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DATA DEPENDENT: How the NFL’s top defensive teams performed in Week 5.

Coming into the NFL’s Week 5 games, a frequent topic of conversation revolved around the noticeable number of high scoring games that has been on display. At first it seemed to be a result of a shortened preseason but after Week 3 that argument went out the window pretty quickly. By the time most of Week 5’s games were completed, some commentators suggested that the spate of 30+ games were the result of the new way referees have been calling games this season. Whatever it turns out to be, Week 5 continued the high scoring trend.

Prior to the weekend games, we listed the Top 10 Defensive teams first by yards per game (YDS/G) and the by points allowed per game (PTS/G). We’ve compiled total yards allowed and whether the team won or lost.

Indianapolis Colts236.3Cleveland Browns385LOSS
Pittsburgh Steelers290Philadelphia Eagles336WIN
San Francisco 49ers294.8Miami Dolphins436LOSS
Tampa Bay Buccaneers298.2Chicago Bears243LOSS
New York Giants328.3Dallas Cowboys402LOSS
New Orleans Saints334.3Los Angeles ChargersMNFMNF
Washington Football Team338.3Los Angeles Rams429LOSS
Chicago Bears344Tampa Bay Buccaneers339WIN
New England Patriots349BYEBYEBYE
Philadelphia Eagles352.3Pittsburgh Steelers367LOSS
Carolina Panthers352.3Atlanta Falcons369WIN

Of the ten teams, two outperformed their average yards allowed per game – Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Chicago Bears. The Bucs and Bears played each other in a close game that saw Chicago pip Tampa Bay 20-19. That made the Brady’s Bucs the only team to outperform while also losing the game.

If we look at the points allowed per game, a familiar story takes shape.

Indianapolis Colts14Cleveland Browns32LOSS
Kansas City Chiefs17.5Las Vegas Raiders40LOSS
San Francisco 49ers17.8Miami Dolphins43LOSS
Baltimore Ravens18.3Cincinnati Bengals3WIN
Pittsburgh Steelers19.3Philadelphia Eagles29WIN
Chicago Bears20Tampa Bay Buccaneers19WIN
Los Angeles Rams20Washington Football Team10WIN
Tampa Bay Buccaneers22.4Chicago Bears20LOSS
New England Patriots23BYEBYEBYE
Arizona Cardinals23New York Jets10WIN
Los Angeles Chargers23.8New Orleans SaintsMNFMNF
Miami Dolphins24San Francisco 49ers17WIN

Once again, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers drew the short end of the stick while also putting in a solid defensive effort.

In conclusion, sucks to be the Bucs this week.

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