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By the Numbers: Season in review

Posted Jan 10, 2017

A look at some of the key stats that reflected who the 2016 Bears were and what changes may be in store before next season kicks off.

Jordan Howard

Numbers can help tell a story for a football season. Here's a look at 10 important or interesting statistics that played a role for the 2016 Chicago Bears.

3:

Fumbles recovered by the Chicago defense, tied for the fewest in the NFL; Cleveland and Cincinnati also had three recoveries each. All three of the Bears' recoveries happened in the first seven weeks of the season. Adrian Amos had a recovery in Week 3 versus Dallas, Akiem Hicks picked up a loose ball in Week 6 against Jacksonville and Leonard Floyd stripped the ball and picked it up for a touchdown in Week 7 against Green Bay.

5.21:

Rushing yards per attempt by running back Jordan Howard. That average was second best in the NFL among players with at least 150 attempts this season, trailing only Buffalo's LeSean McCoy, who averaged 5.41 yards per attempt. Howard saved his best running for the end of the year, averaging more than 5 yards per rush in each of Chicago's final four games of the season.

7.5:

Sacks recorded by outside linebacker Willie Young, a team-high. It marked the second time in three years Young led the Bears in sacks, after also accomplishing that mark in 2014. Young led the way this year as one of 13 Chicago players with at least one sack; three players (Young, Akiem Hicks and Leonard Floyd) had seven or more sacks.

7.58:

Average yards gained by the Chicago offense on first down. Only the Atlanta Falcons - who averaged 8.1 yards - were more successful on first down than the Bears were. Chicago was able to move the ball both on the ground and through the air on first downs, averaging 6.97 yards per rush and 8.16 yards per pass on first downs, both of which ranked among the best in the NFL.

13:

Interceptions thrown by Chicago quarterbacks after halftime during the 2016 season. The second-half turnovers were a major problem for the Bears. Only the New York Jets, who had 19 interceptions in the second half of games during the year, ranked above the Bears in this statistic.

66:

Receptions by Cameron Meredith this season, which led all Bears pass catchers. The second-year wide receiver was inactive for the first two games of the season and had just six total catches in the following two games. But he picked it up and had four games this season with at least nine receptions and 100 receiving yards.  

71:

Players who saw action for the Bears this season. That marked the third consecutive season Chicago has fielded exactly 71 players over the course of a 16-game schedule. In 2016, only the New York Jets - who played 75 different players - topped the Bears in total numbers.

89:

Passing first downs thrown by Chicago quarterback Matt Barkley. Out of Barkley's 216 passing attempts on the season, 41.2 percent of them ended up moving the chains for the Bears' offense. Only Atlanta's Matt Ryan - who threw for first downs on 44.6 percent of his passes - had a higher percentage than Barkley among QBs who attempted more than 200 passes this season.

93.0:

Yards after the catch allowed per game by the Chicago defense. That ranks as the second-fewest in the NFL, trailing only the New England Patriots, which allowed 91.4 YAC a game during the year. While the Bears were good at limiting how far opposing pass-catchers gained after making catches, they still allowed long throws in the passing game. Chicago allowed 6.79 yards per pass play, which ranked in the bottom half of the NFL.

1,010:

Offensive snaps by the Bears in the 2016 season. Thirty-four different players played at least one of those snaps throughout the year, but only one player was on the field for all 1,010 of them: left tackle Charles Leno Jr. Leno was one of 27 offensive players across the NFL to participate in 100 percent of their team's snaps this season.