Bengals Climb Past Dolphins with Titans Win

Bengals CB Cam Taylor-Britt
Bengals CB Cam Taylor-Britt
Photo: USA Today Sports Images

NFL Week 12 - Which teams moved up and down on the top of the DVOA table this week? The answer depends if you're looking at DVOA rating or DVOA ranking.

As Mike Tanier explained in his DVOA preview article yesterday, available to FO+ subscribers, this is how we ended up with the paradox where the Miami Dolphins easily beat the Houston Texans but actually dropped one spot from seventh to eighth in DVOA. Their rating went up from 12.6% to 14.8%, but their ranking dropped because another team happened to go up more: the Cincinnati Bengals, who moved from 10th to sixth after beating a better opponent (Tennessee) than the Dolphins.

(Houston Texans aside: Houston had -86.3% offensive DVOA in this game, the second-lowest individual offensive game this season behind only Indianapolis getting destroyed by Jacksonville back in Week 2. It would have been worse if Miami didn't relax with a big lead, as Houston had -181.6% offensive DVOA and 1.3 yards per play before halftime. Kyle Allen is not the answer.)

Returning to a discussion of good teams, Baltimore's DVOA stayed exactly the same after their close loss to Jacksonville but the Ravens got to move up a spot from third to second because the Dallas Cowboys fell after a close Thanksgiving win over the New York Giants. The Cowboys dropped from 29.1% to 26.0% this week and from second to fourth behind both Baltimore and Philadelphia.

There were some bigger moves further down on the table. The New York Jets climbed from 13th to ninth after getting a more than competent offensive performance from Mike White against the Chicago Bears. Even after adjusting for the poor Chicago defense, currently 31st in the NFL by DVOA, the Jets had the best offensive performance any team this week and their best offensive performance of the year. That moves their offense up to 18th overall to go with a defense that now ranks fourth behind only Dallas, New England, and Buffalo.

Seattle dropped from eighth to 12th this week after losing to Las Vegas in overtime. The Raiders had the higher DVOA for the game (13.0% to -13.4%) although the Post-Game Win Expectancy formula has the game as a 50/50 result. The Raiders move up three spots from 26th to 23rd.

The two teams that won this week on last-second two-point conversions also won with reverse PGWE. The Jaguars had only 13% PGWE against the Ravens, although they still move up slightly in DVOA. The Chargers had 26% PGWE against the Cardinals and drop two spots to 24th in DVOA, making them the lowest team with a winning record this season.

Speaking of winning teams with low DVOA, The Minnesota Vikings had a slightly higher DVOA than New England for their Thanksgiving night win, 2.4% to -0.6%. What can I say, running into the kicker penalties don't count in our ratings. The Vikings moved up slightly in DVOA and now rank 22nd. They are the first team to ever have a negative DVOA with a 9-2 record, more than 10 percentage points lower than any other 9-2 team since 1981. 

Fun with Divisions

In our latest playoff odds simulation, the entire NFC South has a losing record 34% of the time.

The entire NFC East has a winning record 53% of the time, and the entire division makes the playoffs 17% of the time.

The entire AFC East has a winning record 60% of the time, and the entire division makes the playoffs 15% of the time. That 60% mark is impressive considering that the four AFC East teams rank second, fourth, fifth, and sixth in strength of remaining schedule. Primarily this comes from playing each other, since all four AFC East teams are now ranked 11th or higher in DVOA.

Has any division ever put all four teams in the top 10 of DVOA since we went to the 32-team setup in 2002? Actually, yes, this happened just last year! The 2021 NFC West had all four teams in the top 10 with three teams making the playoffs and then Seattle ranking higher in DVOA than their 7-10 record suggested. The division ended up with the 12-5 Rams (5), 10-7 49ers (6), 7-10 Seahawks (9), and 11-6 Cardinals (10). This was the second division to put all teams in the top 10. The other was the 2016 NFC East, with the 13-3 Cowboys (2), 7-9 Eagles (6), 11-5 Giants (8), and 8-7-1 Redskins (9). That high DVOA for the Eagles made more sense when the team won the Super Bowl the following season. 

How Good is Kansas City Anyway?

I wanted to say a little bit about Kansas City this week because it keeps standing out that DVOA only has the Chiefs ranked fifth in the NFL. This stands in contrast to other advanced metrics around the Internet, most of which are based on expected points added (EPA) models. Pro Football Reference's Simple Ratings System is an exception, based on just points scored and allowed, and it has the Buffalo Bills way ahead of the rest of the AFC. But most models have the Chiefs on top.

The question here is figuring out just how good the Kansas City offense is and how good it will be going forward. I'll look here at the EPA model from NFLfastR, displayed on the site. Nobody is arguing about whether the Chiefs are the best offense in the league, but the question is just how far ahead they are. DVOA has the Chiefs only slightly ahead of the Miami Dolphins in the second spot. EPA has the Chiefs way, way ahead of the rest of the league. The gap in EPA per play between the Chiefs and the No. 2 Bills is larger than the gap between the Bills and the No. 13 Raiders. Other EPA models such as TruMedia's have an even larger gap between the Chiefs and everybody else.

Looking closer, it appears that this gap between DVOA and EPA is related almost entirely to third downs, in particular passes on third downs. (I mean just third downs here, not including fourth downs.) Kansas City is averaging 10.3 net yards per pass on third downs compared to an NFL average of 5.8. No other team is above 8.0 net yards on third downs. So the Chiefs are averaging 0.66 EPA per play on third-down dropbacks with the Bengals second at 0.47. Yet because of the way DVOA scores certain long plays, the Chiefs aren't even on top of DVOA for third-down passing! They rank third behind Miami and Cincinnati. Without opponent adjustments, they would be second behind the Dolphins.

The difference also seems to come from games in the first few weeks of the year, not the last month and a half. You may remember that in Week 7 against San Francisco, the Chiefs had one of the best offensive performances in DVOA history. In Weeks 7-12, the Chiefs actually come out more impressive by DVOA than by EPA/play. The Chiefs have 39.1% DVOA for that period compared to 29.7% for the Dolphins and 27.0% for the Bengals. Compare this to EPA/play, where the Chiefs are at 0.209 for Weeks 7-12 and the Bengals are right behind at 0.202.

However, in Weeks 1-6, EPA/play has the Chiefs much higher than DVOA. The Chiefs led the league with 0.185 EPA/play during the first six weeks, ahead of the Bills at 0.173 with no other team above 0.11. Compare this to DVOA, where the Chiefs rank only fourth for Weeks 1-6 behind Buffalo, Baltimore, and Miami. (Without opponent adjustments, the Chiefs would be second in Weeks 1-6. That's a better comparison for EPA since EPA does not have opponent adjustments. Still, the Chiefs and Bills in Weeks 1-6 were much closer to the rest of the league in DVOA than they were in EPA.)

I could say we'll have to see which metric is correct but the honest truth is that what happens the rest of the season doesn't really prove either metric correct. It would not be a surprise to see the No. 1 team in EPA lose in the playoffs. It happens plenty! It also would not be a surprise to see the No. 5 team in DVOA win the Super Bowl. It happened just last year! So we won't prove anything. But the difference between the metrics is interesting, and I'll continue to tweak DVOA in the future to make it more predictive. 

* * * * *

Football Outsiders playoff odds, snap counts, and the FO+ database are now all updated through Week 12.

A reminder that all our free stats pages, including DVOA and player position stats, require registration to view. This is not a paywall*! You only need to register (for free) and then log in to the site to view these pages. While you're at it, you can get a seven-day trial of FO+ and check out the FO+ features like a deeper DVOA database, weekly fantasy projections, fantasy football research tools, Derrik Klassen's All-32 game preview column, and picks against the spread (now including projected totals for over/unders).

*New: It's not a paywall, except on Mondays! We now post DVOA data on Monday instead of waiting until Tuesday as in the past. If you want to see data from the current season on Monday, including all of Sunday's games, you will need to be an FO+ subscriber. On Tuesday morning when we post the update with Monday Night Football added in, all of the free stats pages become free again. The exception is snap counts, which are available to everyone Monday.

* * * * *

This is the Football Outsiders Top 16 through 12 weeks of 2022, measured by our proprietary Defense-adjusted Value Over Average (DVOA) system that breaks down every single play and compares a team's performance to the league average based on situation in order to determine value over average (explained further here). Click here for the full table.

OFFENSE and DEFENSE DVOA are adjusted for opponent and performance indoors and consider all fumbles, kept or lost, as equal value. SPECIAL TEAMS DVOA is adjusted for type of stadium (warm, cold, dome, Denver) and week of season. As always, positive numbers represent more points so DEFENSE is better when it is NEGATIVE.

WEIGHTED DVOA represents an attempt to figure out how a team is playing right now, as opposed to over the season as a whole, by making recent games more important than earlier games.

To save people some time, please use the following format for all complaints:

<team> is clearly ranked <too high/too low> because <reason unrelated to DVOA>. <subjective ranking system> is way better than this. <unrelated team-supporting or -denigrating comment, preferably with poor spelling and/or chat-acceptable spelling>

1 BUF 32.2% 1 29.4% 1 8-3 14.0% 6 -14.0% 3 4.1% 3
2 BAL 28.4% 3 26.6% 4 7-4 14.3% 5 -8.4% 9 5.7% 1
3 PHI 26.9% 4 26.8% 3 10-1 18.1% 3 -10.5% 6 -1.7% 24
4 DAL 26.0% 2 27.4% 2 8-3 4.2% 15 -17.8% 1 4.0% 4
5 KC 21.4% 5 24.6% 5 9-2 25.2% 1 3.8% 18 0.0% 14
6 CIN 16.6% 10 18.3% 7 7-4 12.3% 7 -5.6% 12 -1.3% 22
7 SF 16.6% 6 19.4% 6 7-4 6.5% 10 -11.3% 5 -1.2% 21
8 MIA 14.8% 7 15.9% 8 8-3 22.9% 2 2.9% 17 -5.2% 31
9 NYJ 11.7% 13 13.7% 9 7-4 -0.6% 18 -13.3% 4 -1.0% 17
10 TB 10.5% 9 7.3% 12 5-6 1.4% 17 -10.1% 7 -1.0% 19
11 NE 10.0% 11 11.3% 10 6-5 -9.3% 25 -17.8% 2 1.6% 9
12 SEA 8.1% 8 9.3% 11 6-5 8.6% 8 4.2% 19 3.8% 5
13 TEN 4.5% 12 6.9% 13 7-4 -1.3% 19 -6.1% 10 -0.3% 15
14 CLE 2.7% 15 3.6% 14 4-7 15.8% 4 11.3% 29 -1.8% 25
15 GB 1.0% 14 1.1% 16 4-8 8.3% 9 4.5% 21 -2.8% 30
16 DET -0.9% 16 0.3% 17 4-7 5.6% 12 6.9% 24 0.5% 13


97 comments, Last at 03 Dec 2022, 5:14pm

#1 by Moridin // Nov 29, 2022 - 2:19pm

Well, i will say as a fan of the Vikings, its fun to look backwards at a team continually defying the odds, but it certainly lot of anxiety on game day about waiting for the wheels to come off (Dallas game) or just a more minor 4Q regression (losing on a GWD instead of pulling one out).

Points: 0

#4 by Aaron Schatz // Nov 29, 2022 - 3:04pm

I wonder sometimes how it feels to be a fan of a team that's pulling wins out of such close situations over and over. The closest thing to me was the 2001 Patriots but that was before I did DVOA and Football Outsiders so I didn't realize at the time that they were not as good as their record (except for the Super Bowl victory, we all knew what a huge upset that was).

Points: 0

#5 by Joey-Harringto… // Nov 29, 2022 - 3:15pm

I kind of had this experience watching the 2016 Lions.  They pulled out a bunch of close wins (that was the year Stafford had eight 4Q comebacks) to start out 9-4, but had a negative DVOA, ranked in the 20s.  My brain knew the bottom was going to fall out (especially since their last 3 games were against tough teams), but my heart kept saying, "hey, maybe they'll improve!".  

Sure enough, my brain was correct, they lost their last 3 games handily, backed into the playoffs at 9-7, and got creamed in the Wildcard round.

Luckily for the Vikings, there's pretty much no chance anyone in the division catches them, so they'll at least get their first playoff game at home.

Points: 2

#15 by LionInAZ // Nov 29, 2022 - 5:57pm

That wild card loss was a travesty of officiating. For me the worst was 2007, when they started out 6-2 and collapsed down the stretch with Kitna.

Points: 1

#31 by Joey-Harringto… // Nov 30, 2022 - 9:11am

In 2007, there was no real concept of analytics (at least not in wide circulation), and I was too naive to understand what a house of cards that first half record was.  In retrospect, the fact that 5 of their six wins were squeakers against mediocre/bad teams, and their two losses were horrific blowouts against the only good teams they faced, should have clued me in.

Also, I should not have been surprised that Mike Martz trying to run the GSHOT offense with Jon Kitna, Kevin Jones, and Mike Furrey instead of Warner, Faulk, and Holt, ended up not working.

Points: 0

#34 by Aaron Brooks G… // Nov 30, 2022 - 9:29am

I had totally forgotten Martz had been an OC for the Lions.

Points: 0

#61 by Joey-Harringto… // Nov 30, 2022 - 1:57pm

Having failed to prove that he could make Jon Kitna as productive as Kurt Warner, he moved on to failing to do that with J.T. O'Sullivan, and then later Jay Cutler.

Points: 0

#12 by KnotMe // Nov 29, 2022 - 5:39pm

It's better than being a fan of a team that loses a bunch of close situations over and over, that is just infuriating. 

Points: 0

#13 by Aaron Brooks G… // Nov 29, 2022 - 5:44pm

The worst part is when the delinquent owner moves upstate and rents out the Rams' attic.

Points: 0

#17 by jheidelberg // Nov 29, 2022 - 6:25pm

That is called this years Ravens.  DVOA loves them, they have lost games with PGWE of 99 and 83.

To top it off the are the third team in NFL history to have a 2 score lead in their first 11 games.  The other two teams went 11-0.

Also, the team blew a 5th second half 2 score lead only to beat CIN on a last second FG, and had a 6th opportunity, but Kevin Stefanski thought it better to try a 56 yard FG than go for 4th and 6, then after a penalty, move the holder up a yard and try a 60 yard FG instead of trying 4th and 11 

DVOA says love the Ravens, so I ll stay analytical and stay the course.  


Points: 5

#97 by JimZipCode // Dec 03, 2022 - 5:14pm

DVOA says love the Ravens, so I ll stay analytical and stay the course.  

My suspicion is that, since Rashod Bateman went down, the Ravens don't have enough at the top end of their passing-game-weapons to keep up with Chiefs/Bills/Phins in a playoff game.


Harbs has done a pretty credible job holding it all together while waiting for reinforcements to come back.  Tyus Bowser returned a couple weeks ago; Gus Edwards & DeSean Jackson this past game; JK Dobbins returned to practice this week (might not be game-ready); Marcus Williams is on deck.  So is Isaiah Likely.  Maybe even David Ojabo will start getting snaps.

It is possible that a fully-healthy Ravens roster (minus Bateman) might emerge over the last few weeks of the season.  And that team could be really, really dangerous.  This whole season might go down a Waiting-For-Godot drain, where the best version of that team never appears.  But we Ravens fans have to keep holding on to the maybe, because they really could be something.

Points: 0

#19 by jmaron // Nov 29, 2022 - 6:52pm

This isn't the first rodeo of this type for a Viking fan, as you see from your lists of over achieving good record bad DVOA teams, littered with Viking teams (97, 2000) and it ends with a big loss. So I fully expect a rather lopsided defeat in the playoffs to end the season. 

Points: 1

#21 by Will Allen // Nov 29, 2022 - 7:52pm

Not the same thing, but the 2000 Vikings were in line for a number 1 seed and HFA, until quite late in the season, and I hated watching them, because they were what I really dislike about any football team; soft on defense, not really physical on the offensive line, and getting by with big pass plays to a great wide receiver. Maybe things will change in the last 6 games, but that's not the way to bet, and I have the same feeling about this team. Give me teams like the Vikings from 2006-2008 anytime; doomed by poor quarterbacking and mediocre receiving, maybe not even making the playoffs, but extremely physical on both lines of scrimmage. 

Points: 1

#23 by theslothook // Nov 29, 2022 - 8:22pm

Sad as it is, I have an easier time believing this soft Vikings team has a better chance at the tourney than those teams do. Blame the NFL for making sure the pass game is a necessary and halfway to almost sufficient condition(acknowledging that there are some rare cases to the exception). 

Would also add. The 2009 Vikings I will remember fondly. Their o line was utter crap and I believe their secondary sucked as well, but they milked everything they could out of that pass rush and their pass game; both of which were sublime. As flawed teams go, they were pretty much a blueprint of how to be flawed if you have to field flawed units.  

One of the rare times where AP was probably an overall hinderance considering how they were built. 


Revisiting memory lane. I know, for whatever reasons, Jared Allen is viewed as a second rate candidate and unthinkably!!!! Kevin Williams is almost an afterthought, but if you need more evidence of their hall of fame worthiness, just look at that 2009 season. I mean, Ray Edwards owes most of his contract to those two guys + Pat Williams. 

Points: 1

#26 by Will Allen // Nov 29, 2022 - 11:57pm

The 2009 oline featured a still very good Steve Hutchinson, and a still interested Bryant Mckinnie, along with an above average Phil Loadholt. Yes, John Sullivan was a real step down from Matt Birk, and Anthony Herrerra was JAG, but the oline was not utter crap. The reason Favre had a great year at age 40, with below average receiving, was due to defenses still filling the box to stop Adrian Peterson, and Favre would be the first to say it.

Yes, Ray Edwards had a career on the coat tails of two guys who belong in the HoF, and one other in the Hall of Very Good.


Points: 1

#41 by theslothook // Nov 30, 2022 - 11:57am

I thought McKinney was not very good and well John Sullivan and Phil loadholt both became good to pretty good players, those were their first year starting. 

Ironically I had a pretty strong impression about their receivers that year. I know Sidney Rice is largely unknown, but he had an amazing season in 09 and Bernard Berrian and Visante Shanco served as more than capable compliments to Favre.

I thought the Cowboys blowout was a microcosm of their season; driven by Rice ripping the Cowboys secondary to shreds and the Vikings line harassing Romo into submission.

Points: 0

#44 by Will Allen // Nov 30, 2022 - 12:28pm

Mckinnie was an above average lt when he cared enough to be in shape, as he did in '09. There's a reason he could show up too blob-like to pass a conditioning test for the Ravens a couple seasons later, spend a few weeks laying off the midnight pizzas, and be a productive starter for a Super Bowl champ by early December. 

Loadholt was never a bad rt, even as a rookie, and retired young, rather go through a grueling rehab of an achillies injury, after getting his 2nd contract money.

Sullivan was easily overpowered, and a significant step down from Birk, but not a bottom 5 center.

It was more Favre living off the threat of Peterson that year, than it was the other way around. Favre frequently talked about how nice it was to throw against defenses that were primarily schemeing to defend handoffs.

(edit) Visanthe Shiancoe had the ball skills of a untrained seal with vaseline liberally applied to his flippers. Take his helmet off, and he may have manipulated the ball better with his nose than his hands.

Points: 2

#45 by Aaron Brooks G… // Nov 30, 2022 - 12:47pm

(edit) Visanthe Shiancoe had the ball skills of a untrained seal with vaseline liberally applied to his flippers. Take his helmet off, and he may have manipulated the ball better with his nose than his hands.

Still better than Ebron.

Points: 1

#52 by theslothook // Nov 30, 2022 - 12:57pm

Replying in a separate post.

...and one other in the Hall of Very Good.

I could see a compelling argument for Pat Williams in the Hall of Fame. He was a dominant nose guard and performed well for two franchises while also noteworthy enough to have be part of a famous defensive moniker.

I get the sense that defensive tackles are mostly known for their pass rush and I am not quite sure how he was in that capacity, but that wasn't his role and it feels unfair to ding him for that when the defensive design hinged upon a particular style that he fit. There is value in being amazing at what you've been tasked to do when it serves as a vital fulcrum to your defense.


Points: 1

#55 by Pat // Nov 30, 2022 - 1:39pm

I get the sense that defensive tackles are mostly known for their pass rush

It's just because it's a stat. Any position with a stat has an express lane into the Hall.

There is value in being amazing at what you've been tasked to do when it serves as a vital fulcrum to your defense

This Hall of Fame argument apparently works for special teams guys but no one else, sadly.

Points: 1

#37 by Kaepernicus // Nov 30, 2022 - 9:46am

Kevin Williams is severely underrated and the final cherry on top of why the Vikings are the greatest interior d line franchise of all-time. I think d line overall is a tight one between them and the Rams. Chris Doleman was another horribly underrated Viking great who took too long to get in. I think this year's Vikings are going to need to draw the right teams to have a chance at getting to the NFCCG. If they can somehow pull the Seahawks/Giants first followed by TB they could make it. If they end up having to deal with SF/Dal/Phi before then they are going to get clobbered. Best chance against those three is getting SF at home and hoping for a Jimmy meltdown classic.

Points: 0

#46 by Aaron Brooks G… // Nov 30, 2022 - 12:48pm

I think d line overall is a tight one between them and the Rams.

Don't underestimate Tampa.

Points: 0

#50 by theslothook // Nov 30, 2022 - 12:53pm

There was the Dungy era and the Leroy Sellman era.

But otherwise, isn't there a giant gulf of nothing in between?

Points: 0

#57 by Aaron Brooks G… // Nov 30, 2022 - 1:44pm

They've also had Gerald McCoy and Ndamukong Suh, with Vita Vea sort of lost in the middle.

If Williams ever gets in, Suh is likely to follow.

Points: 0

#48 by theslothook // Nov 30, 2022 - 12:51pm

That's an interesting thought experiment. Who belongs in the ultimate defensive line all time franchise rankings.

At purely first blush, I'd go with the Vikings Rams and probably the Cowboys. Would probably also include the 49ers whose defenses have routinely been overshadowed. 

Points: 0

#62 by jds // Nov 30, 2022 - 2:13pm

Can someone send the above post to Tanier for an off-season project.

Points: 2

#67 by Kaepernicus // Nov 30, 2022 - 2:54pm

For the 49ers it has to be secondary. Ronnie Lott is one of the 3 greatest DBs of all time. Deion only played one year, but it was his best year as a pro. Eric Wright was a huge part of the dynasty. Merton Hanks and Tim McDonald formed one of the best safety duos of all time as well. Jimmie Johnson is also in the HOF from the 70's. I think you could make the claim for greatest WR franchise ever with Jerry Rice and TO at the top. John Taylor and Dwight Clark are very high up the hall of very good too. If you based it off quality I think it is a no-brainer for WR. The Vikings and Steelers are probably pretty close in that group. LB has a strong case too if you include Charles Haley there.

Points: 0

#68 by Aaron Brooks G… // Nov 30, 2022 - 3:59pm

TE has to be San Diego, right?

GB gets interesting if you throw Don Hutson in the mix, who is the Classical Era WR GOAT.

Points: 0

#73 by Kaepernicus // Nov 30, 2022 - 5:06pm

I think this is clearly KC when Kelce's career is over. He and Gonzalez are going to be 1-2 in nearly all the career stats.

Points: 1

#75 by Aaron Brooks G… // Nov 30, 2022 - 6:24pm

SD is Gates and Winslow.

Gonzalez was better than Gates, but he spent five years in Atlanta. If you compare just their SD/KC years, Gates and Gonzales are really similar.

Points: 0

#72 by Kaepernicus // Nov 30, 2022 - 5:04pm

Hutson, Ellard, Sharpe, Driver, and Adams is a really good top 5 for GB. Honestly though having Jerry Rice and Terrell Owens on the same team is just insanely hard to overcome. I think Pittsburgh has a big argument for greatest WR franchise with Stallworth, Swann, Ward, and AB. QB would also get really interesting with a clear big 3 of GB, SF, and Colts. Parsing through those 3 gets pretty interesting. I think I would lean toward the Colts with Unitas and Manning personally. But SF is really interesting. It starts with Y.A. TIttle then you get Brodie followed by the Montana/Young era. GB has Starr, Rodgers, and Favre. This seems like it would make for a really interesting off-season project.

Points: 0

#76 by Aaron Brooks G… // Nov 30, 2022 - 6:26pm

SD has Fouts, Brees, and Rivers.

\they only ever won the AFC with their bad QBs

Points: 0

#84 by MrMan // Nov 30, 2022 - 10:31pm

In baseball, the 2016 Texas Rangers.  They finished with a +6 run differential yet won 95 games and won the AL West.  Their pythagorean win expectancy was 82 games.  Rangers went 36-11 in 1-run games.  


Of course in the playoffs they promptly got swept in 3 games including the last game, a 1-run loss.  


Frankly it was magical while it lasted.  Seemed like every night they'd figure out some fluky way to win a 1-run game.  "Gritty" "Poised" "Clutch" and other such words were thrown around a lot.  

I think it's more fun in a sport like baseball where you play so often.  In football, if I were a fan of the Vikings, Giants or (former) Football Team I'd just assume we're going to get annihilated at some point bc they're just not very good football teams.  In baseball, bad teams beat good times all the time in the playoffs; pretty rare in football. 

Points: 0

#6 by peterplaysbass // Nov 29, 2022 - 3:20pm

It's been a semi-stressful season for me as a Vikings fan, but fortunately part of me died after the 2017 season and I've sort of had this dead-eye, far-away look since.

I'm expecting a hilariously remarkable playoff loss at somepoint ala the 41-donut NFCCG against the Giants 20-ish years ago

Points: 0

#2 by asleep06 // Nov 29, 2022 - 2:39pm

They are the first team to ever have a negative DVOA with a 9-2 record, more than 10 percentage points lower than any other 9-2 team since 1981. 

DVOA clearly doesn't account for the 'griddy' factor.

Points: 1

#3 by Aaron Schatz // Nov 29, 2022 - 2:57pm

The Bengals are up to No. 6 so I think that the 'griddy' bonus variable is working quite well!

Points: 0

#7 by Aaron Brooks G… // Nov 29, 2022 - 4:37pm

The 1933 Bears sit up.

Points: 0

#8 by big10freak // Nov 29, 2022 - 4:44pm

The Packers assessment strains credulity.   Meaning DVOA is too kind. 

Points: 1

#14 by DisplacedPackerFan // Nov 29, 2022 - 5:48pm

I didn't expect them to be much better than average this year, 2019 level DVOA at best, but I thought the schedule was going to be soft. I was so wrong on that! They have faced the 2nd toughest slate of defenses (average of -4.7% DVOA, 1st is PIT against -6.1% DVOA) and the 13th toughest slate of offenses (average 1.2% DVOA). That all averages out to the 5th toughest schedule so far at a 6.5% DVOA. I was expecting them to have faced the 20th - 26th toughest schedule for the year and hence still getting 10 - 13 wins. Just completely missed my evaluations. Lots of ways to look at the schedule and how wrong I was.

Schedule and results so far
They have played DVOA ranks
1 - BUF (8-3)   32.2% (L by 10)
3 - PHI (10-1)  26.9% (L by 7)
4 - DAL (8-3)   26.0% (W by 3)
9 - NYJ  (7-4)  11.7% (L by 17)
10 - TB  (5-6)  10.5% (W by 2)
11 - NE  (6-5)  10.0% (W by 3)
13 - TEN (7-4)   4.5% (L by 10)
16 - DET (4-7)  -0.9% (L by 6)
17 - WAS (7-5) -2.0% (L by 2)
21 - NYG (7-4)  -8.1% (L by 5)
22 - MIN  (9-2)  -9.2% (L by 16)
29 - CHI  (3-9) -23.3% (W by 17)

They have 29 (CHI), 27 (LAR -17.3%), 8 (MIA 14.8%), 22 (MIN), 16 (DET) left.

How I kinda make DVOA buckets
I kinda look at DVOA as the following though still haven't built the database to really verify the numbers and yes I'm not doing .9 on the ranges to prevent overlap in the ranges but it should be clear what the ranges are.

  • 35%+ Elite, don't see it every year.
  • 25% to 35% is a Super Bowl Contender level of play
  • 15% to 25% is a Playoff caliber with flaws
  • 5% to 15% is a good team but luck could keep them out of the playoffs or give them a losing record
  • -5% to 5% is an NFL average team luck bounces their ratings and wins around some
  • -15% to -5% is a below average team likely with a couple of major flaws but potentially a good unit (and winning record)
  • -25% to -15% is a bad team with lots of issues
  • -25% to -35% in the hunt for that #1 pick
  • -35% or worse is just a dumpster fire.

They've only had 1 really bad opponent in Chicago. 3 Super Bowl contender level in BUF, PHI, DAL. 3 good teams that are on the edge of solid playoff caliber in NYJ, TB, NE. 3 NFL average in TEN, DET, WAS, and 2 below average teams but one of them is the weirdo Minnesota and the other is the overachieving Giants.

So average DVOA, ordinal ranks, and just DVOA quality do all point to a hard schedule with only one real gimme game and everything else likely having at least a 40% chance to lose by DVOA evaluation.

What about old school schedule strength
If someone prefers opponent W-L for SoS (I don't) they have .604 SoS, 2nd in the league to only Detroit's .613. PIT is 3rd at .573. Only Det and Chicago have losing records without the game against GB and TB would be .500 without the loss to GB.

Final thoughts
Now we all know some of those losses were worse than the score but I can see how an average team, 1.0% DVOA after all, could be expected to be about 4 - 8 against that schedule. Of course their expected wins and losses don't match up (you would expect the 8 losses to the 8 teams in the top 16 and the 4 wins against the teams in the bottom 16). The other thing that points to a potential average DVOA is 6 of the 14 (43%) of their games are 1 score. Ignore that they are 3 - 3 in those (which means they could easily be 1 - 11 or possibly 7 - 5 given very different luck). I can also see based on just the opponent DVOA and final score how many of those losses might not look awful to DVOA, even if on the field the outcome was never in doubt. 

They don't look good, at all, but I can at least see the rating not being a complete fraud. I could still see them finishing 8-9, which would agree with DVOA, but I can also see 4 - 13 because I agree with what you said last week, that some vets are making business decisions when it comes to effort, and I can't blame them for that. The more the protect my career psychology of players comes into play the more likely a potentially close game slips away.

Points: 3

#22 by big10freak // Nov 29, 2022 - 7:57pm

It’s the defensive assessment that has me curious.  Because the D since Gary has been out is nonexistent.  Other than a few guys the basic effort has just…….stopped.  

Did you see my post about Silverstein’s comments?   Known Tom a long time.  He doesn’t say guys don’t believe in the coaches unless he has been told that by multiple guys.  

Points: 0

#53 by DisplacedPackerFan // Nov 30, 2022 - 1:00pm

I did catch you mentioning Silverstein, but didn't see a post with the link. My schedule has been such that the last game I saw live was the Giants in London. Everything else has been days later replay, and it wasn't until last week I had time to look at Football Outsiders again. I do agree that I trust Tom's reporting on anything remotely related to inside information and that if he says players don't believe, that they don't.

I also agree with Kaepernicus in the direct response to my scheduling post. The expectations for the defense might have been high. I didn't expect Campbell to be what he was in 2021, but Campbell from 2016 - 2019 would still have been an upgrade over any pre Campbell MLB they've had in a while. I also expected that if Walker was remotely coachable that between the two of them the MLB position could still be a strength instead of the glaring weakness it's generally felt like since they switched to a 3-4 under Capers. It wasn't always but it felt that way.

I really don't know what to think of Alexander's play this year. I think Barry used the trio of Stokes/Douglas/Alexander wrong when he had them. I think after Stokes went down he was used better, but it wasn't long before I think he just started to give up on Barry, and rightfully care about not getting injured again like in 2021. He's been vocal about his annoyances with the defense and I have no doubt he's just lost all faith.

I worried about the D-line because it's been Kenny Clark and the low-fi JAGs for years. Sure Lowry flashes but most of the rest of that line has been low end JAG for a long time. They at least tried to address it with the draft and FA but it didn't work. Be that coaching/scheme/play calling or just lack of talent. I don't know.

The whole defense just feels like it's squandered talent. Though Savage's year over year over year regression I don't know the cause of. As others, and I think you too, have pointed out the org still gives way too many shots to high draft picks. Savage being a first round pick kept getting trotted out. They desperately kept trying to get value out of Amari Rodgers for 2 seasons and he kept failing.

But then you have the case of Rashan Gary. Sure he had Preston and Za'Darius Smith ahead of him on the depth chart for years but he also needed some of that time to develop, and he looked Amari Rodgers fumbling everything bad in run defense a lot of the time till middle of last year.

I was worried about how thin the defense was, especially at safety, pre season. Edge rusher being my next concern. Having zero pass rush without Gary did still surprise me a bit. Of course when teams can run for 300 yards a game on you, and you have to play the run first all the time, even if  you fail at it all the time, that blunts the ability to gamble on aggressive play as a rusher.

I still feel like if Jim Leonard had actually taken the job, even with the injuries that there should be enough talent to make this a top 10 defense, and that Barry only gets about 70-80% of a players ability. But maybe I just over rate the talent. It's so hard to tell. It's like trying to evaluate a QB with no WR. Or a WR with a crappy QB. Where is the real talent when you have a guy like Douglas, who doesn't have the best change of direction, playing in the slot all the time? Is that because Douglas has no talent at all, or because he's being used completely wrong. In that case we've seen it's more that he can play, just not in that role. So when you have a player that can play that role and the coach doesn't do it, then it's crappy coaching. Barry is a crappy coach/coordinator.

Points: 0

#54 by Joey-Harringto… // Nov 30, 2022 - 1:07pm

"Barry is a crappy coach/coordinator."

As a Lions fan who watched Joe Barry coordinate the defense of the infamous 2008 Lions, I remain unsurprised that a defense coordinated by him is falling short of expectations.

Points: 0

#38 by Kaepernicus // Nov 30, 2022 - 10:37am

I think the biggest shock with the Packers has been how mediocre the defense has been. I thought they were overrated on D going in because a lot of people were assuming all-time best seasons from multiple players were going to carry over. Specifically Devondre Campbell. I think they got a big boost for the performance against the 49ers in the playoffs even though that game was cold and half the 49ers offense was playing injured. If they keep the team together and don't ship off Rodgers I think they will be right back on top of the NFC North next year with a little more injury luck

Points: 0

#39 by Will Allen // Nov 30, 2022 - 10:47am

If they catch a break on a wr pick in the 1st round, they'll likely be a 12-13 win team again, all injury caveats aside.

Points: 0

#9 by andrew // Nov 29, 2022 - 4:59pm

What are the largest differences (in each direction) between estimated wins and actual wins?   (I know you have to adjust for byes, so not always as simple, you'd have to correct estimated to their # of games if different or their wins to estimated number)...



Points: 0

#11 by colonialbob // Nov 29, 2022 - 5:36pm

So using a naive approach of just multiplying estimated wins by 11/12 for teams that have had their bye week, we get:

Minnesota +4.6 (no surprise there - Giants are second at +2.7)

Cleveland -2.0 (Baltimore is second at -1.8)

Points: 0

#10 by laflamablanca87 // Nov 29, 2022 - 5:12pm

Please correct me if this statement is wrong, but hasn't DVOA been consistently below the market in rating the Chiefs every season since 2019? I know it partially has to do with the Chiefs giving up a lot of chunk plays and scores with big leads and/or "letting their foot off the gas."

Points: 0

#16 by LionInAZ // Nov 29, 2022 - 6:03pm

My recollection of KC games is that they typically start out slow and blow out opponents in the 2nd half.

Points: 0

#18 by jmaron // Nov 29, 2022 - 6:49pm

"What can I say, running into the kicker penalties don't count in our ratings."

I don't know if penalties have any predictive value but it has something to do with the Vikings winning this year. They are 2nd in net yards gained in penalty yardage (+163) and 1st in net 1st downs 14. 

NE for what it's worth is dead last in net yards lost (-167) and 29th in net 1st downs -6.

Points: 0

#20 by Aaron Brooks G… // Nov 29, 2022 - 7:14pm

It’s weird to me that Belichick and Saban teams are simultaneously taking a ton of bad penalties.

Points: 0

#59 by JoelBarlow // Nov 30, 2022 - 1:52pm

For 20 years we were told Beli had cracked the code on football and the Patriots were always going to do all the marginal things better and it would make all the difference

Three years after Brady they're just another football team. They do things well, they do things poorly, they have ups and downs and strange plays like everyone else. 

I think having the best QB ever is probably really helpful.

Points: 0

#63 by whocares4 // Nov 30, 2022 - 2:20pm

The best QB of all-time AND a player who stayed wildly, improbably healthy far beyond expectation. Think about a "good not great coach" and how someone like will lose two seasons to a QB a injury (say, finish a year with a midseason injury like 9-7 and then go 6-10 the following year when the QB isn't back/ready) and then the franchise will panic and hop on the QB carousel, demand changes/results, etc. We're finally seeing how BB handles that to a certain extent and... it's not impressive. If he weren't who he is, the way he's developed Jones and handled the Zappe situation, he'd be getting ridiculed relentlessly.

Points: 0

#64 by Aaron Brooks G… // Nov 30, 2022 - 2:26pm

The best QB of all-time AND a player who stayed wildly, improbably healthy far beyond expectation. 

And gave a contract discount, because he really didn't need the money.

Points: 0

#65 by whocares4 // Nov 30, 2022 - 2:32pm

Crazy what kind of house money he was playing with! The only question is: how mediocre does BB need to be post-Brady for it to damage his reputation?

I remember late-period Shula where for like 10 years he was hanging around .500 with a few mild peaks. And that was enough that I'm not sure he's taken to be a Top 5 All-Time coach anymore? 

Points: 0

#66 by Aaron Brooks G… // Nov 30, 2022 - 2:46pm


Parcells basically noodled around with the Jets and Cowboys, but it hasn't really negatively affected his reputation.

I think Parcells and Belichick are pretty similar as coaches, except Parcells had more of a wanderlust or more of a need to show he could do it again somewhere else.

Points: 0

#71 by Will Allen // Nov 30, 2022 - 5:04pm

When Parcells went 10-6 in 2003, with a roster that might have struggled, with a lesser coach,  to become bowl eligible playing in the Big 12, it was the best coaching performance I've ever seen..Parcells was great with the Jets..If he noodled around in those places, about 85% of the NFL needs some noodling around.

Points: 0

#80 by whocares4 // Nov 30, 2022 - 9:28pm

It's not that he wasn't doing a good coaching job, it's that after he left the Giants, he made the playoffs 5 times in 11 seasons and got bounced from the playoffs in the first game 3 times. That's just not the resume of someone who is doing anything beyond "noodling around."

Surely even you can understand the difference between in the resume between playoffs 5 times out of 8 seasons, 2 SB rings, and only a single "one-and-done" playoff performance? (And yes we all know that you think the playoffs are random, so they're a bad way to judge coaches etc. No need to repeat it.) Purely in terms of results, there's a huge difference between his Giants days and everything else - and when you're measuring the best against the best, results matter. 

Points: 0

#83 by Will Allen // Nov 30, 2022 - 10:07pm

Divorcing coaching w-l record from context is silly. Surely even you can see that, right?

Points: 0

#92 by whocares4 // Dec 01, 2022 - 5:16pm

Give me a definition of what "noodling around" as an NFL coach would be to you. 

Points: 0

#70 by Pat // Nov 30, 2022 - 5:03pm

"Three years after Brady they're just another football team. "

Is that really what people think? They're still ludicrously well run in my mind. Still absolutely destroying bad QBs on defense, almost regardless of who the players are. A winning record from '20 to now is pretty impressive overall given the weakness at QB.

I think it did expose that there was nothing special about New England on offense, but I think most people had suspicions on that anyway.

Points: 1

#74 by Will Allen // Nov 30, 2022 - 5:09pm

Very much agree. If somebody wants to critique drafting, fine, or maybe staff hiring this year, I'll listen. They still seem very well managed to me, however. It is possible that Belichick isn't as good at age 70 as he was at 55, of course.

Points: 0

#77 by Aaron Brooks G… // Nov 30, 2022 - 6:27pm

He's still a good DC. But shorn of a HOF QB he found in a dumpster, NE has begun cosplaying as the Ravens or the Bears.

Points: 0

#78 by theslothook // Nov 30, 2022 - 6:35pm

For what it's worth, I completely and totally agree.


I was beginning to think I was the only nut job who thought so.

I do think Nes ability to cobble offensive lines together is a skill for Ne. It's just not mattering much presently 

Points: 0

#81 by whocares4 // Nov 30, 2022 - 9:32pm

They're well run but plenty of teams are well run. Again, there's an important difference between being competently run and being *decisively the best.* Brady was decisively the best - there's plenty of evidence for it. Without Brady, BB and the Pats are just another football team. A good one. Probably not a great one. Definitely not the best. 

Points: -1

#87 by KnotMe // Dec 01, 2022 - 12:43am

Basicly, Belichick is a great coach would be in a goat conversation...but he's only maybe a bit above average as a gm. Most teams with NE talent level probably wouldn't be even near the playoffs. I think Brady was covering for his failings as a gm rather than a coach. 

Points: 0

#88 by Will Allen // Dec 01, 2022 - 8:30am

Confident pronouncements of GOAT-hood, in a contest as interdependent and complex as football, is just hotttaekism run amok.

Points: 2

#90 by KnotMe // Dec 01, 2022 - 12:35pm

That's exactly why I said he was in the conversation. I agree that trying to compare coaches across eras and even divorcing them from player performance is difficult. It's hard to argue you can be that successful and not be a good coach however 

Points: 0

#91 by Will Allen // Dec 01, 2022 - 2:54pm

I was responding to "Brady is decisively the best". Nobody is decisively the best at anything in the NFL. Even the closest to that description, Jerry Rice, may have had a far different career, especially with it beginning 7 years before free agency, had he been drafted by another team.

Points: 0

#93 by whocares4 // Dec 01, 2022 - 5:21pm

I know as a Vikings fan, you're very averse to judging teams based on results, but at a certain point the results matter more than anything else. I'm not talking alternate universes where Brady goes to the 1991 Colts or Jerry Rice in the land where free agency was different, but the things that actually happened. At some point, we're not talking about theoreticals, but things that actually occurred or there's no point it. Though, as a Vikings fan, I can imagine you think that football is, generally speaking, pointless. (I mean that sincerely, rooting for a team that has fielded goal, sometimes remarkable teams, and failed in such notable ways while never once achieving the game's ultimate goal probably colors your relationship to the sport! It probably makes you question the meaning of "ultimate goal" in a fundamental way!) 

Points: 0

#94 by whocares4 // Dec 01, 2022 - 5:25pm

What I mean is, at certain point, there's a "best" because how we judge "the best" in football is a mix of on-field accomplishments related to the goal of winning the championship. Brady is the best because every objective and subjective measure related to that goal says he is. Same thing for Jerry Rice! They're outliers and with most coaches/players its harder to say. 3 years ago, a lot people would've argued BB was another such outlier. I don't think those people would be quite so certain anymore.

Points: 0

#32 by Hoodie_Sleeves // Nov 30, 2022 - 9:22am

The net numbers are actually really interesting - because my impression was that they were committing a ton of penalties - and now that I look at it - they're really not. They're about dead average. The issue is that their opponents aren't getting called for anything. (66 against a 65.5 average, benefitted from 43)

Which makes sense for stuff like Defensive Holding (10th committing, 32 receiving) - don't need to hold guys when the offense telegraphs that they're passing and then the lineman block the wrong guys. 

31 in Offensive Holding doesn't really surprise me (given that Judon gets held a LOT, and it rarely gets called) - but it should  - given how good the defense is, and how good the pass rush is. There's 7 dismissed - I'm not sure if that's for, or against, but if it's the Patriots declining offensive holding calls - that would make sense and make that number more reasonable. 

Points: 0

#33 by Hoodie_Sleeves // Nov 30, 2022 - 9:22am

The net numbers are actually really interesting - because my impression was that they were committing a ton of penalties - and now that I look at it - they're really not. They're about dead average. The issue is that their opponents aren't getting called for anything. (66 against a 65.5 average, benefitted from 43)

Which makes sense for stuff like Defensive Holding (10th committing, 32 receiving) - don't need to hold guys when the offense telegraphs that they're passing and then the lineman block the wrong guys. 

31 in Offensive Holding doesn't really surprise me (given that Judon gets held a LOT, and it rarely gets called) - but it should  - given how good the defense is, and how good the pass rush is. There's 7 dismissed - I'm not sure if that's for, or against, but if it's the Patriots declining offensive holding calls - that would make sense and make that number more reasonable. 

Points: 1

#27 by MJK // Nov 30, 2022 - 12:03am

Ever since the 2992 realignment, I have  always disliked having a guaranteed playoff spot for winning a 4-team division. Too easy to squeak in with a losing record and poor play, and too easy for good teams to be left out at the same time.   All you need to make the playoffs as a sub-average team is to happen to be in a division where the other three teams are even more sub average. The chance of a division being sub average top to bottom is simply too high with four team divisions. 

someone from the NFC South gets a playoff spot (and a home game to boot!), while at least one and probably several good AFC and NFC East teams will have to stay home. 

Points: 0

#28 by superglucose // Nov 30, 2022 - 2:38am

I'd buy this except the Cardinals made the Superb Owl as either a 7-9 or 9-7 division winning squeaker.

Points: 0

#29 by superglucose // Nov 30, 2022 - 2:38am

I'd buy this except the Cardinals made the Superb Owl as either a 7-9 or 9-7 division winning squeaker.

Points: 0

#30 by Joey-Harringto… // Nov 30, 2022 - 9:06am

"Ever since the 2992 realignment,"

Hey, there's only one RaiderJoe, stop trying to copy him.

I agree with you about small divisions.  Increases the odds of a crappy team winning a crappier division.  I've always wanted each conference to have two 5 team divisions, one 6 team division, and one additional wildcard spot.  Yes, the numbers aren't nice and even, but that's always been the case from 1976-2001, and they made it work.  

However, it sounds like the owners are perfectly happy with the status quo, so I can only dream.

Points: 0

#35 by Aaron Brooks G… // Nov 30, 2022 - 9:30am

RaiderJoe got years and names correct, but nothing else.

Points: 1

#40 by Mike B. In Va // Nov 30, 2022 - 11:26am

Not team names, though. (Although you could argue that Clots is a much better name for that team this year.)

Points: -1

#49 by Joey-Harringto… // Nov 30, 2022 - 12:53pm

Squirrels is a way better team name than Commanders.

Points: 3

#85 by Paul R // Nov 30, 2022 - 11:32pm

I remember once he got in an argument with somebody and he wound up typing a few posts with perfect spelling and punctuation just to prove a point, and it looked so wrong.

Points: 0

#36 by Aaron Brooks G… // Nov 30, 2022 - 9:34am

All you need to make the playoffs as a sub-average team is to happen to be in a division where the other three teams are even more sub average. 

This cuts both ways, though.

Let's say you're a ~median team in a slightly below-median division. So you go 3-3 in-division and 4-6 outside of it, good for 7-9. We'll call this the South.
Now let's say you're a ~median team in a putrid division. So you go 6-0 in-division and 4-6 outside of it, good for 10-6. We'll call this the Brady.

Is a Brady qualifier really different from a South qualifier? Or did they just enjoy a division with a lower floor?

Points: 0

#42 by KnotMe // Nov 30, 2022 - 12:00pm

I would be ok with requiring division winners to be above .500 to get the automatic spot. (otherwise, it just becomes a WC slot) Even if an entire division is strong and hurt each others records, they should have a good enough record outside of it get above .500. 

Points: 0

#60 by JoelBarlow // Nov 30, 2022 - 1:53pm

at the very least they should seed by record

Points: 1

#95 by coboney // Dec 01, 2022 - 7:34pm

The Realignment of 2992 made a lot of chanes to the basic assumptions of how the game of football was organized with it's 32 divisions of 4 teams, split by regions in the world, as well as the two outer space division and the Moon division. Terrestial teams, often complain about the Moon Division having an advantage at their homefield after they win the division often facing teams less accustomed to the unique fields that the Moon Teams play on.

Points: 0

#43 by johnnycuff // Nov 30, 2022 - 12:10pm

Is Post-Game Win Expectancy available as a statistic anywhere on FO?

Points: 0

#58 by JoelBarlow // Nov 30, 2022 - 1:47pm

man it seems there's an awful lot of internal anxiety about the Chiefs and where they should rank during the Mahomes era


wouldn't it be easier just to trust the numbers and look to the obvious fact that they do have various issues, which have, in fact, cost them games now and then

Points: 0

#79 by sk57 // Nov 30, 2022 - 7:01pm

There are a lot of different (analytic site) numbers.  You mean trust DVOA vs other metrics?  Does "trust" mean if you were making a W/L bet, even up, on neutral turf, you would take Bills, Ravens, Eagles, and Cowboys over Chiefs?  Vegas would take that money.  What I find odd is that by DVOA KC offense is #1 but defense is below average, yet watching their games, seems like you would give the game ball to the D on 4-5 of the 11 games thus far.  It doesn't seem like a below average defense should be bailing out the #1 offense as often as they do.

Points: 0

#82 by whocares4 // Nov 30, 2022 - 9:39pm

DVOA says KC is fantastic on offense, middle of the pack on defense, exceptional in the passing game, mediocre in the running game, unremarkable on special teams, decisively better than Cincinati, SF and Miami. DYAR says Mahomes is the most productive QB in the league, Kelce the most productive TE and that they have no WRs of any special distinction.

What part of that is so outlandish and unreasonable? Which part of it deviates even slightly from the conventional wisdom?

Points: 2

#86 by Paul R // Nov 30, 2022 - 11:48pm

It also would not be a surprise to see the No. 5 team in DVOA win the Super Bowl. It happened just last year! So we won't prove anything. But the difference between the metrics is interesting, and I'll continue to tweak DVOA in the future to make it more predictive. 

I haven't kept records, but in my experience from years of DVOA-watching, it seems that the Super Bowl winner always winds up being a team that spends the whole year just hanging around in the rankings somewhere between 3rd and 7th. They might make the top spot once or twice, but most of the time they're just somewhere there in the top ten so often that you cease to pay attention to them.  

Also, there always seems to be a steady-climbing team that gets dangerous in the postseason. They might start off near the bottom of the pile and they climb up a few spots every week, often finishing somewhere between maybe 7 and 12. Those seem to be teams that lose games but go up in DVOA rankings. If, at some point in the year, Aaron has begun a paragraph with, "Surprisingly, despite their 33-10 loss, [team] moves up four spots in this weeks ranking..." you might want to bet a few bucks on that team in the postseason.  



Points: 0

#96 by JimZipCode // Dec 03, 2022 - 5:07pm


I love it!  Honestly, I've always wanted it here.  Now where are some SlotHook comments??

Points: 0

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