Monday, October 22, 2007

Fans Perception: When the Masses Revolt

A commenter yesterday got me going. Under the post about the Vikings/Cowboys game the commenter was stating that the left side is nothing special and that the right side is performing just as well. Thus this fan thought that the left side was being overpaid and the money should have been spent elsewhere. But is this true? Is the right side producing as well as the left side of the offensive line when it comes to the running game? I went and looked at the play-by-play for all the games and tracked the production of the halfbacks (Peterson, Taylor, and Moore) here are the reuslts game-by-game and the totals for the season so far.

(Left) 7 carries 42 yards
(Middle) 4 carries 21 yards
(Right) 8 carries 40 yards
(Left) 1 carry 0 yds
(Middle) 0 carries
(Right) 2 carries 18 yds
(Left) 11 carries 44 yards
(Middle) 2 carries 9 yards
(Right) 7 carries 13 yards
(Left) 2 carries 7 yards
(Middle) 3 carries 34 yards
(Right) 1 carry 9 yards
Kansas City
(Left) 6 carries 13 yards
(Middle) 11 carries 48 yards
(Right) 8 carries 41 yards 1 TD
(Left) 1 carry 0 yards
(Middle) 3 carries 21 yards
(Right) 0 Carries
Green Bay
(Left) 9 carries 51 yards
(Middle) 1 carry 2 yards
(Right) 2 carries 59 yards
(Left) 3 carries 3 yards
(Middle) 4 carries 46 yards
(Right) 1 carry 9 yards
(Left) 13 carries 193 yards 3 TDs
(Middle) 0 carries
(Right) 7 carries 31 yards
(Left) 9 carries 44 yards
(Middle) 0 carries
(Right) 13 carries 39 yards
(Left) 4 carries 47 yards 1 TD
(Middle) 2 carries 7 yards
(Right) 6 carries 9 yards
(Left) 2 carries 3 yards
(Middle) 5 carries 19 yards
(Right) 3 carries 25 yards

(Left) 50 carries 390 yards 4 TDs (7.8 yds/carry)
(Middle) 20 carries 87 yards (4.4 yds/carry)
(Right) 38 carries 193 yards 1 TD (5.1 yds/carry)
(Left) 15 carries 50 yards (3.3 yds/carry)
(Middle) 9 carries 65 yards (7.2 yds/carry)
(Right) 19 carries 73 yards (3.8 yds/carry)
(Left) 3 carries 7 yards (2.3 yds/carry)
(Middle) 6 carries 55 yards (9.2 yds/carry)
(Right) 1 carry 9 yards (9.0 yds/carry)
(Left) 68 carries 447 yards 4 TDs (6.6 yds/carry)
(Middle) 35 carries 197 yards (5.6 yds/carry)
(Right) 58 carries 275 yards 1 TD (4.7 yds/carry)

So there you have it. Those are the stats, and my interpretation of the stats is that the LEFT side is superior to the right side in the running game. When over 6 games the halfbacks are averaging 1.9 yds more per carry to the left side that all adds up. Fact is the Vikings have a great running game and perhaps need to stick to it a little more. This team is going to be predicated on getting their RBs a total of 35-45 carries a game. When this happens I predict wins for the Vikings.

(data compiled from Yahoo box scores)


  1. What happens if you take out AP's two long TDs against Chicago? The left side numbers go down to 66-307, a 4.65 yard average. Still impressive, but almost identical to the numbers for the right side.

    Both those runs were contingent on AP making sick moves at the second level. Sure, the line had to get him there, but those skew the average significantly. Once he gets 5-10 yards downfield, you can't really credit the line with the rest of the run.

  2. Anonymous4:53 PM

    At the same time then you have to take out the 55 yarder to the right side in another game and that lowers the right side significantly.

    The line can only do so much. The job of a line is to create holes so that the RB can get to the 2nd level and then make something special happen. This is consistently happening on the left side, the ride side not as much. If you look at AP's long runs (over 15 yds) I believe 80-90% have come from the left side.