Good instagram post by Tony Khan yesterday: Since 2001, there have been more interceptions made by defensive players aged 26 than by players of any other age.
That was true for this past season, too, where 70 of the interceptions came from players that were 26 years old in 2016. Perhaps more interesting: the median age for interceptions, by defenders, was 26 years. What do I mean by that?
Well, 2% of all interceptions in 2016 came from players 21 years of younger; 7% came from players 22 or younger, 14% from 23 years or younger, 28% from 24 or younger, 39% from age 25 or younger, and 56% from age 26 or younger. So if you sort all interceptions by the (ascending) age of the defender, you need to go up to age 26 to cross the 50% mark.
I looked at the September 1st age of every player who recorded an interception in each year from 1940 to 2015 (I haven’t updated by database for 2016 just yet). The graph below charts the median 9/1 age in each season (i.e., what is the youngest 9/1 age you need to use to make sure you capture at least 50% of all interceptions from player that age and younger):
What do you think? And if I was to run this study for say, sacks, how do you think it would compare?