Jets-Pats and Week 7 Power Rankings

Tonight’s game should be relatively straightforward.  The Patriots are the better team, especially given their last few outings.  They’re at home.  They started favored by a touchdown and the line has moved closer to 10.  All three models have them as about a touchdown favorite, so they would lean towards taking the Jets to cover.  But given their record on picking games so far this year, it might be better to take the Pats.  So let’s just look at the power rankings. Continue reading

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NFL Week 6 Results

I was traveling for most of the week, so let’s update the model results real quick before I fall too far behind.  Or forget entirely, since I have no idea what happened this past weekend while I was driving. Continue reading

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NFL Week 6 Picks

As promised, the Thursday night game went against me.  But at least it was a close one this time, with the Texans putting up a good fight in a game they could have given up on after the first quarter.

Turning to the Lions, the line against the Vikings has been flying around.  Detroit was originally favored by a field goal, but with Megatron looking like a no-go and Bridgewater back for Minnesota, it’s flipped all the way to Vikings -2.  I think this is interesting to the extent that even with Johnson only making one catch last week, the Lions still would have won if they had a kicker capable of making field goals in a dome.  Maybe more relevant, Stafford still averaged 7.5 yards per dropback.  The passing game did ok.  On the other hand, if Bridgewater tweaks his ankle again, the Vikings are back to relying on Christian Ponder.  In case you’ve forgotten, Ponder has a career completion percentage of 59.8%, about as many touchdowns as interceptions, 6.3 yards per dropback, and a 76 QB rating.  But let’s see what the models think; they don’t even take injuries into account. Continue reading

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Colts-Texans and Week 6 Power Rankings

As noted last post, basically every Thursday night game I’ve broken down so far this season has gone the wrong way.  Is one team better on defense?  They give up at least 30.  Is one team better at passing?  They can barely move the ball.  So I expect the same thing to happen tonight. Continue reading

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NFL Week 5 Results

Obviously I should stop talking about specific games.  In the past few weeks I’ve put a little more detail into Atlanta- Tampa (models roughly agreed with the spread and Atlanta won in a huge blowout), Giants-Washington (models liked Washington; Giants won handily while I sat Larry Donnell), Vikings-Packers (models like Minnesota; Packers looked like the Packers are supposed to), and Bengals-Patriots (models like Cincy; the line even swung to favor Cincy; the Bengals got thrashed).  So if the article for Thursday’s game just has some power rankings and an ‘enjoy the game!’ tagged on the end, now you know why.  Let’s see how the models did on every game I didn’t reason through. Continue reading

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NFL Week 5 Picks

Once again, the Thursday night pick didn’t go so well.  Christian Ponder being on a football field didn’t help (everyone loses when that happens), but this was a case of the Packers playing like they were supposed to all year even though they haven’t all year.  The Vikings being kind of terrible isn’t all that surprising, but Green Bay’s next few weeks will be informative.  If they’re actually good, then they should look pretty good playing Miami and Carolina the next two weeks and put on a good show in New Orleans before heading into the bye at maybe 5-3 if not 6-2.  If they’re more like the team we saw play Seattle and Detroit, they might still get there at 5-3 but could be 4-4 and everyone will be a little unsettled.  But those are predictions for future days; let’s look at the rest of week 5 first. Continue reading

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Packers-Vikings and the Power Rankings

Tonight’s game is a big one in the NFC North.  The Lions sit at the top of the division at 3-1, but everyone else is tied at 2-2.  And as I keep harping on, the most important games involve teams with average records.  The Lions host the Bills this weekend and are currently big favorites, but it’s hard to say with a new QB coming in (Orton for Buffalo) and the Lions being the Lions.  Chicago is traveling to Carolina, who may not have any running backs but is still a decent team.  So it’s possible that the winner of this game will end up in a tie for first place with a division win under their belt. Continue reading

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