November 2017


It’s been a harder work week than usual, and really haven’t had time to touch on the stats this week. I don’t have many comments at the moment. Kansas City is in a mid season swoon. Washington played well. I wish it had a better result, but Drew Brees is a comeback king. Minnesota looks like a tough opponent. New England has sneaked into the top five of a number of scoring stats. I caught the very end of the Atlanta Seattle game. It was probably one I should have watched.

Global Statistics:
Games  Home Wins HwPct Winning_Score Losing_Score Margin
160        84     52.5      28.17        16.17     12.00

Calculated Pythagorean Exponent:  2.60


Rank  Team    Median  GP   W   L   T  Pct   Pred   SRS    MOV   SOS
------------------------------------------------------------------------
1     PHI     11.5    10   9   1   0  90.0  80.0  11.69  13.20 -1.51
2     NO      11.5    10   8   2   0  80.0  75.5  11.68  10.60  1.08
3     MIN      9.0    10   8   2   0  80.0  70.6   9.21   6.90  2.31
4     NE       7.5    10   8   2   0  80.0  71.7   9.28   8.70  0.58
5     PIT      5.5    10   8   2   0  80.0  69.6   5.96   6.20 -0.24
6     JAX     14.0    10   7   3   0  70.0  80.8   8.81  10.40 -1.59
7     LA       7.5    10   7   3   0  70.0  78.1  10.35  11.70 -1.35
8     CAR      3.0    10   7   3   0  70.0  60.8   4.46   3.30  1.16
9     KC       7.5    10   6   4   0  60.0  61.2   5.39   4.20  1.19
10    DET      5.0    10   6   4   0  60.0  59.4   4.39   3.70  0.69
11    ATL      3.5    10   6   4   0  60.0  56.2   2.00   2.10 -0.10
12    SEA      3.0    10   6   4   0  60.0  62.5   1.66   4.30 -2.64
13    TEN      3.0    10   6   4   0  60.0  41.6  -5.35  -3.10 -2.25
14    BAL      5.0    10   5   5   0  50.0  63.9   2.90   4.20 -1.30
15    DAL      3.5    10   5   5   0  50.0  50.0   0.04   0.00  0.04
16    BUF     -0.5    10   5   5   0  50.0  38.3  -5.16  -4.20 -0.96
17    GB      -3.0    10   5   5   0  50.0  42.3  -0.11  -2.60  2.49
18    LAC     -2.0    10   4   6   0  40.0  57.8   1.95   2.50 -0.55
19    HOU     -3.0    10   4   6   0  40.0  51.2   0.02   0.50 -0.48
20    OAK     -3.5    10   4   6   0  40.0  37.8  -5.35  -4.30 -1.05
21    CIN     -3.5    10   4   6   0  40.0  39.5  -5.14  -3.00 -2.14
22    TB      -4.0    10   4   6   0  40.0  42.5  -2.60  -2.50 -0.10
23    NYJ     -4.0    10   4   6   0  40.0  43.6  -4.90  -2.10 -2.80
24    WAS     -5.5    10   4   6   0  40.0  42.8   1.93  -2.80  4.73
25    MIA     -6.5    10   4   6   0  40.0  22.2  -9.71  -9.70 -0.01
26    ARI     -8.0    10   4   6   0  40.0  27.8  -8.17  -7.80 -0.37
27    IND     -3.0    10   3   7   0  30.0  23.8 -11.23 -10.10 -1.13
28    CHI     -4.5    10   3   7   0  30.0  34.9  -0.92  -4.70  3.78
29    DEN    -10.0    10   3   7   0  30.0  28.8  -6.81  -7.60  0.79
30    NYG     -7.5    10   2   8   0  20.0  25.0  -6.80  -8.50  1.70
31    SF      -3.0    10   1   9   0  10.0  26.0  -9.02  -8.60 -0.42
32    CLE    -13.0    10   0  10   0   0.0  19.4 -10.43 -10.90  0.47
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It is getting to the point now where games won and lost become important. In the NFC, at least, teams leading the division have very high probabilities of making the playoffs. Team with 5 and 6 wins are, as of the moment, on the outside looking in, with a possibility of making the playoffs.

Before the Dallas Atlanta game I would have said that Dallas was the better bet as a playoff team, but Dallas’s inability to remain healthy was central to the 27-7 Falcons win. And that will remain their critical issue. Ezekiel Elliot has a workable replacement in Alfred Morris, but there is no functional replacement for the injured Tyron Smith.

While the revitalized New Orleans Saints are having a season on offense comparable to last years, their improvement on defense is substantial. Their DSRS last year was about -5.73 points, while now it is 4.84 points. That’s a turnaround of 10.57 points. In terms of the Rams, it’s about a 18 point improvement in the offense and a 4 point improvement in the defense. Philadelphia by contrast, has improved by 9 points on offense, while the defense isn’t as good as last year, by about 3 and a half points.

The best defense of the year and the best team in the AFC, by the numbers, is that of Jacksonville. Many years of accumulating talent appears to have borne fruit. The only issue with Jacksonville is that they have been erratic. No one is sure which Jacksonville team will appear.

Global Statistics:
Games  Home Wins HwPct Winning_Score Losing_Score Margin
146        78     53.4      28.01        16.18     11.83

Calculated Pythagorean Exponent:  2.78


Rank  Team    Median  GP   W   L   T  Pct   Pred   SRS    MOV   SOS
------------------------------------------------------------------------
1     PHI     10.0     9   8   1   0  88.9  78.2   9.41  11.56 -2.15
2     NO      14.0     9   7   2   0  77.8  79.4  12.53  11.44  1.08
3     LA      10.0     9   7   2   0  77.8  84.3  12.64  14.89 -2.25
4     MIN      8.0     9   7   2   0  77.8  68.2   6.75   5.78  0.97
5     NE       7.0     9   7   2   0  77.8  68.3   8.09   6.89  1.20
6     PIT      5.0     9   7   2   0  77.8  65.7   4.12   4.33 -0.21
7     CAR      3.0    10   7   3   0  70.0  61.5   4.49   3.30  1.19
8     JAX     16.0     9   6   3   0  66.7  81.1   9.32  10.22 -0.90
9     KC       8.0     9   6   3   0  66.7  63.3   6.48   5.00  1.48
10    SEA      3.0     9   6   3   0  66.7  66.5   2.49   5.11 -2.62
11    TEN      3.0     9   6   3   0  66.7  47.3  -4.12  -0.89 -3.23
12    DAL     11.0     9   5   4   0  55.6  58.8   2.35   3.11 -0.77
13    DET      7.0     9   5   4   0  55.6  60.3   4.30   3.78  0.52
14    ATL      4.0     9   5   4   0  55.6  56.6   2.45   2.00  0.45
15    GB       3.0     9   5   4   0  55.6  49.0   2.24  -0.33  2.57
16    BUF      3.0     9   5   4   0  55.6  45.6  -2.30  -1.33 -0.97
17    OAK     -1.0     9   4   5   0  44.4  43.9  -4.23  -2.00 -2.23
18    BAL     -3.0     9   4   5   0  44.4  57.3   0.36   2.11 -1.76
19    MIA     -3.0     9   4   5   0  44.4  20.3  -9.46  -9.67  0.20
20    ARI     -6.0     9   4   5   0  44.4  26.7  -7.60  -7.56 -0.05
21    WAS     -8.0     9   4   5   0  44.4  42.1   1.28  -2.78  4.05
22    NYJ     -4.0    10   4   6   0  40.0  43.1  -4.37  -2.10 -2.27
23    LAC     -2.0     9   3   6   0  33.3  47.9  -0.89  -0.56 -0.34
24    HOU     -3.0     9   3   6   0  33.3  48.5   0.23  -0.56  0.79
25    CIN     -4.0     9   3   6   0  33.3  36.4  -5.10  -3.67 -1.43
26    TB      -5.0     9   3   6   0  33.3  37.5  -3.03  -3.89  0.86
27    CHI     -6.0     9   3   6   0  33.3  32.8  -1.32  -4.89  3.57
28    DEN    -10.0     9   3   6   0  33.3  26.6  -7.06  -8.11  1.05
29    IND     -3.0    10   3   7   0  30.0  22.4 -10.96 -10.10 -0.86
30    NYG    -10.0     9   1   8   0  11.1  21.7  -8.51  -9.78  1.27
31    SF      -3.0    10   1   9   0  10.0  24.6  -8.80  -8.60 -0.20
32    CLE    -14.0     9   0   9   0   0.0  19.1 -11.75 -10.78 -0.98

Scott Kacsmar is making Eagles fans angry again, by pointing out how many of Carson Wentz’s TD passes start on drives where the ball is inside the opponents 20 yard line. This kind of short TD drive is weighted accurately in EPA based stats, but inflates standard scoring models, such as ANYA and the NFL passer rating. That doesn’t change the fact that Carson Wentz has been in the top five of the ESPN QBR for a while now. For that matter, all three of the top 2016 quarterbacks are in the ESPN QBR top ten.

Ezekiel Elliott has a court date on Thursday afternoon and Friday is a Federal Holiday. Zeke is eligible to play at least until the court makes a decision. The odds the decision is made Thursday is very small. He’s likely to play Atlanta.

I wish I had seen the Washington comeback against the Seahawks. I was away from the screen at the time.

So how many seasons has it been now that Atlanta plays its best for one half? This was true in the late Mike Smith era, and continues to this day.

Best teams? For now, 1a and 1b are Jacksonville and the Rams. Third are the Eagles. Fourth is New Orleans. Fifth is Kansas City, I suspect, but at this point, reasonable arguments could be made for Minnesota, New England, and Pittsburgh.
 

Global Statistics:
Games  Home Wins HwPct Winning_Score Losing_Score Margin
132        70     53.0      27.77        16.14     11.63

Calculated Pythagorean Exponent:  2.55


Rank  Team    Median  GP   W   L   T  Pct   Pred   SRS    MOV   SOS
------------------------------------------------------------------------
1     PHI     10.0     9   8   1   0  88.9  76.3   9.50  11.56 -2.05
2     NO      11.5     8   6   2   0  75.0  71.2   8.70   8.25  0.45
3     MIN      9.0     8   6   2   0  75.0  67.2   5.76   5.50  0.26
4     LA       7.5     8   6   2   0  75.0  79.4  11.25  13.50 -2.25
5     NE       6.0     8   6   2   0  75.0  61.7   6.05   4.62  1.43
6     PIT      5.5     8   6   2   0  75.0  65.0   5.84   4.50  1.34
7     KC       8.0     9   6   3   0  66.7  62.2   7.37   5.00  2.37
8     CAR      3.0     9   6   3   0  66.7  53.5   2.23   1.00  1.23
9     JAX     18.5     8   5   3   0  62.5  80.9  10.72  11.12 -0.40
10    DAL     11.0     8   5   3   0  62.5  64.8   4.85   6.00 -1.15
11    BUF      4.5     8   5   3   0  62.5  59.8   0.50   3.12 -2.63
12    SEA      3.0     8   5   3   0  62.5  64.7   2.87   5.00 -2.13
13    TEN      3.0     8   5   3   0  62.5  45.9  -3.85  -1.50 -2.35
14    DET      2.0     8   4   4   0  50.0  56.5   3.45   2.50  0.95
15    ATL      0.5     8   4   4   0  50.0  49.3  -0.33  -0.25 -0.08
16    MIA     -0.5     8   4   4   0  50.0  24.9  -8.55  -7.88 -0.68
17    GB      -3.0     8   4   4   0  50.0  46.6   1.15  -1.25  2.40
18    WAS     -3.5     8   4   4   0  50.0  44.2   1.85  -2.12  3.98
19    ARI     -4.0     8   4   4   0  50.0  28.1  -8.77  -7.75 -1.02
20    OAK     -1.0     9   4   5   0  44.4  44.4  -3.20  -2.00 -1.20
21    NYJ     -3.0     9   4   5   0  44.4  44.9  -3.37  -1.78 -1.59
22    BAL     -3.0     9   4   5   0  44.4  56.7   0.91   2.11 -1.20
23    LAC     -2.0     8   3   5   0  37.5  49.2  -0.91  -0.25 -0.66
24    HOU     -3.0     8   3   5   0  37.5  56.1   2.08   2.62 -0.55
25    CIN     -3.5     8   3   5   0  37.5  37.4  -3.93  -3.62 -0.30
26    CHI     -4.5     8   3   5   0  37.5  34.9  -2.13  -4.62  2.49
27    DEN    -10.0     8   3   5   0  37.5  33.0  -4.73  -6.00  1.27
28    IND     -3.0     9   3   6   0  33.3  23.0 -12.16 -10.89 -1.27
29    TB      -5.0     8   2   6   0  25.0  36.0  -4.33  -5.00  0.67
30    NYG     -9.5     8   1   7   0  12.5  23.1  -7.01  -9.75  2.74
31    SF      -3.0     9   0   9   0   0.0  21.3 -10.35 -10.67  0.32
32    CLE     -8.5     8   0   8   0   0.0  20.6 -11.47 -10.38 -1.09