NFL Net Yards per Play Report for Week 17 (Browns are Serious Contenders)

Browns are 2nd in NFL in Net Yards per Play over last three games

Dec 24, 2023; Houston, Texas, USA; Cleveland Browns defensive end Alex Wright (91) celebrates after
Dec 24, 2023; Houston, Texas, USA; Cleveland Browns defensive end Alex Wright (91) celebrates after / Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports

There are just two weeks left in the NFL season and teams across the league are jockeying for the final spots in the postseason.

If you're trying to figure out which teams are true Super Bowl contenders, a good place to start is taking a look at where they rank in "Net Yards per Play".

What is Net Yards per Play?

Net Yards per Play is the figure you're left with when you take the average yards gained per play on offense and then subtract the average yards given up per play on defense.

Remember, Net Yards per Play doesn't take into account things like penalties, turnovers, and red zone efficiency. With that being said, it's a good starting point to see how well a team moves the ball down the field while preventing their opponents from doing so.

If you want my best bet for every game on the Week 17 slate, you can find them in the latest edition of the Road to 272 Bets here.

Net Yards per Play Standings for Week 17

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The Browns Are Legitimate Super Bowl Contenders

We knew all season that the Browns had an elite defense, arguably the best in the NFL, but their offense held them back the majority of the year.

They finally found an unlikely answer to their problems in the form of an aging quarterback in Joe Flacco. He has taken this offense to the next level and helped Amari Cooper break the Browns' record for receiving yards last week against the Houston Texans.

As a result, they're 10-5 with a firm grasp on the AFC North crown. They're also second in the league in Net Yards per Play over each team's last three games at +1.8. This is going to be a tough out for any team in the playoffs.

They're set as 7.5-point favorites on Thursday Night Football against the Jets and they'll officially clinch the division with a win.

Green Bay Packers are Collapsing

Just a few short weeks ago, the Green Bay Packers looked like near locks to make the playoffs after upsetting the Kansas City Chiefs on Sunday Night Football. Now, in the blink of an eye, they've gone 1-2 in their last three games and are in serious danger of missing the playoffs all together.

To make matters worse, their stats have been horrific lately, pointing to their recent rough outings not just being the result of bad luck. They're dead last in the NFL in Net Yards per Play over their last three games at -1.4.

They're slight underdogs on Sunday Night Football in Week 17 to the Minnesota Vikings, who are also vying for a postseason berth.

Odds refresh periodically and are subject to change.