Dion Lewis Stands Out In All Facets Of Patriots’ 2017 Year-End Advanced Stats

New England Patriots running back Dion Lewis had an even better season than you originally imagined.

I know that’s hard to believe.

In breaking down some key advanced stats this season from Pro Football Focus Elite, Lewis consistently stood out positively as a pass-catcher, blocker and ball-carrier.

With the 2017 regular season over, let’s take a closer look at PFF Elite’s metrics.

PASS ACCURACY
— Quarterback Tom Brady went 385-of-581 for 4,577 yards with 32 touchdowns and eight interceptions overall this season. Of his 196 incompletions, 30 were drops, 22 were throwaways, eight were batted at the line of scrimmage and five came as he was hit while throwing, according to Pro Football Focus. His 76-percent accuracy percentage ranked sixth among qualified quarterbacks.

— Brady was 33-of-80 on passes that traveled 20 yards or more for 1,104 yards with five touchdowns and four interceptions and four drops. He finished second among qualified quarterbacks in deep-passing attempts, fourth in deep-passing yards, sixth in deep-passing attempt percentage, fifth in deep-passing accuracy percentage and 15th in deep passer rating.

DROPS
WR Brandin Cooks: seven drops, 9.72 percent drop rate
TE Rob Gronkowski: five drops, 6.76 percent
TE Dwayne Allen: four drops, 28.57 percent
WR Danny Amendola: four drops, 6.15 percent
WR Chris Hogan: three drops, 8.11 percent
FB James Develin: two drops, 25 percent
RB Rex Burkhead: two drops, 6.25 percent
RB Brandon Bolden: one drop, 50 percent
WR Phillip Dorsett: one drop, 7.69 percent
RB James White: one drop, 1.75 percent
RB Dion Lewis: no drops on 35 targets
TE Jacob Hollister: no drops on 11 targets
TE Martellus Bennett: no drops on six targets
WR Kenny Britt: no drops on five targets
RB Mike Gillislee: no drops on one target

— Lewis had a 91.4 catch rate this season, which led the NFL among qualified players. He was one of 11 pass-catchers with at least 30 targets and no drops.

— Allen had the highest drop rate among tight ends with double-digit targets.

PASS PROTECTION
LT Nate Solder: four sacks, six QB hits, 41 hurries, 8.2 percent pressure rate
LG Joe Thuney: five sacks, 10 QB hits, 21 hurries, 5.7 percent
RG Shaq Mason: one sack, 10 QB hits, 15 hurries, 4.1 percent
C David Andrews: two sacks, three QB hits, 17 hurries, 4 percent
RT Marcus Cannon: five sacks, three QB hits, 13 hurries, 7.9 percent
RT LaAdrian Waddle: seven QB hits, 10 hurries, 9.4 percent
RT Cameron Fleming: four sacks, six hurries, 5.2 percent
RB James White: one sack, two hurries, 10 percent
C Ted Karras: one QB hit, two hurries, 4.1 percent
TE Dwayne Allen: three hurries, 7.5 percent
RB Brandon Bolden: two hurries, 20 percent
TE Rob Gronkowski: no hurries on 50 blocks
RB Dion Lewis: no hurries on 35 blocks
FB James Develin: no hurries on 28 blocks
RB Rex Burkhead: no hurries on 12 blocks
RB Mike Gillislee: no hurries on eight blocks
TE Jacob Hollister: no hurries on three blocks
TE Martellus Bennett: no hurries on one block

— Develin and Lewis were two of four players to not allow any pressures among qualified running backs.

— Waddle has a higher pressure rating, but he didn’t allow a sack all season.

RUSHING ATTACK
RB Dion Lewis: 49 missed tackles forced, 3.17 yards after contact
RB Rex Burkhead: 11 missed tackles, 2.05 yards after contact
RB Mike Gillislee: 10 missed tackles, 2.43 yards after contact
RB James White: eight missed tackles, 1.79 yards after contact
RB Brandon Bolden: four missed tackles, 3.15 yards after contact

— Lewis ranked first among qualified running backs in Pro Football Focus’ “elusive rating,” which combines missed tackles and yards after contact.

PASS RUSH
DE Trey Flowers: 6.5 sacks, 18 QB hits, 35 hurries, 13.3%
DE Deatrich Wise: 5 sacks, 11 QB hits, 19 hurries, 9.2%
DT Adam Butler: two sacks, 22 hurries, 7.5%
DT Lawrence Guy: one sack, five QB hits, 15 hurries, 7.4%
DT Malcom Brown: 2.5 sacks, three QB hits, 12 hurries, 6.5%
LB Kyle Van Noy: 5.5 sacks, two QB hits, 10 hurries, 10%
LB Dont’a Hightower: two sacks, one QB hit, 10 hurries, 18.6%
DE Cassius Marsh: one sack, one QB hit, 11 hurries, 9.5%
DE Eric Lee: 3.5 sacks, one QB hit, eight hurries, 8.8%
LB Elandon Roberts: two sacks, one QB hit, five hurries, 15.1%
LB Marquis Flowers: 3.5 sacks, one hurry, 7.1%
LB James Harrison: two sacks, one hurry, 27.3%
LB David Harris: 1.5 sacks, three hurries, 35.7%
SS Patrick Chung: three QB hits, two hurries, 17.9%
CB Malcolm Butler: one sack, two QB hits, one hurry, 40%
DT Alan Branch: four hurries, 3%
CB Jonathan Jones: one sack, two hurries, 37.5%
DE Geneo Grissom: three hurries, 12%
FS Devin McCourty: one sack, one hurry, 50%
FS Duron Harmon; one hurry, 33.3%
CB Eric Rowe: one hurry, 16.7%
SS Jordan Richards: one hurry, 4.3%
DT Ricky Jean Francois: no hurries on 38 snaps
LB Trevor Reilly: no hurries on five snaps
LB Harvey Langi: no hurries on three snaps

— The Patriots’ pass rush did not rate well on a pressure per snap basis, but they ranked seventh in the NFL with 42 sacks. Their sack total increased considerably in the second half.

RUN DEFENSE
DT Malcom Brown: 27 stops
DT Lawrence Guy: 27 stops
DE Trey Flowers: 20 stops
LB Elandon Roberts: 17 stops
LB Kyle Van Noy: 15 stops
FS Devin McCourty: 13 stops
DT Alan Branch: nine stops
SS Patrick Chung: eight stops
DE Cassius Marsh: seven stops
LB Marquis Flowers: seven stops
DE Deatrich Wise: six stops
DT Ricky Jean Francois: six stops
DT Adam Butler: six stops
CB Malcolm Butler: five stops
CB Stephon Gilmore: four stops
LB Dont’a Hightower: four stops
CB Jonathan Jones: three stops
LB Trevor Reilly: three stops
LB David Harris: three stops
DE Eric Lee: two stops
SS Jordan Richards: two stops
FS Duron Harmon: one stop
LB Jonathan Freeny: one stop

— Flowers was the Patriots’ most consistent overall defender, though he didn’t break out as a star as many predicted he would in 2017. He’s entering a contract season in 2018.

PASS COVERAGE
CB Malcolm Butler: 52-89, 698 yards, six TDs, two INTs, 12 PBUs
SS Patrick Chung: 60-90, 589 yards, two TDs, INT, nine PBUs
CB Stephon Gilmore: 42-67, 509 yards, three TDs, two INTs, nine PBUs
CB Jonathan Jones: 35-64, 444 yards, two TDs, INT, eight PBUs
FS Devin McCourty: 34-55, 424 yards, four TDs, INT, five PBUs
LB Kyle Van Noy: 31-35, 330 yards, TD, two PBUs
CB Eric Rowe: 16-27, 270 yards, TD, two PBUs
LB Elandon Roberts: 22-27, 263 yards, three TDs, PBU
CB Johnson Bademosi: 13-18, 164 yards, PBU
SS Jordan Richards: 16-21, 139 yards, TD, PBU
DE Cassius Marsh: 5-7, 116 yards, TD
LB Marquis Flowers: 11-17, 101 yards, PBU
DE Trey Flowers: 9-10, 80 yards, three PBUs
LB Dont’a Hightower: 7-7, 73 yards
FS Duron Harmon: 5-9, 47 yards, INT, seven PBUs
LB David Harris: 5-8, 41 yards, PBU
DE Eric Lee: 1-2, 17 yards, INT, two PBUs
LB Jonathan Freeny: 1-1, 7 yards
LB Trevor Reilly: 1-1, 5 yards
LB James Harrison: 1-2, 2 yards
DE Deatrich Wise: PBU
DT Lawrence Guy: PBU
TE Rob Gronkowski: PBU

— Butler and Gilmore didn’t excel as expected in 2017. Heading into the season, they were originally believed to be one of the NFL’s top cornerback duos, but both went through inconsistent stretches. They both ranked middle-of-the-road in Pro Football Focus’ cover snaps per target, yards per cover snap and cover snaps per reception metrics. Jones had the best passer rating allowed among Patriots cornerbacks this season at 80.5.

Thumbnail photo via David Butler II/USA TODAY Sports Images

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