Week 18 DVOA Ratings

Once again, it is time for postseason DVOA ratings. As always, the following rules apply:

  • All 32 teams are ranked, whether they made the playoffs or not.
  • Teams are ranked in order of weighted DVOA, not total season DVOA. Since weighted DVOA is meant to lower the strength of older games, these ratings do not include Weeks 1-3, and Weeks 4-11 are somewhat discounted.
  • The ratings listed do not include the adjustments used in the ratings for our playoff odds report. For example, Kansas City moves up two spots to No. 5 in those ratings because we remove the Week 17 game due to sitting starters.
  • Only weighted DVOA is listed for offense, defense, and special teams. Total DVOA is also listed, but one game doesn't change much in a 17-game sample so these ratings will be similar to those from the end of the season.
  • Teams which did not play in the wild-card round are treated as if they had a bye week. (That includes both the 18 non-playoff teams and the two teams with byes.)

Buffalo remains No. 1 in weighted DVOA although the Bills did not reach a single-game rating of at least 40% for the first time since their Week 11 bye. Instead, the Bills "only" came out at 35% for their win over the Indianapolis Colts.

Because we have Buffalo first and Kansas City seventh (fifth without Week 17), we get an unexpected result in our playoff odds report. We are now in disagreement with Vegas oddsmakers and probably everybody else on the Internet, and our numbers give Buffalo a stronger chance to win the Super Bowl than Kansas City. The Chiefs have a stronger chance to make the Super Bowl for a few reasons:

  1. Cleveland is a weaker opponent than Baltimore.
  2. We give Green Bay and Kansas City a bonus in the divisional round to represent the historical value of a bye week.
  3. Our simulation still considers home-field advantage, which Kansas City would have in a prospective AFC Championship Game.

However, the playoff odds report makes Buffalo the slim favorite in any Super Bowl matchup should the Bills make it all the way, while Kansas City sits behind three of the four remaining NFC teams. And thus, Buffalo comes out with a higher chance to win it all.

Speaking of the NFC teams, Green Bay moves up to No. 2 with weighted DVOA going up a little bit during the Packers' week off. That's because of how the formula works with weights and the big Week 6 loss to Tampa Bay (and the narrow Week 10 win over Jacksonville) being further in the rearview mirror. Tampa Bay and New Orleans both drop a little bit, with New Orleans falling slightly behind Tampa Bay. However, the ratings used in the playoff odds report move New Orleans higher than Tampa Bay because the effect of removing the Taysom Hill games on offense is stronger than the effect of removing the Kendall Hinton game (Week 12) on defense.

Cleveland is still the lowest of the remaining playoff teams but their weighted DVOA has moved up to 12th, six spots higher than last week. Their offensive rating is a bit artificially low because of the Week 16 game where all their wide receivers were on the COVID list; again, we're using an adjusted rating for the Browns in the playoff odds report.

* * * * *

To save people some time, we remind everyone to put their angry troll hatred into the official zlionsfan angry troll hatred Mad Libs form:

<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>

If you are new to our website, you can read the explanation of how DVOA is figured here. As always, positive numbers represent more points so DEFENSE is better when it is NEGATIVE.

There are no adjustments here for sitting starters in Week 17, although we do adjust the ratings that we use in the playoff odds report.

You will find DVOA matchup pages for the four divisional games on FO+, and snap counts are now updated with playoff data.

Teams in yellow are still alive in the playoffs. Teams in gray lost this past weekend.

1 BUF 35.5% 1 14-3 20.2% 4 -6.7% 11 8.7% 3 24.1% 4
2 GB 32.9% 4 13-3 32.7% 1 -3.9% 15 -3.7% 29 25.9% 3
3 TB 30.7% 3 12-5 26.0% 2 -7.2% 9 -2.5% 26 30.2% 2
4 NO 30.5% 2 13-4 7.5% 9 -20.3% 2 2.6% 12 31.2% 1
5 SEA 23.1% 5 12-5 7.0% 10 -6.9% 10 9.2% 2 19.3% 7
6 BAL 22.3% 7 12-5 9.4% 7 -7.7% 8 5.1% 5 21.6% 5
7 KC 17.7% 6 14-2 22.4% 3 8.3% 26 3.6% 8 19.5% 6
8 LAR 16.6% 8 11-6 -6.7% 20 -26.8% 1 -3.5% 28 16.2% 8
9 IND 14.0% 9 11-6 8.6% 8 -4.5% 13 0.9% 15 15.1% 9
10 PIT 8.4% 10 12-5 -7.5% 21 -14.6% 4 1.2% 14 14.1% 10
11 WAS 5.9% 13 7-10 -17.1% 29 -19.0% 3 4.0% 7 -1.1% 16
12 CLE 4.7% 18 12-5 13.8% 6 8.2% 25 -0.8% 21 -2.3% 17
13 CHI 4.0% 15 8-9 -4.5% 16 -4.2% 14 4.3% 6 0.9% 15
14 MIA 3.8% 14 10-6 -5.2% 18 -8.8% 7 0.3% 18 4.6% 12
15 TEN 2.9% 12 11-6 16.3% 5 12.0% 29 -1.4% 24 1.2% 14
16 SF 2.4% 11 6-10 -8.2% 22 -13.7% 5 -3.1% 27 5.4% 11
17 ARI 2.1% 16 8-8 -8.6% 23 -10.3% 6 0.4% 17 3.6% 13
18 ATL 0.7% 17 4-12 -3.8% 15 -4.8% 12 -0.3% 20 -4.2% 18
19 NE -7.0% 19 7-9 -12.9% 26 6.3% 22 12.2% 1 -7.1% 22
20 DAL -9.0% 22 6-10 -11.5% 25 3.5% 19 5.9% 4 -11.1% 23
21 LV -10.4% 21 8-8 -4.8% 17 8.9% 27 3.3% 10 -6.3% 19
22 CAR -11.0% 20 5-11 -6.0% 19 6.4% 23 1.4% 13 -6.7% 21
23 NYG -11.1% 23 6-10 -10.4% 24 0.4% 17 -0.3% 19 -13.8% 25
24 MIN -13.7% 24 7-9 6.7% 11 9.1% 28 -11.3% 31 -6.4% 20
25 HOU -15.9% 25 4-12 2.2% 12 16.9% 31 -1.2% 23 -12.5% 24
26 PHI -16.3% 26 4-11-1 -16.1% 27 -2.3% 16 -2.4% 25 -18.8% 28
27 LAC -16.8% 27 7-9 -0.2% 13 4.4% 20 -12.3% 32 -14.7% 26
28 DEN -20.4% 28 5-11 -16.8% 28 2.7% 18 -0.9% 22 -22.1% 29
29 CIN -23.2% 30 4-11-1 -18.6% 30 8.2% 24 3.6% 9 -24.7% 30
30 DET -23.4% 29 5-11 -2.9% 14 23.2% 32 2.7% 11 -15.7% 27
31 NYJ -29.4% 31 2-14 -18.9% 31 5.0% 21 -5.6% 30 -30.5% 32
32 JAX -32.6% 32 1-15 -19.3% 32 14.2% 30 0.9% 16 -27.9% 31

Next, let's look at all the single-game ratings from wild-card weekend. The one that is going to stand out to you is Chicago-New Orleans. How on earth does Chicago end up with a higher rating than New Orleans for a game which the Saints totally dominated in the second half? Part of the answer is opponent adjustments, but that's only part of it. The Bears even end up higher than New Orleans without opponent adjustments. This is related to the final Chicago drive. The final Chicago drive was a long series of steady, successful gains... and given the score at the time, totally meaningless. Without that drive, the New Orleans defensive rating for the game would go from 2% DVOA to -37% DVOA, and they would have the higher DVOA for the day. In the offseason, we're hoping to do some studies as to whether it improves the predictiveness of DVOA to lower the weight of (or completely remove) plays because the win probability is close to zero. In the meantime, that drive is in there, and explains the weird single-game ratings. Some other tidbits:

  • This was Pittsburgh's worst defensive performance of the year. Three of their four worst defensive games came in three of the last four weeks.
  • Pittsburgh's offensive DVOA went from -53.9% in the first half of the game to 71.8% in the second half.
  • The Baltimore victory over Tennessee had a really high DVOA for just a 20-13 win, but there was a big discrepancy in yards per play here, 6.5 for Baltimore (not counting kneeldowns) compared to just 4.3 for Tennessee. Baltimore also had significant offensive improvement, from -16.0% in the first half of the game to 47.9% in the second half.
  • You may not have realized how good the Seattle special teams were despite the loss to the Rams and despite the D.J. Reed fumble. There was Reed's 58-yard kickoff return and two field goals over 50 yards by Jason Myers, plus Michael Dickson was outstanding on punts. Six of his eight punts went at least 50 yards in the air, and he had three punts that ended inside the 10. The Rams also had positive special teams for the game since there's nothing they could really do about Myers hitting field goals or Dickson's punt distance.

DVOA (with opponent adjustments)
IND 24% 27% 5% 3%
BUF 35% 44% 14% 6%
LAR 51% -4% -44% 11%
SEA 18% -22% -14% 26%
TB 14% 35% 25% 3%
WAS 26% 26% 5% 4%
BAL 74% 19% -51% 3%
TEN -23% -27% 5% 8%
CHI 25% 17% -11% -2%
NO -14% -4% 2% -8%
CLE 76% 77% 11% 10%
PIT -33% -3% 32% 2%
VOA (no opponent adjustments)
IND 2% 21% 21% 3%
BUF 22% 31% 15% 6%
LAR 33% -7% -29% 11%
SEA -1% -36% -9% 26%
TB 23% 20% 1% 3%
WAS -6% 8% 19% 4%
BAL 62% 25% -35% 3%
TEN -45% -36% 17% 8%
CHI -6% -8% -5% -2%
NO -10% -12% -10% -8%
CLE 60% 55% 5% 10%
PIT -36% 4% 42% 2%


42 comments, Last at 14 Jan 2021, 9:23am

4 Buf vs Ind

Interesting that VOA of Buf came out that much higher than Ind. Indy was basically two extremely unlucky plays away from winning by 7. the 4th down goal line play and the FG that hit the upright. It felt like Buf was extremely lucky to win this one. I would have expected that VOA would be more even. 

7 Bills and math

In reply to by Topas

I love that quote so much:

If Josh Allen succeeds, the Bills will have outsmarted basically all regular humans and the entirety of math itself


I am a Bills fan

I cried when the Bills drafted Allen over Rosen  I hated the pick. Happy to eat crow.


12 Im a Blls fan as well, and I…

In reply to by Topas

Im a Blls fan as well, and I was not giddy about Josh Allen pre-draft, but I did not want Rosen either haha.  I was big on Sam Darnold and once he was off the board I wanted Buffalo to avoid trading up and instead use the six picks they had in the first 3 rounds (two per round) to stock linemen on both sides of the ball.  Picking an OLineman and a DLineman in each of the first 3 rounds would have been an awesome way for Buffalo to fortify its front on each side of the ball and the draft had plenty of good prospects to accomplish that.  Of course now Im very happy with Josh Allen and hope he continues to play well!  The game against the Colts had all of us nervous at the end but the defense pulled through and sent the Colts home!  Now time to avenge last year's (and other seasons) loss to the Ravens!

8 DVOA measures per play

In reply to by Topas

Indy gave up more yards per play, gave up two touchdowns on five drives that started between Buffalo’s 15 and Buffalo’s 3, gave up points on three of Buffalo’s other four drives, and let the Bills get to the 34 on the other. I’m not surprised DVOA liked Buffalo’s game more in the slightest; 50 seconds into the third quarter, this game looked to be on ice despite everything that had happened to that point. And up until that point, Indy had run 24 times for 80 yards. 

13 Yeah overall DVOA tends to…

Yeah overall DVOA tends to give more weight to overcoming bad field position than it does to putting your opponent in bad field position. Which makes sense. Even as a Colts fan, the Bills felt like the better team even though they ended up needing a significant amount of 50/50 plays to go their way to be ahead at the 2:30 mark. DVOA only really sees one of those though (the fumble they recovered on the drive before that). 

5 Of the five teams still…

Of the five teams still remaining that are listed above the Chiefs, the Chiefs have already beaten four of them (all except for the Packers, whom they didn't play). They played all four of those games on the road, too.

15 I would not be surprised if…

I would not be surprised if KC won it all. There isn’t a lot of separation between that whole list of teams, and they could have easily jumped a few spots with small changes (and as Aaron noted, they are higher when ignoring the week 17 game in the playoff simulation). 

I suspect their ranking reflects the fact that they haven’t won by 2 scores in the second half of the season and their defense has notably declined. Great teams have mediocre games, but KC has had an uncomfortable number of them in November and December. I would point out that during that stretch, they beat NO and TB by only 3 points - but those games weren’t that close until late. Maybe KC is the team that “gets up” for the big game. If they are, they’ll win the Super Bowl. But what if they can’t “get up” for a big game in consecutive weeks (they’ve never been tested this way in 2020)? If they have 1 game that reflects their other 6 of 8 games to end the season, they’re going home. 

35 KC not getting up big

I wouldn't worry about KC not getting up big in games.

Remember they were behind by double digits in EVERY playoff game last year including halfway through the 4th quarter in the Super Bowl to a better defensive team than is currently left (except perhaps LA).

They were behind Miami 10 - 0 against Miami. They were down with 2 minutes left against Las Vegas. Down in the second half against New Orleans (albeit briefly) and they were down late against the Falcons (the Falcons record sucks but if you just give them credit for games they had a  95% win chance and blew, they become a playoff team.)

Mahomes doesn't have many fourth quarter comebacks because the Chiefs don't need to come back often. But remember the 2018 game against a hot Ravens with Lamar Jackson having won his first three starts. Mahomes authored an improbable 11 play 3 minute drive to tie the game up with less than a minute left which included converting a 4th and 9 (less than 10% win probability at the time) and 4th and goal from the 5 to win in overtime.

In the 2018 playoff loss he rallied from 14 - 0 down in the first half to tie the game at 31 with a drive for a game tying field goal starting at the -31 with 32 seconds left.

This has greater bearing on today since the roster is fairly similar to 2019 and 2018. The defense is obviously stronger than 2018 and I think has more potential than 2019 while the offensive line is worse but Mahomes still has Kelce and Hill who have gotten better and Watkins.


40 I hear you. I’m just not…

I hear you. I’m just not sold on performances of past years being predictive of current team performance. They stumbled into the playoffs in 2020 - it’s hard to deny that. They may figure it out, but they may lose in the AFC championship. They do really feel like the 2011 Packers. I have no doubt of their capability, but I highly doubt their defense. They don’t need a great defense and the mantra that defense wins championships is outdated, but I think it would be really easy for them to get behind with 1 or 2 bad plays. And I think they might not be capable of getting a stop against the Bills, Ravens, Packers, Saints, or Bucs. They’re really good and they have an advantage by not playing a legitimate playoff team until the AFC Championship game, but they’re also a very flawed team that has little margin for error. They probably deserve to be an underdog in their remaining games (after the Browns obviously). Mahomes may not need any margin for error. If Mahomes is “the best ever” I’m taking KC. If he’s “among the best” I’m taking the field. And in either case, they might just win anyways. 

42 On the one hand, you want to…

On the one hand, you want to discount the Chiefs' 2019 performance.

On the other hand, you want to discount the Chiefs' 2020 performance, where they beat the Ravens, Bills, Saints, and Bucs all in road games.

Their defense is a problem, but it was a problem in 2018 and 2019, too, and they were one offside away from going to two Super Bowls.

I'm not sure how many times they need to just blitz good teams and turn a deficit into a sizeable lead before you acknowledge they can do that. That doesn't mean they will; there are games in which they don't. But that threat is always there.

39 2020 KC mirrors 2011 GB (maybe?)

Bias - I'm a Packers fan. 

Over the second half of this season, KC has felt much like the 2011 GB 15-1 team.  The record similarity is obvious, but there are a few additional factors: They stumbled into the playoffs; Offensive line was banged up; and team seemed to be sleep-walking towards the end.  

KC's offensive weapons are collectively the most talented and explosive I've seen (ever).  Yet with a turnover or two they could be brought down to earth.  

I'd love to see at GB/KC superbowl match-up, but I'd also love to see someone knock them off prior to the SB.  

36 Beat them bad too

They beat the Ravens and Bills by 14 and 9 points and while they beat the Saints and Bucs by 3 at no point did either team ever have the ball and a chance to take the lead in the 4th quarter. The Saints led by 1 point early in the 3rd quarter but quickly went down by 14 at the end of 3.

6 We give Green Bay and Kansas…

  1. We give Green Bay and Kansas City a bonus in the divisional round to represent the historical value of a bye week.

I have been wondering about this. Obviously, the biggest value of a bye is that it's one fewer game you have to win. But do teams actually play comparatively better coming off a bye week? 

14 It's a huge boon to team…

It's a huge boon to team health to have a bye week that late in the season. I imagine that's a significant part of the historical bonus. Both in things that show up in an injury report and a ton of things that don't.

10 Part of Baltimore higher than expected DVOA

  • The Baltimore victory over Tennessee had a really high DVOA for just a 20-13 win, but there was a big discrepancy in yards per play here, 6.5 for Baltimore (not counting kneeldowns) compared to just 4.3 for Tennessee. Baltimore also had significant offensive improvement, from -16.0% in the first half of the game to 47.9% in the second half.

Maybe this is minor, but maybe not.  The Ravens ended the game by taking a knee in the red zone.  DVOA accounts for all of the good things that happened for the Ravens to get to the red zone, the interception, the long run by Jackson, and then another first down.

The bottom line is that there is a point value that can be assigned to having 1st and 10 at the 19.  If you added those points (I am assuming this is worth 4-5 points) to the Ravens 20-13 victory, and make it a 24-13 or 25-13 victory, it would not be as variant of a DVOA for this game.  Anyway you slice it, this was a great DVOA game, Tennessee had no offense after the first quarter.

I am also not sure how DVOA views the Ravens penalties, but the Ravens got -50 penalty yards as compared with the Titans (60 yards to 10 yards).

On the other hand, DVOA does not account for the terrible Mike Vrabel decisions to punt twice on 4th and 2, cutting his teams GWC by about 20%.  


16 I feel sorry for the Rams…

I feel sorry for the Rams going into next week.  A QB with his thumb handing by some pins, Aaron Donald hurt, Cooper Kupp hurt.  Good news:  they won.  Yay.  Bad news:  they won.  They have to play next week.  *mwah mwah*

17 At least they’re such a…

At least they’re such a defensive team, so they’re less QB driven and may be able to manage it a little better. If they keep the score low, a couple turnovers or fluke plays could carry them. 

18 Beating a team 3 times in one year?

I have heard it is hard to beat the same team twice. Does this "stat" indicate maybe a better chance doe TB12 and TB?

Seems unlikely. The Saints D seems to have the TB O nailed down.





22 There is a great article on that

See yesterday's post on <>. They have an article with stats about this very thing. Several of us who comment here comment there as well. Historically, the Saints should win this game about 2/3 of the time, considering they are the "sweeping" team and are at home as well. At the same time, I don't think anyone would assign the Saints a 67% chance to win the game--even as a lifelong Saints fan, I wouldn't put it above 55%. In my book, that 38-3 stomping wasn't quite as good as it looks--the score got out of hand early, and then the Bucs were pushed into going for 4th downs and TD's when a 7-10 point deficit would have dictated different strategy. Also, you have the Saints injuries since then, and the Bucs having AB more integrated into their offense, etc. I would be surprised if either team was ahead by more than one score in the 4th Q. Seems like a game that will go down to the wire.

24 Link

Aaron, thanks for posting the link for people. IIRC, only you guys are allowed to do that. IMO, I think some details and extra research would be beneficial--but I don't know if there are really any firm conclusions that could be drawn, considering that there are 20-something instances over ~75 years.

29 You can post a link.  When…

In reply to by Joseph

You can post a link.  When you're writing a comment, there's a little chain link icon, to the right of the bold (B), italics (I), and quote (") icons.

31 Although you do not want to draw firm conclusions

In reply to by Joseph

Although you do not want to draw firm conclusions from the sample size, I am thankful for the article.  If the Ravens beat Buffalo, I can keep my sanity and root for Cleveland to beat KC on Sunday as the Ravens beat Cleveland twice this year.

41 I’m going with the…

In reply to by Joseph

I’m going with the conclusion that the team who wins the first 2 is usually better and better teams usually win. 

19 I like Buffalo to beat…

I like Buffalo to beat Baltimore next week. Sean McDermott (and staff) has impressed me for a couple of years now with their game-planning, and I expect them to come up with a good scheme to limit what has frankly become a totally one-dimensional offense. 

On the other side of the ball, it's a fantastic matchup of strength vs. strength. But Buffalo are so deep at receiver they are bound to create mismatches somewhere. There's always a nag in the back of the mind that Josh Allen could suddenly implode, but all the recent evidence suggests it is unlikely.....

21 DVOA numbers are scary thinking about piles of cash for Lamar

Football outsiders QB DVOA and DYAR numbers for 2020 are telling me that Lamar Jackson's most comparable QB's are:

1. BEN (Blah Efficiency Now) Roethlisberger

2. Jared (Grinding On Four Fingers) GOFF (note that numbers compiled are with 5 healthy fingers)

3. TEDDY (Tolerably Efficient Dink Dunk Yards) Bridgewater

4. A combo for which I have no acronym, a combo of 5 games of Dak Prescott and 9 games of Gardner Minshew.

Note that the above QB's are the only ones that are have a passing DVOA of between +2 and -2.  Do not include my imaginary combo of Dak Prescott and Gardner Minshew since that is not a real QB.  The point is that this combo will get you 14 games of Jackson like numbers.

Jackson's rushing adds nothing to his DVOA this year.

This is horrifying as a Ravens fan.  We hope for last year's Jackson like play, not part of this year's Jacksonville like play.

FO 2018 numbers are not kind to him either, even Joe Flacco was better.  The fumbling machine that Jackson was make him awful by DVOA.  I must admit, had the refs not blown dead a fumble that would have been returned for a TD against Cleveland in the final game of the season, the Ravens would not have made the playoffs that year.  However, they were 6-1 in the regular season with Jackson, 4-5 with Flacco.

By FO 2019 numbers, Jackson was excellent

It is hard to judge a QB by won - loss record, but the Ravens record under Jackson is tremendous

6-1 in 2018

14-2 in 2019

11-4 in 2020 (missed 1 game)

31-7 overall in regular season

1-2 in playoffs, since he can not, oh wait he can, win a playoff game.  We know that no one at FO ever said or would say that he couldn't win a playoff game, just foolish media.

FO numbers tell me that the Ravens are winning by defense and special teams with a barely above mediocre offense.

The truck is warming up, it will arrive with the piles of cash at Lamar Jackson's feet within two years.  

FO outsiders numbers are telling me that the Ravens are playing with a very different version of Joe Flacco, but yet are getting the same Flacco results. In other words, winning with a mediocre QB on his rookie contract.

Once the money goes to the QB, some of the money now applied on defense goes away and it will be difficult to invest in a much needed wide receiver.

Is FO missing something, that is, that Jackson makes the other Ravens running backs better because the defense keys on stopping Jackson's runs, or are Raven's fans in for a period of mediocre at best football once Jackson is off of his rookie deal?

Why would anyone expect Jackson to improve, as he ages, his running skills will decline so unless his passing skills improve dramatically, he will not be better.  Why would anyone invest the boatload of $$$ needed to retain his services if they are relying on improved passing skills at this point of his career?

Do the Ravens have a 3 year window to win the Super Bowl that closes after the 2022 season?

Am I misreading the FO numbers?  I would love a FO quick analysis on Jackson.  After his subpar regular season (21st in passing and rushing DVOA), he is ranked 11 of 12 for QB's in wild card week in the Quick Reads column.  Yet the Ravens had offensive DVOA of 19% for the week.  How did they do that?


25 AFC QB’S youth vs NFC experienced are what is left

Mahomes 2017 draft, other 3 QB’s left in AFC drafted in 2018, I won’t call the early 40’s old so I will call all but Goff who are left experienced in NFC.  

What will AFC look like in a few years with these 4 teams left, Herbert, Burrow, Tua, and Jacksonville and Jets taking QB’s?  I ll leave Drew Lock out of this for now, but if he develops that is 10 QB’s that are young.  Also Watson if he stays in AFC.


27 Herbert still plays in a…

Herbert still plays in a cursed indian burial ground, and will never even sniff an AFCCG with an intact ACL.

Burrows plays for an owner so cheap you'd think they ran a midwestern hockey team located south of a Great Lake

The Jaguars and the Jets are still the Jaguars and the Jets, and you can't play every game in London because eventually the UN treats it as a war crime.

Tua is not Dan Marino, and even the actual Marino couldn't do anything in his last 15 years.

Houston is going to ruin Watson or die trying.


32 Russell Wilson ain't going anywhere

Russ's already said he expects to play into his 40's.  He's never had a losing season, he's never missed a single down due to injury & from what Michael-Shawn Dugar over at The Athletic reported last off-season he's only ever missed 2(!) practices...and the second one was for bereavement.

33 Any study on coaches being more conservative in playoffs?

EDJ sports only found 3 decisions of 1% or better increase of game winning chance by going for it.

Conversely, EDJ sports bottom 5 decisions totaled -30% vs the +3.7 percent for the 3 good decisions.  Pete Carroll had 4 decisions to punt/kick FG's on fourth and short and could not even make the bottom 5 list.   I am counting the bad decision to punt in the fourth quarter on 4th and 6 after his offense was on the field for 4th and 1 and committed a false start.  Twice he tried a 50+ yard field goal, once on 4th and 1, once on 4th and 3.

The Rams, Cleveland, and the Ravens should have awarded a game ball to Pete Carroll, Mike Tomlin and Mike Vrabel respectively. 

This weekend was a horror show for analytic coaching.

34 Adjusting for meaningless end of game stats

Frankly I already thought this was done. How can an 80 yard run at 0-0 in the 1Q be "worth" as much as an 80 yard run at 31 - 10 with 2 minutes left?

How can an 80 yard run at 20 - 20 in a tie game with 1 minute left not be worth more?

I always thought there was some adjustment for how much the play affected win potential. Guess I was wrong. I guess that's why the defending Super Bowl Champs with the best record and wins over Number 1, 3, 4 and 6 in weighted DVOA and sole one score loss in the first half of the season come in at #7.


Also note wins against the Bills and Ravens were two score wins and despite 3 point wins against the Bucs and Saints at no time did either opponent have the ball and the ability to take the lead at any time in the fourth quarter.

37 "Frankly I already thought…

"Frankly I already thought this was done. How can an 80 yard run at 0-0 in the 1Q be "worth" as much as an 80 yard run at 31 - 10 with 2 minutes left?

How can an 80 yard run at 20 - 20 in a tie game with 1 minute left not be worth more?"

That type of approach could devolve into "the team that won was the better team".  If you're trying to separate team quality from luck, it's reasonable to evaluate each play independently, regardless of when in the game it happened or what the score board says.  There's been on-going discussion about "garbage time" being different, but even there FO has found that discounting garbage time lowers predictability of future, rather than raising it.

38 The garbage time issue

It makes sense to me that garbage time would be predictive.  If someone is a slow tight end, he will not catch an 80 yard pass at any point of the game.  

If a backup QB is used during garbage time, his success or failure may lead the team to future success or failure.  Look what happened to Philadelphia in the final game of the season vs Washington in their playoff game against Tampa Bay.