On the eve of this NFL season, ESPN assemble a story considering 14 trends across football. The NFL is passing the ball a lot more than it did a decade ago, so the passing game and all its implications is now the sunlight the rest of specialist soccer rotates around. For example: cornerbacks are now paid a whole lot more than they was, while running backs aren’t.
But you knew that.
1 trend that caught my attention was that: the amount of coaches who defer the kickoff to the second half has skyrocketed over the last ten years.
Ahead of 2008, the NFL had a rule that prevented teams by deferring the kickoff into the second half, and as such, 99 percent of trainers who won the toss elected to get. (Two points One: I’ve followed football religiously my whole life and don’t have any recollection of such a rule existing. 2: Why were 1 percentage of coaches preferring to kickoff to start both halves?)
But, the NFL gave its groups the option to defer beginning in 2008, also in these first 3 seasons, a third (32 per cent, to be precise ) of trainers elected to do so. To half of NFL coaches, that amount had risen in 2011-12. By 2013-14, it was two-thirds.
Now, five six NFL coaches who win the throw choose to reevaluate, based on ESPN’s data.
ESPN discovered no statistical advantage to taking the ball to open the second half in contrast to the first, but perhaps coaches are planning at a psychological advantage. An excess possession is, on paper, more precious from the second half than the first. Maybe coaches are planning for the double whammy of grading to close the first half and also to open the second. It is probably all the aforementioned.
Or it could be a more straightforward reason: they’re doing it because everyone else is. Writes ESPN:
There also could be a herd mentality. If a great coach such as Belichick is going to defer all the time, why go the opposite direction?
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