23 Nov 2005
"It is relatively common for football teams to find themselves down by two touchdowns late in the game. If they score a first touchdown then coaching folklore says that the team should go for the extra point at that time. In this paper I will show that this strategy, which appears to be universally used in both the NFL and the NCAA, is incorrect, and that going for the two-point conversion after the first touchdown is nearly always significantly better."
The one problem here is that the author is way off on the percentage of extra points missed in the NFL. It isn't six percent, it's one percent. This makes the chances of winning with a "kick extra points" strategy 49.2%, not 45.5%. (You'll understand what I'm talking about after you read this.)
31 comments, Last at 24 Nov 2005, 11:18pm by Felton
This year's update to the playoff drive stats show that the football gods may have been on Peyton Manning's side this time. Also: Cam Newton and Alex Smith enter the mix, and why we should be comparing Andrew Luck to Dan Marino.