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Pre-Season Questions Finally Answered 
Posted on January 2, 2012 at 11:15 AM.
League-wide there were a couple of questions entering the 2011 season. Now that the season is over we can finally answer them

1. Would the lockout hurt the defenses?

Well lets look at the average league stats from the past 2 seasons

Passing
2010: 20.5 of 33.7 (60.8%) with 7.0 YPA, 751 total TD / 511 INT
2011: 20.4 of 34 (60.1%) with 7.2 YPA, 745 total TD / 506 INT

Rushing
2010: 27.2 att 114.5 yards (4.2 YPC), 399 total TDs
2011: 27.3 att 117.1 yards (4.3 YPC), 400 total TDs

Defensive Scoring:
2010: 79 TDs (57 INT, 22 Fum)
2011: 80 TDs (49 INT, 31 Fum)

The numbers are nearly identical. Despite the great passing by the top QBs and the record setting passing early weeks overall the defense performed the same this year as they did last year. The lockout DID NOT hurt the defenses.

2. Would the change from the 30 to the 35 ruin the return game?

This one was pretty obvious. The NFL had kicked from the 35 before so people had a pretty good idea of what would happen and that proved to be true.

The 5 year avg of kick return TDs for 2006-10 was 17.6

There were 9 kick return TDs in 2011

The total number of kick returns was way down. 1375 in 2011 vs 2033 in 2010. Thats a 33% drop.

This one is easy, the 35 yard line has destroyed the exciting kick returns we all love.
Comments
# 1 tbook24 @ Jan 2
true even though the passing numbers are identical u have to take into account the number of qb injuriesthat contributed to that. matt schaub, jay cutler, any chiefs qb, any dolphins qb, and the decision to play tebow and gabbert. we all know that defense was way down look at the packers and saints and pats top 3 teams in league and cant stop a nose bleed. defenseswere hurt because they had to keep things simple, when they tried to get fancy the lack of continuity led to all kindsof mistakes. c'mon there were 3 qbs that threw for over 5000 yds and 2 that broke marino's record which stood for 25 yrs.
 
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