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DMWSackMachine
09-22-2009, 01:14 PM
Its been the reality for awhile now, but any lingering doubts or debate that may have existed should have been permanently erased from people's minds after each of the last two primetime games.

The days of "run the ball and stop the run" are officially a thing of the past. In both the Dal/NY and Ind/Mia games the team that dominated both sides of the ground game lost because of their inability to stop the other teams passing game as well as generate a passing game of their own.

The modern era of football is here. Throw the ball and stop the pass should be the new mantra....and if you look carefully at the money positions, its clearly evident that that's been the case for awhile.

bigbluedefense
09-22-2009, 01:17 PM
I was thinking about this 2 years ago when the Giants won the SB, and while it holds true in a lot of instances, this is the conclusion Ive reached.

Passing the ball has dominated the regular season, but if you want to win in the playoffs, you gotta still run the ball and stop the run.

Think about it. The past 2 years, a high powered passing offense has lost to a dominant defense and ground attack.

Granted the Steelers didn't have a run game like the Giants, but they still could run the ball somewhat well.

The teams that play defense and run the ball still win the championships. The glitter of the passing game is becoming more prevalent, but its still not winning championships.

Even when the Colts won the SB, they did it when they finally relied on their defense and run game.

Gay Ork Wang
09-22-2009, 01:17 PM
The Vikings are disagreeing

bigbluedefense
09-22-2009, 01:19 PM
so basically, offenses and passing games win in the regular season, but the playoffs are still dominated by defense.

Gay Ork Wang
09-22-2009, 01:26 PM
so basically, offenses and passing games win in the regular season, but the playoffs are still dominated by defense.
i think its a wrong conclusion. It was always the case if you had a bad pass defense you will most likely lose if the other team is a team that will exploit you. If they see you cant defend the pass, well the other team will sure as hell pass all day and try to win that way. It really depends on what the matchups are, and right now the pass defense prolly need to adjusted a little, but yea basically the same thing was said the year the Patriots went 0-16. That didnt work that well

yourfavestoner
09-22-2009, 01:35 PM
so basically, offenses and passing games win in the regular season, but the playoffs are still dominated by defense.

Exactly. Throw to score, run to win.

awfullyquiet
09-22-2009, 01:51 PM
does time of possession count for anything anymore?

bigbluedefense
09-22-2009, 01:52 PM
does time of possession count for anything anymore?

not when your qb can't run a 2 minute drill.

Rosebud
09-22-2009, 01:52 PM
does time of possession count for anything anymore?

Not for Peyton Manning.

bigbluedefense
09-22-2009, 01:53 PM
i think its a wrong conclusion. It was always the case if you had a bad pass defense you will most likely lose if the other team is a team that will exploit you. If they see you cant defend the pass, well the other team will sure as hell pass all day and try to win that way. It really depends on what the matchups are, and right now the pass defense prolly need to adjusted a little, but yea basically the same thing was said the year the Patriots went 0-16. That didnt work that well

matchups will always dictate the gameplan, but i still think running the ball in december and january wins in the playoffs.

the way you run and defend the run has changed, but its still the same old same at the end of the day.

yourfavestoner
09-22-2009, 01:55 PM
not when your qb can't run a 2 minute drill.

Pennington led them down the field and gave them a chance to win. Ginn has to come down with that ball in the endzone.

D-Unit
09-22-2009, 01:55 PM
Once the NFL made changes in the rule book to enhance the passing game, it was a new day. Scoring is entertainment. This is an entertainment business at it's core. Money, money, money. The limitations on defensive players is such a joke. It's all about protecting the product. Losing star players, loses commercial appeal, loses money.

So the rules make it more enticing for teams to pass more. It's only a matter of time before more teams adopt what New England, New Orleans, and Arizona (last year) do. Watch out for Denver and KC. Notice they are all from the Parcells/Belichick tree? Those guys are so smart it's sickening. lol.

The funny thing is... if you look at the coaches from that tree... Parcells is the only one sticking with the run. Stubborn old man, won't change his ways. He's trying to reinvent it. haha. Still thinks he can revolutionize the game... lol. He handcuffed Payton so badly in Dallas. ...and I still get a kick at the memory of him punching Todd Haley on the sidelines. hahahahha.

I think the new era is Running the Ball and Stopping the Pass.

D-Unit
09-22-2009, 01:56 PM
does time of possession count for anything anymore?
TOP is such a misleading measure for teams that are pass heavy. The score could be 28-0 and the team with 0 could be way ahead on the TOP count.

Hurricanes25
09-22-2009, 01:57 PM
matchups will always dictate the gameplan, but i still think running the ball in december and january wins in the playoffs.

the way you run and defend the run has changed, but its still the same old same at the end of the day.

Agreed. There is nothing like a dominating ground game in December and January when it is freezing out.

bigbluedefense
09-22-2009, 01:58 PM
Pennington led them down the field and gave them a chance to win. Ginn has to come down with that ball in the endzone.

that was good defense. the ball was on the money, but so was the CB.

either way, it shouldn't come down to a 40 yard pass with 15 or so seconds left when you had 2 minutes to move down the field.

that tells me you wasted over 100 seconds only moving 40 yards downfield.

bigbluedefense
09-22-2009, 02:02 PM
Once the NFL made changes in the rule book to enhance the passing game, it was a new day. Scoring is entertainment. This is an entertainment business at it's core. Money, money, money. The limitations on defensive players is such a joke. It's all about protecting the product. Losing star players, loses commercial appeal, loses money.

So the rules make it more enticing for teams to pass more. It's only a matter of time before more teams adopt what New England, New Orleans, and Arizona (last year) do. Watch out for Denver and KC. Notice they are all from the Parcells/Belichick tree? Those guys are so smart it's sickening. lol.

The funny thing is... if you look at the coaches from that tree... Parcells is the only one sticking with the run. Stubborn old man, won't change his ways. He's trying to reinvent it. haha. Still thinks he can revolutionize the game... lol. He handcuffed Payton so badly in Dallas. ...and I still get a kick at the memory of him punching Todd Haley on the sidelines. hahahahha.

I think the new era is Running the Ball and Stopping the Pass.

I love that old man and his dinosaur ways. He still knows what he's doing.

Giantsfan1080
09-22-2009, 02:12 PM
I was thinking about this 2 years ago when the Giants won the SB, and while it holds true in a lot of instances, this is the conclusion Ive reached.

Passing the ball has dominated the regular season, but if you want to win in the playoffs, you gotta still run the ball and stop the run.

Think about it. The past 2 years, a high powered passing offense has lost to a dominant defense and ground attack.

Granted the Steelers didn't have a run game like the Giants, but they still could run the ball somewhat well.

The teams that play defense and run the ball still win the championships. The glitter of the passing game is becoming more prevalent, but its still not winning championships.

Even when the Colts won the SB, they did it when they finally relied on their defense and run game.

When we won the Super Bowl we were passing better than running, believe it or not.

bigbluedefense
09-22-2009, 02:14 PM
When we won the Super Bowl we were passing better than running, believe it or not.

I know. 3.5 ypc. But zomg Eli didn't do a thing, our run game carried him.

Anyway, the point remains, we were a run first team. Still are.

The Giants and Steelers both still had 8 in the box on 1st and 2nd down to stop the run. To me, that makes you a running team.

Giantsfan1080
09-22-2009, 02:20 PM
I know. 3.5 ypc. But zomg Eli didn't do a thing, our run game carried him.

Anyway, the point remains, we were a run first team. Still are.

The Giants and Steelers both still had 8 in the box on 1st and 2nd down to stop the run. To me, that makes you a running team.

Ok that's fair. We were a run first team but we just didn't have any success running the ball.

Halsey
09-22-2009, 02:22 PM
The Steelers were a passing team last year. Both teams in the Super Bowl were. Passing is at least as important as running the ball. There's no one right way to do it though.

Sniper
09-22-2009, 02:22 PM
If this were true, the Eagles would have won multiple Super Bowls by now.

Gay Ork Wang
09-22-2009, 02:24 PM
The Steelers were a passing team last year. Both teams in the Super Bowl were. Passing is at least as important as running the ball. There's no one right way to do it though.
no, Steelers were a Defensive Team and Cardinals made it cause the Defense stepped up mayorly in the playoffs. The run game though actually

keylime_5
09-22-2009, 02:37 PM
yea, but if you cant stop the run or run the ball you probably wont be winning a super bowl anytime soon. That much is still true. I think you can win a championship in this day and age without being too good at passing.

sweetness34
09-22-2009, 02:41 PM
When we won the Super Bowl we were passing better than running, believe it or not.

When the Giants won the Super Bowl their defense was what carried them. It didn't matter if their run game was off or if Eli struggled, the Giants had a defense that dominated and kept teams off the scoreboard. The Giants' opponents averaged 16ppg (Tampa Bay, Dallas, Green Bay, and New England).

A team can pass all they want but in the end they won't win if they aren't balanced on offense. If they don't have the ability keep teams from scoring, they won't win a Championship either.

The emergence of the Colts' defense in 2006 was what put them over the top. Peyton could only do so much. When the other side of the ball found some consistency (thanks to Bob Sanders), they were a scary team to deal with.

The Giants are title contenders this year because they have balance on both sides of the ball. They have a dominant defense and an efficient offense. The Saints are pretenders because until they can stop opposing teams from putting up points, outscoring them from week to week is not a championship recipe. The Steelers are title contenders because of their defense (when healthy still is dominant) and have the ability to score consistently. The Patriots are pretenders until Brady can prove he is fully recovered, until they can run the ball consistently, and until their defense proves it can replace Seymour, Harrison, Bruschi, and Vrabel.

Take a look at the past Super Bowl Champions, what do they all have in common? They had dominant defense, or they had a dominant offense. Either way teams don't win Super Bowls unless they can play defense consistently. For the indoor teams (Colts, Saints, Vikings, and Falcons) that look to be contenders this year, when it gets to winter time and the temperature drops they had better hope they have home field advantage. The track record of dome teams that are forced to go on the road in the playoffs isn't very good. Before you call me out on the Colts, they had two home games the year they won the Super Bowl and a game in Miami. The only opponent they faced "outdoors" was Baltimore and if memory serves me right it wasn't a nasty day weather wise (63 degrees and some light rain).

Winning in the regular season is different than winning in the post season. Teams that find balance on both sides of the ball are usually consistent and victorious. Teams such as Arizona last year that got to the Super Bowl by getting hot at the right time are usually flukes.

Giantsfan1080
09-22-2009, 02:46 PM
I agree about the whole defense thing Sweetness I was just pointing out that in the playoffs our running game wasn't that good. If our defense hadn't played the way we did then it didn't matter one bit on what our offense was doing.

Halsey
09-22-2009, 02:46 PM
Many fans are in denial and just don't want to believe facts. They don't want to let go of the rough, tough, blue collar, 3 yards and a cloud of dust ideal that they believe NFL teams should be. Last year the Steelers passed it more than they ran, had more passing yards than rushing yards, more passing TD's than rushing TD's and so on. Currently on the Steelers roster are a first round QB with a ginormous contract, a first round WR, a 2nd round WR, 2 third round WRs(one a high paid vet), and a first round TE. Even the Steelers backs are good pass catchers. Even the NFL team most known for a blue collar, run the ball offense has been investing big money and high picks into having a quality passing game.

Also, look at which players get the biggest contracts: QBs, LTs, pass rushers, cover corners and top WR's. WR's even get more than RB's now. Fitzgerald makes $10 mill a year. Name a RB who makes that much.

DMWSackMachine
09-22-2009, 02:51 PM
The point is, all things considered, the pass has sur-passed (heh) the run in terms of importance. This is quite obvious, actually.

When the Giants won the Super Bowl, it was because they were able to 1) stop Brady's passing attack by pressuring him, confusing his reads and limiting his opportunities downfield and 2) mount a pass-filled drive to score a TD in the waning seconds.

When the Steelers won last year, THEY WERE A PASSING TEAM. What is so hard to understand about this? Offense vs. defense, sure they were a defensive team, but they were horrifically bad at running the football and relied on the passing game to move the ball and to score. Also, while they were a solid run D, it was their ability to pressure the QB at an elite level, to cause INTs and to confuse QBs that made them what they were defensively.


And are we really going there with the Colts? They were a passing team who specialized in passing the ball and rushing the passer. Sure, their run D went from "god awful" to "pretty damn good" in the playoffs, but that wasn't what got them there. Any time you have any single part of your team that is really bad, you will have to get it at least up to par in order to compete for a title. That's really all they did, but it was still their ability to throw and stop the pass that got them there and won it for them.


Aside from all this, people are ignoring the obvious. You had three teams this week that dominated in the running game and completely shut down the other teams rushing attack, and yet all three LOST.

Give it up, guys. Its a thing of the past. Passing>running.

Jughead10
09-22-2009, 02:58 PM
Disagree. Call me old school but in no way do I consider the New Orlean Saints a real Super Bowl contender as presently constructed. I don't care how many times they put 40 plus points up on mediocre teams.

2 Live Crew
09-22-2009, 03:00 PM
It has been this way for while now. You NEED to be able to pass the ball in today's game to win. Being able to put up big time points on the scoreboard is a lot more important in today's game.

You can win a championship without a good running game, but the only way you are winning one without a passing game is if you have a legendary defense or legendary run game.

If your QB cannot come through on a 2 min drill and drive down the field for a score, you will not a win a championship, this a must.

Super Bowls:

09:

Pit - Below Average running game, great passing game in the clutch, great D
Ari - Below Average running game, great passing attack

08:

NE - one of the greatest passing attacks of All time, didn't run the ball and went 18-1 (exhibit A for why you don't need to run if you can pass well)
NYG - Legendary PASS RUSH. Won the game with clutch PASSING in the 2 min drill

07:

Ind - Great passing attack (not great in the SB however)
Chi - Great D and good run game but lost because had ZERO passing game (Grossman). Would've needed a legendary D to pull this out.

06:

Pit: Amazing D, great run game...passing was average. Legendary D carried this team
Sea: Solid all around team...only made it this far because of Hasselback though.

Then you've got the NE teams where Brady had CLUTCH PASSING in the 2 min drill to win.

The outliers in this are the 06 Steelers, Bucs, and Ravens. These teams could not really pass the ball, but they were near perfect in all other areas of the game and they all had LEGENDARY D's that had to carry them.

So basically...in today's game if you don't have a good passing game (or at least a clutch passing game) than the rest of your team needs to be near perfect and your Defense most likely has to be Legendary for you to win a title. That just doesn't happen too often.

Running still has its place but with all the rules that help the passing game it is the new way. Also WR's just keep gettin bigger, stronger, faster, and tougher to defend. People are starting to perfect passing now, sh*t the forward pass wasn't even legal at first.

There were no domed stadiums back in the day, they didn't have these sticky a** gloves, the original ball was a fat rugby ball (you can't throw those things), players got paid squat (makes people want to play less), and they practiced and trained wayyy less.

Now today, you have all these things but also training from a younger age (Manning passing camps, etc...) and perfecting technique over the years that people back then didn't have. All of this makes passing a much more effective weapon in football today than it was in the old days.

DMWSackMachine
09-22-2009, 03:07 PM
Many fans are in denial and just don't want to believe facts. They don't want to let go of the rough, tough, blue collar, 3 yards and a cloud of dust ideal that they believe NFL teams should be. Last year the Steelers passed it more than they ran, had more passing yards than rushing yards, more passing TD's than rushing TD's and so on. Currently on the Steelers roster are a first round QB with a ginormous contract, a first round WR, a 2nd round WR, 2 third round WRs(one a high paid vet), and a first round TE. Even the Steelers backs are good pass catchers. Even the NFL team most known for a blue collar, run the ball offense has been investing big money and high picks into having a quality passing game.

Also, look at which players get the biggest contracts: QBs, LTs, pass rushers, cover corners and top WR's. WR's even get more than RB's now. Fitzgerald makes $10 mill a year. Name a RB who makes that much.


Thank you for that, sir.

The evidence is overwhelming here. Look at resources. Look at positions whose job it is to stop the run versus stop the pass, or promote the run versus promote the pass. MLBs, non-penetrating DTs, 3-4 ends who can't rush the passer, safeties who aren't amazing in coverage, OGs, Cs, run-blocking TEs, RBs, FBs....these are the lowest paid positions in the NFL relative to their workload, and also are the lowest drafted.

Meanwhile, pass rushers (4-3 DEs and 3-4 OLBs), coverage CBs, elite S (which, coincedence of coincedences are all great in the passing game), WRs, QBs...these are the money positions and the ones that are regularly going very high in the draft.

Then compare that against YPA....the passing game is generating about 7 YPA league wide versus the 4 YPA figure for running. The great equalizer there has always been 1) TO figures for passing have vastly outstriped the ones for rushing and 2) inconsistency in the distribution of that yardage as a result of low completion %s.

Now, with the leaguewide INT% going from about 4.5% to 2.5% over the last 25 years and completion percentages going from 50% to 60%, the risk reward has tilted in favor of the passing game to a large extent. More reward when you pass and less risk.


Teams haven't been ignorant to this, either, as the Run/Pass ratio has consistently crept upward nearly every season since 1990 (don't have the #s in front of me).


...and that's just the beggining.


No one is saying that running is no longer needed, or important. Or that its not an effective way to win. Just that, in today's NFL, the old school ideas of the importance of the running game are no longer valid.

Its funny because you have people, KNOWLEDGABLE people like the ones on this board, who will go back and try to revise the identities of teams winning the SB to lineup with the old stereotypes just to try to make it true, when that is clearly not the case. The 2008 Pittsburgh Steelers were quite possibly the worst running team to ever win the Super Bowl. They ranked, iirc, 31st in the league in short yardage situations--one of the old standbies of a smash-mouth running team--and the team they beat, Arizona, was probably the worst running team in the league. Had Pittsburgh not had the ability to make some explosive, jaw dropping passing plays, Arizona would have actually won, purely on the strength of their passing attack.

I really can't believe people are still making these arguments. This has been true for the majority of this decade, if not all of it, and it gets more and more obvious by the day.

D-Unit
09-22-2009, 03:14 PM
Seems like we're starting to go pretty far back... say the beginning of the Patriots SB run? So how new is this again? :)

Jughead10
09-22-2009, 03:15 PM
Not sure about the exact numbers but didn't the Cardinals run attack greatly improve in the playoffs compared to the regular season, much like the Colts defense did in their Super Bowl run.

scottyboy
09-22-2009, 03:18 PM
i have a **** load to do but just a few things:

WR's get paid more because they're longievity and because it's becoming a 2 back league. RB's get banged up and you need 2 RB's, hence WR's making more cash.

99%of game winning 2 minute drills are passing attacks. It's quicker and get big yards so the n00b who broke down the last few Super Bowls, there was no need to use caps lock on "passing" when saying the Giants won with a 2 minute drill. That proves absolutely nothing. 2 minutes drills are more about composure and being clutch more-so being a better passing attack. I mean, the Phins almost had one last night, and Pennington and Ginn and Bess don't really strike fear into too many hearts...

Gay Ork Wang
09-22-2009, 03:18 PM
Not sure about the exact numbers but didn't the Cardinals run attack greatly improve in the playoffs compared to the regular season, much like the Colts defense did in their Super Bowl run.
so did their defense.

scottyboy
09-22-2009, 03:21 PM
If this were true, the Eagles would have won multiple Super Bowls by now.

this....this right here. And I'm dead serious. THe iggs have had some downright DIRTY D's, and JJ (RIP) was one of the greatest defensive minds in the game ever. However, a lack of run game (running GAME, not back) hindered them and they were just not a very balanced O, costing them chances to win a super bowl.

it's all about balance. Not passing>running or running>passing.

I'll use the 08 Giants because it's clearly the team I know best to use an example for:

Balance with the run with Jacobs and Bradshaw kept teams off guard, had them loading the box, and made the playaction that much more dangerous. We were a balanced O that didn't rely on the ground or the air. Balance on O and D wins championships.

D-Unit
09-22-2009, 03:25 PM
So by this theory who should be the top contenders this year and who can we eliminate? It'd be interesting to see if those results are any different from most projections.

DMWSackMachine
09-22-2009, 03:30 PM
The outliers in this are the 06 Steelers, Bucs, and Ravens. These teams could not really pass the ball, but they were near perfect in all other areas of the game and they all had LEGENDARY D's that had to carry them.


Great post, but you need to check your facts on the Bucs. That year Brad Johnson was a very good passing who ranked 3rd in the NFL is PR. The Bucs were an excellent passing team that year and Keyshawn was one of the best possession receivers in the league.

Sniper
09-22-2009, 03:33 PM
So by this theory who should be the top contenders this year and who can we eliminate? It'd be interesting to see if those results are any different from most projections.

The Vikings have been and will continue to be a pretender unless they open things up a bit more.

Rosebud
09-22-2009, 03:34 PM
Great post, but you need to check your facts on the Bucs. That year Brad Johnson was a very good passing who ranked 3rd in the NFL is PR. The Bucs were an excellent passing team that year and Keyshawn was one of the best possession receivers in the league.

Now you're just twisting things to support your point. That passing game was effective but in no way shape or form was it "very good", what it did was give them balance, which is far more important than just a passing game.

2 Live Crew
09-22-2009, 03:36 PM
99%of game winning 2 minute drills are passing attacks. It's quicker and get big yards so the n00b who broke down the last few Super Bowls, there was no need to use caps lock on "passing" when saying the Giants won with a 2 minute drill.

LOL...that's exactly my point, not every team can pull off a winning 2 min drill in a big game.

Also, I could care less about one meaningless week 2 game with the dolphins, not to mention they didn't even finish off the drive. Dolphins ran all over their a** and had way more TOP but the Colts big passing plays win them the game.

2 Live Crew
09-22-2009, 03:42 PM
Great post, but you need to check your facts on the Bucs. That year Brad Johnson was a very good passing who ranked 3rd in the NFL is PR. The Bucs were an excellent passing team that year and Keyshawn was one of the best possession receivers in the league.

That's true, they didn't necessarily get carried by their D in that game because it was a blowout...but still in the grand scheme of the things, they were there in the first place because of that D.

Also, that Bucs passing game, compared to many recent Super Bowl Winner's...I mean compared to them its average at best...not that its really a bad thing. Their passing was better than the Ravens I would say though.

scottyboy
09-22-2009, 03:43 PM
LOL...that's exactly my point, not every team can pull off a winning 2 min drill in a big game.

Also, I could care less about one meaningless week 2 game with the dolphins, not to mention they didn't even finish off the drive. Dolphins ran all over their a** and had way more TOP but the Colts big passing plays win them the game.

but being able to pass for a clutch drive doesn't make you a great passing team. It's about balance for the game. Balance kept the Giants in the game offensively, getting them their other 10 points. Composure and clutchness from Eli was what made the 2 minute drill.

There are plenty of great passing attacks that can't pull off a 2 minute drill. It's also about coaching/

again, that Phins game was just using a recent example. Being able to pull off a 2minute drill means you're well coached, you're QB kept calm, and/or you had a big play. It doesn't define you as a great passing team by any stretch

scottyboy
09-22-2009, 03:44 PM
That's true, they didn't necessarily get carried by their D in that game because it was a blowout...but still in the grand scheme of the things, they were there in the first place because of that D.

Also, that Bucs passing game, compared to many recent Super Bowl Winner's...I mean compared to them its average at best...not that its really a bad thing. Their passing was better than the Ravens I would say though.

The Ravens are the exception. That defense...with that coaching...my word it was a nightmare. It didn't even make sense. They were absurd and really, the exception to most rules, ha.

DMWSackMachine
09-22-2009, 03:49 PM
this....this right here. And I'm dead serious. THe iggs have had some downright DIRTY D's, and JJ (RIP) was one of the greatest defensive minds in the game ever. However, a lack of run game (running GAME, not back) hindered them and they were just not a very balanced O, costing them chances to win a super bowl.


Let's differentiate between passing in quantity and passing with quality. The Eagles passed a ton, but were not a good passing team. Get a clue.

The one year where they were actually an elite passing team (2004) they made the Super Bowl and were extremely close to taking it. In fact, if their QB had performed better IN THE PASSING GAME, they would have taken that game. And that was against what was probably NE's best SB team.




it's all about balance. Not passing>running or running>passing.

I'll use the 08 Giants because it's clearly the team I know best to use an example for:

Balance with the run with Jacobs and Bradshaw kept teams off guard, had them loading the box, and made the playaction that much more dangerous. We were a balanced O that didn't rely on the ground or the air. Balance on O and D wins championships.

Its always been about balance. Quite obviously, being able to do two things very well is better than only being able to do one very well. The question here is where it starts. In the past, if you set out to be a good defensive team you said "Ok, we need to begin by stopping the run." Today you begin by stopping the pass. And vice versa.

You can't ignore either aspect of the game, on offense or on defense. Which is why the whole idea of we-just-wanna-run-the-ball-and-stop-the-run was ridiculous in the first place. You want to be good against both and if you ignore the pass game, you can dominate the run game all you want but you will still lose. That's still the case. I just think that its pretty clear that in terms of relative importance and effectiveness of each aspect of moving the ball, passing has become a better way to do it, and thus it has become more important to be able to do it well and stop other teams from doing it well.

Both still fill their respective niches in terms of what they allow a team to do. Running the ball is still important when you need to kill the clock, control the ball and maintain a lead/possess the ball. Throwing is still just as important when you need to score quickly and in volume. Both have their importance. But the gradual increase in the effectiveness of passing the ball has made it a better way of moving the ball and scoring points at the niche neutral points in the game (ie, those points in the game when it is neither more important to control the ball or score quickly, a time that accounts for the vast majority of the time which an NFL game is composed of). That in turn has made it more important for defenses to be all to stop. Seems pretty obvious to me.

wonderbredd24
09-22-2009, 03:57 PM
Citing that running backs do not make as much as receivers has more to do with supply and football lifespan than style of play.

It's far easier to find a good running back than a good wide receiver and a good wide receiver will have a much easier time to stick around in the NFL than a good running back

Frankly, I think this premise has more to do with how important it is to have a good quarterback than a passing game, per se. This, however, is nothing new. When it comes to winning the Superbowl, more often than not, you need a quarterback who can make that big time throw to win the game.

DMWSackMachine
09-22-2009, 03:59 PM
Now you're just twisting things to support your point. That passing game was effective but in no way shape or form was it "very good", what it did was give them balance, which is far more important than just a passing game.

Um, no.


Let's look at what their runner did. That year they were led by Michael Pittman, with a putrid 718 yards on 204 attempts for a scorching 3.5 YPA. Also receiving significant carries was Mike Alstott, who got 548 on 146 for an even better (!) 3.8 yard average. Wow, impressive huh?

Meanwhile, Brad Johnson posted a 4.9% TD rate, good for 4th in the NFL, a 1.3% INT rate, tops in the league and a solid though not spectacular 62.3% comp% (12th). Only his YPA of 6.76 was below par, ranking 22nd in the NFL.

So, while he didn't make explosive down the field throws, he was able to maximize scoring opportunities while making the least critical mistakes in the league. Don't know where you live, but where I'm at, that's a great combination. Thanks for playing.

scottyboy
09-22-2009, 04:17 PM
Let's differentiate between passing in quantity and passing with quality. The Eagles passed a ton, but were not a good passing team. Get a clue.

The one year where they were actually an elite passing team (2004) they made the Super Bowl and were extremely close to taking it. In fact, if their QB had performed better IN THE PASSING GAME, they would have taken that game. And that was against what was probably NE's best SB team.





Its always been about balance. Quite obviously, being able to do two things very well is better than only being able to do one very well. The question here is where it starts. In the past, if you set out to be a good defensive team you said "Ok, we need to begin by stopping the run." Today you begin by stopping the pass. And vice versa.

You can't ignore either aspect of the game, on offense or on defense. Which is why the whole idea of we-just-wanna-run-the-ball-and-stop-the-run was ridiculous in the first place. You want to be good against both and if you ignore the pass game, you can dominate the run game all you want but you will still lose. That's still the case. I just think that its pretty clear that in terms of relative importance and effectiveness of each aspect of moving the ball, passing has become a better way to do it, and thus it has become more important to be able to do it well and stop other teams from doing it well.

Both still fill their respective niches in terms of what they allow a team to do. Running the ball is still important when you need to kill the clock, control the ball and maintain a lead/possess the ball. Throwing is still just as important when you need to score quickly and in volume. Both have their importance. But the gradual increase in the effectiveness of passing the ball has made it a better way of moving the ball and scoring points at the niche neutral points in the game (ie, those points in the game when it is neither more important to control the ball or score quickly, a time that accounts for the vast majority of the time which an NFL game is composed of). That in turn has made it more important for defenses to be all to stop. Seems pretty obvious to me.

you're throwing out general statements that aren't true. It's about match-ups and how your team is designed. Some teams thrive off of the kill the clock type of game. They'll give you limited possessions. Some teams thrive off the big play passing game. They're equally important, and you cannot say one is better than or ahead of the other and say you're right. This is an opinion on passing vs running when it all comes down to it. It's a prefence and how they're schemed and who matches up well. You say teams are building to stop the pass when building a D? This is just not true. It's all schemes and who you play. If you're playing the Vikings, you gonna build your D with Secondary to stop the pass? Didn't think so. Again on the flip side, if I'm playing the Patriots, am I gonna want to stack my D for the run? no. It's strategy, preference, scheming and coaching. That's it.

BlindSite
09-22-2009, 04:36 PM
Success comes through balance. Trends from year to year due to new rules, emphasis or whatever will always balance out, if you want to be successful you need to be balanced on both sides of the ball.

The Steelers could run the ball effectively last year, they didn't light up the stat sheet, but they did rank 11th in rushing touchdowns, when the time counted they could run the ball. We know the rest.

The Giants had an amazing run game, great defense and Eli's light came on in a big way, we know the rest.

Can anyone remember an unbalanced Patriots team in a superbowl? The one that lost.

Balance, not being able to pass, but being able to RUN and PASS effectively in both areas along with playing defense is how to be successful.

2 Live Crew
09-22-2009, 05:01 PM
Can anyone remember an unbalanced Patriots team in a superbowl? The one that lost.


Maybe they were unbalanced, maybe they didn't win the superbowl. But I'm not ready to say that the other Pats teams were any better than that one.

In all fairness to that Pats team, they were 1 defensive stop (and 1 helmet catch) away from being 19-0 and being crowned the greatest team of all-time...hard to argue with that...I'd take that any day from my team...

Bengalsrocket
09-22-2009, 05:06 PM
If I was a coach, I would just take the best of whatever I can get my hands on :P

There is 1,000 different ways to win a football game, and it all comes down to scoring touchdowns or stopping your opponent from scoring touchdowns.

bigbluedefense
09-22-2009, 05:31 PM
Let's give this some more time. Im open to the idea, but Im not ready to put my stamp on it just yet.

I think balance as has been said already in this thread is truly the correct answer here, but Im still a believer in old school football.

I want to see how this year plays out before I reach any conclusions. But I can see both sides of this argument.

Job
09-22-2009, 05:46 PM
Am I the only one here thinking there's no one secret formula? The team that wins in the end is the team that utilizes their strenghts better than the other team, whatever those strengths are. Yes, there has been a trend about defense and running in the last decade or so. But I also remember not so long ago a Jerry Rice-Joe Montana/Steve Young lead team that did pretty well and relied mostly on the pass, as did the Brett-Favre-in-his-prime-lead Packers, and the greatest show on turf.

CC.SD
09-22-2009, 06:05 PM
Welcome to week 2, where the sample size is still too small to determine any kind of reliable trend.

DMWSackMachine
09-22-2009, 06:31 PM
Am I the only one here thinking there's no one secret formula? The team that wins in the end is the team that utilizes their strenghts better than the other team, whatever those strengths are. Yes, there has been a trend about defense and running in the last decade or so. But I also remember not so long ago a Jerry Rice-Joe Montana/Steve Young lead team that did pretty well and relied mostly on the pass, as did the Brett-Favre-in-his-prime-lead Packers, and the greatest show on turf.

Have you read the thread? No one is saying--in fact, everyone is quite clearly NOT saying--that running is obsolete, un-needed or antiquated.

Simply that passing the ball has become a more important part of the game than running the ball, as opposed to the 1970s where running and stopping the run was clearly the key to winning often and big.

Obviously its about the total package, when you add the strengths of every team and subtract their weaknesses the team with the greatest overall "score" is the best team.

But at the same time, all the evidence suggest that this has become a passing league first and a running league second.

Let's give this some more time. Im open to the idea, but Im not ready to put my stamp on it just yet.

I think balance as has been said already in this thread is truly the correct answer here, but Im still a believer in old school football.

I want to see how this year plays out before I reach any conclusions. But I can see both sides of this argument.

Well, that's something at least. Just go back and look at the evidence. We've had more passing teams make the SB and win the SB over the last 5 or 6 years than the opposite, and when you crunch the numbers of what an average pass will give you versus what an average run will give you in terms of risk (TOs, long down and distances, etc) versus reward (average yardage per attempt, TD frequency, etc) it becomes clear that the pass is a more dangerous weapon from a purely numerical standpoint.

Obviously, as has been said 1,000,000x so far, its better to be balanced. But its clear that when you go to the tape, the passing game is the more important part of the game today.....and it should be, after all the time and effort the league has put into making it that way.


Welcome to week 2, where the sample size is still too small to determine any kind of reliable trend.


Read the thread and you'll see that this is something that's been going on for years. What happened in week 2 was merely a strong punctuation of that fact.

Jughead10
09-22-2009, 10:45 PM
Well, that's something at least. Just go back and look at the evidence. We've had more passing teams make the SB and win the SB over the last 5 or 6 years than the opposite, and when you crunch the numbers of what an average pass will give you versus what an average run will give you in terms of risk (TOs, long down and distances, etc) versus reward (average yardage per attempt, TD frequency, etc) it becomes clear that the pass is a more dangerous weapon from a purely numerical standpoint.

I still don't see all these prolific passing offenses that have won the Super Bowl recently. We've seen a few lose the Super Bowl but that's about it. But I also think its no suprise that the it took the Cardinals run game and defense to really step up for them to go on their playoff run. That passing game didn't win them a big game all season.

Remember no one was picking the Cardinals to do anything because they couldn't do either and sleptwalked through a terrible division by using their passing attack. When they playoffs came they played better defense and ran the ball much better than they did all season. That's what it took for them to make the Super Bowl when they were no longer playing teams like the 49ers, Seahawks, and Rams.

wogitalia
09-22-2009, 11:33 PM
does time of possession count for anything anymore?

So I had a look at this.

In week 1, 12 teams won that won time of possession. In week 2, it was just 9.

The Bucs, whose pass defense has been smashed so far were on the losing side twice despite winning time of possession. Poor pass defense, weak at QB would be the quick summary why this happened.

Chargers went 1 and 1 in reverse to TOP. To me this shows a team that is probably better throwing the ball than running.

Packers/Bears is a simple explanation, over everything else turnovers are still king for who will win.

Bronco's/Bengals was a fluke game anyway, basically there was 1 10 second play between the teams.

Colts have Manning who was at his best.

Vikes and Lions was a surprise but probably shows how slow the Vikes started as much as anything.

So basically, TOP still means something after 2 weeks, it just doesn't mean everything. Worth noting was that all those games were close pretty much and that a lot of them came down to the team with less TOP having a great QB who could run a 2 minute drill.

I think a big reason for the trend of passing over running is NFL rule influenced. A few years back they basically outlawed physical coverage. Now they have severely upgraded roughing the passer rules over the last couple where basically the QB is untouchable if he throws on time. On top of that there have been no changes to make running easier. So basically they have made passing "easier" and more protected and running has remained the same.

brat316
09-22-2009, 11:40 PM
Modern Era of NFL Football

Offense scores points, Defense wins Championships

wait.....what?

sweetness34
09-23-2009, 11:42 AM
Let's give this some more time. Im open to the idea, but Im not ready to put my stamp on it just yet.

I think balance as has been said already in this thread is truly the correct answer here, but Im still a believer in old school football.

I want to see how this year plays out before I reach any conclusions. But I can see both sides of this argument.

Even with a pass happy offense, if you don't have a defense to stop opposing teams you are not going anywhere.

The Steelers and Giants didn't "need" a run game because they had two of the best defenses in the league. If you can't run the ball, you at least better be able to stop the run.

The 49ers are 2-0 and they aren't a pass happy offense. They get it done with running the ball and a stout defense. The formula still works if you can play to your strengths. On the flip side teams that don't have a run game can win by passing and if they have a defense to stop the opposition.

I'm a firm believer in defense winning championships and I still hold to that belief today. Keeping teams off the scoreboard is the best trait a team can have.

scottyboy
09-23-2009, 11:48 AM
Even with a pass happy offense, if you don't have a defense to stop opposing teams you are not going anywhere.

The Steelers and Giants didn't "need" a run game because they had two of the best defenses in the league. If you can't run the ball, you at least better be able to stop the run.

The 49ers are 2-0 and they aren't a pass happy offense. They get it done with running the ball and a stout defense. The formula still works if you can play to your strengths. On the flip side teams that don't have a run game can win by passing and if they have a defense to stop the opposition.

I'm a firm believer in defense winning championships and I still hold to that belief today. Keeping teams off the scoreboard is the best trait a team can have.

winner winner, chicken parm dinner. I feel the SAME way. You keep 'em at 0, you're gonna win. And a great D can even score for you: see 2000 Ravens D, Osi against the Skins etc.

unless you've got Dan Orlovsky who, ya know, gives the other team points...but still

sweetness34
09-23-2009, 11:55 AM
I refuse to pick the Saints as a "contender" until their defense can show more consistently.

Scoring 40 points a game is great but a team isn't going to put up those numbers every week (especially in the post season). The Colts won the Super Bowl because their defense stepped up to help the offense. The Cardinals went to the Super Bowl because their defense improved and also because they found a run game. The Saints are not going anywhere until they can show consistency on defense.

brat316
09-23-2009, 12:00 PM
Remember those record breaking Colts, scoring a massive number of points. Then the playoffs happened.

2 Live Crew
09-23-2009, 12:03 PM
Sample size alert...but still interesting

In week 2...3 teams had over 200 yds rushing and still lost.

Gay Ork Wang
09-23-2009, 03:33 PM
Sample size alert...but still interesting

In week 2...3 teams had over 200 yds rushing and still lost.
In week 2, 4 teams had over 290 yards passing, 3 of them over 300, 1 even over 400. They still all lost

MichaelJordanEberle (sabf)
09-23-2009, 09:33 PM
In week 2, a team had Kyle Orton... and won.

Shiver
09-23-2009, 10:35 PM
This is the reaction every year at this time. Once the weather changes all these ridiculous passing statistics will fade for the most part, sans the warm weather/dome teams.

wordofi
09-23-2009, 11:38 PM
Its been the reality for awhile now, but any lingering doubts or debate that may have existed should have been permanently erased from people's minds after each of the last two primetime games.

The days of "run the ball and stop the run" are officially a thing of the past. In both the Dal/NY and Ind/Mia games the team that dominated both sides of the ground game lost because of their inability to stop the other teams passing game as well as generate a passing game of their own.

The modern era of football is here. Throw the ball and stop the pass should be the new mantra....and if you look carefully at the money positions, its clearly evident that that's been the case for awhile.

You're right. The Cardinals and Steelers made the Super Bowl last year, and they were two of the NFL's worst rushing offenses.

Saints-Tigers
09-23-2009, 11:44 PM
I refuse to pick the Saints as a "contender" until their defense can show more consistently.

Scoring 40 points a game is great but a team isn't going to put up those numbers every week (especially in the post season). The Colts won the Super Bowl because their defense stepped up to help the offense. The Cardinals went to the Super Bowl because their defense improved and also because they found a run game. The Saints are not going anywhere until they can show consistency on defense.



Meh, we're 4th in rushing defense, and we're causing turnovers. It's only been two weeks, so it's hard to draw a whole lot, but we had two teams just trying to throw their way back into the game and running up the yards.

DMWSackMachine
01-06-2010, 07:00 PM
Bumping this thread.

Early in the season, some said that they wanted to see this season play out before making any judgments.

I think the proof has been in the pudding. More 4000 yard passers than ever. More correlation between top passing games and winning teams than top rushing teams and winning teams. More passing versus running in general across the board. In addition to all the other points made earlier in the thread.


I still think the best way to solve the dispute here is to follow the money. Look at the highest paid positions and correlate them to run vs. pass, and you'll see a very clear correlation between passing or stopping the pass and higher pay, while runners or run stoppers get paid less. People pay for what's important, and clearly passing has become more important than running. The shift has been happening for over a decade now, but its beyond obvious at this point, imo.


Discuss.


Oh, and yes, it is best to be balanced, so please refrain from pointing out the obvious. Doing two things is better than one. But just like it used to be true that it was better to be able to run the ball really well than pass it, it is now better to be able to throw it.

Iamcanadian
01-07-2010, 12:22 AM
There is no doubt that the rule changes have made passing the ball much more important and has diminished running the ball to win. While it is true that for northern cities without a dome, running the ball will always be a necessity as windy days and cold can make passing the ball a lot harder than if you are a team in a milder climate area.
In the playoffs, it all depends on which team(s) you have to play and where you have to play them. Indy for example, is a dome city and plays all its playoff games in the dome this year, so running the ball will not be all that important as they should be able to continue to use their passing attack without any weather worries. The SB is almost always played in good weather or in a dome so you certainly can win a SB without a running game. However, if you are a northern city playing its playoff games outside and at home, running the ball will be a necessity in January if you want to advance in the playoffs. So for northern teams playing outside, a running game will always be a necessity if they want to win later in the season, while for warm climate teams, a passing attack is likely the best way to win as long as their playoff games aren't played outside in the north. Then the possibility of an unset will always exist.

BeerBaron
01-07-2010, 12:45 AM
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v613/BeerBaron/thread_necromancer.png

Couldn't resist.....now that I've whipped that bad boy out:

The NFL is just like anything else in that it works in cycles, and always will. The league pendulum has definitely been swinging towards the "passing" end of the spectrum for quite a few seasons now.

But if you look back through history, there have been many occasions where passing numbers popped up for periods of time. The "Greatest Show on Turf" Rams from the turn of the millennium come to mind, and before that, you had the golden age of QBs in the 1980s and early 1990s. That era still holds the all time single season passing leader, and though maybe they weren't throwing for the epic amount of yardage as modern QBs, the current crop of passers just doesn't doesn't conjure the same mystic allure that names like Marino, Elway, Kelly and Montana do....And even before that, you had the Chargers running the "Air Coryell."

And though it may be a passing league now, we've still never had the passing yardage leader in a season win the Superbowl that year. Being balanced is still the ideal I feel when it comes to looking at a football team's success. One needs to look no further than just last season when Drew Brees nearly eclipsed Marino's single season mark only to miss the playoffs entirely due to the lack of a run game and defense.

But, for now, i feel this trend will continue. If you look at the college game, more and more teams are converting to spread offenses with gimmicky passing attacks that inflate passing numbers. Eventually, I feel like the days of a QB coming from a "pro-style" system in college will come to an end and all potential NFL QBs will be coming out of spread offenses. And when that happens, I feel like pro teams aren't going to continue trying to retool these players and force them into their pro-style offenses...they're going to start incorporating elements of the spread into their offenses to help the young signal callers along.

But, like any other offensive trend in the NFL, defenses will catch up and the offenses will need to adapt once again. I like to allude it rabbit vs. fox populations. As the rabbit population goes up, so does the fox population just a short time after. Then, the rabbit population peaks and falls as the fox population catches up, and the fox population then descends accordingly. Once offenses start to adapt a new style or scheme or technique, the defenses immediately start figuring out ways to stop it, just delayed by a little bit. Then, once the defenses catch up and start shutting down the offenses, the pendulum starts to swing back the other way, perhaps back towards a power run game style of offense to combat the new smaller, more athletic defenses that were geared towards stopping the high powered pass games of previous seasons.

Should be interesting....