(Red) Zoned in

Say what you will about Mike Bobo’s stint as offensive coordinator so far, there’s one area where Georgia has shown significant improvement in that time:  red zone offensive efficiency.

Through last weekend, the Dawgs rank first in the SEC in that category, scoring 23 out of 24 times, a percentage of 95.8.  And it’s not because they’re settling for field goals, either.  Of the 23 scores, 17 are TDs.

For comparison’s sake, here are Georgia’s numbers from the past  five seasons (that’s all that’s tracked on the SEC’s site):

  • 2002 – 78.5%, 5th in the conference
  • 2003 – 85.2%, 6th in the conference
  • 2004 – 80.0%, 7th in the conference
  • 2005 – 80.4%, 6th in the conference
  • 2006 – 82.6%, 4th in the conference

If the current percentage holds up, it would be the highest ever compiled in the conference in the period of ’02-’07.  Not too shabby…

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8 Comments

Filed under Georgia Football, Stats Geek!

8 responses to “(Red) Zoned in

  1. Bunch

    Interesting. I’s be interested in the TD% from 2002-06. One thing about the Red Zone Efficiency stat that needs to be changed is the reliance on any score (FG) counting on either side of the ball. They should opt instead for a formula that weights TDs scored (or FG surrendered in lieu of TDs) higher than FGs. Under the current formula, a team that scores TDs only 40% of the time but has a deadeye FG unit (or who surrenders TDs 70% of the time but opponents have missed a good number of FGs) can lead the league.

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  2. Here are the TD/FG ratios for Georgia for the period:

    2007 – 17/6
    2006 – 29/9
    2005 – 27/14
    2004 – 27/13
    2003 – 31/21
    2002 – 36/15

    The ’03 numbers stand out, but they’re still nothing near 40%.

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  3. Ally

    That just shocked the hell out of me. I knew we were doing better and have seen less of Coutu, but never would’ve guessed we were 1st in the SEC

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  4. Ally, a couple of things that might play into that ranking: Georgia is second in the SEC in penalty yardage – the dreaded Dan Inman factor – and first in offensive turnovers. As a result, the offense avoids more of the screw-ups that end drives and winds up being more efficient when it’s inside the 20 than it’s been in previous years.

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  5. Hobnail_Boot

    ..and some people don’t think Stafford is getting better. Unbelievable.

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  6. Solon

    Building on what Bunch said, it seems the current system for measuring red-zone efficiency is ineffective. There’s little doubt that a team that scores 80% TDs and 10% FGs is doing markedly better than a team that has 50% TDs and 45% FGs, even though the current system will rank the second team as better.

    What I don’t understand is that the fix seems a fairly obvious one: total points on trips into the red zone divided by number of drives into the red zone.

    In other words, if a team gets in the red zone 10 times, has 5 TD (+5 XP), 3 FG, and 1 FG miss, and 1 TO, their “red zone efficiency” is 4.4/rzo or whatever you want to call it.

    To be honest, it seems so intuitive that I’m surprised this isn’t the universal measure of red-zone efficiency. Am I out of my mind here?

    (For the record, I would suggest counting TDs automically as 7, as opposed to taking extra point conversions (or failures) into account–since the vast majority of them don’t involve the offense–but that’s an argument for another time.)

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  7. Great post. I’m pleased with our red zone efficiency this year but the more telling stat for me would be how often do we score in genral?

    Sure, we might be automatic for points once we get inside the 20, but what is our percentage of getting points per drive? If I had to guess, I’d say it’s somewhere in the area of about 35-40%. Ideally, I’d say anything 60-65% or higher would be encouraging. It would show that we finish drives by getting points more than half the time, which would mean that every other time the Defense gets a stop, we can either grow our lead or cut theirs.

    Just my own $.02. Great read!

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