Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Missing Jim Johnson

The Eagles defensive numbers since the death of Jimmy Johnson.

Missing Jim Johnson

(Tom Mihalek/AP file photo)
(Tom Mihalek/AP file photo)

There is was no question that following Jim Johnson (left) as the Eagles defensive coordinator would be difficult, and the numbers — especially for the last 2 1/2 seasons — have been mediocre, at best.

But one gets the feeling that if they had just gotten to the opposing quarterback a little more often (0 sacks in the last 202 minutes-plus), the Birds would have a win or two more and Juan Castillo would still have a job. 

Here are the Eagles' defensive numbers and NFL ranks since Johnson's death (May, 2009):

 Season: 2009 2010 2011 2012
  Total Rank Total Rank Total   Rank Total   Rank
Net Yards/Gm. 321.1 12th 327.2 12th 324.9 8th 330.8 12th
   Yards/Play 4.95 5th 5.25 16th 5.29 12th 5.13 10th
Rushing Yards/Gm 104.7 9th 110.4 15th 112.6 16th 104.5 15th
   Yards/Rush 4.06 11th 4.17 14th 4.35 19th 4.07 18th
Net Passing Yds./Gm. 216.4 17th 216.8 14th 212.3 10th 226.3 15th
   Net Yds./Pass Play 5.55 5th 6.03 14th 5.98 11th 5.83 10th
   Interception Pct. 4.31% 5th 4.29% 2nd 2.71% 17th 3.10% 12th
   Sack Pct.    7.05%   t-8th     6.78% 10th     8.80% 1st     3.01% 30th
First Downs/Game 18.4 14th 19.3   t-18th 18.1 8th 18.7 9th
   Third Down Pct. 33.0% 2nd 38.3% t-17th 35.5% 13th 29.1% 4th
Opp. Points/Game 21.1 19th 23.6 t-21st 20.5 10th 20.8 13th
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Bob Vetrone Jr.
About this blog

Boop – who goes by Bob Vetrone Jr. when he is undercover or paying bills – has been at the Daily News since 1982, after working for five years at the Philadelphia Bulletin up to its closing. Along with helping to build the sports scoreboards most nights, he has had great input into the papers’ special sports pullouts – March Madness, Broad Street Run, Record Breakers, Greatest Moments – as well as its day-to-day, award-winning event coverage.

A 1980 graduate of North Catholic, he took some evening college courses. Those lasted right up until the first conflict with a Big 5 doubleheader.

His favorite books growing up were the NBA Guide and the Baseball Encyclopedia, which was, for all intents and purposes, the Internet before there was an Internet.

He has been immersed in sports statistics since the early 70s, when his father (long-time sports writer, broadcaster and the Daily News’ Buck The Bartender), would take him into the Bulletin newsroom overnight in the summer and let him update the Phillies statistics in a little, black spiral notebook. But things have changed tremendously in the decades since … He now uses a big, black spiral notebook.

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Reach Bob at vetronb@phillynews.com.

Bob Vetrone Jr.
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