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August 22, 2016

Dear Kirby...

In light of this, can I point you in the direction of this:
(courtesy of Advanced Football Analytics)
As Bill Connelly puts it 
Points Per Trip inside 40
("Scoring Opportunities")
% of 2013 gamesWin%Avg. Scoring margin
5.5 to 7 points18.6%72.8%15.1
5 to 5.5 points13.2%68.4%11.9
4.5 to 5 points13.3%62.6%7.4
4 to 4.5 points13.7%51.8%1.7
3.5 to 4 points8.5%50.4%-3.9
3 to 3.5 points12.5%38.5%-7.6
2 to 3 points12.1%23.1%-14.1
1 to 2 points5.0%4.9%-25.8
0 to 1 points3.0%0.0%-36.0
One other thing about this table: field goals are basically failures. They are obviously useful at times in close games, but settling for field goals is a losing strategy as a whole. Even with a good kicker, averaging three points per scoring opportunity will win you about one-third of your games. (Keep this in mind the next time your team kicks an 18-yard field goal.)
I get you need to have a serviceable kicking option for many situations. I'd posit that those situations don't include 4th and less than four from inside the 35. Of course, your mileage may vary, but I'm also not going to incur the wrath of the Dawgvent if it doesn't work out that one time.


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