Here’s some refreshing non-Lockout news for you. According the Football Outsiders, the NY Giants were the 6th best defense in the NFL for forcing 3-and-Outs.
Keep in mind, the Giants had the #3 overall Defense according to their weighted DVOA. And although the overwhelming feeling I get from this is that the Giants are in pretty good shape on defense while there’s room to improve, this doesn’t mean everything. 3-and-outs are important, but so are forcing turnovers and sacks though….
The rankings somewhat follow the rankings for the best defensive DVOA ratings, except that teams which get a lot of turnovers and sacks will rank lower on the frequency of three-and-outs. Pittsburgh, for example, was just average in three-and-outs per drive.
I have no doubt the Giants can improve on these rankings across the board in 2011 – would love to see them do it. Based on the top 3 defensive teams, the Giants are right on the cusp of doing something great once again. Defense wins championships too, don’t forget – and both the Packers and Steelers who went to the Superbowl last year were the two teams ranked higher than the Giants in 2010. Food for thought in any case…