The overlooked statistic that could keep Sam Bradford in Philadelphia

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It’s no lie that the Eagles run game suffered a huge dip in performance this season and whilst there are many reasons for this, the end result is that the Eagles really struggled to run an up-tempo Offense without any kind of prominent attack on the ground. But just how much of an impact did it have on Sam Bradford and did affect his form at all?

After doing some digging, the result was actually quite surprising. Bradford only lost one game when the Eagles rushed for more than 100 yards. That loss came against Carolina where the team also suffered two dropped touchdowns in the endzone.

So why does this matter? Obviously he’s going to do better if there’s more of a balance on Offense and less pressure, right?  It’s natural to have that reaction, but the Eagles Offense was so heavily skewed when the run game was shut down that Bradford was often making  close 50 attempts a game. In ten of his starts last year, Bradford threw 38 or more passes and ended with a 4-4 record.

However, to put things into perspective I compiled the same records of a range of Quarterbacks to see how Bradford ranked.

In games where the Quarterback’s team had 100 rushing yards or more:

Alex Smith 10-3
Russell Wilson 10-5

Sam Bradford 7-1
Ryan Fitzpatrick 7-1
Kirk Cousins 6-1
Jameis Winston 5-7
Matt Ryan 5-4
Tom Brady 5-1
Derek Carr 4-2
Matt Stafford 4-2
Drew Brees 4-2
Blake Bortles 3-2
Ryan Tannehill 3-3
Eli Manning 2-2
Marcus Mariota 2-5

Surprisngly, just because a running game is established, it doesn’t necessarily mean the Quarterback’s record is going to improve. The Eagles suffered their lowest amount of rushing yards since 2009 in what was truly a mess of a season yet in spite of this, many were quick to pin the blame on Sam Bradford. However what this shows is that when Bradford actually had some help on the ground he ranks very, very highly.

There are plenty of other contributing factors to this statistic of course, Offensive Line play, injuries and strength of opponent..but to go 7-1 when the team are able to find a balance on Offense is an impressive statistic whichever way you look at it.

If that isn’t convincing enough, in 63 games..Bradford has only lost 15 when his team has rushed for at least 100 yards.

Under Doug Pederson, the Eagles backfield could be set to enjoy the season it should have had in 2015. Last season, Pederson and Reid were able to create a dynamic one-two punch in the absence of Jamaal Charles whilst also utilising their running backs as receivers. The Eagles had flashes of brilliance with their committee backfield that are otherwise smothered by a very dark cloud. Pederson’s west-coast hybrid Offense is set to not only re-balance one of the most versatile backfields in the league but potentially transform it into one of the most efficient..and if that is indeed the case, Sam Bradford could well be one of the most efficient arms to stand in front of it.