Glenn Dorsey, Tyson Jackson Broken Down


I see that the age old Dorsey/Jackson debate has arisen on Arrowhead Addict once again. It amazes me that this keeps coming up because I thought I did a pretty good job of explaining the situation a few weeks ago when I broke down the play of the defensive line using numbers from Pro Football Focus.

I shall do it one more time.

I am going to try to make this very simple and easy to follow (not my strong suit). To do so, I’m going to make a series of statements about these players based solely on their numbers. I am going to leave my own feelings out of it. I’m just going to show you what the numbers say and let you make up your own minds.

1.   Glenn Dorsey is one of the best 3-4 DE’s in the NFL against the run.

His numbers support that. PFF ranks Dorsey second, behind only Ray McDonald of the 49ers in run defense. Dorsey was graded at +16.1 on the year. McDonald was +16.4. Dorsey was fourth in stops with 32. He missed only two tackles.

2. Glenn Dorsey is one of the worst 3-4 DE’s in the NFL against the pass.

Again, the numbers. Dorsey is ranked 29th of 32 3-4 DEs in pass rush. He received a grade of -10.7. He had two pressures, two QB hits, zero sacks and zero batted passes.

3.  In order, the number of QB pressures caused by the top 10 overall 3-4 DEs in the NFL: 48, 29, 32, 23, 25, 16, 35, 29, 14, 7.

4. Number of QB pressures for Glenn Dorsey and Tyson Jackson combined: 6

5. In order, the sack totals for the top 10 overall 3-4 DEs in the NFL: 7, 9, 6, 3, 7, 5, 4, 7, 5, 1.

6. Number of sacks for Glenn Dorsey and Tyson Jackson combined: 1

7. Tyson Jackson has developed into a top 10 run defender.

The numbers support this. PFF grades him as the sixth 3-4 DE best run defender in the NFL. His overall grade is +10.0. He recorded 40 stops. He missed only three tackles. He was third in the NFL in stops with 40.

8. Tyson Jackson is near the bottom of 3-4 DEs when it comes to rushing the passer.

Jackson ranks 26th out of 32 in this department with a grade of -5.4. Even at that low mark, he is still twice as good at rushing the passer as Glenn Dorsey. He had four pressures, two QB hits and one sack.

9. Tyson Jackson is the 11th best 3-4 DE in the NFL with an overall grade of +7.3.

10. Glenn Dorsey is the 15th best 3-4 DE in the NFL with an overall grade of +5.2.

11. The overall grades for the top five NFL DEs in the NFL are, in order: +47.5, 33.1, 30.6, 26.6,26.3.

12. After the top five, there is significant drop off. The top five are clearly elite. The 6-10’s grades are as follows: +12.5, 11.6, 11.4, 8.9, 8.7.

13. Glenn Dorsey and Tyson Jackson are not balanced players at their position. They are elite or near elite in stopping the run and very poor at defending the pass and pressuring the QB.

14. Allen Bailey is the most balanced 3-4 DE on the Chiefs.

Bailey finished the season with a grade of +5.1. He graded +1.8 in run defense and a +1.4 in pass rush. He had nine pressures, two batted passes, one sack and one QB hit in 294 snaps. Dorsey and Jackson played just over 600 snaps each.

Those are the facts. If Dorsey and Jackson could become more consistent pass rushers, they both have the skills to join the elite level. If not, they are players that probably can only be on the field for a limited number of snaps. Allen Bailey appears to have a chance to be a balanced player for the team, however he could be blocked by the other two because of their skills stopping the run.

That is as fair as I can look at it. Dorsey and Jackson are what they are. Nothing more and nothing less.