Running the Numbers: Cowboys’ Initial Drives
Every year, I do an article on the Cowboys’ initial drives: those to start the game and the second half. Here’s this year’s article on initial drives at DallasCowboys.com. A preview:
The first drives to start the second half were even worse for the Cowboys in 2009. The team racked up only 4.94 yards-per-play and 1.06 points-per-drive–less than half of their points-per-drive on all other drives.
One of the things I’ve admired about Garrett has been his ability to improve as a coach and play-caller. He’s really evolved in his short time as the Cowboys’ head coach, and I think that improvement will continue into the future.
Garrett’s adaptability is reflected in the team’s 2010 initial drive stats. After averaging only 1.38 points-per-drive on initial drives (to start both the game and second half) the previous season, Garrett led the team to 2.13 points-per-drive on initial drives in 2010. The team scored 34 total points on their possessions to begin games, and 34 more points on the initial drives coming out of halftime. Those numbers were superior to the team’s average of 1.90 points-per-drive on all other drives.
The trend continued in 2011. The Cowboys averaged a robust 2.35 points-per-drive to start the game and second half—that’s way up from the 1.95 points-per-drive the team totaled on all other drives. On first drives alone, the ‘Boys managed 2.56 points-per-drive.
A recent comment here argued that Jason Garrett isn’t really getting the job done as head coach. The comment, as almost all written here, was well-reasoned. You all know there are areas in which I think Garrett can improve, but I also think he’s made great strides in a number of areas. This is one of them, and it’s further proof Garrett is evolving as a head coach.
Tell me your thoughts.