Seattle Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll and others around the league call them sudden change situations. Basically they are turnovers – momentum swing moments in the game where a team either creates or loses an opportunity to take control of the game.
Carroll has preached it’s all about the ball, and it’s true if you want to win in the NFL. The team that wins the turnover battle usually wins the game.
However, creating turnovers is only one step in the process. A more important measurement I would argue is what a team does after the turnover has happened.
That’s what I attempt to measure here. Similar to basketball, I’ve taken the points teams score off turnovers and the points teams have given up off turnovers around the league and calculated the point differential in a chart below.
The Seahawks rank 14th overall in the league with a +4 four point differential, scoring 17 points off turnovers and giving up just 13 points of turnovers.
And Seattle is third in the league in terms of number of points the defense has given up when taking the field after a turnover. Baltimore leads the league, giving up just nine points on nine turnovers by the offense.
As you can imagine, teams at the top of the list usually have a winning record. Kansas City at 3-1 top the list, with 27 points off takeaways and no points given up off turnovers.