PASS OR FAIL? RANKING THE PLAYOFF TEAMS
We came up with 13 categories that help weigh the two most important elements of 21st century NFL football: Passing the ball and stopping the pass. We took the regular-season statistics and ranked each conference’s six teams from 1 to 6 in the following categories: yards per pass attempt, yards allowed per pass attempt, the current starting quarterback’s passer rating, overall passer rating allowed, passer rating differential, interception differential, turnover differential, red-zone offense, red-zone defense, third-down offense, third-down defense, sacks per pass play and sacks allowed per pass play. Here’s how each conference stacked up (the lower the point total, the better):
1. Broncos (35 points)
Best stat: The NFL’s best red-zone offense with a 76.1 touchdown percentage.
Worst stat: No. 5 among AFC playoff teams in turnover differential (even).
Thing that could mess up all this number crunching: In 12 trips to the playoffs, Peyton Manning has gone one-and-done eight times, including five times at home.
2. Bengals (36)
Best stat: No. 1 among AFC playoff teams and second in the NFL in third-down defense (32.9 percent).
Worst stat: Ranks tied for last among AFC playoff teams in interception differential (even, 20-20).
Thing that could mess up all this number crunching: In playoff games, Andy Dalton is 0-2 with no touchdowns, four interceptions and a 48.6 passer rating.
3. Chiefs (40)
Best stat: Ranks first among AFC playoff teams in interception differential (plus-14) and turnover differential (plus-18).
Worst stat: Ranks last among AFC playoff teams in third-down offense and sacks allowed per pass play.
Thing that could mess up all this number crunching: The Chiefs went 0-5 against this year’s AFC playoff teams.
4. Patriots (47)
Best stat: Ranks first among AFC playoff teams and seventh in the NFL in defensive sacks per pass play.
Worst stat: Ranks last among AFC playoff teams in third-down defense (42.2).
|Chicago WSox - WP: S. Carroll||6||FINAL|
|Cleveland - LP: Z. McAllister||2|
|Atlanta - WP: M. Minor||11||FINAL|
|Chicago Cubs - LP: E. Jackson||6|
|NY Yankees - WP: S. Greene||3||FINAL|
|Baltimore - LP: C. Tillman||0|
|Arizona - WP: W. Miley||2||FINAL|
|San Francisco - LP: R. Vogelsong||0|
|St. Louis - WP: A. Wainwright||10||FINAL|
|Milwaukee - LP: J. Nelson||2|
|Miami - LP: M. Dunn||4||FINAL|
|NY Mets - WP: V. Black||5|
|Boston - LP: J. Peavy||2||FINAL|
|Houston - WP: J. Fields||3|
|Minnesota - WP: K. Correia||9||FINAL|
|Colorado - LP: T. Matzek||3|
|Toronto - LP: D. Hutchison||3||FINAL|
|Tampa Bay - WP: J. Odorizzi||10|
|Detroit - WP: R. Porcello||5||FINAL|
|Kansas City - LP: J. Shields||1|
|Washington - WP: R. Detwiler||5||FINAL|
|Philadelphia - LP: J. Diekman||3|
|Pittsburgh - WP: J. Wilson||6||FINAL|
|Cincinnati - LP: J. Hoover||5|
|LA Angels - WP: J. Weaver||5||FINAL|
|Texas - LP: M. Mikolas||2|
|San Diego - LP: K. Quackenbush||0||FINAL|
|Los Angeles - WP: K. Jansen||1|
|Oakland - LP: J. Chavez||2||FINAL|
|Seattle - WP: H. Iwakuma||6|
|Red Bull New York||4|
|Sporting Kansas City||2||FINAL|
|Real Salt Lake||0||FINAL|
|Aug 8 - vs. Oakland||7 pm|
|Aug 16 - vs. Arizona||7:30 pm|
|Aug 23 - at Kansas City||7 pm|
|Aug 28 - at Tennessee||7 pm|
|2014 regular season|
|Sep 7 - at St. Louis||Noon|
|Sep 14 - vs. New England||Noon|
|Sep 21 - at New Orleans||Noon|
|Sep 28 - vs. Atlanta||3:25 pm|
|Oct 2 - at Green Bay||7:25 pm|
|Oct 12 - vs. Detroit||Noon|
|Oct 19 - at. Buffalo||Noon|
|Oct 26 - at Tampa Bay||Noon|
|Nov 2 - vs. Washington||Noon|
|Nov 9 - Bye|
|Nov 16 - at Chicago||Noon|
|Nov. 23 - vs. Green Bay||Noon|
|Nov. 30 - vs. Carolina||Noon|
|Dec 7 - vs. NY Jets||Noon|
|Dec 14 - at Detroit||Noon|
|Dec 21 - at Miami||Noon|
|Dec 28 - vs. Chicago||Noon|