Unlocking the Game: List of Football Statistics

John Rizzo

List of Football Statistics

Football, often dubbed “the beautiful game,” is a symphony of strategy, athleticism, and teamwork. Behind the thrilling touchdowns and bone-crushing tackles lies a world of statistics that adds depth to our understanding of this beloved sport. 

From quarterbacks’ passing yards to defensive tackles for loss, football statistics serve as the scorecard of the gridiron battles.

In this comprehensive guide, we delve into the fascinating realm of football statistics. We explore offensive metrics like completion percentage and passing touchdowns that showcase a quarterback’s prowess. 

It also shines a spotlight on defensive stats like sacks and interceptions that define a team’s ability to halt opposing offenses in their tracks. 

Moreover, we’ll uncover the significance of general statistics in assessing a team’s overall performance and strategic approach.

So, whether you’re a die-hard fan seeking to dissect the game’s nuances or a novice looking to deepen your appreciation for football, join us on this journey through the world of football statistics. Stay focused. 

List of Football Offensive Statistics

Here is a list of football offensive statistics:

Total Offense

Total offense is the cumulative yardage gained by an offensive team during a game or over a specified period, including both rushing and passing yards.

Points Per Game (PPG)

Points per game is the average number of points a team scores in a game. It provides a measure of an offense’s scoring efficiency.

Quarterback Rating (QBR)

Quarterback rating, often referred to as passer rating or QBR is a statistic used to evaluate the performance of a quarterback. 

It takes into account passing yards, touchdowns, interceptions, and completion percentage to provide a rating that reflects a quarterback’s overall effectiveness.

Yards After Catch (YAC)

Yards after catch is a statistic that measures the number of yards a receiver gains after catching a pass. It assesses a receiver’s ability to break tackles and make plays after the catch.

Two-Point Conversions Made (2 PM)

Two-point conversions made represent the number of times a team successfully converts a two-point conversion attempt after scoring a touchdown. It is an indicator of a team’s aggressiveness in attempting to gain extra points.

Attempts per Game (A/G)

Attempts per game is the average number of offensive plays, typically rushing or passing attempts, that a team or player makes in a game. It can be used to assess how often a team or player is involved in offensive plays.

Average Gain per Play (AVG)

Average gain per play is a statistic that measures the average yards gained on each offensive play. It provides insights into the effectiveness of each offensive snap.

Completion Percentage (COMP%)

Completion percentage is a statistic used to measure a quarterback’s accuracy in passing. It represents the percentage of pass attempts that are successfully completed.

Yards per Attempt (Y/A)

Yards per attempt is a quarterback statistic that calculates the average number of passing yards gained per pass attempt. It is used to evaluate a quarterback’s ability to gain significant yardage through passing.

Yards per Carry (Y/C)

Yards per carry is a statistic that measures the average number of rushing yards gained by a running back or ball carrier per rushing attempt. It assesses a player’s ability to gain yardage on the ground.

These statistics provide valuable insights into the efficiency and effectiveness of an offensive football team’s performance and its players, particularly quarterbacks and running backs.

List of Football Defensive Statistics

List of Football Defensive Statistics

List of Football Defensive Statistics

Tackles (TCKL)

Tackles, often abbreviated as TCKL, are a fundamental defensive statistic in football. A tackle occurs when a defensive player successfully stops an opponent from advancing the ball. 

This can involve bringing down a runner who carries the football or tackling a receiver who has caught a pass. 

Tackles are critical because they prevent the opposing team from gaining additional yardage and moving closer to the end zone. 

The total number of tackles made by a defensive player over a game, season, or career is an essential indicator of their involvement in defensive plays. 

It showcases their ability to read the game, pursue ball carriers, and execute tackles effectively.

Solo Tackles (SOLO)

Solo tackles, represented as SOLO, are a subset of the total tackles made by a defensive player. A solo tackle occurs when a player successfully brings down an opponent without any assistance from teammates. 

These tackles highlight the individual skill and ability of a defensive player to defeat blockers or evade offensive players to make a direct, one-on-one stop. 

Solo tackles are often considered more impressive and indicative of a player’s tackling ability, as they require self-reliance and the capacity to finish plays without relying on help from others.

Assisted Tackles (AST)

Assisted tackles, denoted as AST, track tackles in which multiple defensive players contribute to bringing down an opponent. 

These tackles typically involve one player initiating contact or slowing down the ball carrier, while one or more teammates converge to complete the tackle. 

Assisted tackles emphasize teamwork and the ability of defensive players to work in concert to stop an opponent’s progress. 

While not as individually celebrated as solo tackles, assisted tackles are essential for overall defensive success and reflect a player’s ability to support their teammates in making stops.

Tackles for Loss (TFL)

Tackles for loss, known as TFL, are tackles made by a defensive player that results in a loss of yardage for the opposing team. 

These tackles are particularly valuable because they occur behind the line of scrimmage, disrupting the opposing team’s offensive plays. 

TFLs can be the result of a defender tackling a runner or quarterback for a loss of yardage, or they can occur when a defender tackles a receiver behind the line of scrimmage immediately after a catch. 

TFLs are a clear indication of a player’s ability to penetrate the offensive line and disrupt plays in the backfield.

Sacks (SK)

Sacks, often abbreviated as SK, are a specialized type of tackle primarily associated with defensive linemen and linebackers. A sack occurs when a defensive player successfully tackles the opposing quarterback behind the line of scrimmage before they can pass or hand off the ball. 

Sacks are highly coveted defensive statistics because they disrupt passing plays, lead to a loss of yardage, and can result in turnovers. 

They showcase a player’s ability to apply pressure to the quarterback, use pass-rushing techniques effectively, and create havoc in the opponent’s backfield. 

Sacks are a critical component of a defense’s ability to control the game and are often a focal point of defensive strategies.

Quarterback Hits (QBH)

Quarterback hits are a crucial defensive statistic that measures the number of times a defensive player successfully makes contact with the opposing team’s quarterback during a pass play. 

QB hits are significant because they can disrupt the quarterback’s timing, force errant throws, and potentially lead to turnovers. When a quarterback is under constant pressure and getting hit, it can affect the overall effectiveness of the offense. 

Defensive players who excel at getting QB hits often play a key role in putting pressure on the quarterback, which can lead to sacks, interceptions, and incomplete passes.

Interceptions (INT)

Interceptions are one of the most notable defensive statistics in football. An interception occurs when a defensive player catches a pass thrown by the opposing team’s quarterback.

Interceptions are often the result of excellent anticipation, positioning, and ball skills by the defensive player. They not only halt the opponent’s offensive drive but also provide an opportunity for the defensive team to gain possession of the ball and potentially score points themselves. 

Interceptions can be game-changing moments, and defensive players who excel at intercepting passes are highly valued for their ability to create turnovers.

Passes Defended (PD)

Passes defended, sometimes referred to as “pass breakups,” represent the number of times a defensive player prevents a pass from reaching its intended target. 

This statistic includes both interceptions and instances where the defensive player swats the ball away or disrupts the pass trajectory. Passes defended are a critical measure of a defensive player’s ability to cover receivers, read the quarterback’s intentions, and disrupt passing plays. 

Players with a high number of passes defended are often excellent in coverage and play a crucial role in preventing successful passes and forcing incompletions.

Forced Fumbles (FF)

Forced fumbles occur when a defensive player successfully dislodges the football from an opposing player’s possession. It can happen during tackles, when the defender deliberately targets the ball-carrier’s ball-handling arm or attempts to strip the ball. 

Forced fumbles are important because they can lead to turnovers and change the course of a game. Recovering a fumble provides the defensive team with a sudden change of possession and an opportunity to gain field position or even score. 

Defensive players skilled at forcing fumbles are known for their ability to create chaos and disrupt the opponent’s ball control.

Fumbles Recovered (FR)

  • Fumbles recovered (FR) is a crucial defensive statistic that measures a player’s ability to recover fumbles or loose balls on the field. When a player from the opposing team loses possession of the football due to mishandling or a hit by a defensive player, the ball becomes a “fumble.” The player who successfully regains possession of the fumbled ball for their team is credited with a fumble recovery.
  • Fumble recoveries are pivotal because they provide a turnover opportunity for the defense, allowing them to gain possession of the football and potentially set up their offense with excellent field position.
  • Defensive players who excel at forcing and recovering fumbles can have a significant impact on the outcome of a game by disrupting the opponent’s offensive drives and creating scoring opportunities for their own team.

Fumble Return Yards (FRY)

  • Fumble return yards (FRY) is a statistical measure that tracks the total yardage gained by a player or the defensive unit as a whole after recovering a fumble. It represents the cumulative distance that the player or team advances the ball following a fumble recovery.
  • FRY is essential because it not only indicates the ability to recover fumbles but also the ability to turn those recoveries into positive field position for the offense. The greater the FRY, the more advantageous the field position for the offense.
  • A successful fumble recovery followed by a substantial return can result in a shorter field for the offense, making it easier for them to score points.

Fumble Return Touchdowns (FRTD)

  • Fumble return touchdowns (FRTD) represent the number of times a defensive player or unit returns a fumbled ball into the end zone for a touchdown. This is a highly valuable defensive achievement as it directly contributes to a team’s point total without the offense being on the field.
  • FRTDs are game-changing plays that can swing the momentum in favor of the defensive team. Scoring a touchdown off a fumble return not only adds points to the scoreboard but can also demoralize the opposing team.
  • Players who excel at converting fumble recoveries into touchdowns are considered playmakers on defense, capable of making a significant impact in crucial moments of a game.

Blocked Kicks (BLCK)

  • Blocked kicks (BLCK) refer to instances where a defensive player successfully prevents an opponent’s kick (usually a field goal attempt or an extra point attempt) from crossing the line of scrimmage and reaching its intended destination.
  • Blocking a kick is a skill that requires precise timing, speed, and athleticism. It can result in a blocked field goal or extra point, denying the opposing team potential points on the scoreboard.
  • Blocked kicks can also lead to turnovers if the blocked ball is recovered by the defense, further emphasizing their importance as a defensive statistic.

Successfully blocking a kick can shift the momentum of a game, provide a significant advantage to the blocking team, and demonstrate the effectiveness of a defense in special teams situations.

List of Football General Statistics

List of Football General Statistics

Let’s take a closer look at each of these general football statistics:

AP1: All-Pro Selections

All-Pro Selections, represented as AP1, are an important recognition and accolade in professional football. 

This statistic quantifies the number of times a player has been selected as an All-Pro, which means they were considered one of the best players at their respective positions during a given season. 

All-Pro selections are typically determined by a panel of sports journalists or experts, and they represent a player’s excellence and impact on the field. Players who earn multiple 

All-Pro selections are often regarded as among the greatest in the history of the sport.

FD: First Downs

First downs, denoted as FD, are a crucial statistical measure of a team’s offensive success during a game or over a season. A first down is achieved when the offensive team advances the ball ten yards or more from the original line of scrimmage. 

It signifies that the team has effectively moved the ball and earned the right to continue their offensive series of plays. First downs are essential for sustaining drives, controlling the clock, and ultimately scoring points. 

The number of first downs a team accumulates reflects their offensive efficiency and ability to move the chains.

GP: Games Played

Games Played, abbreviated as GP, is a straightforward statistic that records the number of games a player has participated in during their career or a specific season. 

It is a fundamental measure of a player’s availability and durability. Players who consistently appear in games are valuable to their teams because they contribute to the team’s success over the long term. 

GP can also be used to assess a player’s consistency and reliability.

GS: Games Started

Games Started, represented as GS counts the number of games in which a player was in the starting lineup at the beginning of the game. 

Starting a game is an indication of a player’s importance to the team and their ability to secure a regular role in the starting lineup. 

GS is particularly relevant for positions like quarterbacks, where starting signifies a leadership role, and for defensive players who are often responsible for setting the tone of a game.

Cmp: Completions

Completions, abbreviated as CMP, is a statistic primarily associated with quarterbacks in football. It measures the number of successful passes completed by a quarterback during a game or over a season. 

Completions are a key indicator of a quarterback’s accuracy and ability to connect with receivers. High completion percentages are often a sign of a quarterback’s efficiency in moving the ball down the field and sustaining drives. 

Quarterbacks with a high number of completions are typically considered among the top passers in the league.

Att: Attempts (Att)

Attempts, abbreviated as “Att,” refers to the number of times a quarterback throws the football during a game, season, or career. 

Passing attempts are a fundamental statistic in football as they reflect a quarterback’s involvement in the passing game. 

The number of attempts can vary widely from game to game, depending on a team’s offensive strategy, the game situation, and the quarterback’s performance. 

A high number of attempts may indicate a team’s reliance on the passing game, while a low number might suggest a more run-oriented offense.

Cmp%: Completion Percentage (Cmp%)

Completion percentage, represented as “Cmp%,” is a crucial passing statistic that measures a quarterback’s accuracy. 

It is calculated by dividing the number of completed passes by the total passing attempts and then multiplying the result by 100 to express it as a percentage. 

A high completion percentage indicates a quarterback’s ability to accurately deliver the ball to receivers, while a lower percentage suggests less accuracy. 

Completion percentage is a key metric for evaluating a quarterback’s efficiency and effectiveness in the passing game.

Yds: Passing Yards (Yds)

Passing yards, denoted as “Yds,” represent the total number of yards gained through passing plays. It includes all the yardage gained on completed passes, whether they are short screen passes or long deep throws. 

Passing yards are a fundamental indicator of a quarterback’s ability to move the ball through the air and gain positive yardage for their team. High passing yardage often correlates with a productive passing offense.

TD: Passing Touchdowns (TD)

Passing touchdowns, abbreviated as “TD,” are a statistic that measures a quarterback’s ability to score points through the air. 

A passing touchdown occurs when the quarterback successfully throws the ball into the end zone, and a receiver catches it for a touchdown. 

It is one of the most celebrated statistics for a quarterback, as it directly contributes to the team’s point production. 

A high number of passing touchdowns indicates a quarterback’s proficiency in capitalizing on scoring opportunities.

Int: Interceptions (Int)

Interceptions, represented as “Int,” track the number of times a quarterback’s passes are intercepted by the opposing team’s defense. 

Interceptions are generally considered negative plays for the offense, as they result in a loss of possession and potentially favorable field position for the opposing team. 

A low interception rate is a positive indicator of a quarterback’s decision-making and ability to protect the football. Quarterbacks strive to minimize interceptions while maximizing touchdown passes.

These general football statistics provide important insights into a player’s career achievements, a team’s offensive success, and the overall impact of players on the field.


What is the purpose of football statistics?

Football statistics provide quantitative insights into the performance of teams and players. They help analyze offensive and defensive efficiency, player contributions, and overall team success. 

These statistics are essential for coaches, analysts, and fans to assess and understand the game better.

Which statistics are crucial for evaluating a quarterback’s performance?

Key statistics for evaluating a quarterback include completion percentage (Cmp%), passing yards (Yds), passing touchdowns (TD), interceptions (Int), and passer rating (QBR). 

These metrics measure accuracy, yardage gained, scoring ability, and decision-making.

How do defensive statistics impact a team’s success?

Defensive statistics, such as tackles (TCKL), sacks (SK), and interceptions (Int), are crucial for assessing a team’s ability to stop the opposing offense. 

A strong defense can create turnovers, disrupt plays, and limit the opponent’s scoring, contributing significantly to a team’s success.

What do rushing statistics reveal about a running back’s performance?

Rushing statistics, including rushing yards (Yds), yards per carry (Y/C), and rushing touchdowns (TD), provide insights into a running back’s ability to gain yardage on the ground, break tackles, and score. 

They gauge a running back’s effectiveness and impact on the team’s running game.

What role do general statistics play in football analysis?

General statistics like attempts (Att), completions (Cmp), and total touchdowns (TD) are fundamental for evaluating overall team performance and strategy. 

They offer a comprehensive view of a team’s offensive capabilities, including passing efficiency and scoring proficiency, aiding in game analysis and strategy development.

Wrapping Up

As the final whistle blows, we’ve navigated through the playbook of football statistics, understanding how they illuminate the brilliance and complexity of the sport. 

These numbers provide context to the on-field heroics, enabling fans, coaches, and analysts to appreciate the subtleties that make each game unique. 

From the precision of a quarterback’s throw to the power of a defensive sack, football statistics are the foundation upon which narratives of victory and defeat are built.

In this world where every yard gained, every touchdown scored, and every tackle made has significance, football statistics stand as an essential companion. 

They’re more than just numbers; they’re the stories of triumph and struggle etched onto the gridiron. 

So, the next time you watch a game, remember the statistics that shape it, for they are the true game-changers of football. Best of luck. 

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John Rizzo

I am a professional rugby player in the Washington DC-Baltimore area. I have been playing rugby for over 10 years and have had the opportunity to play in many different countries. I am also a coach for both youth and adult rugby teams. I graduated from Johns Hopkins University with a degree in Sports Management and Marketing. I am currently working on my MPA from American University and plan to pursue this career path after graduating next year. LinkedIn