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Collectively, NFL rushing attacks lacking a little punch relative to 2012


It’s very early in the season, but according to one standard metric, NFL offenses are collectively rushing the ball a little less effectively in 2013 than they did in the 2012 regular season.

Through 33 games, teams are gaining 3.91 yards per carry, according to NFL data. By comparison, NFL teams collectively averaged anywhere between 4.21-4.29 yards per carry in the last five seasons.

The last time the NFL collectively averaged 3.9 yards per carry over a full season was 1999.

Overall, teams are running a little less than they did in 2012. Games are featuring 52.2 carries this season; by contrast, games averaged 54.4 rushing attempts a season ago.

The league is also collectively on pace for fewer rushes of 20 yards or more compared to 2012. Entering Sunday’s games, the league is on track to see about 303 rushes of 20 yards or more in 2013 — 52 less than in 2012 and 75 less than 2011, according to figures.

If this post precedes a host of big-play rushes on Sunday, fantasy-football owners of the world know who to thank.

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13 Responses to “Collectively, NFL rushing attacks lacking a little punch relative to 2012”
  1. romosmicrodongs says: Sep 21, 2013 7:52 PM

    if the redskins change their name, native americans will know who to thank

  2. mvpolamalu says: Sep 21, 2013 8:01 PM

    The steelers alone probably make this years average about 5 points lower.

  3. craniator says: Sep 21, 2013 8:27 PM

    Well , heck , the way Goodell and co. are putting skirts on the QB’s , it’s a wonder anybody is even attempting to run the ball.

  4. bucfaninil says: Sep 21, 2013 8:42 PM

    and the wide receivers

  5. culturalelitist says: Sep 21, 2013 8:51 PM

    The running game takes more time than the passing game to gel and become effective. Starters play less and less in the preseason, which results in two things: a running game that’s not ready for the start of the regular season, and sloppy games like the Week Two contest with the Jets and Patriots that looked like a first preseason game.

    No one likes preseason games, but they exist for a reason.

  6. shibengal says: Sep 21, 2013 9:24 PM

    Your logic is flawed.

    You’re comparing the first two games to an entire season, instead of the first two games of seasons past.
    Teams will start running the ball more when the weather starts getting ugly. The statistics will even themselves out once the calendar turns December.
    This happens every season; nothing to see here folks, move along.

  7. Deb says: Sep 21, 2013 9:34 PM

    Great … it’s not just us. As a Steelers fan, I’ll have to take comfort where I can get it.

  8. eaglesw00t says: Sep 21, 2013 10:08 PM

    LeSean McCoy 62 395 6.4 41 2
    Michael Vick 18 187 10.4 61 2

    Thank god it isnt the Eagles dragging down the average for once.

    Lesean McCoy looks fantastic thus far.

  9. harrisonhits2 says: Sep 21, 2013 10:08 PM

    2 games is not a valid comparison to full seasons. Especially the first two when offenses have only begun to work out the bugs.

  10. wferg1121 says: Sep 21, 2013 10:26 PM

    Teams have adjusted to the QB option attack so far it has not been as effective as last year.. As a result of teams defending the option, one of the effects of their road trips to college defensive coordinators is that they are also more prepared against the run. I also echo everyone else it is still early…

  11. Rick Spielman is a Magician says: Sep 21, 2013 11:17 PM

    I think Adrian Peterson’s slow start has dragged down the average.

  12. raiderapologist says: Sep 22, 2013 12:24 AM

    Oakland is averaging almost 6 yards per rush. They’ve scored 38 points. The Broncos are averaging 3.3, and have scored 90 points. Personally, I would take the points. But that’s just me.

  13. easywolf says: Sep 22, 2013 12:42 AM

    Better defences, better idp’s, more passing..

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