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Why your drive's first down is more important than you probably think

Over the years I have come across a number of different statistics that one can measure during a drive to predict whether or not they score on that drive.

For example, back in 2019 Stadium took an interesting look at "clean drives" - drives where an offense avoids taking a sack, penalty, or tackle for a loss - and looked at how many of those drives (minus the ones that ended in three-and outs or turnovers) led to points. Their research found that those drives ended up scoring on over 73% of the drives.

That brings me to something the Kendal Briles shared today. According to Briles, who entering his first season at Arkansas after stops with his offensive approach at Baylor, FAU, Houston, and Florida State since 2016, he found that getting a first down has been absolutely critical to their success as an offense.

Exactly how critical? Briles shares that 84% of drives where they got the initial first-down have led to points.

That's an incredible stat.

It might not work for you, but with this down time it might make some sense for you and your staff to dive into your offensive film and see what your offensive figure is when getting that initial first down.

Sounds like a great COVID-19 research project!