Football Outsiders Staff Writer Mike Tanier

Mike Tanier

Senior Analyst
Since 2004
New Jersey

MIKE TANIER has been writing Football Outsiders Almanac chapters for so long that he feels like Ringo making yet another special guest appearance during a Paul McCartney show. Mike recently wrapped up a six-year run as the NFL Lead Columnist for Bleacher Report; his popular Monday Morning Digest feature will presumably be replaced by TikTok videos, cartoon GIFs of Lamar Jackson, and long apologies. A father of two with almost 20 years of experience as an NFL writer, Mike is proof positive that we all get by with a little help from our friends. You can find his work at, Pro Football Network, the New York Times, and here at Football Outsiders.

Mike Tanier's Archive


Four Downs: AFC West

Journey out west to the division that defense forgot. Oakland adds one of the game's best receivers but will he bring Geritol for the defensive line? Is Arrowhead Stadium now the Coors Field of the NFL, scaring off defensive free agents? Plus, Denver joins the march to the 3-4, and finally, the People's Champion has come back... to San Diego?!?! Mike Tanier whips through the AFC West in the latest edition of Four Downs.

Feb 24, 2005

Four Downs: NFC West

In the first edition of our new offseason feature, Four Downs, Mike Tanier takes a team-by-team look at the NFC West through the eyes of Football Outsiders, and examines the key questions facing each club. Four Downs will be regular feature on Tuesdays and Thursdays throughout the offseason.

Feb 10, 2005

Rest Stopped: The 1996 Denver Broncos

They clinched home field advantage with weeks to spare. But when an offensive superstar was hurt in the clinching game, coaches had to decide whether to bench regulars and risk losing their competitive edge, or let the starters play in the waning weeks and risk injury. Do the 1996 Denver Broncos foretell playoff failure for the 2004 Philadelphia Eagles? Michael Tanier revisits those long ago days when John Elway was just a guy with great stats who couldn't win the big one.

Jan 11, 2005

Marino vs. Manning

There's a lot of talk out there about the Peyton Manning breaking the passing touchdown record, but very little talk about how Dan Marino set it. Michael Tanier compares the two seasons to find out if Manning is guilty of padding his stats -- or if Marino was guilty of padding his. Or neither.

Dec 22, 2004

Skin of the Teeth: The Worst Playoff Teams Ever

The term "playoff race" is a bit of a misnomer when every team in the NFC seems to be running away from the playoffs. We could have two 8-8 teams in the playoffs this season, maybe even a 7-9 team. Michael Tanier looks at the worst teams to ever make the postseason, and what the histories of those teams say about the feeble NFC playoff contenders of 2004.

Dec 07, 2004