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Success & Stop Rates: San Diego Chargers vs Indianapolis Colts

We take a look at Monday night's win through the lens of Football Outsiders' advanced football statistics.

Kevork Djansezian

For those unfamiliar with Football Outsiders' success and stop rates, we'll begin with a quick refresher course. A successful play is one that gains 45% or more of the needed yards on 1st down, 60% or more of the needed yards on 2nd down, and 100% or more of the needed yards on 3rd/4th down. A stop is preventing the offense from gaining those yards.


Hey, those overall stats don't look like they belong to the winning team. First down numbers are weighed down by an ugly running success rate. This is somewhat misleading, though, as there were only three negative (and one for no gain by Danny Woodhead) running plays (one by each back) out of 36 rushing attempts. The offense struggled early, but found its legs in the second half succeeding on better than 54% of plays. Keenan Allen was the biggest driver of success with 8 of 12 targets resulting in successful plays, including the only touchdown scored by either team. The Chargers only ran twice on 3rd down, but both runs were by Le'Ron McClain and they were successful both times.

Game 1st Down 2nd Down 3rd Down 1st Quarter 2nd Quarter 3rd Quarter 4th Quarter
Pass 48.6% 66.7% 42.9% 41.7% 30.0% 62.5% 77.8% 25.0%
Run 44.4% 31.8% 58.3% 100.0% 40.0% 30.8% 33.3% 66.7%
Overall 46.5% 41.9% 50.0% 50.0% 33.3% 42.9% 60.0% 50.0%


The Chargers defense struggled against the Colts rushing offense, but were excellent against the passing attack of Andrew Luck and co. The pass defense was particularly lights out on 3rd down, though it was helped out by a handful of bad drops by Indy receivers. Luckily, the Colts completely abandoned the running game in the 4th quarter, and the defense was able to hold onto the lead. Individually, Derek Cox led the way with three stops (including the game-ending interception) and five other defenders were tied with two.

Game 1st Down 2nd Down 3rd Down 1st Quarter 2nd Quarter 3rd Quarter 4th Quarter
Pass 58.1% 41.7% 45.5% 100.0% 55.6% 44.4% 100.0% 66.7%
Run 41.2% 55.6% 33.3% 0.0% 66.7% 33.3% 37.5% N/A
Overall 52.1% 47.6% 41.2% 80.0% 60.0% 41.7% 33.3% 66.7%