NFC West Penalty Watch: Up and down

The weekly NFC West Penalty Watch is back with a twist.

This time, I've gone through the ESPN Stats & Information file to identify players committing penalties at a significantly different rate from last season. I excluded players whose totals changed through injuries (Sean Locklear, for example).

The first chart shows totals through Week 9 for last season and this season, focusing on changes of four or more penalties.

2009-2010 NFC West Penalty Patterns: Weeks 1-9

The second chart ranks NFC West players by 2010 penalty totals. The chart breaks out subtotals by quarter.

For example, the St. Louis Rams' Jason Brown has yet to commit a penalty in the first three quarters of games. He has five in fourth quarters. Eight of his nine penalties in two seasons with the Rams fell in fourth quarters, up from one of 18 committed with Baltimore from 2005 to 2008, counting playoffs. Odd, but interesting, at least to me.

2010 NFC West Penalty Leaders by Quarter