Through three weeks (before Monday night's Packers/Seahawks game), the Buffalo Bills offense is ranked 3rd in the NFL in rushing yards per game with 178.0. Kansas City is tops with 191.7 and Washington #2 with 180.7 per game. Of course, who knows where the Bills would fall if CJ Spiller hadn't gone down in the first quarter of Sunday's game in Cleveland?
But let's take a deeper look at exactly how well the Bills have run the ball to certain areas of the offense, and specifically, who they're running behind. The numbers are above average for the right side of the offensive line, but extremely impressive for the left side.
According to the NFL's official Statistical Information System, which provides the NFL game book reports, here are the Bills stats for running behind each position and player on the offensive line through three games, and where those numbers rank in the NFL for running behind that particular spot.
NOTE: These stats do not include quarterback scrambles, only what are considered "called runs." Also, runs to the far outside (such as end-arounds or sweeps where tight ends or wide receivers are the primary blockers) are not counted as runs behind tackles:
Left Tackle (primarily behind Cordy Glenn)
Avg. gain: 8.91 yards
NFL Rank: 1st
Left Guard (primarily behind Andy Levitre)
Avg. gain: 7.33 yards
NFL Rank: 1st
Center (primarily behind Eric Wood)
Avg. gain: 8.38 yards
NFL Rank: 2nd
Right Guard (primarily behind Kraig Urbik)
Avg. gain: 3.67 yards
NFL Rank: 13th
Right Tackle (primarily Erik Pears)
Avg. gain: 4.18 yards
NFL Rank: 15th
Granted, three games is still a relatively small sample size. But couple these numbers with the fact the Bills offensive line
still has yet to give up a sack, which is what we know is really the case despite what the official stats say as of now because of Ryan Fitzpatrick's whiff-pass-fumble that shouldn't have been called a fumble anyway because of basic laws of inertia has only given up one sack, and you get an even better picture of just how good that unit has been so far. Especially when it comes to run blocking on the left side.
Later this week I'll share stats and provide analysis on how the Patriots defense is performing in each area of the field against both the run and the pass and how and where the Bills may look to attack them Sunday.
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