New England Patriots offense: Are they the NFL’s best?

Head coach Bill Belichick of the New England P...

Head coach Bill Belichick of the New England Patriots (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

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

The New England Patriots offense last Sunday came off their bye week by scoring four touchdowns and three field goals in a 37-31 win over the Buffalo Bills.

If you go back to their game prior to the bye, the Pats offense has now scored on 14 of their last 18 possessions, scoring 10 TDs and four field goals in the last two contests.

Their seven scores in nine possessions last weekend helped the Patriots offense extend their lead in the weekly NFL POP Score rankings. The Patriots ranking is 2.6, with the Atlanta Falcons second at 2.27. It’s the biggest lead any team has had in these rankings this season.

With games the next two weeks against Indianapolis and the New York Jets, both teams with defenses ranked in the bottom half of the league, the Patriots offense could put up some big numbers in the next two games.

(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 10.

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

1. New England 2.6 (52 scores in 97 possessions)

2. Atlanta 2.27 (47 scores in 97 possessions)

3. New York Giants 2.15 (52 scores in 106 possessions)

4. New Orleans 2.13 (38 scores in 96 possessions)

5tie. Baltimore 2.09 (42 scores in 96 possessions)

5tie. Tampa Bay 2.09 (42 scores in 99 possessions)

7tie. Denver 2.08 (39 scores in 95 possessions)

7tie. Pittsburgh 2.08 (40 scores in 88 possessions)

9. Green Bay 2.04 (38 scores in 97 possessions)

10. San Francisco 2.01 (38 scores in 91 possessions)

11. Houston 1.89 (40 scores in 103 possessions)

12. Detroit 1.88 (40 scores in 99 possessions)

13. Cincinnati 1.87 (39 scores in 101 possessions)

14. Minnesota 1.83 (44 scores in 108 possessions)

15. Washington 1.8 (36 scores in 95 possessions)

16. San Diego 1.78 (35 scores in 91 possessions)

17. Buffalo 1.73 (33 scores in 99 possessions)

18tie. Chicago 1.69 (37 scores in 99 possessions)

18tie. Seattle 1.69 (36 scores in 100 possessions)

20. Indianapolis 1.68 (35 scores in 93 possessions)

21. Dallas 1.67 (33 scores in 90 possessions)

22. Oakland 1.61 (39 scores in 106 possessions)

23. Tennessee 1.56 (36 scores in 108 possessions)

24. St. Louis 1.45 (31 scores in 91 possessions)

25. Philadelphia 1.41 (31 scores in 100 possessions)

26. Miami 1.4 (30 scores in 101 possessions)

27. Cleveland 1.34 (32 scores in 105 possessions)

28. Carolina 1.33 (25 scores in 97 possessions)

29. New York Jets 1.3 (27 scores in 97 possessions)

30. Kansas City 1.19 (30 scores in 106 possessions)

31. Arizona 1.15 (27 scores in 107 possessions)

32. Jacksonville 1.04 (27 scores in 103 possessions)

Biggest gainers this week: Baltimore (up seven spots this week); Buffalo (up five spots this week); St. Louis (up four spots this week).

Biggest losers this week: Chicago (down six spots this week); New York Jets (down five spots this week); Dallas (down three spots this week), Miami (down three spots this week), Pittsburgh (down three spots the week)

NFL POP Score league average through Week 10: 1.74

Follow Jerry on Twitter @StatsonTapp


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