Stats that make you go ‘Yikes!’

Every once in a while as I grind through hundreds of stat categories and tens of thousands of numbers, I run across one that makes me reconsider everything I thought I saw in the CFL last season. Today was one of those times.

This was the stat that did it: BC Lions’ LB Loucheiz Purifoy missed 30% of his tackle opportunities last season.

Mouth agape…

When a number like that pops up there’s a lot of things to be instantly double-checked. And they were all correct. Purifoy did miss 30% of his tackle opportunities.

DT = “Defensive Tackles” as per CFL.ca, MT = “Missed Tackles” as per #Details

That is a shocking number. The Missed Tackle Percentage for all defensive players was a hair under 15% last season. Purifoy missed twice as often!

It’s especially shocking from a guy I ’remember’ being pretty impressed with last season. Purifoy seemed to fit in very well with Solomon Elimimian and Adam Bighill (now gone to the NFL).

Now I won’t pretend I have the answer. There must be a half-dozen reasons why guys miss tackles. And his other stats suggest Purifoy is pretty good:

17 QB pressures was a ridiculous number for a SAM linebacker last season. The next-best was Saskatchewan’s Otha Foster with 9.

From his pressures and sacks we can probably assume BC uses Purifoy differently than other teams use their SAM linebacker. Thank goodness for analysts who will be able to show us that this season.

No surprise that Purifoy wasn’t alone in missing a lot of tackles. A little surprising that he didn’t have the worst rate in the league.

Minimum 20 Defensive Tackles

From top to bottom: Cut, employed, traded, employed and free agent. A testament to the thought that no one stat tells the whole story.

At this time we should give some love to the surest tacklers from last season, led by Calgary’s Jamar Wall:

Minimum 20 Defensive Tackles

Stampeders players did not miss tackles last season. They have five in the top-20 in Missed Tackle Percentage.

I’ve also broken down Missed Tackle Percentage by position. Hit me up on Twitter (@DTonSC) if you can guess the positions with the best and worst percentages in 2016.