With all the talk about who will be the best option at QB for the Vikings this year and how team stats from last year compare to each other, I wondered if I could find stats showing the number of “true” three-and-outs given up by offenses and forced by defenses.

First, what is a “true” three-and out? I define this as when the offense takes the field and four plays later they punt. These stats should not include turnovers, penalties, or safeties, as these are tracked separately. A three-and out can be one of the most deflating moments in a game, not only to the team, but also to the crowd. There is no worse feeling than to watch the defense make a great stance only to have the offense come on the field and go three-and-out.


I searched, but could not find anyplace that tracked three-and-outs, so I decided to compile a few teams on my own. Of course the Vikings were my first choice. Then I thought I should choose the Super Bowl participants and a couple of the worst teams for comparison. I also chose the two best offenses. Surprisingly, neither made it to the “big show”. Finally, I chose the Jets for obvious reasons.


So without further adieu, here are the stats for “true” three and outs including how the offenses and defenses ranked at the end of the year in total yards.


Offense           3 & Outs          Rank                                  Defense        3 & Outs         Rank


Denver                 26                  2                                       Pittsburg          56                   1

New Orleans        28                  1                                       Minnesota       43                   6

NY Jets                32                  16                                     New Orleans    40                 23

Arizona                34                  4                                       Oakland           37                 27

Minnesota            38                  17                                     Arizona            35                 19

Pittsburg               40                  22                                    Detroit              33                 32

Oakland                55                  29                                    NY Jets            32                 16

Detroit                  55                  30                                    Denver             30                  29


Take these stats for what they are, but it does seem interesting, although maybe not surprising that the best teams rank highest in three-and-outs. I think it’s also plain to see why the Steelers won the Super Bowl. Wow, 56 times the defense forced a three-and out. That averages out to 3.5 per game. Pretty impressive.

This FanPost was created by a registered user of The Daily Norseman, and does not necessarily reflect the views of the staff of the site. However, since this is a community, that view is no less important.

Log In Sign Up

Log In Sign Up

Forgot password?

We'll email you a reset link.

If you signed up using a 3rd party account like Facebook or Twitter, please login with it instead.

Forgot password?

Try another email?

Almost done,

By becoming a registered user, you are also agreeing to our Terms and confirming that you have read our Privacy Policy.

Join Daily Norseman

You must be a member of Daily Norseman to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Daily Norseman. You should read them.

Join Daily Norseman

You must be a member of Daily Norseman to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Daily Norseman. You should read them.




Choose an available username to complete sign up.

In order to provide our users with a better overall experience, we ask for more information from Facebook when using it to login so that we can learn more about our audience and provide you with the best possible experience. We do not store specific user data and the sharing of it is not required to login with Facebook.