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GBPKS
08-02-2010, 01:40 PM
Some interesting playoff facts from the last eight years (since the NFL switched to its current format of 4divisions and 2 wild card teams per conference):

The highest number of repeat playoff teams from the previous season is 7 (2002 and 2004) and the lowest is 4 (2003). The average and median are both about 5.5 returning playoff teams, meaning that at most you should expect to get 6 playoff teams back.

When you break it down further, roughly 4 of the 8 division champions return to the playoffs (3 on average via repeating as division champs with another 1 getting in as a wild card). The most division champions to ever return to the playoffs (in any form) has been 5 (2004 and 2006) and the lowest has been 3 (2003, 2008, 2009). That means that half of last year's division champions should expect to miss the playoffs. New England, Cincinnati, Indianapolis, San Diego, Dallas, Minnesota, New Orleans, and Arizona - look to your left, look to your right - either you or the team next to you will not be making the playoffs this season.

Wild card teams don't get off the hook easy either. The highest number of wild card teams to return to the playoffs the previous year was 3 (last year) and the fewest was 0 (2006). The median is 2, which similar to the division winners is 50%. That means the Jets, Ravens, Packers, and Eagles - half of you are going home.

In every year since 2003, at least one team that finished 5-11 or worse the previous season has made the playoffs. From 2004 through 2008, there were at least 2 5-11 or worse teams that made the playoffs. That's good news for the fans of the Browns, Chiefs, Redskins, Seahawks, Lions, and Rams. Historically, however, the median and average record for the worst team from the previous season to make the playoffs was 4-12, so Bucs, Lions and Rams fans shouldn't get their hopes up just yet. On the flip side, with the exception of last year, at least one playoff team (and on average two) from the previous season has had the wheels come off the following year, going 5-11 or worse (most years the worst record from a prior year playoff team is 4-12). Who are the candidates to completely fall apart this season? The Cardinals without Kurt Warner? The Eagles without Donovan McNabb?

The NFC East has had at least one repeat team in the playoffs every year in this small sample except 2005, which is good news for the Cowboys or the Eagles. Conversely, the NFC South has not had a repeat playoff participant since the current format, which is bad news for New Orleans. The AFC North has only had one repeat champion during this timeframe, the 2008 Steelers. That does not bode well for the Cincinnati Bengals.

The average prior season record of playoff teams is roughly 9-7, which is also what playoff teams tend to average the year after they make the playoffs.

Since 2003, here are how playoff teams have done the following season based on record:

14 Wins or Greater: Average 11.5 Wins the following season, make the playoffs 83% of the time (16-0 New England was the only exception). This year, Indianapolis falls in this bucket.

13 Wins: Average 7.8 Wins the following season, make the playoffs 20% of the time. This year, New Orleans and San Diego fall in this bucket.

12 Wins: Average 10.4 Wins the following season, make the playoffs 56% of the time. This year, Minnesota falls in this bucket.

11 Wins: Average 7.9 Wins the following season, make the playoffs only 33% of the time. This year, Dallas, Green Bay, and Philadelphia fall into this precarious bucket.

10 Wins: Average 8.3 Wins the following season, make the playoffs 45.5% of the time. This year, New England, Cincinnati, and Arizona fall into this bucket.

9 Wins: Average 8.5 Wins the following season, make the playoffs 45.5% of the time. This year, either the Jets or Ravens will be going to the playoffs, and the other will be going home.

8 Wins: Average 9.5 Wins the following season, make the playoffs 50% of the time. Small sample size (considering it is pretty rare for an 8-8 team to make the playoffs), nobody from last season fits this bill.

So, based on these statistics, what can we expect from the 2010 Playoff picture:

* 3 repeat division champions, plus another getting in via wild card
* 2 wild card teams making it back to the playoffs
* 2 4-12 or 5-11 teams making the playoffs
* A lot of fan bases with big expectations ending up disappointed

Andy Freeland
08-02-2010, 01:48 PM
Nice post. promoted to user article: http://footballproslive.com/content.php/293-Playoffs-By-the-Numbers

I was about to post a poll about the 5-11 teams making the playoffs. To expand on that, there have only been 4 seasons since 1981 that a team with 5 or fewer wins the previous season didn't make the playoffs.

BigDerf
08-02-2010, 06:47 PM
I would like to see how those repeating champion and playoff numbers would look if you took out the colts who have won that division 6 of the 8 years and were a wild card the other two years and if you took out the Pats who have won their division 6 of the 8 years over that same span (1 year was between the first two super bowls when Brady was younger and the other with Brady hurt). I'm saying that outside of having Manning or Brady the playoff teams fluctuate even more wildly than your numbers already indicate.

Turk Schonert
08-02-2010, 07:11 PM
Excellent post ! Very interesting numbers, and fans from last years 5-11 teams should have some positive vibes coming into this season. Love a good underdog !!

BubbaLove
08-02-2010, 09:17 PM
Nice post GBPKS.

cobber66
08-02-2010, 09:20 PM
Props for compiling these stats. Great work!

msclemons
08-02-2010, 09:22 PM
That post needs to be printed out and sent to every NFL prognosticator. Everyone makes their picks based on last year and as GBPKS shows, last year only counts about 50%.

rxbrown86
08-02-2010, 11:38 PM
Great post GBPKS. Your research illustrates one of the great things about the NFL - unpredictability. The opportunity to improve and compete in this league gives the fan base of all teams a lot of hope. I really think it's another reason the season shouldn't be extended to 18 games. I like the fact that each game carries significance. What's more, a little luck by the 5-11 teams the next year and they go 9-7 or 10-6 and they make the playoffs, as you point out often happens. A longer season may disrupt the very phenomenon you describe and actually diminish the "hope" that is so important to fans everywhere.

Pruitt
08-02-2010, 11:54 PM
Great post.

Sadly, numbers can't explain everything - like Ralph Wilson's hires or Matt Millen's drafts.

Somethings can not be explained logically.

Cris Collinsworth
08-02-2010, 11:59 PM
How many teams have won 13 games in that data? That seems almost too strange to be true. How could 13 win teams fall off that far?

GBPKS
08-03-2010, 11:03 AM
How many teams have won 13 games in that data? That seems almost too strange to be true. How could 13 win teams fall off that far?

There were ten teams in the sample (not counting the two 13-3 teams from this year):

2008 Tennessee Titans 13-3, were 8-8 last year and didn't make the playoffs
2007 Indianapolis Colts 13-3, were 12-4 the next year and made the playoffs
2007 Dallas Cowboys 13-3, were 9-7 the next year and didn't make the playoffs
2007 Green Bay Packers 13-3, were 6-10 the next year and didn't make the playoffs
2006 Baltimore Ravens 13-3, were 5-11 the next year and didn't make the playoffs
2006 Chicago Bears 13-3, were 7-9 the next year and didn't make the playoffs
2005 Denver Broncos 13-3, were 9-7 the next year and didn't make the playoffs
2005 Seattle Seahawks 13-3, were 9-7 the next year but actually DID make the playoffs
2004 Philadelphia Eagles 13-3, were 6-10 the next year and didn't make the playoffs
2003 Kansas City Chiefs 13-3, were 7-9 the next year and didn't make the playoffs

Pruitt
08-03-2010, 11:25 AM
There were ten teams in the sample (not counting the two 13-3 teams from this year):

2008 Tennessee Titans 13-3, were 8-8 last year and didn't make the playoffs
2007 Indianapolis Colts 13-3, were 12-4 the next year and made the playoffs
2007 Dallas Cowboys 13-3, were 9-7 the next year and didn't make the playoffs
2007 Green Bay Packers 13-3, were 6-10 the next year and didn't make the playoffs
2006 Baltimore Ravens 13-3, were 5-11 the next year and didn't make the playoffs
2006 Chicago Bears 13-3, were 7-9 the next year and didn't make the playoffs
2005 Denver Broncos 13-3, were 9-7 the next year and didn't make the playoffs
2005 Seattle Seahawks 13-3, were 9-7 the next year but actually DID make the playoffs
2004 Philadelphia Eagles 13-3, were 6-10 the next year and didn't make the playoffs
2003 Kansas City Chiefs 13-3, were 7-9 the next year and didn't make the playoffs

That's almost unimaginable.

Great stat. Kind of puts the Colts consistency into sharper focus.

Polishguy00
08-03-2010, 11:43 AM
There were ten teams in the sample (not counting the two 13-3 teams from this year):

2008 Tennessee Titans 13-3, were 8-8 last year and didn't make the playoffs
2007 Indianapolis Colts 13-3, were 12-4 the next year and made the playoffs
2007 Dallas Cowboys 13-3, were 9-7 the next year and didn't make the playoffs
2007 Green Bay Packers 13-3, were 6-10 the next year and didn't make the playoffs
2006 Baltimore Ravens 13-3, were 5-11 the next year and didn't make the playoffs
2006 Chicago Bears 13-3, were 7-9 the next year and didn't make the playoffs
2005 Denver Broncos 13-3, were 9-7 the next year and didn't make the playoffs
2005 Seattle Seahawks 13-3, were 9-7 the next year but actually DID make the playoffs
2004 Philadelphia Eagles 13-3, were 6-10 the next year and didn't make the playoffs
2003 Kansas City Chiefs 13-3, were 7-9 the next year and didn't make the playoffs

If you had gone back just two more years, the 2001 Bears would have dropped the percentage even further. We coulda had two. We would have the only repeat offender. Go Bears. Of course, that happened due to the fallout from the Gumby arm Miller was throwing with because we knew we would have had to bring Steve Fuller out of retirement.

GBPKS
08-03-2010, 12:17 PM
There were ten teams in the sample (not counting the two 13-3 teams from this year):

2008 Tennessee Titans 13-3, were 8-8 last year and didn't make the playoffs
2007 Indianapolis Colts 13-3, were 12-4 the next year and made the playoffs
2007 Dallas Cowboys 13-3, were 9-7 the next year and didn't make the playoffs
2007 Green Bay Packers 13-3, were 6-10 the next year and didn't make the playoffs
2006 Baltimore Ravens 13-3, were 5-11 the next year and didn't make the playoffs
2006 Chicago Bears 13-3, were 7-9 the next year and didn't make the playoffs
2005 Denver Broncos 13-3, were 9-7 the next year and didn't make the playoffs
2005 Seattle Seahawks 13-3, were 9-7 the next year but actually DID make the playoffs
2004 Philadelphia Eagles 13-3, were 6-10 the next year and didn't make the playoffs
2003 Kansas City Chiefs 13-3, were 7-9 the next year and didn't make the playoffs

It's interesting how a lot of times it all goes back to the quarterback. This is where the 13-3 Saints and 13-3 Chargers have a chance to buck the trend. I would say the Chargers are more vulnerable given their hard-line holdout situation.

The 2008 Titans ended up having to switch from Kerry Collins to Vince Young during the 2009 season. Kerry Collins kind of got it done on smoke and mirrors in the 2008 season. Also, the team lost their best defensive player (Albert Haynesworth) in the 2008 off-season.

The 2007 Packers obviously made the transition from Brett Favre to Aaron Rodgers, and the 2008 Packers lost so many close games that despite a 6-10 record they still were well in the positive for net points on the season. 2008 proved to be a bit of a speedbump, as the 2009 Packers went 11-5 under their new quarterback.

The 2006 Ravens lost Jamal Lewis in the offseason and then suffered through an injury-riddled season from the late Steve McNair and had to endure several starts from Kyle Boller. This was the end of the Brian Billick era in Baltimore and ushered in the Harbaugh/Flacco regime.

The 2006 Bears, in addition to the Super Bowl losers' curse, had to deal with the fact that Rex Grossman was their quarterback.

The 2005 Broncos drafted Jay Cutler in the offseason, and they ended up switching from Jake Plummer (who led the Broncos to the AFC Championship Game the year before) to Cutler in the middle of the 2006 season while they were still in the playoff race. Cutler went 2-3 down the stretch and the Broncos missed the playoffs.

The 2004 Philadelphia Eagles had to deal with the Terrell Owens experience in 2005, which derailed their season. The Eagles were riddled with injuries all season long, including significant ones to McNabb and Westbrook. I would say the 2004 Eagles are the best template for what we might see from the Chargers this year.

Not really sure what happened to the Kansas City Chiefs between 2003 and 2004 - perhaps a Kansas City fan can weigh in.

Kosar19
08-03-2010, 12:19 PM
I think this is why the NFL is so compelling and the most popular sport in America. Hope actually springs eternal. Every year is so unpredictable. last year me and a couple of guys from work printed out the schedules of a couple of teams that were the favorites of the guys we work with (Browns, Steelers, Packers, and Lions) and we picked the before the season started. When the season was over we looked at them again to see how far off we were....and we were.

GBPKS
01-06-2011, 10:03 AM
I wrote this article in August and now that the regular season has come to an end, I wanted to revisit and see how well it predicted.

Some interesting playoff facts from the last eight years (since the NFL switched to its current format of 4divisions and 2 wild card teams per conference):

The highest number of repeat playoff teams from the previous season is 7 (2002 and 2004) and the lowest is 4 (2003). The average and median are both about 5.5 returning playoff teams, meaning that at most you should expect to get 6 playoff teams back.

This year, New England, NY Jets, Indianapolis, Baltimore, Philadelphia, Green Bay, and New Orleans returned to the playoffs, so we got 7 - a tie for the highest number.

When you break it down further, roughly 4 of the 8 division champions return to the playoffs (3 on average via repeating as division champs with another 1 getting in as a wild card). The most division champions to ever return to the playoffs (in any form) has been 5 (2004 and 2006) and the lowest has been 3 (2003, 2008, 2009). That means that half of last year's division champions should expect to miss the playoffs. New England, Cincinnati, Indianapolis, San Diego, Dallas, Minnesota, New Orleans, and Arizona - look to your left, look to your right - either you or the team next to you will not be making the playoffs this season.

Ironically, even though we tied for the highest number of returning playoff teams, we tied for the lowest number of returning division champions to the playoffs. Only New England, Indianapolis, and New Orleans were division champions that returned to the playoffs this season.

Wild card teams don't get off the hook easy either. The highest number of wild card teams to return to the playoffs the previous year was 3 (last year) and the fewest was 0 (2006). The median is 2, which similar to the division winners is 50%. That means the Jets, Ravens, Packers, and Eagles - half of you are going home.

Simple math dictates that we just hit a new record. All four of last year's wild card teams returned to the playoffs this year, and interestingly three of the four are wild cards once again.

In every year since 2003, at least one team that finished 5-11 or worse the previous season has made the playoffs. From 2004 through 2008, there were at least 2 5-11 or worse teams that made the playoffs. That's good news for the fans of the Browns, Chiefs, Redskins, Seahawks, Lions, and Rams. Historically, however, the median and average record for the worst team from the previous season to make the playoffs was 4-12, so Bucs, Lions and Rams fans shouldn't get their hopes up just yet.

This year, we had two 5-11 or worse teams make the playoffs - the Chiefs and the Seahawks.

On the flip side, with the exception of last year, at least one playoff team (and on average two) from the previous season has had the wheels come off the following year, going 5-11 or worse (most years the worst record from a prior year playoff team is 4-12). Who are the candidates to completely fall apart this season? The Cardinals without Kurt Warner? The Eagles without Donovan McNabb?

We had a lot of playoff teams collapse this year, and both the Arizona Cardinals and Cincinnati Bengals fit the bill of going 5-11 or worse, with the Bengals hitting the 4-12 mark.

The NFC East has had at least one repeat team in the playoffs every year in this small sample except 2005, which is good news for the Cowboys or the Eagles. Conversely, the NFC South has not had a repeat playoff participant since the current format, which is bad news for New Orleans. The AFC North has only had one repeat champion during this timeframe, the 2008 Steelers. That does not bode well for the Cincinnati Bengals.

2 out of 3 ain't bad. The NFC East did get their repeat team in the Eagles, but the NFC South got its first repeat team in the New Orleans Saints. The AFC North trend continued as Pittsburgh regained the division crown.

The average prior season record of playoff teams is roughly 9-7, which is also what playoff teams tend to average the year after they make the playoffs.

The average 2009 record of this year's playoff teams was 9.25 wins, fitting the 9-7 metric nicely. The 2010 record of last year's playoff teams averaged exactly 9-7.

Since 2003, here are how playoff teams have done the following season based on record:

14 Wins or Greater: Average 11.5 Wins the following season, make the playoffs 83% of the time (16-0 New England was the only exception). This year, Indianapolis falls in this bucket.

Indianapolis made the playoffs, with a 10-6 record.

13 Wins: Average 7.8 Wins the following season, make the playoffs 20% of the time. This year, New Orleans and San Diego fall in this bucket.

New Orleans made the playoffs, San Diego did not - they averaged 10 wins.

12 Wins: Average 10.4 Wins the following season, make the playoffs 56% of the time. This year, Minnesota falls in this bucket.

Minnesota missed the playoffs with a 6-10 record

11 Wins: Average 7.9 Wins the following season, make the playoffs only 33% of the time. This year, Dallas, Green Bay, and Philadelphia fall into this precarious bucket.

Green Bay bucked the odds by winning its last game and getting into the playoffs. The win average here was 8.7

10 Wins: Average 8.3 Wins the following season, make the playoffs 45.5% of the time. This year, New England, Cincinnati, and Arizona fall into this bucket.

Only New England made the playoffs out of this bucket, but even their 14 win season couldn't help a 7.7 win average from these three teams.

9 Wins: Average 8.5 Wins the following season, make the playoffs 45.5% of the time. This year, either the Jets or Ravens will be going to the playoffs, and the other will be going home.

Turns out both made it, with a robust 11.5 win average.

8 Wins: Average 9.5 Wins the following season, make the playoffs 50% of the time. Small sample size (considering it is pretty rare for an 8-8 team to make the playoffs), nobody from last season fits this bill.

Next year, we get our first data point on what a 7-9 team does after making the playoffs. Way to go, Seattle.

So, based on these statistics, what can we expect from the 2010 Playoff picture:

* 3 repeat division champions, plus another getting in via wild card

We only had 2 repeat division champions, plus a third getting in via wild card

* 2 wild card teams making it back to the playoffs

All four wild card teams returned to the playoffs

* 2 4-12 or 5-11 teams making the playoffs

Check.

* A lot of fan bases with big expectations ending up disappointed

Check.

Polishguy00
01-06-2011, 10:37 AM
Just great stuff. This is the NFL Playoff Manifesto. I will be printing out the original article.

Andy Freeland
01-06-2011, 01:00 PM
Nice work GBPKS. You have this down to a science. We can use your predictions instead of playing the season, which might come in handy next year.

sportman
01-06-2011, 01:53 PM
Excellent original post, I'm glad you revisited it!

msclemons
01-06-2011, 02:58 PM
I loved this thread in pre-season and I still love it today. Nice breakdown comparing the trends to 2010 actual performance.

As Andy said, we might have to use this in lieu of games next year.

GBPKS
01-06-2011, 03:45 PM
Looking ahead to next year...

14 Wins: New England
13 Wins: Atlanta
12 Wins: Pittsburgh, Baltimore
11 Wins: Chicago, New Orleans, NY Jets
10 Wins: Philadelphia, Green Bay, Kansas City, Indianapolis
7 Wins: Seattle

5-11 Teams: Cleveland, Arizona
4-12 Teams: Denver, Buffalo, Cincinnati

Andy Freeland
01-06-2011, 04:22 PM
Looking ahead to next year...

14 Wins: New England
13 Wins: Atlanta
12 Wins: Pittsburgh, Baltimore
11 Wins: Chicago, New Orleans, NY Jets
10 Wins: Philadelphia, Green Bay, Kansas City, Indianapolis
7 Wins: Seattle

5-11 Teams: Cleveland, Arizona
4-12 Teams: Denver, Buffalo, Cincinnati

Clear room on those Browns and Bills bandwagons.

Pruitt
01-06-2011, 04:59 PM
Clear room on those Browns and Bills bandwagons.


I'm already in business class baby!!

GBPKS
09-06-2011, 10:25 AM
It's been a while since I posted on this board, but I did want to re-visit the research I did last year to see how it can apply to predicting the 2011 regular season.

Last year, we tied the high for returning playoff teams (7), and if we believe anything about reversion to the mean it's hard to imagine that happening again, so I'll again be predicting the more typical average of 6. It will be interesting to see the effects of the lockout, though - if we get an abnormally high repeat number of playoff teams it would be an interesting data point.

Interestingly, though, we only had 3 division champions get back in the playoffs last year. The typical is 4 - so out of NE, Pittsburgh, Indianapolis, KC, Philadelphia, Chicago, Atlanta, and Seattle - half are going home. This season it's pretty tempting to just knock out Indianapolis, Kansas City, Chicago, and Seattle and call it a day.

Last year something brand new happened - we had all four wild card teams get back in. Not likely to happen again - the typical is half - so NY Jets, Baltimore, Green Bay, and New Orleans - the bulls-eye is on you.

Then we have the 5-11 or 4-12 teams - two of them are going to the playoffs, if history is any guide. Cleveland, Arizona, Denver, Buffalo, Cincinnati - who's it going to be? Arizona is certainly tempting given the awful division and their hopefully stabilized QB situation, but the other four names are pretty daunting. Can John Fox pull a rabbit out of his hat in Denver? Can Cleveland or Cincinnati take advantage of playing the NFC West and steal a wild card spot?

On the flip side, which 2 playoff teams are going to completely implode? Last year it was Arizona and Cincinnati. This year is it Chicago? It's certainly not a stretch for 7-9 Seattle to get back to the 5-11 mark. What about the Colts if Peyton Manning has an extended absence?

The NFC East repeat playoff participant streak is intact - so Philadelphia fans have more reasons to smile. The NFC South trend got bucked last year - can New Orleans make it three in a row? And the difficulty of repeating in the AFC North is good news for Ravens fans and bad news for Steelers fans...

Now, by wins:

14: 14 win teams continue to make the playoffs consistently, so you can pencil the Patriots in.

13: We split on 13 win teams last year, as New Orleans made it and San Diego did it. History has been bad for 13-win teams, so the Falcons are on the bubble - especially when you consider the history of the NFC South in sending repeat teams to the playoffs.

12: 12 win teams are slightly better than 50/50, and Minnesota failed to make it last year. Given the AFC North trend, that's good news for Baltimore and more potentially bad news for Pittsburgh.

11: 11 win teams bucked the trend a little bit last year, as 2 of 3 teams made it versus a 33% historical average. This year, there are three teams in the mix - Chicago, New Orleans, and the Jets. Again, I think everyone has the Bears penciled in to fall out of the playoff mix, but Rex Ryan guaranteed another Super Bowl and may have bitten off more than he can chew.

10: Historically slightly less than half - this year there are four teams in here - Philly, GB, Indy, and the Chiefs. I think most people would write off the latter two at this point.

Then there's Seattle, who we don't have any historical data on but I think we can safely write them out for now.

So who are our six returning playoffs teams?

Looks good for New England, Philadelphia, and Baltimore. My personal biases lead me to keep in Green Bay and New Orleans. Since we need another divisional champion in here, it's a coin flip for me between the Steelers and the Falcons, and given the historical difficulties of 13-win teams and the NFC South in general, I'll cut Atlanta and keep Pittsburgh.

So, the playoff picture rounds into shape:

AFC East: New England
AFC North: Baltimore
AFC South: ? - could this finally be the year for the Texans
AFC West: San Diego (seems like a safe bet to get back)
AFC Wild Card: Pittsburgh
AFC Wild Card: Cleveland (I'll give them the edge based on their relatively easy schedule)

NFC East: Philadelphia
NFC North: Green Bay
NFC South: New Orleans
NFC West: Arizona
Wild Card: Dallas
Wild Card: ? - could this be the year the Lions return to the playoffs

mikesteelnation1
09-07-2011, 04:16 AM
Nice in depth prognostication. Tons of work you did to put that out there. All sounds good to me, but Pittsburgh wins the north. These are not cowhers steelers. Tomlin is a more intuitive coach, he takes into account each player and coaches them accordingly. He has a way better future after football at broadcasting, than cowher. tomlins pressers are so much better. He's so much better in front of a camera. If you didn't know better, you'd swear he was omar epps twin and that's where he gets it from.. every week he plays it close to his vest, but he still says what he feels. Lots of quotable statements every week...

GBPKS
09-08-2011, 02:15 PM
Tomlin's Steelers failed to make the playoffs the year after winning the Super Bowl...

mikesteelnation1
09-10-2011, 04:28 AM
Tomlin's Steelers failed to make the playoffs the year after winning the Super Bowl...

Good thing they didn't win the superbowl this time then huh? These steelers never lost the big game, after winning two.. your statistical analysis is spot on, I won't argue. However it removes what happened outside that vacuum. And for the most part ill stipulate what you've posted. The clear miss for me is the afc north pick and the browns as a wildcard. The stats don't do the current match UPS justice. The ravens have 2 inexperienced corners, an inexperienced safety, and reed has a pinched nerve. That doesnt bode well ... Add to that bens pure dominance of the ravens and flacco in specific and it paints a hugely different picture. Add to that bmore has an offense line that hasn't taken a single snap together.. saying the ravens are the favorite is downright silly. The browns won't win 10, which is almost necessary to gain a playoff berth in the afc. The jets gain that sans the colts in the mix pushing Houston down.

GBPKS
12-29-2011, 11:04 AM
Looking ahead to next year...

14 Wins: New England
13 Wins: Atlanta
12 Wins: Pittsburgh, Baltimore
11 Wins: Chicago, New Orleans, NY Jets
10 Wins: Philadelphia, Green Bay, Kansas City, Indianapolis
7 Wins: Seattle

5-11 Teams: Cleveland, Arizona
4-12 Teams: Denver, Buffalo, Cincinnati

Looks like we're going to have exactly six repeat playoff teams last year, with New England and perhaps Pittsburgh as the only repeat division winners.

Denver and Cincinnati need to make the playoffs to continue the streak of multiple teams with records of 5-11 or worse making the playoffs the following season.

GBPKS
08-30-2012, 10:51 AM
Since 2003, here are how playoff teams have done the following season based on record:

14 Wins or Greater: Average 11.5 Wins the following season, make the playoffs 83% of the time (16-0 New England was the only exception). This year, Indianapolis falls in this bucket.

13 Wins: Average 7.8 Wins the following season, make the playoffs 20% of the time. This year, New Orleans and San Diego fall in this bucket.

12 Wins: Average 10.4 Wins the following season, make the playoffs 56% of the time. This year, Minnesota falls in this bucket.

11 Wins: Average 7.9 Wins the following season, make the playoffs only 33% of the time. This year, Dallas, Green Bay, and Philadelphia fall into this precarious bucket.

10 Wins: Average 8.3 Wins the following season, make the playoffs 45.5% of the time. This year, New England, Cincinnati, and Arizona fall into this bucket.

9 Wins: Average 8.5 Wins the following season, make the playoffs 45.5% of the time. This year, either the Jets or Ravens will be going to the playoffs, and the other will be going home.

8 Wins: Average 9.5 Wins the following season, make the playoffs 50% of the time. Small sample size (considering it is pretty rare for an 8-8 team to make the playoffs), nobody from last season fits this bill.

So, based on these statistics, what can we expect from the 2010 Playoff picture:

* 3 repeat division champions, plus another getting in via wild card
* 2 wild card teams making it back to the playoffs
* 2 4-12 or 5-11 teams making the playoffs
* A lot of fan bases with big expectations ending up disappointed

This is what I had posted before the 2010 season, and it has generally held up pretty well...

Let's see how it applies to the 2012 season

15 wins: Green Bay - should make the playoffs

13 wins: We have three teams here - New England, New Orleans, and San Francisco. We could see the return of the 13-win curse this year as New Orleans could have their problems with Sean Payton, and San Francisco might regress to the mean a little bit.

12 wins: Baltimore and Pittsburgh - will this be the year that one of these two teams fails to make the playoffs?

10 wins: Detroit, Atlanta, Houston - looks like a mixed bag here - of the three, I would have the least faith in Detroit making it back.

9 wins: Giants, Bengals - would have to probably favor the Giants getting back in over the Bengals

8 wins: Broncos - the Peyton Manning acquisition perhaps gives the Broncos a better than average shot to get back.

So, six returning playoff teams - four of which are division champions (three of which repeat), and two of which were wild cards. If we were doing a draft, I would say that Atlanta and Pittsburgh were the two wild card teams I could see making it back to the playoffs. Of the division champs, you have to like New England, Green Bay, Baltimore, and then you have to choose between Houston, New Orleans, San Francisco, the Giants, and Denver. I'll make that decision in a minute.

There's not a lot to choose from on the other end of the spectrum - two teams 5-11 or worse making their way to the playoffs. Our contenders this year:
- Washington
- Tampa Bay
- Cleveland
- Jacksonville

Again, the effect seems to stop at 4-12, so that leaves out teams like St. Louis and Indianapolis.

After reviewing the 4-12 and 5-11 teams likely to make the leap, I'm scared for New Orleans, Houston, and the Giants, and I'm not sold on Denver, so let's put the Niners back in the playoffs given the weakness of their division.

NFC East: Philadelphia - new
NFC North: Chicago - new
NFC South: Atlanta - new division champ
NFC West: San Francisco
NFC Wild Card: Green Bay
NFC Wild Card: Washington

AFC East: New England
AFC North: Baltimore
AFC South: Jacksonville
AFC West: Kansas City
AFC Wild Card: Pittsburgh
AFC Wild Card: Buffalo

BobbyJ
08-30-2012, 11:32 AM
Nice work, I like the layout of the teams you have predicting to go to the playoffs. Although I think the AFC North will repeat in sending all but the Browns (I just shed a tear) to the playoffs, with the Steelers and Bungles getting the Wildcards. I don't think Buffalo will make the cut. Also how do you not have Houston winning the division? And there's no way Jacksonville gets in.

DaBearsFan
08-30-2012, 11:56 AM
A classic that always needs to be reposted. I forgot about the 5-11/4-12 rule and have adjusted my expected playoff predictions to adjust (though, to break the trend, I see only one team from that list making it, though I have a couple of 6 and 7 win teams making the playoffs). This also confirmed my thinking of keeping both San Francisco and New Orleans out of the playoffs; I have a hard time seeing New England not making the playoffs unless Brady gets hurt.

GBPKS
08-30-2012, 01:40 PM
Nice work, I like the layout of the teams you have predicting to go to the playoffs. Although I think the AFC North will repeat in sending all but the Browns (I just shed a tear) to the playoffs, with the Steelers and Bungles getting the Wildcards. I don't think Buffalo will make the cut. Also how do you not have Houston winning the division? And there's no way Jacksonville gets in.

Because stuff always happens - the league is just too unpredictable, and it's not like Houston has a sustained track record of success. Last year was the first year they lived up to expectations. Now they've lost Mario Williams, they got worse on the OLine, Andre Johnson is a year older, they have a first place schedule...

The Jags, I don't know - prior to last year they've generally been an 8-win team - they have a new coach, Blaine Gabbert might improve from Year 1 to Year 2, they've got an upgraded WR corps... maybe they take advantage of an easy schedule and surprise people...

BobbyJ
08-30-2012, 01:54 PM
Because stuff always happens - the league is just too unpredictable, and it's not like Houston has a sustained track record of success. Last year was the first year they lived up to expectations. Now they've lost Mario Williams, they got worse on the OLine, Andre Johnson is a year older, they have a first place schedule...

The Jags, I don't know - prior to last year they've generally been an 8-win team - they have a new coach, Blaine Gabbert might improve from Year 1 to Year 2, they've got an upgraded WR corps... maybe they take advantage of an easy schedule and surprise people...

Sure it's all debatable and I'll give Houston could regress, but I just can't and I repeat CAN'T sign off on a team that just decided to sign a four year contract with those Bloody Brits!!! May they endure the same shame, anguish, pain and suffering for the next 12 years just as my beloved Browns have since they came back. Good Luck and God Speed Jacksonville, because your going to need it.