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Licensed Unlicensed Requires Authentication Published by De Gruyter October 15, 2010

A Simplified Analysis of Contemporary Defensive Performance in the National Football League

Harry L Morrison

A conceptual basis for examining team defense in the National Football League is presented. Based on these concepts, a simple method is proposed to analyze the weekly defensive performance of NFL teams. Using overall game data that is easily obtained, the procedure computes six indices which characterize the functioning of each defensive team for every game and over the entire season.The results presented here can be used to determine a rank ordering of all team defenses for the entire season. The resultant ranking compares quite favorably with a similar ranking determined by a process that employs play-by-play data.

Published Online: 2010-10-15

©2011 Walter de Gruyter GmbH & Co. KG, Berlin/Boston

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