No. 5: Rushing Adjusted-Line Yards
The Niners offensive line is far from perfect and will likely be a major point of emphasis for general manager John Lynch early in 2018.
San Francisco 49ers
Yet there has been a solid area of improvement over last year. And it comes in the form of Football Outsiders’ adjusted-line yards metric.
Here’s the description from Football Outsiders:
"Teams are ranked according to Adjusted Line Yards. Based on regression analysis, the Adjusted Line Yards formula takes all running back carries and assigns responsibility to the offensive line based on the following percentages: Losses: 120% value 0-4 Yards: 100% value 5-10 Yards: 50% value 11+ Yards: 0% value These numbers are then adjusted based on down, distance, situation, opponent, and the difference in rushing average between shotgun compared to standard formations. Finally, we normalize the numbers so that the league average for Adjusted Line Yards per carry is the same as the league average for RB yards per carry."
A year ago, San Francisco was dead last in the NFL in this category with an ALY average of 3.46.
Through six weeks this season, that number has jumped up all the way to 4.29 — good for 11th in the league — meaning the Niners O-line is helping tailbacks gain nearly a yard more per rushing attempt.
So far, so good.