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The Boston Globe

Sports

Smaller players fill vital roles for Patriots

The Patriots have an unusual array with some of the smallest and largest players in the league on their offense. The Patriots' running backs and wide receivers are an inch and a half shorter than the NFL average for the same position. Their offensive line is half an inch taller. A look at how they compare:

Data for offensive teams (RB, WR, QB, C, G, OG, OT, TE, FB)

Patriots
NFL
Ravens

Average height of offensive team
Mouse over the bars below to compare the average height of each NFL team
The Patriots are 0.12 inches below the average height of the NFL offensive teams with 6 feet 2.31 inches. That's 1.17 inches shorter than the tallest team (Buffalo Bills) and 0.70 taller than the shortest (Washington Redskins).
Average height of RB+WR
Mouse over the bars below to compare the average height of each NFL team
The short players of the Patriots offense are the shortest of the whole NFL, with an average of 5 feet 10.33 inches. That's one inch and a half below the NFL average and more than three inches less than Denver Broncos or Buffalo Bills.
Average height of offensive line (C, G, OG, OT)
Mouse over the bars below to compare the average height of each NFL team
The Patriots are way shorter than average, but the tall Patriots are taller. Just a half inch more than average, but it is the sixth tallest offensive line of the NFL. The tallest? The usual suspects: the Buffalo Bills.
Average weight of offensive team
Mouse over the bars below to compare the average weight of each NFL team
The Patriots are a bit above the weight NFL average (0.73 pounds over). The Buffalo Bills also set the high record, but the Kansas City Chiefs set the lowest mark, with 247.3 pounds, six and a half pounds below average.
Average weight of RB+WR
Mouse over the bars below to compare the average weight of each NFL team
Being short is not the same than being small. Patriots running backs and wide receivers may be the shortest of the NFL, but not at all the lightest of the league, with 1.6 pounds over the 49ers players in the same position.
Average weight of offensive line (C, G, OG, OT)
Mouse over the bars below to compare the average weight of each NFL team
The Patriots are tall, but not so heavy. Despite being slightly over the average in height, they're below in terms of weight for the big men. But this is Ravens' land, with a really big difference of average weight with the rest of the league.
Height-weight ratio
Offensive teams
Mouse over the circles
^ height
RB + WR
Mouse over the circles
^ height
weight >
Offensive line
Mouse over the circles
^ height
weight >

SOURCE: NFL.com

Chiqui Esteban/Globe Staff

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