Writers of Pro Football Prospectus 2008

27 May 2014

Mandatory Monday: The Hope Index

Something a little frothy for Memorial Day weekend, in part because I am knee deep in FO Almanac chapters! (And also Indy 500 coverage and a video project for Sports on Earth and on and on).

Posted by: Mike Tanier on 27 May 2014

11 comments, Last at 29 May 2014, 12:58pm by Travis


by Theo :: Tue, 05/27/2014 - 8:56am

"Give us someone besides Ben Roethlisberger and Troy Polamalu to believe in"

Lawrence Timmons is the man on the Steelers defense, not Polamalu.

by MilkmanDanimal :: Tue, 05/27/2014 - 12:41pm

There should be potential Regime Change bonus points based on how loathed the prior participants were. Minor boost to the Redskins for getting rid of the Shanahan sideshow, massive boost to the de-Schianozation of Tampa.

by Sixknots :: Tue, 05/27/2014 - 1:29pm

Snap-weighted age would disagree that SF has hope generated by the abundance of youth. Everything else, for sure.

by Joe Curwen :: Tue, 05/27/2014 - 3:45pm

I'd add SOS to the Hope Index; other than that, seems like a reasonable stab at how hopeful a team ought to be for the upcoming season.

In measuring how hopeful a team ought to be, it does less well in measuring how hopeful a team actually is. Some teams have "hope gaps". San Francisco as a team is less hopeful than they ought to be because they don't believe they can get around Seattle, whereas San Diego is more hopeful than they ought to be because they remain confident that they can beat Denver.

Correcting for the Hope Gap would cause a reranking that would reflect the enthusiasm of each team's fan base. A team like San Francisco would still be in the top 5 but Cleveland would fall to the bottom 5 despite all the positive moves this offseason.


by Perfundle :: Tue, 05/27/2014 - 5:42pm

If the playoff game had been like the 42-13 and 29-3 stompings in the regular season (where Davis was lost to injury for more than half of both games), then maybe, but I don't see how a decided-in-the-last-minute 23-17 loss would make the Niners doubt they can get past Seattle.

by andrew :: Tue, 05/27/2014 - 7:44pm

I could make a case for having more hope at a team contending for #1 overall (and Jameis or whoever) than a team whose history suggests another year in the 7-9 to 9-7 range.

by serutan :: Tue, 05/27/2014 - 10:13pm

I liked the comment at SOE that the 1999 Rams would have had a Hope Index of 2.

Oh, and the 2013 Seahawks:

0 points for Super Bowl appearances in the previous 5 years
0 points for a QB having a Super Bowl appearance
0 points for a Super Bowl coach
1 point for winning seasons in the previous 5 years
3 points for having a Pro Bowler in 2012
0.5 points for having a Pro Bowler in 2011 (Assuming alternates don't count)
0 points for a new QB
3 points for a 2012 QB (Russell Wilson).
0 points for a new coach
0 points for a new regime
0 points for draft improvement (they drafted too low)
-1 points for playing in the NFC West.

6.5 total


Was wr

by tuluse :: Tue, 05/27/2014 - 10:23pm

You missed a point for making the playoffs the previous year. Also, I'm not sure I'd dock a point based on the 2012 NFC West. The 49ers were good, but the Cardinals and Rams were not.

Not that 8.5 is a great score either.

by Lance :: Wed, 05/28/2014 - 11:36am

That was my comment. Whenever I think about predictions, I always go back to the 99 Rams. I realize that they are, to an extent, an exception. But still: you never know if that ex-grocery bagger will turn into a potential MVP, and a bunch of no-name defensive players will become Pro-Bowlers.

by Noah Arkadia :: Thu, 05/29/2014 - 11:25am

That's why there's always hope. Unless you get a zero. That would be awful.

Who, me?

by Travis :: Thu, 05/29/2014 - 12:58pm

The 2012 Bills scored MINUS half-a-point (0.5 for Kyle Williams making the Pro Bowl in 2010, -1 for being stuck in the AFC East with the Patriots).