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2013 Seahawks defensive stats: Seattle is very good at what matters to Pete Carroll

Otto Greule Jr

After 13 games, I think it's easy to see what is important to the Seahawks and what isn't. I think Pete Carroll has some pretty ambitious goals for this team, and I when I look at the statistical tables, Seattle ends up ranking in the top 5 in almost every category that matters to Pete Carroll. I plan on getting to the offensive side of the ball later, but for now, I'll focus on the defense.

Here are some pretty impressive defensive stats after 13 games for this Seahawks defense:

The Seattle Seahawks are #1 in yards allowed at 287.1 yards per game. Carolina is the only other team that allows under 300 yards per game at 296.2. The Cowboys allow a league-worst 426.8 yards per game, and the league average is 350.9 yards allowed per game.

The Seattle Seahawks are #2 in points allowed per game at 15.8. Carolina is #1 at 14.5 points per game (they jumped up after the bad loss to New Orleans). The NFL average for points allowed is 23.5.

The Seattle Seahawks are #1 in passing yards allowed per game at 175.6. New Orleans (199.3) and Houston (183.6) are the only other NFL teams that allow under 200 yards per game passing. The NFL average is for passing yards allowed is 238.2.

The Seattle Seahawks are #1 in Opponent QB Rating at 69.4. The NFL league median for QB Rating allowed is about 85.

The Seattle Seahawks are #1 in Opponent Passing Yards per Attempt (YPA) at 5.8. They are the only team that allows under 6 yards per attempt passing, with the NFL median around 7.1-7.2 (this is a pretty big deal).

The Seattle Seahawks are #1 in Opponent Yards Per play at a whopping 4.6 yards per play. The NFL league median is closer to 5.3-5.4 yards per play.

The Seattle Seahawks are #1 in 20-yard passing plays allowed at 26. The NFL median is closer to 43 or 44 twenty yard passing plays allowed.

The Seattle Seahawks are #1 in 40-yard passing plays allowed at 2. The NFL median is closer to 7 or 8.

The Seattle Seahawks are #3 in Interceptions at 17, Tampa Bay leads the league with 21 interceptions.

The Seattle Seahawks are #3 in Forced fumbles at 23 (behind PHI and STL at 24) and #4 in recovered fumbles with 11 (behind KCC, DAL, STL).

The Seattle Seahawks are #4 in passing TDs allowed at 14. The Titans lead the NFL with 12 allowed. The NFL Median is around 21 passing TDs allowed.

The Seattle Seahawks are the #3 team in Red Zone defense at 40.0% conversion.

For the advanced stats guys, the Seattle Seahawks are #1 in Defensive DVOA per Football Outsiders after 13 weeks.


If you look at the areas above, the Seahawks focus on turnovers, limiting explosive plays, and limiting points. Pete and his staff want the opponent to "earn everything, with nothing deep and nothing cheap."

There are other defensive stats where the Seahawks are simply middle of the pack, yet it doesn't hurt their overall performance on the scoreboard.

The Seahawks' defense is simply average on 3rd down, they allow 38% conversion, which is 17th best in the NFL. Middle of the pack. The Seahawks allow opponent running backs 4.2 yards per carry, again - good for 17th in the NFL. The run defense is simply average. The Seahawks allow 111.5 yards per game on the ground, good for 14th in the NFL.

They are "run at" 26.7 times per game, good for 12th in the NFL. The Seahawks have allowed only five 20-yard runs (5th best) and one 40-yard run (7th best) - so they tend to be average overall in run defense - but tend to hold down explosive runs in general. The variance from the best pass defense to the worst pass defense is 139.7 yards per game, while the variance from the best run defense to the worst run defense is 77.6 yards per game. Being excellent in pass defense (over being average) is more important than being excellent in run defense (over being average).

The Seahawks are also 11th in the NFL in sacks at 36- somewhere in between good and average in that measurement. Buffalo leads the NFL with 44 sacks.

I will try to tie in the offensive side of the ball in the near future. Until then, you know where to find me.