99 Stats Until Kickoff: (No. 14) Success in ‘0 turnover’ games

Houston Texans' Arian Foster fumbles while bei...

(Photo credit: Wikipedia)

From May 30 and every day until September 5… the start of the 2013 NFL season… Sports Stats ‘on Tapp’ will publish “99 Stats Until Kickoff” a daily dose of NFL stats that will get you ready for the 2013 NFL season.)

How often have you heard an NFL head coach mention that his team needs to “limit the turnovers” and “protect the ball” to be successful in their upcoming game? Quite often, I bet.

In the 2012 season, there were 123 occasions when a team played a game without committing a turnover. In those games, teams were 98-24-1, an .801 winning percentage.

Eleven teams last season were undefeated in games when they committed no turnovers. Houston topped the list going 7-0 last season in games with no turnovers. Super Bowl champs Baltimore were close behind going 6-0 in no turnover games. Three teams, Indianapolis, Minnesota and Pittsburgh were 4-0 in those error-free games. (The 49ers were 6-0-1 in games where they committed no turnovers.)

Three teams led the league with most games with no turnovers: Atlanta, Houston and San Francisco each played seven games with no turnovers. Oakland was the only team in 2012 that did not win a game when they had zero turnovers. They were 0-1.

If we expand the parameters a little and look at how well teams have played in turnover-less games since the start of the century, we discover that NFL teams were 1025-291-1 in games with no turnovers dating back to the start of the 2000 season. The Patriots top the list with 68 games played with no turnovers, while the Indianapolis Colts have the league’s best record in these games, going 39-2 (.951 winning percentage) in those games.

Following is a look at each teams’ record in games with no turnovers (from 2000-2012).

Indianapolis 39-2 .951
New Orleans 38-3 .927
Baltimore 39-4 .907

Denver 35-4 .897
Pittsburgh 41-5 .891
New England 60-8 .882
Green Bay 42-6 .875
San Francisco 38-6-1 .856
San Diego 41-8 .837
Cincinnati 30-7 .811
Arizona 17-4 .810
Carolina 32-8 .800

New York Giants 39-10 .796
Tennessee 34-9 .791
New York Jets 41-12 .774
Seattle 34-10 .773
Atlanta 37-11 .771
Tampa Bay 33-10 .767
Dallas 27-9 .750
Miami 27-9 .750
Jacksonville 36-13 .735
Chicago 25-9 .735
St. Louis 19-7 .731
Minnesota 27-10 .730

Washington 27-12 .692
Philadelphia 26-12 .684
Buffalo 26-13 .667
Oakland 23-12 .657
Houston 23-14 .622
Cleveland 19-12 .613
Detroit 19-12 .613

Kansas City 29-20 .592

Note: The Atlanta Falcons had the longest current winning streak in games where they did not commit a turnover. The Falcons had won their last 19 straight turnover-less games, dating back to Sept. 28, 2008. They then were defeated 22-17 by Tampa Bay in a turnover-less game on December 30, 2012, thus ending their streak at 19. The Baltimore Ravens have the longest current winning streak of turnover-less games with 12.

Follow Jerry on Twitter @StatsonTapp

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