Championship Game Preview: New England at Denver

January 18, 2014 Current Events

Someone needs to say it. I know, I know, it’s Manning/Brady XV. But someone needs to remind people that Peyton Manning threw 30 more touchdown passes than Tom Brady in 2013. He threw for over 1,000 more yards. He threw one less interception. He was sacked 22 fewer times. And did I mention that he […]

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Cap Space Versus Production For DEN/NE/SF/SEA

January 16, 2014 Strategy

It’s not much of a stretch to say that the Patriots, Broncos, 49ers, and Seahawks, and are four of the best organizations in the NFL. Over the last two years, these four teams are the only to win 23 games in the regular season or 26 games if you include the playoffs. In the salary […]

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The Division Round Gives Us The Championship Round We Want

January 13, 2014 Current Events

By all accounts, this was an underwhelming quartet of games played on The Best Weekend in Football. Last year, the division round gave us an incredible Russell Wilson comeback where the Seahawks scored three fourth quarter touchdowns before falling short against the Falcons and the Peyton Manning-Joe Flacco-Rahim Moore classic. Seattle won this year but […]

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Division Preview: Indianapolis at New England

January 10, 2014 Current Events

When it comes Patriots/Colts, it’s easy to want to focus on Tom Brady vs. Andrew Luck. Or to marvel at the sheer number of star players these teams have lost in the last 12 months. If you played college in the state of Florida, you’re probably not going to be playing in this game: T.Y. […]

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2012 Rearview Adjusted Net Yards per Attempt

July 29, 2013 Quarterbacks

Every year at Footballguys.com, I publish an article called Rearview QB, which adjusts quarterback (and defense) fantasy numbers for strength of schedule. I’ve also done the same thing using ANY/A instead of fantasy points, and today I revive that concept for the 2012 season. Let’s start with the basics. Adjusted Net Yards per Attempt is […]

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Contest: Reports of the Demise of the New England Passing Game Are…

June 27, 2013 Checkdowns

On September 13, 2008, Doug Drinen wrote this post, which I reproduce in full below. I’m hearing and reading a lot of crazy stuff this week. So I just want to document my predictions that (a) the Patriots will win at least 11 games this year, (b) the Patriots will clinch the East before week […]

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Previewing the AFC Championship Game: Baltimore at New England

January 19, 2013 Current Events

According to the SRS, this is as lopsided as championship games get. The Patriots are 12.8 points better than average while the Ravens have an SRS of just +2.9; therefore, you’d put New England as 13-point favorites at home (in reality, they are 8-point favorites). I’ve been a Ravens skeptic for a couple of months […]

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Previewing the Divisional Round of the NFL Playoffs – Sunday

January 13, 2013 Current Events

Yesterday, I previewed Saturday’s games with um, mixed results (skip the Denver-Baltimore preview and just read the San Francisco-Green Bay breakdown twice). Let’s take another crack at it by examining Sunday’s matchups. Seattle Seahawks (11-5) (+1) at Atlanta Falcons (13-3), Sunday, 1:00PM ET Once again, Atlanta is tasked with facing a dominant wildcard team. Is […]

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Season in review: AFC and NFC East

December 31, 2012 Review

This season, I published power rankings after each week where I stated my updated projected number of wins for each team. The point of those posts was to put in writing my thoughts at that time, so that once the season was over, I could look back and see how I did. Over the next […]

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NYT Fifth Down: Post-week 15

December 18, 2012 NYT

A double post at the New York Times this week. Did you know that Alex Smith is seven attempts away from qualifying for eligibility for certain rate-based statistics? If Jim Harbaugh wants to game the system — and this is Harbaugh — he could ptobably that Smith breaks the completion percentage record, set by Drew […]

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Checkdowns: Biggest failed comebacks

December 18, 2012 Checkdowns

[UPDATE: There was an error earlier in this post. I believe it is fixed now.] On Sunday Night, the Patriots trailed 31-3 halfway through the third quarter. But that’s when Tom Brady got hot, and New England tied the game with 6:43 left in the 4th quarter. At that moment, many fans probably had visions […]

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Game Scripts, Part III – 2012 results

December 5, 2012 Statgeekery

Last week, I introduced the concept of Game Scripts in Part I and Part II of this series. The short explanation is that a team’s Game Script score is simply the average score during each second of every game. Today, we’re going to look at some data from the 2012 season, although I have not […]

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NYT Fifth Down: Post-week 12

November 27, 2012 NYT

My article for the New York Times this week takes a look at one interesting statistic for each of the eight division winners.   Atlanta Falcons – Record in Close Games In 2010, Atlanta raced to a 10-2 record on the strength of an improbable 7-1 record in games decided by 7 or fewer points. […]

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NYT Fifth Down: Post-week 10

November 14, 2012 NYT

This week at the New York Times I looked at several interesting statistical developments in both the 2012 season and in week 10. Even in today’s pass-happy N.F.L., it pays to have one of the best running backs. In one of the bigger surprises of the season, the best of the best is Minnesota’s Adrian […]

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Checkdowns: Patriots Passing Game Struggles

October 17, 2012 Passing

If there was one thing you can count on in New England, it’s that the Patriots passing attack would be more efficient than their opponent’s nearly every week. From 2003 to 2011, New England averaged 6.9 net yards per pass attempt while their defense allowed 6.0 NY/A. But this season, the Patriots passing offense is […]

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Random Perspective On: The 2012 New England Patriots

August 20, 2012 Fantasy

New England has had one of the most creative and flexible offenses for the last decade. From 2002 to 2011, the Patriots offense was always good but it was rarely predictable. On paper, the Patriots arguably have their best and deepest set of skill position players in franchise history. But with the addition of Brandon […]

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2011 Age-adjusted team rosters

August 1, 2012 Statistics

Measuring team age in the N.F.L. is tricky. Calculating the average age of a 53-man roster is misleading because the age of a team’s starters is much more relevant than the age of a team’s reserves. The average age of a team’s starting lineup isn’t perfect, either. The age of the quarterback and key offensive […]

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Brandon Lloyd and Josh McDaniels together again

July 12, 2012 Coaches

Once Josh McDaniels went to New England, it was a fait accompli that free agent wide receiver Brandon Lloyd would soon become a Patriot, too. After gaining only 2,370 yards in the first seven seasons of his career, Lloyd had a breakout season with the Broncos and McDaniels in 2010, catching 77 passes for a […]

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