2006 we averaged 6.6 yards per play on offense. 7th in the country.
2011 we averaged around ~5.6 yards per play lower than 50th in the country.
So there is one mighty big difference there. And to say 3 yards difference in starting field position is not a big deal is misleading. Especially when those three yards mean you are top 10 ranked or 70th ranked in the country.
not sure how you're making that ranking conclusion, post your data. The difference between the 10th ranked team and the 70th ranked team this year was 110 yards. Thats about 9 yards per drive if you assume 12 drives per game.
In addition, you can't simply ignore the 5 yard difference in where the kickoffs occured in 06 vs 11. Given that 11 had an average per play of 5.6, there's no reason to think they wouldn't have scored on the majority of their scoring drives if they were 3 yards longer.
as far as the yards per play goes, 06 certainly had more big play potential compared to 11. But 11 had more blowouts so they were pounding the ball late in the game to burn clock. Rankings have to be taken in context.
This post was edited on 1/15 at 7:35 pm