The unlucky 13 – NFL Edition

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Last week I was warning peeps about this Sunday as it marks the point of no return from hell… Erm… No that’s not that. This Sunday means we are just 13 Sundays away from our regular football feast joining us on screens of our tellies, laptops, smartphones or whatnots.
As 13 is considered to be unlucky number to the point of hotels lacking a room with said number we should discuss some football unluck and one of the most hectic, unexpected unlucky situations that there can be, are the fumbles!
Thing is, since the acient pharaohs, and all the other creatures around them, took number 13 as a lucky sign, I’m gonna add a twist to this week’s edition of ‘Did you know that’ and we are going to run through fumbles recovered by the defences leaving the sad and miserable offence to more modern approach towards number 13. Let’s get going then.
Did you know that?

There were three NFL teams that defenses recovered more than 13 fumbles in 2015 season? These were the Redskins with 16, the Panthers with 15 closely followed by the Cardinals with 14. Quite an interesting mixture of teams. Straight after the top 3 there were 5 teams that defenses managed to secure 13 fumbles exactly and we are going to look at these teams in no particular order.

  • Denver Broncos had 13 recovered fumbles in 2015. The orange devils also recorded 14 interceptions which gave them a nice total of 27 takeaways. Their offence committed 31 turnovers though with 23 interceptions and 8 fumbles given away. So thumbs up for fumbles but thumbs down for these nasty picks which 17 belonged to our famous Peyton Manning and his falling apart body.
    Sadly, minus 4 for the Broncos.

  • Pittsburgh Steelers defence recorded 13 fumble recoveries in 2015. The Steelers also managed to grab 17 interceptions through the course of the season for a juicy 30 takeaways (the most from the teams mentioned in the article here). It was a collective effort with four players securing two fumbles each and 11 players recording at least one interception.
    Offensively, the Steelers gave a little less than they took as they fumbled 7 times and thrown 21 picks for a total of 28. Main offenders were DeAngelo Williams with 4 fumbles and Big Ben with 16 picks.
    Still, plus 2 for the Steelers.

  • Whereas St. Louis’ offense wasn’t creating highlights, at least defensively, the Rams had something to cheer up about as they recovered 13 fumbles during 2015 season. Add another 13 interceptions grabbed and you get a nice number of 26 takeaways that weren’t chilli or some Chinese chicken wings. Score.
    Trumaine Johnson had 53.9% of the teams’ interceptions with 7 to his name (he also added one fumble recovery) and Akeem Myers lead the team with 3 recovered fumbles.
    On the offensive side of the business it was somewhere in the middle as the Rams gave up more fumbles (11) but prevented throwing more picks (11) than their defense recovered. Their total came to 22 turnovers in 2015.
    Hey it is plus 4 for the Rams!

  • New York Giants had 13 fumbles recovered in 2015. They also forced 15 interceptions and ended up with 28 takeaways in total. Not a bad number. Similarly to Pittsburgh, New York relied on team effort with eight players recording a fumble recovery on the defense. Interceptions were also a collective work with Rodgers- Cromartie and McBride being on top of the teams’ list with three picks each.
    On the offense, the Giants have taken ball security issues seriously and managed to cough up only 7 fumbles and 14 interceptions giving them a total of 21 turnovers and it is the way the game is played that Eli Manning has to take the blame for most of them.
    Surprisingly it is plus 7 for the Giants.

  • New Orleans Saints finished the 2015 having recovered 13 fumbles. They added only 9 interceptions though that gave them a very low score of 22 takeaways through the year. Basically one for every starter. There was no clear leader in terms of recovering fumbles and only because the numbers were so low, Delving Breaux looked like a driving force with 33.3% of teams’ interceptions (3).
    Looking to the other side of the field, the offense did its best to keep things in balance and they gave up 12 interceptions and 8 fumbles for the lowest amount of takeaways among these five teams (20).
    Funny enough it is plus 2 for the Saints.

And by starting with Broncos I unintentionally got going with the “worst” of the five teams in terms of balancing takeaways and turnovers. Health of Manning had a lot to do really with all these interceptions thrown around. The best team, turned out to be New York Giants that despite playing poorly as a team in general, at least something that goes their way and perhaps will continue next season.
As the next Sunday will mark 12 week point until the first football Sunday is with us I might do a little bit of brolove and focus primarily in the number 12 that makes me smile and is my top favourite player, Andrew Luck.
Or maybe I’ll do something else, there are some great 12s around the NFL.
And in the meantime, I hope you all have a great time. Keep well!

ALL STATISTICAL DATA PER http://www.pro-football-reference.com 
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