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Data Crunch: Jackson's Peak Games

Posted Oct 17, 2013

In the second of our weekly ventures into data visualization, we give you a graphical look at the 112 games of WR Vincent Jackson's stellar career and where his latest outing ranks among his best.

Every week, we football fans consume the NFL through live game action, replays and highlight shows. And then we consume it again through the numbers. Whether it's via fantasy football, statistical analysis or simply the league standings, numbers help us understand and digest the game we love.

This season, Buccaneers.com wants to help you see what the numbers are saying.

Welcome back to Data Crunch, our weekly foray into data visualization that will help tell the story of Tampa Bay Buccaneers football and the 2013 NFL season as a whole. Here, we will not only dive deep into the statistics generated each week by the Buccaneers but we'll present it to you in graphical form to better convey what the numbers are telling us. These interactive graphs allow the user to identify trends, gaining a better understanding of how wins and losses are generated and where the team is headed.

Our second data visualization exercise of 2013 was prompted by wide receiver Vincent Jackson's enormous statistical outing against the Philadelphia Eagles. Jackson led the Buccaneers with nine catches for 114 yards and two touchdowns; working with rookie quarterback Mike Glennon in only Glennon's second NFL, the ninth-year receiver produced one of the most well-rounded outings of a stellar career that has so far spanned 112 games.

Jackson has had other peaks in his game-by-game account, of course, including a Buccaneer-record 216-yard outburst against New Orleans last year and a pair of three-touchdown games during his last two years as a San Diego Charger. Use the interactive graphs below to find out where Sunday's performance ranks among those in terms of catches, yards, touchdowns…and even fantasy points, for those so inclined.

This week's collection of graphs also allows you to sort through Jackson's game-by-game career with a variety of qualifiers, including his work with each of the four quarterbacks with which he has worked. Spend a little time browsing through the various graphs, using your mouse to find the details of any specific game, and you'll get a much better feel for the breadth and depth of Jackson's career.

Receptions: As with even the most accomplished receivers, a player's game-by-game catch totals can be very volatile, depending upon game situations and the coverage approach of the opponent. Still, Jackson has already had eight games since he joined the Buccaneers, out of 21 total in his career, in which he has caught six or more passes. His nine grabs against Philadelphia were just one below his single-game high.

Yards: Jackson's 216-yard game against New Orleans last year is the clear outlier in this graph, though he has already surpassed 100 yards six times (and hit 100 right on the nose once) since joining the Buccaneers. Nine of his 21 Tampa Bay outings, or 42.9% have left him in the 60 to 120-yard range; in his seven years in San Diego, he was in that range in 25 of 91 games, or 27.5%

Touchdowns: Obviously, there is much less variance here. Jackson has scored in eight of his 21 games as a Buccaneer and has now recorded a pair of two-TD games since coming to Tampa.

Fantasy Points: Contrastingly, there is quite a bit of variance here, as a good fantasy output for a receiver can come from either yards or touchdowns. In the best-case scenario, as Vincent Jackson owners enjoyed this past weekend, it's both. In a standard non-PPR scoring format (six points per touchdown, one point for every 10 yards receiving), Jackson's performance against the Eagles produced 23 points, his fifth-best fantasy output ever.