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An Analysis of Goal Line Runs out of Shotgun

I decided to test a common narrative:

A common theme among Buffalo Bills fans is the idea that the Bills run too many plays out of shotgun near the opposing team’s goal line, and this is hampering their ability to score points. Instead, these fans argue, they should run from under center, either a direct handoff or a quarterback sneak. If you were to press fans on this, I believe you’d also hear that the Bills are unique, or at least uniquely bad, at running such plays.

I’m going to use the nflfastR package to analyze play-by-play data and see just how well this bit of fan wisdom holds up.

Spoiler alert: it doesn’t.