Tyrod Watch: Escapability Index vs. Broncos, three-game update - The Buffalo News

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Tyrod Watch: Escapability Index vs. Broncos, three-game update

In Week Two against the Panthers, Tyrod Taylor had an Escapability Index of 0, as he was sacked twice and he "escaped" two of them.

Because context and comparison are vital in analysis, monitoring how often Taylor gets sacked relative to how often I deemed he escaped one makes sense. Here's a quick refresher on the criteria for Escapability Index:

Criteria

  • Not every avoidance of a sack is counted as an escape, because the majority of quarterbacks have enough athleticism or skill in the pocket to avoid minimal to moderate pressure. Escapes come on plays in which I deem only fewer than 20 percent of the league's current starters (six signal-callers: Cam Newton, Russell Wilson, Aaron Rodgers, Marcus Mariota and two others for randomness) could have pulled off Taylor's sack avoidance.
  • The outcome of the play after the escape doesn't matter, whether it be a completion, scramble, throwaway and so on. However, an escape will not be counted if Taylor eludes a sack to only be later taken down for a sack on the same play.
  • "Sacks" need to be a defensive player bringing Taylor to the turf. Running out of bounds behind the line of scrimmage will not be counted as a sack.
  • To summarize, an escape is only counted if, by my determination, 80 percent of the starting quarterbacks in the NFL would not have been able to execute the sack avoidance, and if a sack didn't ultimately occur on the same play.

Against the Broncos, Taylor's escapability formula was as follows:

Escapes: 1

Sacks: 2

Escapability Index: -1

One of the sacks came when Taylor eluded light pressure, rolled to his left but was ultimately taken down well behind the line of scrimmage. After he left the pocket, the play probably was to throw it out of bounds. Another sack came when Taylor was looking to his right, and when he looked back to his left, defensive lineman Shelby Harris was right in his face.

The escape was a big one. It came on a third and 6 in the fourth quarter with 9:29 to play. Taylor couldn't find anyone open, and after he drifted to his left he made a move back to his right toward the middle of the pocket. He slipped, and Denver pass-rusher Shaq Barrett was next to him but was unable to corral the quarterback. Taylor put his hand on the ground for balance, reversed his field back to the left, then outran safety Justin Simmons to get the first down.

Buffalo burned another 6:15 off the clock, and Stephen Hauschka made a field goal to make the score 26-16.

Through two games, Taylor's escapability formula is as follows:

  • Escapes: 6
  • Sacks: 5
  • Season Escapability Index: +1

Taylor is still in the positives, a good sign that his mobility has paid more dividends than it's been a detriment. The Falcons are expected to be without 2016 sack leader Vic Beasley on Sunday, but they have a quality group of interior pass-rushers led by Grady Jarrett.

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