Recapping The Bengals Top 2019 Next Gen Stats Performers

Cincinnati Bengals wide receiver John Ross (11) rushes during the second half of an NFL football game against the Cleveland Browns, Sunday, Dec. 29, 2019, in Cincinnati. (AP Photo/Bryan Woolston)
Wide receiver John Ross ranked ninth among wide receivers and tight ends in average targeted air yards at 14.9 and sixth averaging 7.4 yards per reception.

Next Gen Stats is a fascinating and informative resource to help fans go beyond the box score and provide additional context.

2019 marked the sixth season that this technology has been used in some form with the league. With that in mind, here are some of the Bengals' top analytic performances from this past season.

TOP PLAYS

Fastest Ball Carriers

Safety Brandon Wilson's 92-yard kickoff return for a touchdown against the Baltimore Ravens in Week 6 had him at a top speed of 22.03 miles per hour. It was the speediest kickoff return in the NFL and overall the 3rd-fastest ball carrying play of the season.

Bengals cornerback William Jackson also showcased his speed with the 20th-fastest play this year topping out at 21.33 miles per hour on an interception return against the San Francisco 49ers.

Longest Play

This one is quirky because the Bengals' longest play didn't officially count. That belongs to cornerback Darius Phillips running 123.1 yards for a touchdown on a kickoff return that was nullified by a holding penalty. Still, it was the sixth-longest play of the year per Next Gen Stats.

Wilson's previously mentioned kickoff return for a touchdown by comparison went for 105.3 yards and was the 16th-longest play of the 2019 campaign.

Improbable Completions

The Bengals enjoyed many highlight-reel catches and Next Gen Stats backs that claim up. Quarterback Andy Dalton converted three improbable competitions, which was the second-most in the NFL last season.

The toughest catch was a 33-yard reception by wide receiver Auden Tate against Jacksonville in Week 7. Tate's catch had a competition probability of 12 percent, the seventh-toughest catch made in 2019.

The other two improbable completions went to tight end Tyler Eifert. Eifert's 25-yard touchdown reception at Miami in Week 16 had a 13.4 percent chance of being completed and was the 10th most difficult reception of 2019. Dalton and Eifert also connected on a 24-yard reception against New England in Week 15 that had a success rate of only 15.5 percent.

Next Gen Stats built a machine learning model that determines the probability of a pass being completed. The machine learning model takes into account stats such as air distance, air yards and receiver separation.

OTHER NOTABLE METRICS

Time To Throw

Dalton led the NFL in time to throw releasing the ball in a blistering 2.51 seconds. Time to Throw measures the average amount of time elapsed from the time of snap to throw on every pass attempt for a passer (sacks excluded).

Rushing Efficiency

Running back Joe Mixon registered a rushing efficiency of 3.95, ninth-best in the NFL. Rushing efficiency is calculated by taking the total distance a player traveled on rushing plays as a ball carrier according to Next Gen Stats (measured in yards) per rushing yards gained. The lower the number, the more of a North/South runner.

Big Play Receivers

Wide receiver John Ross is known for his big play ability. Ross was third among all receivers and tight ends in yards after the catch above expectation at 2.6. That is a measurement of a receiver's YAC compared to their Expected YAC. Ross also ranked ninth among wide receivers and tight ends in average targeted air yards at 14.9 and sixth averaging 7.4 yards per reception.

Per the NFL, player tracking or Next Gen Stats, is the capture of real time location data, speed and acceleration for every player, every play on every inch of the field. Sensors throughout the stadium track tags placed on players' shoulder pads, charting individual movements within inches.

For a full rundown of Next Gen Stats and a glossary of terms, please visit nextgenstats.nfl.com/stats.

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