All NFL teams have now played at least six games, which means we are more than one-third of the way through the 2021 regular season. Six or seven games is still a rather small sample, but it's enough action to look at some early trends around the league. Some things in the NFL are just as we expected, but other metrics have given us surprising results so far in 2021.
The Baltimore Ravens are struggling to convert on third down. The Cleveland Browns have a problem turning drives into touchdowns. Derek Carr of the Raiders is doing more than ever before, and Stefon Diggs of the Bills isn't doing as much as expected. What do these stats mean for teams going forward? It could be something, or it could be a mirage that requires a bigger sample -- but it certainly is interesting.
Below, we explore these topics and look at surprising stats for each of the AFC teams using a mix of numbers from Football Outsiders and ESPN Stats & Information, then explain what it means for the rest of the season. We did the NFC last week.
Baltimore Ravens (5-2)
Offense struggles on third down