This is my first attempt at statistical analysis, so bear with me.
In Danny's recent breakdown of a Tom Cable interview, I noticed how defensive Cable has become of Breno. Cable refers to the overall negative perception fans have of Breno, and pointed out the progress Breno made reducing penalties in the second half of the season. I thought voicing his support of his starting Right Tackle was significant.
Last year on Brock and Salk (link), Cable said he would choose Breno over any other Seahawk to accompany him down a dark alley. I doubt Cable would endorse a guy he felt didn't have the talent to start in this league like that. Since I respect Cable's coaching ability, (and his straight right) I thought retaining Cable's services last year was a clear "W" for the Seahawks. I was surprised to hear he was not being poached like our OC and DC for Head Coaching positions this year either. I understand why Owners would stay away from Cable and his image, but that willingness to take risks when the reward is great, is part of what makes Carroll and Schneider unique. But I digress. To my point, Cable's out-of-the-box approach to linemen coaching, talent evaluation, and scheme implementation are as critical to Seattle's success to this point as any other aspect besides Schneider's drafting.
Think back to where our line was before Cable. In the last years of Holmgren and the "Dirtbag" guy, the Seahawks oline was leaking worse than the Hanford Nuclear Waste Storage site. Too soon? We now have 2 probowlers and are converting DL to OL with a success rate of 100% unforkingbelievable! This guy is as revolutionary as Carroll, and hopefully RW'sLoveChild takes Danny's suggestion to explore further the technical details of Cable's scheme.
Since this post was supposed to be about Breno and my initial attempt at stat analysis I will attempt to stay on point from here on out. I was reading through Football Outsiders explanation of their advanced stats this morning, and decided to see where the Seahawks Oline ranks against the league for 2012. The Seahawks unsurprisingly are 3rd overall in run blocking (1st in Power Success woohoo!) and 20th in Pass Protection. That beared out my assumption of excellent run blocking, along with pass protection leaving much to be desired.
FO further breaks down percentage of total rushes into five major directions: Left End, Left Tackle, Mid/Guard, Right Tackle, Right End. I almost dropped my coffee sans cigarettes, when low-and-behold - which team ranks 1st in Adjusted Line Yards when running behind Right Tackle? (Dora the explorer type pause for audience participation) RIGHT! The Seattle Seahawks!
Seattle's percentage of runs by area from Left End to Right End are: 9%, 24%, 41%, 21%, 4% (does not equal 100% due to small percentage of runs without direction indicated). For a reference of success against Okung, the Seahawks ranked 4th overall in ALY when running behind Left Tackle.
So what do these statistics mean? Initially I thought they meant Breno was the shit and was wondering why there was so much humming and hawing around Field Gulls to replace him. I decided to compare the 2012 Oline FO numbers against my gold standard for run blocking Oline the 2005 Seahawks. My assumption was that Walter Jones would rank #1 and the Seahawks averaged 10 yards per play running behind him. Shockingly the Seahawks ranked 25th when running behind Left Tackle in 2005. What the hell Walter! We were 3rd when running up the middle and again 1st running behind Right Tackle. The statistics show a much stronger inclination to run to Left End and Right End as opposed to the 2012 Seahawks who preferred to run between the tackles. The 2005 run location percentages were: 20%, 16%, 37%, 15%, 11%.
How do we interpret these numbers as they apply to Breno? Perhaps his rank as #1 has more to do with Defenses expecting the Seahawks to run to their left behind Okung? Perhaps I should take a class in statistical analysis? Perhaps I should smash my balls with a hammer for fun? Since I am not going to be taking any courses soon and I detest pain, I will stick with uneducated guesses for this Fan Post. My guess is that in 2005 our Hall of Fame to be LT was getting more Defensive attention than Pork Chop (11 starts ESPN) or Locklear (4 starts ESPN) and that contributed to being ranked 25th overall in ALY. I imagine that holds true for today's Oline as well. Defenses know Okung is a strength and that the Seahawks will tend to run to his side more, which the FO statistics support.
So the numbers don't clearly show that Breno should be our tackle of the future, but being ranked 1st by FO in ALY and having the approval of Tom Cable leads me to believe that overlooking Breno's contributions might be selling the man short. I don't think Breno has reached his potential, and if Sweezy or (insert draft pick/UDFA here) could develop this year he might show up on gameday even more. Finally to Breno (who is certainly going to read this) feel free to back up my defense of you by mauling the shit out of defenders this year.
As a follow-up thought to why Breno means so much to the Seahawks:
Friday on the Brock and Danny Show interview with John Schneider, Brock asks Schneider to mention some landmark moments from the past 3 years for this team (16:25). Schneider struggles a bit and Brock jumps in with the Bears game, which is what I was thinking as well. Schneider fires back with his first year here, the Seahawks got their asses handed to them by the Raiders in Oakland. The next year the same thing happened in the Steelers thrashing. Schneider says "I didn't ever want to see our football teams perform like that again..."
Schneider is obviously concerned about the loss, but I think his emphasis was on the fact that he did not want to be sailing the ship on a team that could be manhandled by anyone anywhere. The Seahawks loss to the Raiders probably contributed to Cable getting his job with the Seahawks. I think it is safe to assume Cable enjoys his job and if his boss has a problem with his team getting beat-up physically then that becomes a priority for Cable too. I am not trying to muddy the waters with why Cable supports Breno, but if you want to know WHY the Seahawks make the personnel moves they do, Schneider will often clue you in. This team values toughness and physicality which Breno brings in spades.