News & Analysis

32 NFL Observations, Week 1

By Mark Chichester
Sep 13, 2018

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Sep 9, 2018; Baltimore, MD, USA; Baltimore Ravens quarterback Joe Flacco (5) warms up prior to the game against the Buffalo Bills at M&T Bank Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Mitch Stringer-USA TODAY Sports

The 32 Observations series returns this year with Mark Chichester finding an interesting piece of information about all 32 teams after one week of football. If you would like to make some observations of your own, you can do so with PFF Elite, where you can find several signature statistics for every offensive and defensive position in football, thanks to Premium Stats 2.0.

AFC EAST

Buffalo Bills: The Bills defense yielded a passer rating of 123.5 against Joe Flacco and the Ravens in Week 1, their worst mark since Week 9 of the 2016 season.

Miami Dolphins: Wide receiver Kenny stills generated a perfect passer rating of 158.3 in Week 1 against the Titans. It’s only the fourth time in his career that he’s been targeted more than five times in a game and generated a perfect rating.

New England Patriots: Tight end Rob Gronkowski tallied four explosive plays (plays of 15-plus yards) in Week 1, which tied with Jared Cook for the most among tied ends. Since 2014, Gronkowski has racked up 119 explosive plays – 14 more than the next closest tight end.

New York Jets: Last Monday, second-year safety Jamal Adams racked up three defensive stops against the run when he lined up within eight yards of the line of scrimmage. Since he entered the league in 2017, Adams has accumulated 28 stops when he’s lined up within those eight yards, five more than any other safety in that span.

AFC NORTH

Baltimore Ravens: Quarterback Joe Flacco posted an adjusted completion percentage of 90.6 percent on his 34 pass attempts against the Buffalo Bills in Week 1. That was the second-best single-game mark of his 11-year career and just the third time in 155 games he’s topped the 90.0 percent mark.

Cincinnati Bengals: Cornerback Dre Kirkpatrick broke up three of the 10 targets that were sent his way in Week 1. Since 2012, Kirkpatrick now has six games with at least two pass breakups, the most among Bengals defenders in that span.

Cleveland Browns: Right tackle Chris Hubbard was beaten by a defender on a whopping seven of his 54 pass-blocking snaps in Week 1. Since 2006, no offensive lineman has ever been beaten that many times in a season opener.

Pittsburgh Steelers: Linebacker Vince Williams produced eight defensive stops in Week 1, which is tied career-best for Williams and tied for third-most ever recorded in a single game by a Steelers defensive player.

AFC SOUTH

Houston Texans: Lamar Miller racked up 43 rushing yards after he was contacted at or behind the line of scrimmage in Week 1, the best mark among running backs.

Indianapolis Colts: Edge defender Margus Hunt produced three quarterback pressures in his team’s season opener. It’s only the 10th time in six seasons that Hunt has managed to produce three or more quarterback pressures in a game.

Jacksonville Jaguars: Blake Bortles was one of 11 quarterbacks who were hit as they threw during Week 1 of the 2018 season. While that doesn’t sound significant, Bortles has now been hit as he threw at least once in 17 of his 33 games since 2016, which is tied with Carson Wentz for the most in that span.

Tennessee Titans: Before leaving the game with a hand injury, quarterback Marcus Mariota threw two turnover-worthy passes from a clean pocket, the second most among signal-callers in Week 1. Since he entered the league in 2015, Mariota has thrown a turnover-worthy pass on 3.6 percent of his pass attempts from a clean pocket – the worst mark among quarterbacks with at least 900 attempts in that span.

AFC WEST

Denver Broncos: The Broncos offensive line allowed just five pressures on 40 passing plays in Week 1, keeping quarterback Case Keenum free from pressure on 85.0 percent of his dropbacks. This was the best mark by a Broncos offensive line since Week 15 of the 2014 season.

Kansas City Chiefs: The Chiefs defense combined to miss 19 tackles during their Week 1 victory against the Chargers. This is tied for the third-most ever recorded by a team on the first week of a season.

Los Angeles Chargers: Running back Austin Ekeler caught all five of his targets in the passing game in Week 1, an impressive feat considering two of those passes were contested by a defender at the catch point. Ekeler ended his team’s season opener averaging 5.80 yards per route run – the third-best mark ever recorded by a running back in Week 1.

Oakland Raiders: Tight end Jared Cook put up a mightily impressive 180 receiving yards against the Los Angeles Rams on Monday night, which beat his own record (141 yards in 2013) for the most by a tight end in a season opener. In the past 12 seasons, he’s the only tight end to average over four yards per route run in Week 1 of the season.

 

NFC EAST

Dallas Cowboys: Edge defender Demarcus Lawrence tallied four tackles for loss or no gain during his team’s season opener, which is tied for the most ever recorded by an edge defender in Week 1 of a season.

New York GiantsEli Manning rolled out of the pocket on five of his dropbacks in Week 1. The last time he was tasked with at least five designed rollouts in a game was Week 15 of the 2014 season.

Philadelphia Eagles: Cornerback Ronald Darby was targeted 11 times during his team’s season opener against the Falcons, and he forced four incompletions. His forced incompletion percentage of 36.4 percent is the best mark we’ve ever seen by a cornerback with at least 10 targets in the first week of the season.

Washington Redskins: Running back Adrian Peterson ran for 96 yards on 26 carries last week, with 81 of those rushing yards coming after he was contacted by a defender. Peterson joins Samaje Perine as the only running backs to top 80 yards after contact in a single game since 2015.

NFC NORTH

Chicago Bears: Running back Jordan Howard averaged 5.50 yards after contact per attempt when he was hit in the backfield in Week 1, the best mark among running backs in Week 1.

Detroit LionsMatthew Stafford threw four turnover-worthy passes during his team’s Week 1 loss to the New York Jets. Since 2009, Stafford has thrown multiple turnover-worthy passes in 59 games in that span. Only Eli Manning has more (61).

Green Bay Packers: Wide receiver Randall Cobb racked up 102 receiving yards after the catch against the Chicago Bears. It’s the first time Cobb has reached the 100-yard mark in a single game and it’s the best mark we’ve ever seen from a Packers wide receiver.

Minnesota Vikings: Interior defensive lineman Sheldon Richardson racked up seven total quarterback pressures against the 49ers in Week 1, which was tied for the most among interior defenders last week and the most he’s had in a single game since Week 17 of the 2015 season.

NFC SOUTH

Atlanta Falcons: Wide receiver Julio Jones saw a whopping 18 targets last Thursday against the Eagles, the most he’s ever seen a single game. Jones proceeded to haul in 10 of those targets for 169 receiving yards, at an average of 3.76 yards per route run, the fifth-best mark of the week. Since 2014, Jones has averaged over three yards per route run in 28 games, which is by far the best mark among receivers in that span. The next closest receiver is Antonio Brown, who has averaged over three yards per route run in 22 games.

Carolina Panthers: Cam Newton ran for 59 yards after contact and forced four missed tackles during his team’s Week 1 victory over the Cowboys. Both of these are the best marks by a quarterback in Week 1 of a season.

New Orleans Saints: Quarterback Drew Brees posted an adjusted completion percentage of 86.4 percent in Week 1, the second-best mark among quarterbacks. Since 2014, Brees has had an adjusted completion percentage of at least 80 percent in 35 of his 64 games in that span, which is by far the best mark among quarterbacks.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick averaged 14.9 yards per pass attempt in Week 1, the best mark of his long career and the fifth-best mark ever recorded by a quarterback with at least 20 attempts in a single game.

NFC WEST

Arizona Cardinals: Linebacker Deone Bucannon racked up a quarterback hit and four additional hurries on his 10 passing snaps in Week 1. His pass-rushing productivity of 50.0 is the third-best mark for a linebacker on opening weekend in the past 12 years.

Los Angeles Rams: Quarterback Jared Goff had three turnover-worthy plays in the Red Zone against the Raiders in Week 1. This is tied for the most ever recorded by a quarterback in a single game.

San Francisco 49ers: Rookie receiver Dante Pettis averaged 11.5 yards after the catch per reception in his team’s Week 1 contest, which is the best mark ever recorded by a rookie receiver with at least 30 snaps in a Week 1 game.

Seattle Seahawks: Tight end Will Dissly tallied 105 receiving yards, 67 yards after the catch, racked up three explosive plays and averaged 5.25 yards per route run in Week 1. All of which are the best marks ever recorded by a rookie tight end in a season opener.

 

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