538: Are the Broncos or Seahawks More Immune From Regression?

August 20, 2014 Statgeekery

Over at Five Thirty Eight, I look at whether the Broncos pass offense, or the Seahawks pass defense, is more immune from regression to the mean.  As a general rule, elite offenses are further from league average than great defenses, so offensive regression isn’t as likely as defensive regression. It helps, too, that research has […]

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Being Young Isn’t What it Used to Be: The Harder Road to an NFL Dynasty

August 4, 2014 History

In the Super Bowl era, there has been just one team that was both the youngest in the league and one of the five best teams in football: the 2012 Seattle Seahawks. As friend of Football Perspective Neil Paine recently pointed out, being young and great has historically been a good predictor of teams that […]

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Predictions in Review: NFC West

February 19, 2014 Stat Recap

During the 2013 offseason, I wrote 32 articles under the RPO 2013 tag. In my Predictions in Review series, I review those preview articles with the benefit of hindsight. Last week was the AFC West; this week, the NFC West. Let’s begin in Arizona, where I actually got one right. Questioning the Narrative on Larry […]

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The Best Scoring Defenses In NFL History

February 3, 2014 Defense

Congratulations to the Seattle Seahawks and their fans on winning Super Bowl XLVIII. With the win, Seattle has confirmed its status as one of the greatest defenses in NFL history. The Seahawks defense produced a game for the ages on Sunday: facing Peyton Manning, Demaryius Thomas, and one of the greatest offenses ever, Seattle’s defense […]

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Super Bowl XLVIII Denver/Seattle Preview

January 31, 2014 Current Events

Before we get to my preview, I want to point you to some excellent Super Bowl previews I saw this week: Bill Barnwell at Grantland has a mind-bogglingly in depth Super Bowl preview Brian Burke has created an advanced stats page over at ANS, and he gives the Seahawks a slight edge in his column […]

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Are Teams Afraid To Pass Against Seattle?

January 26, 2014 History

We know that the Seahawks pass defense is historically good, but the title of this post sounds like it was written by a Seahawks homer, right? I mean, who else besides a green-and-blue fanboy (or maybe Richard Sherman or Earl Thomas) would write something as absurd as “Seattle’s pass defense is so good that teams […]

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SB XLVIII Is The Best Offense/Defense Super Bowl Ever

January 24, 2014 Super Bowl

This year, the Broncos averaged 37.9 points per game, 14.5 points more than league average. Seattle, meanwhile, allowed just 14.4 points per game, 9.0 points better than league average. That means this is a true clash of the titans in one sense: when the Broncos offense is on the field against the Seattle defense, the […]

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Championship Game Preview: San Francisco at Seattle

January 17, 2014 Current Events

It’s Carroll-Harbaugh X! Okay, the Whats Your Deal Bowl may not have quite the hype of Brady/Manning XV, but don’t tell that to folks on the West Coast. Pete Carroll and Jim Harbaugh are longtime rivals who have managed to alienate 31 other fanbases in the NFL. For the record, Harbaugh holds a 6-3 record […]

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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: New Orleans at Seattle

January 10, 2014 Current Events

On the surface, this does not appear to be a very even matchup. In home games in 2013, Seattle outscored opponents by 15.4 points per game, an average that includes the loss to Arizona. In road games during the regular season, the Saints were outscored by 4.6 points per game. Both of those averages, of […]

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Putting the 2013 Seahawks Pass Defense in Perspective

January 7, 2014 Defense

After 15 weeks, I wrote that Seattle’s pass defense looked to be one of the most dominant since the merger. With the regular season now over, and the Seahawks getting ready for their first playoff game, I wanted to revisit this question and slightly tweak the methodology. We begin with the base statistic to measure […]

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New York Times: Post-Week 15, 2013

December 18, 2013 NYT

This week at the New York Times, I look at the dominant Seattle pass defense. As the passing revolution overtakes the N.F.L., football fans have become immune to the avalanche of falling records. Teams are averaging 239 passing yards per game and completing 61.3 percent of passes, metrics that would be single-season records. Peyton Manning […]

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The Early Returns On Mike Shula Are Not Good

September 13, 2013 Statgeekery

Tom Brady and the Patriots ran 89 plays in week one. Chip Kelly’s Eagles ran 53 plays in the first half. The Denver hurry-up offense picked up 510 yards, and would have run more than their 68 plays had Peyton Manning stopped throwing touchdowns and prematurely ending drives. But if it seemed like week one […]

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Is Russell Wilson the next Ben Roethlisberger?

August 27, 2013 History

On the surface, Russell Wilson and Ben Roethlisberger have almost nothing in common. Wilson was an undersized, overlooked, third-round pick, while Roethlisberger was a first round pick who is one of the most physically imposing quarterbacks in NFL history. But both players had pretty similar rookie years in a couple of respects. In 2004, Roethlisbeger […]

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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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Checkdowns: Deja vu for the Falcons?

January 9, 2013 SRS

Much has been written this season arguing that the Falcons are not as good as their 13-3 record. Conversely, the Seahawks have emerged as a favorite among some in our advanced statistical community: Brian Burke ranks Seattle as the third most efficient team, Aaron Schatz ranks them number one, and Pro-Football-Reference ranks Seattle second in […]

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Season in review: AFC and NFC West

January 9, 2013 Review

AFC East and NFC East Season in review AFC North and NFC North Season in review AFC North and NFC South Season in review In the case of the AFC West, a picture can say a thousand words. Denver Broncos Pre-season Projection: 8.5 wins Maximum wins: 13 (after weeks 10 through 16) Minimum wins: 9 […]

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Week 16 Power Rankings

December 28, 2012 Power Rankings

What’s the point of power rankings now that there is just one week left in the regular season? If you’ve asked that question, you are implicitly saying that power rankings serve a purpose earlier in the year! If you want to see the playoff picture, I laid that out earlier this week, so I’ll assume […]

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Seattle’s HFA

December 27, 2012 Statistics

As usual, Aaron Schatz provided some interesting information in his weekly DVOA recap. He was looking into Seattle’s home/road splits, and found that the data support what you already know: [W]hen you look closer at home-field advantage over a period of several years, almost every team generally has the same home-field advantage, which in DVOA […]

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Week 14 Power Rankings

December 13, 2012 Power Rankings

It’s time to take Seattle seriously. On Sunday, the Seahawks had a “name your score” game, the type of matchup college football powerhouses regularly use to beef up their statistics. The Seahawks defense took over the game, posting the 10th highest fantasy performance ever, but the offense wasn’t too shabby, either. Seattle rushed for 284 […]

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Russell Wilson continues the NFL’s rookie movement at quarterback

August 27, 2012 Passing

Andrew Luck and Robert Griffin III were drafted as franchise saviors, and have been expected to start on opening day for months; more recently Brandon Weeden in Cleveland and Ryan Tannehill in Miami won starting jobs. Then, last night, Pete Carroll announced that Russell Wilson had beaten Matt Flynn in the Seahawks quarterback battle. Barring […]

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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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