By now, you’ve likely heard about the Saints’ historic touchdown drive that lasted 11 minutes and 29 seconds, the longest postseason drive in at least 20 years. The Saints ran 18 plays and gained 92 yards (22 plays and 117 yards, if you include penalties) culminating in Michael Thomas’ 2-yard touchdown snag, his 4th reception for 53 yards on that drive alone. Before the Eagles’ defense finally got off the field, they had seen their four-point lead turn into a three-point deficit. New Orleans never really looked back, despite the fact it needed a late-game interception to seal the victory.
But how much Game-Winning Chance (GWC) was actually added on this long drive? And how much was each play worth? As with a full game, there were ebbs and flows of GWC gains and losses on New Orleans’ championship-caliber march down the field. An offensive holding penalty on 1st down in Philadelphia territory cost the Saints -4.5% GWC. There were multiple 3rd down conversions on the drive, but none were bigger than a 3rd & 16 conversion that put New Orleans in the red zone. The 20-yard pass to Michael Thomas earned the Saints a 1st down and +10.9% GWC. All told, the Saints went from 36.7% GWC to 61.6% GWC, a total gain of 24.9% GWC.
The full drive breakdown is below:
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