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More Chiefs Stats - Down Analysis

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Stat day continues...

First Down

  • 145 rushes (3.85 average)
  • 183 passing plays (4.91 average)

Of the Chiefs first down plays, they convert a first down 11% of the time when they run.  However, of the 183 passing plays they've run on first down, they've converted 38 times for a success rate of nearly 21%.

Second Down

  • 97 rushing plays (4.8 average)
  • 163 passing plays (6.38 average)

23% of the time the Chiefs are successful converting the first down when they run while 34% of the time they'll convert when they pass. 

Interestingly, when it's 2nd down and less than two yards to go, the Chiefs successfully convert 63% of the time on the ground and 58% of the time they're successful through the air.  In that situation, the Chiefs have run the ball 19 times and passed 12 times.  So, really, there's not a huge difference between our success rates running the ball on 2nd and short versus passing it.

Let's expand that a bit to see just how putrid our running game has been.  On 2nd down with less than 5 yards to go, it's a perfect time to run the ball and convert or set yourself up with a 3rd and short.  Right?

Wrong.  With less than 5 yards to go on 2nd down, the Chiefs pass the ball much more effectively.  In fact, they are one and a half times more likely to get the first passing the ball.

Third Down

  • 40 rushing plays (5.3 average)
  • 139 passing plays (5.01 average)

So, this weekend when you're watching the game with your friends and third and long comes up.  Likely, they'll knock the playcalling and say, "They better not run another draw up the middle here."

Ha!  But you read AP, my friend. This is where you step in and say, "Not so fast, my friend," in your best Lee Corso voice.

On third down with more than 6 yards to go, the Chiefs have run the ball 10 times.  In that same situation they've passed the ball 81 times and actually convert 20% of the time!  So, 1 out of 9 times the Chiefs are going to run some draw play up the middle on third and long which means we've gotta drop the "Not another draw on 3rd and long" line.

4th Down

  • 4 rushing plays (1.5 average)
  • 9 passing plays (6.67 average)

The sample size isn't big enough to draw any conclusions but for those that are interested we picked up the first down on 2 of our 4 attempts running the ball and just 3 of our 9 attempts passing the ball.