Atlanta Falcons hold NFL’s POP Score top spot as NFL’s most efficient offense

Atlanta Falcons quarterback Matt Ryan at a roa...

Atlanta Falcons quarterback Matt Ryan (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Sports Stats ‘on Tapp’ is a sports statistics blog published with a focus on stats that go beyond the numbers.

Atlanta’s offense had another solid performance in their win last Sunday over Carolina, scoring three touchdowns and converting on three field goals (six scores) in 12 offensive possessions. It was the fourth straight week that the Falcons offense has scored four or more times in a game.

Note: Only five other teams (in addition to Atlanta) have seen their offense score (via TD or FG) four or more times in every game they’ve played this season: Arizona, Houston, New England, New Orleans and Pittsburgh.

With another good offensive performance, the Falcons have sole possession of the top spot in this week’s POP Score rankings, signifying the league’s top offense. The Cleveland Browns offense sits at the bottom of the POP Score rankings.

(POP Score is based on the simple premise that it is the offensive team’s objective to score a touchdown (or at the least, kick a field goal) in each possession. POP Score stands for Points per Offensive Possession. Here’s how it works: The Falcons in Week One had nine possessions in their game. On four of the possessions, they scored a touchdown. On four of their possessions they kicked a field goal. They punted once. They scored 24 points on their four TDs (extra points are not included in Pop Score); 12 points on their four field goals. The Atlanta offense scored 36 points on nine possessions. By dividing the 36 points by the nine possessions, you get a POP Score of 4.0. Maximum POP Score is 6.0, which would indicate that a team scored a touchdown every time they had an offensive possession.)

Here’s a look at the POP Score rankings through Week 4.

Team, POP Score, (Season Offensive Scores/Possessions)

1. Atlanta 2.64 (23 scores in 42 possessions)

2. Pittsburgh 2.56 (14 scores in 31 possessions)

3. New York Giants 2.48 (22 scores in 40 possessions)

4. New England 2.43 (24 scores in 47 possessions)

5tie. Cincinnati 2.21 (19 scores in 42 possessions)

5tie. Denver 2.21 (19 scores in 42 possessions)

7. San Francisco 2.18 (19 scores in 40 possessions)

8. Houston 2.15 (20 scores in 46 possessions)

9. Baltimore 2.13 (20 scores in 45 possessions)

10. San Diego 2.05 (19 scores in 41 possessions)

11. Buffalo 2.02 (16 scores in 46 possessions)

12. New Orleans 2.0 (18 scores in 45 possessions)

13. Detroit 1.91 (20 scores in 44 possessions)

14. Chicago 1.9 (17 scores in 41 possessions)

15. Washington 1.84 (18 scores in 49 possessions)

16. Minnesota 1.8 (16 scores in 40 possessions)

17. Green Bay 1.77 (14 scores in 39 possessions)

18. Arizona 1.6 (16 scores in 47 possessions)

19. Carolina 1.58 (11 scores in 40 possessions)

20tie. Kansas City 1.53 (17 scores in 51 possessions)

20tie. Tampa Bay 1.53 (16 scores in 45 possessions)

22. Dallas 1.46 (12 scores in 39 possessions)

23. Oakland 1.43 (14 scores in 42 possessions)

24tie. St. Louis 1.43 (16 scores in 42 possessions)

24tie. Seattle 1.43 (13 scores in 40 possessions)

26tie. Miami 1.41 (14 scores in 49 possessions)

26tie. Indianapolis 1.41 (10 scores in 34 possessions)

28tie. Philadelphia 1.3 (14 scores in 46 possessions)

28tie. Jacksonville 1.3 (13 scores in 43 possessions)

30tie. New York Jets 1.29 (12 scores in 44 possessions)

30tie. Tennessee 1.29 (12 scores in 42 possessions)

32. Cleveland 1.2 (14 scores in 50 possessions)

Biggest gainers this week: Denver (up 13 spots); Carolina (up 10 spots); Green Bay (up 8 spots); St. Louis (up 6 spots)

Biggest losers this week: New York Jets (down 14 spots); Detroit (down 7 spots); Buffalo (down 6 spots); Oakland (down 6 spots)

NFL POP Score league average through Week 4: 1.78

Follow Jerry on Twitter @StatsonTapp

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