There is always a distinction between what fans see and what coaches see. This is never more true than offensive line play, as we see all the time fans question what a player is doing, and then the coaches praise his play.
Well, maybe that is what is happening with the Arizona Cardinals newest defensive toy, Chandler Jones. Through two games, fans, including yours truly, have grumbled that they have not seen enough from Jones.
He isn’t creating much havoc, and despite the two sacks, he has not appeared to be a consistent force. Yet, after the second game of the season, Pro Football Focus gave Jones a strong grade, which made fans raise a few eyebrows, maybe we missed something.
Well, to hammer home that point the Arizona Cardinals staff released their media information packet for the Buffalo Bills game, and if you get all the way to page 30 of the 47 page document, you get to the Arizona Cardinals defensive stats for the 2016 season.
Jones has been the most productive pass rusher for the Arizona Cardinals in the first two games and it is not even close, as Jones has two sacks, four quarterback pressures and five quarterback hits on the season, 11 total quarterback disruptions.
Second on the team is Markus Golden, who has two sacks as well, but only two additional quarterback pressures and one quarterback hit for five total quarterback disruptions on the season.
While everyone knows my stance on quarterback pressures, hits are important, and the fact that Jones has as many hits as Golden does quarterback disruptions is frankly… eye opening.
I reached out to Jordan Plocher, the Arizona Cardinals analyst for Pro Football Focus to give me the pass rushing snap counts, as maybe that would help explain the huge difference, here is what Jordan had to say:
Here is what we have through two weeks.
Chandler Jones 87 pass rush snaps, 2 sacks, 3 hits, 6 hurries.
Markus Golden 57 pass rush snaps, 2 sacks, 1 hit, 2 hurries.
Wow, Jones is creating a disruption on 12.6% of plays, Golden on 8.7%. If you had asked me before today, I wouldn’t have believed it, but here it is in black and white.
What does it all mean? I am not sure, all I know is Jones is doing quite a bit more than I had thought through the first two games, so maybe I need to get back into the film room.