In case you miss the links I send out on Twitter, Deadspin's sub-site Regressing is running a series on the biggest plays of the week. I created a tool for them them lists the biggest plays in terms of Win Probability Added (WPA).
Reading the comments, people seem to take delight in the negative plays for whatever reason. Cutler's interceptions appear to invite a lot of anti-fans. There's also loyal fans who like to pile on the misfortunes of their own team out of frustration. I can see that this week with E.J. Manuel's bad day yesterday.
But keep in mind a "negative" play is all in the perspective. A bad play to an offense is a great play to a defense. Statistically, there is no good and bad. Manuel's interception to Watt was both a poor by play by a quarterback and an alert and athletic play by a defensive lineman.
If and when Regressing gets tired of posting these, I'll make the tool public so you can look up the most agonizing moments in your hometown team's season anytime you want.
Brian Burke makes his first regular season appearance on the podcast to recap week two and discuss his latest research. Brian explains his break-even models for two point conversions and challenges and describes how the WOPR allows him to create test data for all sorts of interesting hypothetical game strategies. He also discusses an upcoming post that examines when teams should start running their "four minute offense". Dave and Brian close out the episode with an update on the 4th down bot and the new home and format for Brian's weekly game predictions.
This episode is sponsored by DraftKings…
Weekly game probabilities for week 4 are now up at Sports on Earth. Probabilities are a blend of the pre-season team strength estimates with a strong dose of stats from weeks 1, 2 and 3.
Please remember that the projected scores are not to be taken terribly seriously. Do not bet the mortgage on them as they are not intended to graded against the spread. They are simply a "maximum-plausibility" estimate given respective team scoring tendencies.
The Chiefs lost to the Broncos 24-17 on Sunday and had a chance to at least tie the game at the very end. Kansas City kept Peyton Manning off the field for an enormous chunk of the second half. The Broncos offense had only two drives after halftime (not including the final kneel down), one for a punt, one for a field goal, totaling just 8:51 in possession. The longest drive came from the Chiefs at the very start of the second half, where they ran 23 plays, taking 10 minutes off the clock... and ultimately missed a field goal. This got me thinking, how does drive length (in minutes) affect the…
With 7:15 left in the 4th quarter against DEN, KC's Knile Davis ran for a 4-yard TD, narrowing the Broncos' lead 21-16 pending the extra point or two-point conversion. Andy Reid elected for the extra point, and following the kick the Chiefs trailed by 4 points rather than 3 or 5 points resulting from a two-point try.
NFL coaches typically adhere to what's known as the Vermeil Chart for making two-point decisions. The chart was created by Dick Vermeil when he was offensive coordinator for UCLA over 40 years ago. It's a very simple chart that simply looks at score difference prior to any…
Search here for over 1,500 research and analysis articles at AFA and the AFA Archives.
Brian Burke is back for the final AFA podcast of the 2014-15 NFL season. Brian and Dave discuss the Patriots deflated ball controversy with a quick recap of high school physics before analyzing the key analytical storylines of Super Bowl XLIX.