There is a must-read article on ESPN.com comparing and contrasting Shaun and Maurice. Among the most interesting items was the stat about defeated run blocks. They don’t focus on it, but our run blocking grades out horribly.
UPDATE: Oops, just realized this requires an Insider subscription.
Here’s a snippet that I mentioned:
I started with the run-blocking success rates. In a nutshell, a run block is considered successful if a blocker is able to give the ball carrier a running lane. If the defender gets past the blocker or doesn’t allow a lane to be created, a run block is listed as having been defeated. Although Alexander’s injuries may be hindering his runs, the Seahawks’ blockers haven’t been helping him out much either. Since the Week 5 game against Pittsburgh, Alexander has carried the ball 78 times. At least one Seattle blocker was defeated in a point of attack block on 25 of those runs, or 32.1 percent of the time. To put that number into perspective, a team with a 70 percent success rate in run blocks will typically rank at or near the bottom of the league. Alexander gained only 19 yards on those runs, so those failed blocks were quite damaging. Morris’ run blocking didn’t fare much better than Alexander’s. On the 86 runs by Morris during this same time frame, at least one Seahawks blocker was defeated on 26 plays, or 30.2 percent of the time. Morris gained 0 yards on those runs, so it looks as if he doesn’t handle runs with defeated blocks as well as Alexander.