Saturday, December 27, 2014

The Eagles are scoring on TD drives at an extraordinarily fast rate

If the Eagles are about to get the football, don't go to the bathroom. You might just miss a TD.

The Eagles are scoring on TD drives at an extraordinarily fast rate

Philadelphia Eagles running back LeSean McCoy. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)
Philadelphia Eagles running back LeSean McCoy. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)

If the Eagles are about to get the football, don't go to the bathroom. You might just miss a TD.

The Eagles have 25 offensive TDs this season, and are averaging an astondingly low 1:48 in time of possession on those drives. They are the fastest scoring team in the NFL, by a mile. Here is how they compare with the rest of the league. (The following chart counts offensive TDs only):

Amazingly, the Eagles' longest drive of the season was 3:58. As you can see above, there are 5 teams who average at least 3:58 per scoring drive.

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Obviously, when the Eagles get into their hurry-up offense, that has a lot to do with faster drives. However, there's another reason for it as well. The Eagles have more explosive plays (plays of 20+ yards) than any other team in the NFL, and the next closest team, the Broncos, is 12 plays off the Eagles' pace. (Note: The Eagles have not yet had their bye, which also factors in).

Of course, there is a downside to having quick possessions on offense. Namely, your defense is going to face more plays than normal. So far this season, the Eagles face more plays on defense than any team in the NFL:

If you compare the 75 snaps per game on defense with one of the teams in the middle of the pack, like the Titans at 64, the Eagles defense will face 11 more snaps per game than the average team, or 176 more snaps over the course of the season. That's almost like playing two extra games. That can be taxing on your players' bodies.

To note, this isn't a surprise. Chip Kelly's offenses scored at incredibly rapid rates at Oregon as well.

Roughly halfway through the season, the Eagles' offense is as explosive as any team in the league. It just needs to become more consistent.

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