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Posted at 1:30 PM ET, 12/14/2010

New way to measure effectiveness of offensive lines

By Rick Maese

Measuring the effectiveness of an offensive line can be a tricky thing. Sack totals don't tell the entire story. Rushing numbers offer a slight hint, as do passing figures. But to get a good feel for line play, you really need to consider all those factors.

The smart people at Stats Inc. have come up with a new way to measure offensive line aptitude in pass protection, taking into consideration a variety of statistics. This might not surprise you, but the Redskins are ranked near the bottom of the league.

Unveiled this afternoon, it's called the New York Life Protection Index -- yes, the stat has corporate sponsorship -- and though the exact formula is apparently top secret, "the fundamentals are comprised of the length of a team's pass attempts combined with penalties by offensive linemen, sacks allowed and quarterback hurries and knockdowns," according to Stats Inc.

The Redskins are ranked No. 25 with an index figure of 51.0. That's apparently not very good. The Colts top the list with an index figure of 90.6. The Bears (29.6) and the Raiders (39.0) are the league's worst teams in pass protection, according to the index.

The good news: The Redskins actually have improved from last season. According to the number-crunchers, the Redskins were ranked No. 30 in 2009 with a 41.7 index.

As for traditional measures, the Redskins have allowed the fourth-most sacks in the NFL (an average of 2.9 per game).

By Rick Maese  | December 14, 2010; 1:30 PM ET
Categories:  Offensive line  
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Next: The long road to a successful 3-4 defense

Comments

Not to be confused with the Washington Post's own funky stat: Win Probability Added (WPA).*


*Patent pending, ACME Goofball Stats, Inc.

Posted by: Vic1 | December 14, 2010 1:41 PM | Report abuse

That the Colts are #1 suggests that the quarterback has a significant impact on this offensive line index. Let me guess, the Saints are in the top 3?

Posted by: Ehren | December 14, 2010 1:42 PM | Report abuse

I guarantee you, build the O and D lines and everything else will fall right into place! That's where you start to build championship teams.

Posted by: iubiquity | December 14, 2010 1:43 PM | Report abuse

I guarantee you, build the O and D lines and everything else will fall right into place! That's where you start to build championship teams.

Posted by: iubiquity

I mean, if this guy can figure it out, why can't Danny and Shanny?

Posted by: zcezcest1 | December 14, 2010 1:48 PM | Report abuse

Awesome -- a secret formula that computes a statistic having corporate sponsorship. Might as well trust Bernie Madoff's investment firm.

If the Smarter Stats people were all that smart, if their stats were actually predictive rather than descriptive, they'd be professional gamblers in Vegas and very, very quiet about their work. Instead, it's another way of saying that the OL ain't so good. Well no s$!t sherlock.

That said, this is Dallas week. I hate Dallas, with the burning heat of a thousand suns. I am sad that that pasty-faced potbellied banana-spined whipping boy Wade got fired. He was one of the best things that ever happened to Amurika's Team.

I'm sad that Tony Ohno is hurt and won't get a chance to be crushed into that stupid blue star in front of their fat, stupid, good-ole-boy, bible-thumping, sheep-molesting, self-hating fans.

I want to see John "Convict" Kitna knocked right into Jason "Clipboard" Garrett on the sidelines. I want to see Chris Cooley knock Terrance Newman on his face and step on his back AGAIN. I want Ryan Torain to flatten Gerald Sensabaugh on his way to 200 yards and 4 TD.

I HATE DALLAS. Duck Fallas!!

Posted by: dpc2003 | December 14, 2010 1:50 PM | Report abuse

Someone gets paid for this crap? Unbelievable.

Posted by: PlayAction | December 14, 2010 1:51 PM | Report abuse

I guarantee you, build the O and D lines and everything else will fall right into place! That's where you start to build championship teams.

Posted by: iubiquity

I mean, if this guy can figure it out, why can't Danny and Shanny?

Posted by: zcezcest1 | December 14, 2010 1:48 PM

I know, right...even PlayAction knows that...geez.

Posted by: PlayAction | December 14, 2010 1:52 PM | Report abuse

if the Colts are #1, then its apparent that rushing yards are not a factor whatsoever in this formula. In other words, this blows!

Posted by: Predator48 | December 14, 2010 1:53 PM | Report abuse

So we need to draft a bunch of pass catchers and bring in a bunch of washed up RBs? What?

Posted by: Scoonie97 | December 14, 2010 1:56 PM | Report abuse


I guarantee you, build the O and D lines and everything else will fall right into place! That's where you start to build championship teams.

Posted by: iubiquity

I mean, if this guy can figure it out, why can't Danny and Shanny?

Posted by: zcezcest1

You have to put that on Vinny 'the hack' Cerrato...wait a min.. "this guy?"

Posted by: iubiquity | December 14, 2010 1:56 PM | Report abuse

Glazer is sock-puppet.

Posted by: erthdog | December 14, 2010 1:53 PM | Report abuse

He's not mine, is he yours H8?

Posted by: monk811 | December 14, 2010 2:03 PM | Report abuse

I think the OL is much better this year than last. They definitely need a center, but otherwise there seems to be enough talent there as long as J. Brown fully recovers in the off-season. RB seems to be set for at least next year, WR is a definite need.

The DL needs a lot of work, a NT for sure and at least one DE. LB needs upgrading, one ILB and one OLB to complement Orakpo. They need to play Riley and Barnes a lot more the next few games. Blades should get more snaps too, but I think they know what he can (and can't) do.

So, if they have a top 10 pick... well I'm not sure. An impact WR like Jones would be a good pick. A DE or NT? Are there any NT types out there like a BJ Raji? Who's the best possible 3-4 DE available?

Posted by: dpc2003 | December 14, 2010 2:04 PM | Report abuse

"Measuring the effectiveness of an offensive line can be a tricky thing."

Fair enough. But you don't need a special tool for evaluating how they're doing when defenses are pouring across the line like seawater through a screen door on a submarine.

Posted by: InRealAmerica | December 14, 2010 2:04 PM | Report abuse


Haha...hess comes in here every morning...pee's in the water hole...gets everyone in a frenzy...then leaves...just like clock work....dive ass.

Posted by: PlayAction | December 14, 2010 12:37 PM |
---------------

then returns to only laugh his ass off. why do folks take this board so seriously, correcting typo's and grammar, what a joke. brown, lighten up for gods sake.

why can't the redskins build their own mankins and vjax ? sure it's a risk trying to do so thru the draft. FA's that are signed first are usually expensive and there's risk involved with them as well. so if we pass on FA's until we build a strong nucleus at the o-line and d-line positions and then go into FA knowing what we need and with the money to do so makes sense to me.

Posted by: hessone | December 14, 2010 2:08 PM | Report abuse


Donovan McNabb: No plan to replace me with Rex Grossman last week

By Rick Maese


No? How about Steve Nash? He's a better bounce passer.

Posted by: TheCork | December 14, 2010 2:13 PM | Report abuse

The smart people at Stats Inc. have come up with a new way to measure offensive line aptitude in pass protection, taking into consideration a variety of statistics.
Rick Maese


Translation:
The NERDS at Stats Inc. were watching Star Trek The Next Generation one day, when one saw the shields of a star-ship and thought up an equation in order to come up with another boring stat that no one really cares about. Afterwards they all retired to their respective basements at their parents house.

Posted by: monk811 | December 14, 2010 2:15 PM | Report abuse

Geeks are taking over the world. They wont' be happy until they've squeezed every last bit of fun out of the life of non-geeks who enjoy quaffing a few in a bar and arguing late into the night about what is the best line around.

My choice: "I love your hair. I'll bet it would look great spread out over my pillow."

Posted by: TheCork | December 14, 2010 2:16 PM | Report abuse

Glazer is sock-puppet.

Posted by: erthdog | December 14, 2010 1:53 PM | Report abuse

He's not mine, is he yours H8?

Posted by: monk811 | December 14, 2010 2:03 PM

What makes for a good sock puppet is that the two voices are so different that no one suspects they're the same poster. Monk811/PlayAction are so obviously the same voice that if you're not sock puppets you're aging gay "partners" who have been together so long that they look alike, talk alike. hessone/ih8 have very different voices and no one would suspect they're sock puppets except that hessone keeps giving the game away.

Best-ever RI sock puppet, though, was TheCork and his little friend Skippy. The board was attributing Skippy to everyone who was at all clever. Actually that was only three guys: dcsween, Redcoat, NateinthePDX. Everyone was amazed when Cork revealed the secret. Skippy was an all-time great poster.

Posted by: beep-beep | December 14, 2010 2:19 PM | Report abuse

I think Maese was just a week off. Now that the Redskins are out of playoff contention, they should be very interested in how well the other QB's on the roster can play, and I think Grossman will play this week. I wouldn't be surprised if McNabb contracted a sudden illness before the game that rendered him inactive for the day.

Posted by: RedSkinHead | December 14, 2010 2:20 PM | Report abuse

IMHO the OL is not the area of greatest need for this team. My prediction for 2011 O line
LT Williams
RG Lipizzaner AKA Lichtensteiger
C Montgomery
LG Heyer
LT Brown

Heyer seemed to do pretty well at guard versus the "Titans".

DL, however, is in DIRE need of an infusion of talent. Looks like the 2011 draft is going to be well stocked with DE types. Not sure if there's a BJ Raji in there, but that's what they really need.

Posted by: dpc2003 | December 14, 2010 2:20 PM | Report abuse

I think the OL is much better this year than last.

Posted by: dpc2003

And by "much" I'm sure you mean "marginally."

I'll give you "marginally better" and a lot of the improvement is the fact they have a better scheme than last year's Zornfest.

Shanahan has always made stars of unknown running backs running behind obscure undersized linemen by his plays and blocking styles.

If Zorn was coaching this bunch, I suspect they'd be as bad as, if not worse than last year's crew.

Posted by: TheCork | December 14, 2010 2:20 PM | Report abuse

the skins put two more opponents on the ir!!!

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers have placed defensive tackle Gerald McCoy and linebacker Quincy Black on injured reserve.McCoy suffered a torn right biceps during last Sunday's 17-16 victory at Washington,

Black broke a forearm against the Redskins.

the list will continue to grow!!!

Posted by: jimmy_the_crickett | December 14, 2010 2:21 PM | Report abuse

My choice: "I love your hair. I'll bet it would look great spread out over my pillow."

Posted by: TheCork | December 14, 2010 2:16 PM | Report abuse

My choice: "I heard that the word of the day is legs. Legs go back to my place and spread the word!"

Posted by: monk811 | December 14, 2010 2:23 PM | Report abuse

quantifying an OL seems like tricky stuff, but if someone wants to try it, go ahead. fwiw, from the perspective of these guys, Campbell has is worse in OAK than Donovan has it here. Just more to mull when the Campbell/McNabb conversation inevitably flares up.

Posted by: zcezcest1 | December 14, 2010 2:23 PM | Report abuse

We as fans are jaded by years gone by....

This team needs EVERYTHING...including a QB. If the best player available in the first round is a QB, and we can't trade down, then why not a QB.

Why should Allen/Shanahan be afraid to take a QB with a first round pick. There are quality O-lineman (and QB's in the 2nd round). I'm tired of retreads.

I think you can draft a solid QB AND rebuild the O-line at the same time.

Posted by: silkydee1 | December 14, 2010 2:25 PM | Report abuse

MHO the OL is not the area of greatest need for this team. My prediction for 2011 O line
LT Williams
RG Lipizzaner AKA Lichtensteiger
C Montgomery
LG Heyer
LT Brown

Heyer seemed to do pretty well at guard versus the "Titans".

DL, however, is in DIRE need of an infusion of talent. Looks like the 2011 draft is going to be well stocked with DE types. Not sure if there's a BJ Raji in there, but that's what they really need.

Posted by: dpc2003 | December 14, 2010 2:20 PM
&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&

rt j brown
rg bmw
c cook... montgomery
lg dock... heyer
lt silverback

sounds a "ton" better than your line...

Posted by: jimmy_the_crickett | December 14, 2010 2:26 PM | Report abuse


hessone/ih8 have very different voices and no one would suspect they're sock puppets except that hessone keeps giving the game away.

Posted by: beep-beep | December 14, 2010 2:19 PM |
-------------

sorry you got pulled into this hess.

beep-beep, you my friend are clueless, but if policing this all important board is what you must do, enjoy. at least you helped to dismiss n_p_i from the board.


Posted by: hessone | December 14, 2010 2:28 PM | Report abuse

Geeks are taking over the world. They wont' be happy until they've squeezed every last bit of fun out of the life of non-geeks who enjoy quaffing a few in a bar and arguing late into the night about what is the best line around.

My choice: "I love your hair. I'll bet it would look great spread out over my pillow."

Posted by: TheCork | December 14, 2010 2:16 PM
------------------------------------------
Off the top of my head:

"I love that shirt. Will it wrinkle after it has been crumpled on my bedroom floor all night?"

"There's only one thing that would look better on your ears than those ear rings: your ankles."

"I'm an expert in animal communications. Want to hear the mating call of the Atlantic Longplank? ...Wanna screw?"

Posted by: RedSkinHead | December 14, 2010 2:28 PM | Report abuse

Best-ever RI sock puppet, though, was TheCork and his little friend Skippy. The board was attributing Skippy to everyone who was at all clever. Actually that was only three guys: dcsween, Redcoat, NateinthePDX. Everyone was amazed when Cork revealed the secret. Skippy was an all-time great poster.

Posted by: beep-beep


Beep, I passed along your kind comments to Skip. He apologizes for not posting lately. He says the reasons are, he's been (1) taking his ailing Mother to the hospital (doing much better), and (2) due to the recession he's been busy doing odd jobs at the trailer park, and (3) from June of 2009 to November 2010, he was abducted by Extraterrestrials.

He promises to post soon.

Posted by: TheCork | December 14, 2010 2:29 PM | Report abuse

The good news: The Redskins' (offensive line) actually has improved from last season.


Nothing like advertising the obvious.

The offensive line play IS much better this year--not the best, mind you.

Thing is, the level of offensive production is about the same as last year's.

So who do you blame or do you blame anyone?

Well, we did make a 'big splashy' trade for a quarterback--Donovan McNabb--who used to be good to improve the offense.

How's that working for ya'?

Some folks in here suggest that, well, our 'elite' quarterback lacks the tools to succeed.

So far, D McNabb has better running backs to hand off to, 'creative' playcallers in the Shanahans, pretty much the same receivers that JC had (better when you consider AA), AND improved offensive line play.

And we still can't score, all of which is proof that the more things change...the more they stay the same.

And as for those draft picks we gave away to a division rival that might be in the Super Bowl, all I can say is, can we get our picks back?

Please....?

Posted by: MistaMoe | December 14, 2010 2:31 PM | Report abuse

Beep, thank you for the critique. Saying that hessone is a better sock puppet than us was a little below the belt though. We'll make you proud someday.

Posted by: PlayAction | December 14, 2010 2:33 PM | Report abuse

Campbell has is worse in OAK than Donovan has it here. Just more to mull when the Campbell/McNabb conversation inevitably flares up.

Posted by: zcezcest1 | December 14, 2010 2:23 PM | Report abuse

Uh oh, pabrainiac is gonna be p*ssed now, get ready for "New Soupster sucks, Shoulda kept Old Soup, blah blah blah".........

Posted by: monk811 | December 14, 2010 2:34 PM | Report abuse


beeps 3-4

Posted by: hessone | December 14, 2010 2:34 PM | Report abuse

Corkster, last year's line, at least the ones that were left playing in December, were Hall of Infamy bad.

I cannot even remember who started against the Giants at home last year it was so bad. Edwin Williams? Big Mike Williams? Are these guys still drawing an NFL paycheck?

Last December was torture. Quinton Ganther? A starting RB? God hates Jim Zorn. And so do I.

Posted by: dpc2003 | December 14, 2010 2:35 PM | Report abuse

I don't get why anybody cares how much money the Redskins spend on players and coaches!! MONEY IS NOT AN ISSUE AND NOT IN A SISTUATION TO BE FRUGAL NANCYS WITH SO MANY HOLES A CULTURE OF LOSING AND FEW DRAFT PICKS WE NEED TO OVER PAY TO HAVE A PLAYER WANT TO PLAY FOR A LOSING TEAM ! The Redskins are the 2nd most Profitable team in the nfl and the 3rd in all of sports behind the yankees and the cowgirls! Money is not an issue it's danny boys dough and the less money he spends the odds he will never leave increase! ODDS ARE THE CAP WILL NOT RETURN AS THE PLAYERS DON't WANT A SALARY MAX CAP ONLY A MIN SALARY CAP, AND IF THE OWNERS AND PLAYERS AGREE TO BRING BACK THE CAP IT WILL BE THE HIGHEST IT HAS EVER BEEN SO MONEY IS NOT AN ISSUE SO PPL NEED TO STOP HAVING STROKES ABOUT HOW MUCH THE SKINS ARE PAYING OUT IT's REALLY REALLY FUNNY

Posted by: warriorking111285 | December 14, 2010 2:36 PM | Report abuse

IMHO the OL is not the area of greatest need for this team. My prediction for 2011 O line
LT Williams
RG Lipizzaner AKA Lichtensteiger
C Montgomery
LG Heyer
LT Brown

Heyer seemed to do pretty well at guard versus the "Titans".

DL, however, is in DIRE need of an infusion of talent. Looks like the 2011 draft is going to be well stocked with DE types. Not sure if there's a BJ Raji in there, but that's what they really need.

Posted by: dpc2003 | December 14, 2010 2:20 PM
------------------------------------------
Disagree with your synopsis of the OL. They need a legitimate center and solid guards. Brown is still gimpy and should not be depended on for an entire season meaning they need depth at tackle. They need upgrades at every position but left tackle.

As for the DL, I would like to think next year we will see Carriker on one side and Jarmin on the other with some young free agents coming in to compete. The big deal for me is nose tackle. After getting their coveted nose tackle they can go back to picking up players for the offensive line.

Posted by: RedSkinHead | December 14, 2010 2:36 PM | Report abuse

IMHO the OL is not the area of greatest need for this team. My prediction for 2011 O line
LT Williams
RG Lipizzaner AKA Lichtensteiger
C Montgomery
LG Heyer
LT Brown

Heyer seemed to do pretty well at guard versus the "Titans".

DL, however, is in DIRE need of an infusion of talent. Looks like the 2011 draft is going to be well stocked with DE types. Not sure if there's a BJ Raji in there, but that's what they really need.

Posted by: dpc2003

I was gonna vehemently disagree, but then I get your point and its a good one. I'll mildly disagree.

The switch to the 3-4 really decimated our DL. We actually have some OK talent, but we have almost no one who really fits that scheme well.

I prefer a 4-3, though I'm open to either. I have 2 basic issues with a 3-4. One, I prefer to have more power guys on the line, creating pressure on the passer, and making it harder to find runs lanes. Of course, 3-4 advocates will say you can do the same thing, with more options on how to bring pressure. Both sides have a point and both schemes can be effective.

But ...

where the 3-4 struggles more, is that its much harder to find the right people for that scheme. An NT is tough to find, and even if you get one, you really need 2, since the best NTs usually need to take a break after a few plays. The DEs are also a more specialized breed.

A 3-4 LB or DL guy can probably play well in a 3-4 scheme. But the reverse isn't true. Which is why I get the point about the DL being such an issue. Still say the OL is more important, but the 3-4 has created a bunch of DL holes.

Posted by: zcezcest1 | December 14, 2010 2:37 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: dpc2003 | December 14, 2010 1:50 PM

Co-sign my brother fronm another mother.

Posted by: wireman65 | December 14, 2010 2:39 PM | Report abuse

I will go on record in saying, if Sam Bradford was our QB this year, we would have won at least 2 more games...I mean look at what he is doing in St. Louis. He has no1 (other than and is still putting up better #'s than Mc5. At least here he would have a few better targets.

Difference between Sam and Mc5: Accuracy. Mc5's bad accuracy has cost us some points, drives, and games.

Posted by: roccoskins | December 14, 2010 2:40 PM | Report abuse

Skippy>TheCork

Posted by: Diesel44 | December 14, 2010 2:42 PM | Report abuse

moe, good to hear you survived the freeze....

Posted by: BeantownGreg1 | December 14, 2010 2:42 PM | Report abuse

TheCork

No? How about Steve Nash? He's a better bounce passer.

I wish I had thought of this.

I think I'll do a lil literary shoplifting and post it in another site and claim it as my own.

(People do it to me all the time, Stephen Colbert especially.)

Then folks will say, "He sure am smart!"

And funny.

Posted by: MistaMoe | December 14, 2010 2:42 PM | Report abuse

Yet somehow, even behind a line with the worst New York Life Protection Index in the league, JC is winning this year.

Posted by: WorstSeat | December 14, 2010 2:45 PM | Report abuse

Monk811/PlayAction are so obviously the same voice that if you're not sock puppets you're aging gay "partners" who have been together so long that they look alike, talk alike. hessone/ih8 have very different voices and no one would suspect they're sock puppets except that hessone keeps giving the game away.

Posted by: beep-beep | December 14, 2010 2:19 PM | Report abuse

Oh I get it! Beep-beep is gay and he's trying to use his 'Gay-dar' to call others out. You're good beep, picking out sock puppets by morning, labeling people from your gay-dar by afternoon. You're like the gay Sherlock Holmes. Gaylock Beeps, I kinda like the sound of that!

Posted by: monk811 | December 14, 2010 2:46 PM | Report abuse

Skippy>TheCork

Posted by: Diesel44


Silence>Diesel44

Posted by: TheCork | December 14, 2010 2:53 PM | Report abuse

TheCork

No? How about Steve Nash? He's a better bounce passer.

I wish I had thought of this.


Posted by: MistaMoe |

Milton "The Thief of Bad Gags" Berle, after hearing a very good joke, noted, "That's funny, I wish I'd said that."

The joke teller responded:

"Don't worry, Milton, you will."

Posted by: TheCork | December 14, 2010 2:56 PM | Report abuse

One hint that the O-Line is not yet there: the 'Skins are tied for the second most punts, one behind Carolina.

Posted by: ACounter | December 14, 2010 3:50 PM | Report abuse

Hey, it's Dallas week and we don't want to be in a tie with them for last place when the final whistle blows. This is a must win for pride and all that rubbish. Don't we want braging rights during the off season so we can at least say we went 2-0 against America's team? What do we have to do to beat Dallas this week?

Posted by: DeployedFan | December 14, 2010 3:53 PM | Report abuse

To quote the Joker from Batman 1 (1989) (Back When the Redskins were not a Joke)

"This town needs an enema"

Posted by: DownTownClown | December 14, 2010 10:38 PM | Report abuse

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