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Buccaneers Causing Havoc on Both Sides of the Ball

Havoc Rate is a statistic that attempts to capture an offense’s ability to prevent negative plays and a defense’s ability to create negative plays. We have altered and expanded the traditional formula to include third and fourth down failures/stops.

Given the uncertainty of teams resting players, we will not highlight any Havoc Rate mismatches in Week 17. Instead, we will briefly walk through what Havoc Rate has taught us about NFL teams this season.

The Packers offense, behind their strong offensive line (first in Pressure Rate Allowed), and the Steelers defense, with their blitz-heavy scheme (first in Pressure Rate Forced), have each separated themselves as our top Havoc Offense and Defense, respectively. Heading into the playoffs, only three teams have units in the top 10 on both sides of the ball: the Tampa Bay Buccaneers (fourth in O Havoc, second in D Havoc), the New Orleans Saints (sixth in O Havoc, third in D Havoc) and the Arizona Cardinals (10th in O Havoc, 10th in D Havoc).

Adding both sides of the ball to calculate Net Havoc Rate, we can see a strong correlation to wins this season. Only one team within the top 15 of Net Havoc, the Las Vegas Raiders, has been eliminated from playoff contention. The top five teams in Net Havoc have won an average of 11 games, while the bottom five teams have won an average of three games.

Check out our final update to the NFL’s Havoc Rate Landscape:

Havoc Rate Leaderboards

The offense and defense leaderboards entering Week 17 (as well as their rates expressed in standard deviations) are as follows: