I like to look at player statistics, and I always see the Tackle stat, the Sack stat, and sometimes the Tackle For Loss stat. Is there some overlap in the stats so that a Sack counts as a Tackle?

ie) A player has 7 sacks in one season, and 81 tackles, and 23 tackles for loss. Is there overlap so that they actually had 74 tackles and seven of them were counted as sacks, and they had 16 tackles for loss, but again, seven of them were counted by sacks. Does anybody know if there is overlap, and some stats are have duplicates, or do they not count a sack as a TFL or a tackle?

  • A sack is not necessarily a tackle for loss, since it can happen on the LoS as well.
    – dly
    Nov 16, 2018 at 8:32
  • Do you know which one is more consistent, to be double counted or to not be?
    – Ginge
    Nov 17, 2018 at 0:35

1 Answer 1


Sacks and Tackles for Loss are both subsets of Tackles. Whether or not Sacks can be recorded as Tackles for Loss seems to vary based on who is reporting. For example:

This ESPN Box Score lists Dante Fowler as having 1 sack and 1 TFL. However, the Pro-Football Reference for the same game gives him 1 sack and 0 TFL. It's clear that PFR records TFLs as separate from sacks, but ESPN lists sacks as a subset of TFLs.

So, to answer your question by using your example, a player with 7 sacks in one season, and 81 tackles, and 23 tackles for loss had 81 total tackles, 7 of which were sacks. 23 of his 81 tackles were for loss, and that MAY be including the 7 sacks or not, depending on who is recording the stats.

  • Is a strip sack considered a tackle, even if the quarterback is still standing at the end of it?
    – kuzzooroo
    Nov 21, 2018 at 23:36

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