first four.

• Brett Favre and Joe Webb combined for a 49.1 passer rating last week versus Chicago, a week after Webb and Tarvaris Jackson had a collective 45.7 rating against the Giants. The last time the Vikings had a sub-50 passer rating in each of back-to-back games was in Weeks 1 and 2 of the 2005 season, when Daunte Culpepper had a 49.2 rating with no touchdown passes and three interceptions in Week 1 against Tampa Bay and a 36.4 rating with no TD passes and five picks the following week.

The last time Minnesota had a passer rating below 50 in three straight games was in October 1980, with Tommy Kramer as their starting quarterback.

• The last NFL game that took place on a Tuesday was October 1, 1946 when the New York Giants beat the Boston Yanks 17-0 at Braves Field. That game was originally scheduled for September 30 but was postponed due to rain. While the last NFL game played on a Tuesday took place in 1946, there have been a total of 19 NFL games played on a Tuesday and Vikings-Eagles will be the 20th.

Colts, Chargers could end playoff streaks

December, 7, 2010
• The two longest active playoff streaks in the league belong to the Indianapolis Colts (eight straight) and San Diego Chargers (four straight). And both of those runs are in jeopardy after each team (both 6-6) lost at home, to the Cowboys and Raiders, respectively.

• The New England Patriots and QB Tom Brady abused the supposedly-tough New York Jets defense Monday night every which way possible. Jets defenders have allowed 19 pass plays of 30 or more yards in 12 games (fifth-most in the league), after giving up just eight passing plays of 30 or more yards in 16 games last season.

• The Minnesota Vikings scored 31 first-half points in their 38-14 win over the Bills, a contest in which Brett Favre went out early and was replaced by Tarvaris Jackson. It should be noted that the 31 points were more than they had scored in any game this season. Unfortunately for Jackson, Favre still gets credit for the win because he started the game.

• No matter how many issues you have on offense, it’s hard to win a lot of games if your defense can’t get off the field. Case in point are the Buffalo Bills, who for the sixth time in 12 games gave up at least 200 yards on the ground. Teams allowing 200 yards rushing are 2-27 this season.

Maurice Jones-Drew
• It's taken some time, but the 2010 version of the Jacksonville Jaguars are starting to look like the '07 team that featured an overpowering ground game. The star has been (of course) RB Maurice Jones-Drew, who had 186 of Jacksonville's 258 yards rushing against the Titans, the fifth game in a row Jones-Drew has reached the century mark and the Jaguars have run for at least 130 yards.

• The Detroit Lions have amassed many losing streaks during the past 10 seasons, led by their current 26-game road losing streak. With their 24-20 setback to the Bears on Sunday, Detroit has now dropped 19 straight games in the division, a skid they hope to end next week against the Green Bay Packers.

• The St. Louis Rams evened their record at 6-6 this season with a 19-6 win at Arizona (snapping an eight-game losing streak to the Cardinals). St. Louis has EQUALED their win total from 2007-09 (6-42). And their Missouri brothers, the Kansas City Chiefs, are 8-4 this season, compared to a combined 10-38 the previous three seasons.

• Colts QB Peyton Manning, the four-time NFL MVP, has thrown 11 interceptions in his last three games, and 15 in 12 games this season. Manning’s career-high for interceptions came in his rookie season in 1998 (28), while his 15 interceptions in 2010 are as many or more than he’s thrown in eight of his previous 12 seasons.

• Ben Roethlisberger's recent success against the Baltimore Ravens continues. Since being pounded by Baltimore in 2006 (Roethlisberger was sacked 14 times, threw one TD and four interceptions and the Steelers lost twice by a combined score of 58-7), the two-time Super Bowl champion is 6-0 vs. the Ravens (including playoffs), throwing 10 TDs and just three picks while being sacked 20 times.