We hope everyone had a safe and Merry Christmas, especially all of you avid NFL prognosticators out there. The weekend was full of shocking finishes and upsets that continued to sculpt the postseason. As for the accuracy of the BES, our Week 15 report went 10-6 (.625) predicting Week 16 winners based strictly on its rankings. Over the last six weeks, the BES has a record of 65-28 (.698), still holding at 70% heading into Week 17.
Most notable in this week’s report is the Packers (9-6) breaching the top-5 after a huge leap from No. 12 last week. They’ve had a remarkable +.71 point surge in their BES Overall score from our Week 14 rankings when they were 18th with a score of 2.34. That is a powerful sign of the momentum they’ve gathered, particularly on offense ( No. 3 in BES Offense), as they travel to face the Lions (9-6) for the NFC North Championship in Week 17.
Meanwhile, the Patriots (13-2) extended their late-season hold on the No. 1 spot in our rankings to three weeks, creating some distance between themselves and the surging Steelers (10-5) who remain at No. 2.
The Patriots are becoming dangerously balanced as the playoffs loom closer. They’ve owned the No. 1 BES Offense for the last six weeks and now boast a defense that has risen to No. 3 in the BES. These numbers are befitting of a team widely considered the favorite to represent the AFC in Super Bowl 51.
The Raiders (12-3) hopes of an eventual postseason clash with the Patriots took a monumental blow when quarterback Derek Carr suffered a broken fibula in a 33-25 win over the Colts (7-8).
Carr’s backup, Matt McGloin is now entrusted with securing the AFC West title on the road against the Broncos (8-7) in Week 17. Fortunately, the Raiders defense continues to rise in our BES Defense rankings, registering a score of 2.80 at No. 7 and leads all teams with a daunting Takeaways score of 3.70. That bodes well against a Broncos offense ranked 29th by the BES.
Requisite Reads for Newcomers:
Pats vs Cowgirls
Steelers at #2! Awesome!
Patriots better watch out for the Steelers Brian McGraw …and the Cowboys have to worry about the Packers and Giants
Wow chiefs titans ravens ahead of Cowboys on offense rating HAHA
No one wants to play the Steelers or the Chiefs right now. Once the Steeler D line gets back healthy we will be running on all cylinders. The Pats have some definite chinks in their armor. I dont think they can handle the explosiveness of the Chiefs or Steelers right now.
The patriots defense hasn’t went up against an elite Offense like the Steelers. I know they beat us but Big Ben wasn’t playing. But I do believe this year it’s all about matchups, patriots pull the 1 seed they may see KC in the 2nd round and their defense can give Brady fits.
Falcons with the 5th best offense? That doesn’t jibe at all with reality. They score on over 50% of their drives..no one else is even close. They are like 19th in number of offensive drives in the NFL this year because they always score keeping them on the field longer. That in a way penalizes the counting stats. Their offense is even better than the raw numbers show.
Actually the Falcons are 4th in BES Offense. Their Point Yield score of 3.23 is the highest of all 32 teams in this report. So we don’t disagree with their scoring output. What hurts them a bit is their Pass Protection score of 2.53, second worst among teams in the top-10. That score is supported by NFL data where they’ve allowed 2.4 sacks per game (21st in NFL) and 100 QB hits (26th) in the NFL.
That makes sense. Thanks for the explanation. However, I think measures like pass protection score are components of what drives the offensive results. IMO, offensive production is the product of things like pass protection so counting items like that as being just as important as actual offensive production IMO doesn’t really make sense.
Valid point. Keep in mind though that the BES considers pass protection as key to winning games, not just a component of offensive production. Most, if not all coaches and front office personnel would concur thus why OL, particularly left tackles, are a premium position. Pass Protection is an essential foundation of the game, especially in today’s NFL.
Notice a common trait among the BES top-10 teams other than the Buccaneers is a Pass Pro score above 2.50. Note that the Buccaneers need a miracle to clinch a playoff berth
Conversely, the majority of the bottom-11 teams have Pass Pro scores below 2.10, are eliminated from the playoffs and average roughly five wins on the season. Most of them will prioritize the QB and/or OL positions in the offseason.
Hopefully that illustrates why we treat Pass Protection with the emphasis we do in terms of our data. There will always be debatable and/or disagreeable results with any metric but we stand by our report. Nonetheless, you raised a great point.