Football Outsiders content published by ESPN

ESPN: Most Likely Worst-to-First Teams

Matthew Stafford
Photo: USA Today Sports Images

It's time for our annual look at the most likely teams to go worst-to-first on ESPN+. This year, it's joined by a look at the most likely teams to go the other way, from first to worst. We also did a new simulation for this article that accounts for COVID opt-outs and the Jamal Adams trade.

View Full Article


3 comments, Last at 12 Aug 2020, 11:54am

1 The 2018 and 2019 Lions are…

The 2018 and 2019 Lions are a case study in why coaching matters.  They have some talented players (even if they lack depth), but the coaching staff makes them less than the sum of their parts.  They're the anti-McVeigh Rams.

2 Bevell seemed like he did a…

Bevell seemed like he did a pretty nice job with the offense last year before Stafford went down, though. I was honestly pretty surprised. If he can help keep Stafford on a similar trajectory (4th in DVOA, 6th in QBR), that could definitely be enough to paper over Patricia's defense and decision-making to get to 10 wins or so.

3 Bevell was certainly a…

Bevell was certainly a pleasant suprise, but I expect Stafford to regress about to around the 8-12 range as far as his passing efficiency rankings, which is more in line with his career averages.  In that scenario, I think their best hope is that the new players on defense drag them from terrible to mediocre, and the Lions win a weak division at 9-7 (IMO the Almanac's projections for them are spot on).