S4S, I hope you get comfortable here at SF cause I love crunching numbers.
For the numbers, lets see who those four teams are: Green Bay '68, San Fran '85, Wash, '92,
St. Louis '00. No slouches for teams in their time by any means so something else must be the reason? I think it does go back to the principle of keeping teams guessing. You can't be skewed too far in one direction. Those four teams had the talent to run and pass. Just turns out they didn't pass to the TE those years. Why not? Didn't need to. My numbers:
'68 Pack - 446 rushing attempts. Lowest back had a healthy 3.2 avg per carry. Sorry no NFL rankings back then I guess.
'85 49'ers - 534 rushing attempts. #2 NFL rank in YPAttempt
'92 Skins - 540 attempts - #1 NFL rank in Attempts
'00 Rams - 431 attempts - #2 YPAttempt
So you see, having a TE to bail out an average running game is good, but if you can run effectively and not just consistently you can winn as well. Our problem last year...
'04 Steelers - 618 attempts - #19 YPAttempt
So then question back at the forum...will Miller be the TE that helps an average/above average running game, or that threat that allows us to run effectively better by pulling one guy deeper for an instant longer to give us a couple yards more on the ground?
Well, if this thread doesn't make us the M.I.T. of fan boards I don't know what will. Lets see the others keep up.