NFL passing emphasis, rushing decline: by the numbers

peyton-manning-passing

It’s happening. The day has finally come where the play calling in the NFL resembles my own play calling from back when I first started playing Madden.

First and 10? Streak to the endzone. Second and four? Streak to the endzone. Third and short? Streak to the endzone.

Okay, it might not be that drastic. But if it hasn’t been apparent in the past decade or so leading up to this season, it should be clear to everyone now that the NFL is a passing league.

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Meet the Candidates for the Chicago Bears Head Coach Position

Phil Emery

Breaking up is hard to do. After a 10-6 season that will leave the Chicago Bears watching the NFL Playoffs from their couches, the team cut their ties with head coach Lovie Smith after 9 seasons.

Many players have already voiced their displeasure with GM Phil Emery’s decision to fire Smith. Devin Hester is even threatening retirement now that Lovie will no longer be calling the shots.

But as Emery stated in his press conference this past Tuesday, a lack of offensive consistency and playoff appearances are what did Lovie in. The Bears only managed 3 postseason berths, a 3-3 postseason record, and ranked in the top half of the NFL in yards per game just once (15th in 2006) in the past 9 seasons.

That track record would’ve done anyone in, not just Lovie. Despite being a defensive genius and a true “leader of men”, Emery knows that it’s in the best interest of the team to find a coach who will bring the offensive production to the same level that the defense has been producing at for decades.

Finally, someone understands.

The Bears will now be testing the free agent coaching waters for the first time since 2004. There are 7 names that have already emerged as candidates for the job, most of them being offensive coordinators.

While it’s nice to imagine all of the big name coaches on the market in blue and orange, I’m going to stick to the 7 men who have been granted permission to interview for the job.

My apologies to anyone hoping to hear Nick Saban or Andy Reid.

Emery has a lot of deciphering to do in the coming weeks, but he hopes to have picked his replacement before the East-West Shrine Game (college football’s “all star game”) on January 19th.

Without further ado, let’s meet the contestants.

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