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Bad to Worse: Comparing the 2012 and 2015 Saints Defenses

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The 2012 Saints defense was historically bad. The 2015 Saints defense might be historically worse...

Derick E. Hingle-USA TODAY Sports

Below is a comparison of the 2012 and 2015 Saints defenses across many statistical categories. Also included is their NFL ranking in each of those categories that year. Below that is a comparison summary of the two units. In many areas, the 2015 Saints defense is worse than it was in 2012. While in some areas, it's slightly better. Feel free to draw your own conclusions.

Team Yds / Game Yds / Play Rush Yds / Game Rush Yds / Play Pass Yds / Game Pass Yards / Play Int. Rate Sacks / Pass Att. First Downs / Game Punt Return Avg Kickoff Return Avg 3rd Down Pct 4th Down Pct Red Zone Pct Goal to Go% Pts / Game Point Diff. / Game Yard Diff. / Game
2012 Stats 440.1 6.47 147.6 5.17 292.6 7.78 2.49 % 4.98 % 23.8 12.6 25.0 38.46 % 52.63 % 55.71 % 62.50 % 28.4 0.4 -29.3
2012 Rankings 32 32 32 32 31 32 16 29 32 29 24 18 19t 22 7 31 15 26
2015 Stats 424.3 6.67 131.2 4.93 293.1 8.42 1.15 % 6.32 % 23.6 8.4 26.3 34.78 % 70.00 % 60.47 % 70.00 % 31.5 -6.0 -9.8
2015 Rankings 32 32 29 31 30 32 32 18 31 16 25 6 26t 23t 17t 32 29 20

  • This year's defense is giving up more yards per play than in 2012, but not as many yards per game.
  • This year's defense is giving up more passing yards per game than in 2012, but not as many rush yards per play.
  • The Saints defense is doing twice as bad in the interception department this year compared to 2012.
  • The Saints are doing a better job sacking opposing quarterbacks this year than in 2012.
  • The Saints are giving up just about as many first downs as they did in 2012.
  • The Saints are giving up 3 points more per game this year than in 2012.
  • Based on the point differential per game, the defense is getting less help from the offense this year than in 2012.
  • The defense with the second most yards given up per game this season is the NY Giants, lead my defensive coordinator Steve Spagnuolo.