Another week, another stats preview ... but with a twist! From now on, I’m working with the wonderful Shane Haff who podcasts for BGN and has some great designs that will make this article easier to follow. As always, I’ll give you my analysis based on film study and the stats. All stats are from Sports Info Solution, FTN Fantasy, and ESPN.
Let’s begin by looking at the Eagles’ offense so far. The Eagles drastically increased their use of 12 personnel last week which made a lot of sense. I know motion can be overrated by some fans, but I’m not sure how comfortable I am with the Eagles ranking 32nd in motion. Finally, it’s not surprising to see the Eagles ranked 1st in zone run success after destroying the Vikings with inside zone over and over again.
There are a few really interesting numbers forming after 2 weeks. The ones that stand out are obviously how bad the Eagles are in a 7-man box and a stacked box. This defense is made for a light box and when they don’t play a light box, they have struggled a lot so far. Ranking 32nd from a one-high shell is obviously concerning too, but it’s clear this defense wants to be a light box with a two-high shell. I love Sports Info Solutions, but I don’t really trust any man vs. zone numbers without knowing the exact call, but ranking 32nd in zone defense is not a great look either.
This is a very interesting Bucs offense, who excel in the short game and run a lot of heavy personnel. The Bucs are the heaviest zone run team in the league, which means I think we might see some more 5-man fronts this week. 5-man fronts are really good against zone running teams because the zone running game relies on double teams upfront which is difficult against 5-man fronts.
The Bucs' defense is not afraid to play old-school base (4 defensive backs) so I wonder if the Eagles will throw a lot out of 12 personnel this week. The Bucs will stack the box and try to stop the run this week, so this could be a week with a lot of vertical shots to AJ Brown down the field. There is a lot of one-high zone from this Bucs’ defense (aka - cover 3) so I hope we see some cover 3 beaters such as post-wheel and some Flood (3-level stretch).
This is a pretty equal game on paper. The Bucs have been better than expected, especially on defense, and this won’t be an easy game for the Eagles’ offense. The Eagles will be hoping they can shut down the Bucs running game (I think Rachaad White may be bad) and force the Bucs to have to throw it a lot.
The Eagles passing numbers really don’t look great, and the Bucs passing defense looks pretty good. The Eagles’ offense will need to be a lot more consistent than it’s been in recent weeks, but I expect them to still be aggressive and take some down-the-field shots.
This is the first matchup where you see a huge advantage for the Eagles. The Eagles' offensive linemen are a lot better than the Bucs. The Bucs’ offensive line does not look good, and the Eagles’ defensive line should be able to take over this game. Similarly, the Eagles’ defense line will fancy shutting down the running game that has struggled big time so far.
These stats really surprised me. Baker Mayfield is not a quarterback I expected to excel on late downs, but he is currently!
This is a really interesting battle. The Eagles’ defense has been terrible in the red zone so far, but the Bucs offense has been really poor too. I always think teams with great running games excel in the red zone, so it’s not surprising to see the Bucs struggle on offense.
That will do for this week, let me know your thoughts on the new layout and any questions you have.