breesrussellwilson

NFC divisional playoffs by the numbers

Here's a first look at the two NFC divisional playoff games from a statistical standpoint…

Saints at Seahawks: Saturday, 4:30 p.m. ET on FOX

Turnovers: That Seattle defense forced a league-high 39 of them during the regular season, including 21 in only eight home games. The Saints have turned it over seven times in their last three road games. 

Bad taste: The Saints' worst offensive performance of the year came when they visited Seattle six weeks ago. New Orleans had only seven points and 188 yards that day. They never had fewer than 13 points or 340 yards in any other games this season. In terms of both points and yards, Seattle had its third-most prolific game of the year against New Orleans, winning 34-7 while netting 427 yards. 

No budging: Seattle gave up a league-low 14.4 points per game. New Orleans scored 25.9 points per, which ranked 10th in the NFL…but the Seahawks scored three more points than New Orleans did during the regular season. 

Can't be all about Jimmy: Jimmy Graham was the league's top tight end statistically, but Seattle defended tight ends better than all but two other NFL defenses, according to Football Outsiders

Fun fact: Russell Wilson and Drew Brees are the two shortest starting quarterbacks in the NFL.

49ers at Panthers: Sunday, 1 p.m. ET on FOX

Don't expect many points: The Week 10 meeting between these teams was the only game all season in which neither team scored more than 10 points. It was also tied for the lowest-scoring game of the season, with the Panthers edging San Francisco 10-9. 

Like, these defenses are good: Both ranked in the top five in terms of yards allowed and in the top three in terms of points allowed. They both forced exactly 30 turnovers, which ranked sixth in the NFL. 

And they're red hot: Carolina hasn't lost at home since Week 3 and has won 11 of its last 12. The 49ers have won seven of their last eight road games and 12 of their last 14 overall. 

They're very similar: Both have mobile young quarterbacks and strong defenses featuring All-Pro-caliber linebackers. San Francisco's offense averaged 2.5 more points per game, thanks to an extra 0.2 yards per carry and a slightly higher team passer rating. They also had one less turnover, for what it's worth. 

One difference: Carolina converted 44 percent of its third downs on offense, ranking third in the NFL. San Francisco was below the league median at 37 percent. That is seriously the only discrepancy. 

Brad Gagnon

About Brad Gagnon

Brad Gagnon has been passionate about both sports and mass media since he was in diapers -- a passion that won't die until he's in them again. Based in Toronto, he's worked as a national NFL blog editor at theScore.com (covering Super Bowls XLIV, XLV and XLVI), a producer and writer at theScore Television Network and a host, reporter and play-by-play voice at Rogers TV. His work has also appeared at Deadspin, FoxSports.com, The Guardian, The Hockey News and elsewhere at Bloguin, but his day gig has him covering all things NFC East for Bleacher Report.

Quantcast