Happy New Year! We want to take a moment to thank you for following the BES Report throughout the season. It’s gratifying to know we have a loyal readership which we hope will continue to grow in coming years.
As for our final Week 17 report, the Minnesota Vikings (13-3) close the season with a five-week reign atop the BES. That stretch matches the Kansas City Chiefs (10-6) five-week stay at No. 1 from Week 2 to Week 6.
Of note, The Vikings, Chiefs, New Orleans Saints (Week 7-Week 10), Philadelphia Eagles (Week 11-12) and Dallas Cowboys (Week 1) were the five different teams to own the No. 1 spot in the BES this season. All except the Cowboys went on to clinch playoff berths as well as their division.
The Patriots were the final No. 1 team in the BES last year. They of course went on to win Super Bowl LI in spectacular fashion. It remains to be seen if the Vikings reach Super Bowl LII. However, if they do they’d be the first team in league history to host a Super Bowl on their home field.
Final Accuracy Update
Week 17 was brutal for the BES as it went 7-9 (.438) based on our Week 16 BES Rankings. As a result, we close the season with a record of 156-85 (.647). That includes an 85-36 (.702) record over the final eight weeks of the season. Here’s an overview of how the BES performed from week to week:
Chiefs: Hottest Team in the BES Top-10 – The Kansas City Chiefs (10-6) are riding the wave of a four-game winning streak which vaulted them from No. 11 to No. 7 in our Week 17 report. Over that four-week stretch, they’ve gained a staggering +.63 points in their BES Overall score.
One notable area of improvement for the Chiefs has been Point Yield where they had a 1.87 in our Week 14 report and now possess a 2.57, a phenomenal +.70 point improvement. That’s a credit to offensive coordinator Matt Nagy who was given playcalling duties from coach Andy Reid in Week 13.
Likewise, on defense the Chiefs made another strong improvement in Takeaways which rose +.86 points from 2.13 in our Week 14 BES rankings to 2.99 this week. The Chiefs have averaged 1.6 takeaways per game on the season which ranks eighth in the NFL. However, they lead the league with 3.0 takeaways per game over the last three contests.
Overall, it’ll be interesting to see how deep this momentum takes the Chiefs into the postseason. They’ll host the Tennessee Titans (9-7) in the wildcard round. Beyond that looms a visit to either the Pittsburgh Steelers (13-3) or New England Patriots (13-3), two teams responsible for the Chiefs last two playoff losses.
Final Category Leaders
Ball Security: Carolina Panthers (3.34)
Pass Protection: New Orleans Saints (3.24)
Point Yield: Pittsburgh Steelers (3.50)
Ball Control: Minnesota Vikings (3.21)
Point Suppression: Los Angeles Chargers (3.41)
Pass Pressure: Washington Redskins (3.47)
Takeaways: Chicago Bears (3.55)