People who say never discuss politics at the Thanksgiving dinner table are clearly not fans of sad NFL teams. "Sports" is usually a default topic of choice and with football on TV, that's likely the go to after your aunt pretends to care what liberal arts degree you're going for. Lions fans have dealt with this for years and finally thought this was the year they'd welcome some pigskin talk while chomping down some pigskin of their own. But as Jay Cuda brilliantly data scienced - such a hope was not written in the skies:
All time find by Jay. One of those hall of famer stats you can only tip your cap to, marvel, and appreciate.
I'll do my best to find a few more worthy of a short chuckle. Here are some more sad stats for NFL Week 12.
Sad Stat #1: It took the Steelers a total of one games without Matt Canada to break their streak of 58 straight with less than 400 yards including all 45 games he was the OC
The Steelers finally broke the 400 barrier. Not exactly Roger Banister level impressive, but hey, 58 games is a long time to be that consistently anemic. For some perspective, I went ahead and compared every team's outcome in topping 400-yards during the Matt Canada era below. Each mark is a game in chronological order from left to right. Green means that team gained 400+ yards and red means they didn't.
Again this shows all teams for every week Matt Canada was the Steelers OC. You can think of this as a macro-level offensive pulse rate for teams. Let's check in on a few teams' state of health.
Bills / Cowboys / Eagles / Chiefs: Everything looks great. These teams just ran a marathan and feel alive. Nice healthy pulse.
Jets: Seems like they go two greens, then a bunch of reds, then a single green, some more reds, then repeat. It's almost too perfectly regular in it's inefficiency. Mechanical. Like a real airplane, this team was built for delays in action.
Raiders: They were doing OK but then coded, got brought back by AED, then coded again. That's the Josh McDaniels experience.
Texans: Was apparently only… MOSTLY dead, but they are coming back to life now under Stroud.
Patriots: Machine flatlines and doctor looks at watch
Sad Stat #2: The Jets joined the Commanders and Patriots as the only teams to go 19-straight third downs without a conversion
This will shock Pardon My Take listeners, but it turns out PMT personalities' favorite teams are bad. Sent this stat to Big Cat for the Sunday show and he tried to cheer Memes up with it to no avail. I think I typo'd and told him it was 17 though instead of 19 so let me clear that up now. Apologies to these three teams for selling them short on them falling short.
I will say the Jets absolutely EARNED that streak-breaking first down by converting on a long third and inches. They didn't even bother bringing out the chains as Tim Boyle snuck it up the middle. Great to see him in his element of doing something that doesn't include passing the ball.
Since that didn't cheer Memes up I have one more Jets stat that might. It's a Hail Mary, but I'm hopeful it won't end in a pick-six.
Sad Stat #3: The Jets spent 35% of their total game time of possession on a 17-play drive that ended in a turnover
You might think this has to be the saddest drive of the season. The Jets finally put a sustained drive together and marched down the field while ending their aforementioned 3rd down failure streak and converting on not one, but TWO 4th downs only to throw a pick six.
That has to be the ultimate blow. The drive lasted 7:01 which was 35% of the Jets total time on offense. And yes, up to that point in the season, it was the largest percentage of total time of possession for a team on a single drive that ended in a turnover. But it wouldn't stay that way for long. Only one team was capable of such a "hold my beer" moment. You know EXACTLY what team I'm talking about.
19 plays. 8:44. The Chargers third fumble of the night was the charm as this drive amounted to 35.2% of their total time on offense vs the Jets' 35.1. Never underoverestimate the Chargers.
Sad Stat #4: The Cardinals 3rd and 37 was not a downagami
Refer to your handi-dandy Jake Marsh downagami card and you'll notice this isn't the first time we had a 3rd and 37 in the NFL.
Looking back at data since 1999, there have been seven other instances in which a team had 3rd and 37. Last being Andrew Luck and the Colts in Week 3, 2016. One of these seven was actually convereted in Week 8, 1999 by the Vikings. Must have been a Hail Mary or crazy lateral play, right?
Nope. They just went Hoard up the middle. Leroy Hoard.
You'll have to watch on YouTube
Sorry Broncos, this play is immediately going into the Sad Hall of Fame for worst defensive effort on a "let's just give our punter some room" 3rd down handoff. And poor Leroy Hoard. Dude just converted a first down on 3rd and longer than he's ever ran in his life and all the broadcasters could say was "if that was Robert Smith, it's six points". He wasn't wrong. Hoard was turning around waving his hands at defenders like hailing a rush hour cab in Manhatten.
Sad Stat #5: The Giants flinched first in the Tank Bowl vs the Patriots as this game took 10 minutes of game time longer than any other game this year for a point to be scored
These are the 50 games that started the longest amount of time scoreless with the Tank Off of the ages between the Patriots and Giants obliterating the competition by refraining from participating in competition. This game was a chess match between two teams doing all they could do to lose. Some teams like to defer the opening kickoff but the Pats and Giants kept that energy throughout the first half. Much like Sallie Mae and MOHELA student loan "customers", they opted for deferment for as long as they possibly could until forced in November.
The Giants started off meaning business with a deep drive ending in a lost fumble. A seven-punt rally would ensue only to be interupted by one Mac Jones interception. But Mac would come back with one more INT before the half which led to a long return and eventual catastrophic touchdown by the Giants at 1:53. That would prove costly.
In desperation, the Giants came out swinging in the second half. By swinging, I mean swinging the opening kickoff out of bounds to set up the Patriots at the 40-yard line. The plan worked as the Patriots tied the game on that drive.
But Belichick would counter by relieving starting interceptioner Mac Jones for closer Bailey Zappe. The plan worked. Zappe through a pick that led to the game winning Giants field goal. And while the Giants set up a New England 35-yard field goal to at the end of the game, the Patriot kicker shanked once more to seal the deal. It was checkmate.
That's it for Week 12.
Got a sad stat tip? DM me @statholesports
Catch up on last Weeks NFL Sad Stats Week 10: