know who to pull for: week thirteen (1 Viewer)

st dude

The dotless one
Super Moderator
Diamond VIP Contributor
Joined
Feb 1, 1998
Messages
15,466
Reaction score
16,956
Offline
At first glance the playoff picture in the NFC seems very muddled with many teams still in the hunt. That is true if you include the non-BCS NFC West in the discussion. Three teams are in the hunt for the West division title. Even Arizona at 3-8 is only two games out.

A closer look tells us it is not that complicated now. A wild card team will not advance from the West. That means the North, South and East will get five spots, three division champs and two wild card spots.

There are only seven teams realistically competing for those five spots, eight if you include Washington at 5-6 and think they can win out. I do not think they can but if they win a couple in a row we can include them in the analysis. The seven teams most probably in the wild card discussion in order are:

Atlanta - 9-2
Chicago - 8-3
New Orleans - 8-3
Philadelphia - 7-4
New York Giants 7-4
Green Bay - 7-4
Tampa Bay - 7-4

All things being equal one might divide 5 by 7 and conclude each team has a 71% chance of making the playoffs. All things are not equal. Atlanta is two games up on four of the teams and is a heavy favorite to make the playoffs as a division champ or wildcard. New Orleans and Chicago have better odds than the four 7-4 teams. This does not factor in the relative difficulty of the team's remaining schedules. I would say New Orleans has better than an 80% chance of making the playoffs, odds that could go significantly down if the Saints get upset this week.:no:

It all certainly does make kwtpf exciting. This week's schedule contain's probably the biggest kwtpf game of the year to date for the Saints. People may be surprised to read it is not as easy a call as you think.

5-6 Houston @ 7-4 Philadelphia - It must be hard to be a Texans Football fan. They are the biggest tease team in football. They opened the season beating Indianapolis and followed that up with a win at Washington. Since then they have been 3-6. The good news for Houston is that they are in the AFC South, the kissing cousin of the NFC West, and are only one game out. Philadelphia has probably been the most consistently good NFC team over the last ten years. They are in a dogfight in the East (no pun intended Vick fans) and need to win this game. There is no guarantee that a wildcard team comes out of the East. Pull for Houston.

5-6 Washington @ 7-4 New York Giants - This is a big game. It is a virtual elimination game for the Redskins, which is good. They will have to pull out all the stops to beat the Giants. A few weeks ago some had crowned the Giants as the team to beat in the NFC. Back to back losses to division rivals Dallas and Philadelphia had the Giants reeling. They were fortunate to beat Jacksonville last week. Our wild card hopes would be significantly enhanced by a Redskin win. Pull hard for Washington.

8-3 Chicago @ 2-9 Detroit - These teams played each other the first game of the season and the end of the game set the tone for both teams for the rest of the year. Calvin Johnson caught a touchdown pass to beat Chicago that somehow turned out not to be a touchdown. Detroit would go on to find all kinds of other heartbreak ways to lose close games. The Bears found ways to win close games. After beating Philly last week the Bears have actually gotten some respect around the league. Few have wanted to believe they are for real. The fact is that even though he is arrogant and unlikeable, Jay Cutler can throw the rock. Pull for the football gods to smile on Detroit and give those guys a freaking break. The Lions would love to play the spoiler role in this game. The Bears are not who we thought they were.

4-7 San Francisco @ 7-4 Green Bay - Green Bay scares me. They have a solid team and should have beat Atlanta in Atlanta. I figure them to either win the North or to get one of the wild cards. If the Saints end up with a wild card, I would rather play in Chicago than Green Bay. The 49ers are still alive and have decent talent. It would be an upset for them to win, but not a huge upset. It would be huge for the Saints playoff hopes. Pull for 49ers.

9-2 Atlanta @ 7-4 Tampa Bay - If your goal is division crown and top seed, pull for Tampa. If you want to improve your overall chances of ensuring a playoff spot, pull for Atlanta. Heresy you say? At least hear me out. Should the Saints lose to Cincinnati (it could happen) and Tampa win, the Saints would suddenly be in a fight for their playoff lives. The Saints have a tough schedule going in with two road games in which they will likely be underdogs, at Baltimore and at Atlanta. A 2-3 finish for the Saints is very possible which would put them at 10-6. We do not want the final game of the season with Tampa to be for a playoff berth, we want Tampa eliminated before then. That being said, we still pull for Tampa. A Tampa win over Atlanta gives the Saints the tiebreak over Atlanta if the Saints beat Atlanta and Tampa (we would be tied head up with Atlanta and have a better division record). Put another way, if Tampa wins, the Saints control their destiny in the NFC South. :9: It will not be all bad if Tampa loses, but I like our chances in Atlanta in a game for the marbles.

8-3 New Orleans @ 2-9 Cincinnati - Thank goodness for spell check. Is there a harder NFL city to spell than Cincinnati? No matter what I do I always end up spelling it with two t's. It's a hard team to figure out as well. They are one of the only teams in the NFL with a supposedly top notch quarterback that is doing so poorly. They did beat a tough Raven team and have had some close games with good teams. They have also stunk it up pretty bad. The Bengals lost close games to our big division foes, Atlanta and Tampa. The Saints have played down to their competition several times this year so this one is no gimme. On the bright side, the Saints are on a four game win streak and their consistency of play has improved. They are as healthy as they have been in a while. This is the type of game where you want to get up on the other team quickly (and as I write that I am trying to think of what type of game you would be in where you don't want to get up on your opponent quickly :D). You get the point. The difference between 9-3 and 8-4 at this point is huge. Actually it's only a one game difference, but a 9-3 team is almost a lock for a playoff berth, an 8-4 team has less margin for error. We need this game to keep pace with the Falcons.
 
Last edited:

Flipx99

Thanks MJ!
Joined
May 5, 2008
Messages
15,380
Reaction score
15,721
Offline
Atlanta loses this week. We just thought last week was the week we wnated them to lose, but no, losing a division game is moar better.
 

endlessHIMdark

Hall-of-Famer
Joined
Sep 23, 2008
Messages
2,569
Reaction score
427
Location
Arlington, WA
Offline
Why are the redskins still in the discussion but not the seahawks? I think they're equally unimpressive.
 
OP
st dude

st dude

The dotless one
Super Moderator
Diamond VIP Contributor
Joined
Feb 1, 1998
Messages
15,466
Reaction score
16,956
Offline
Why are the redskins still in the discussion but not the seahawks? I think they're equally unimpressive.

Read the post again. The NFC West teams do not significantly factor into our playoff chances at this point. There is no West team with a realistic shot at a wildcard.
 

endlessHIMdark

Hall-of-Famer
Joined
Sep 23, 2008
Messages
2,569
Reaction score
427
Location
Arlington, WA
Offline
Read the post again. The NFC West teams do not significantly factor into our playoff chances at this point. There is no West team with a realistic shot at a wildcard.

I understand what you are saying, but I happen to disagree. You list Washington as a possible playoff team, but count out Seattle (as well as the rams, but lets assume they win the division) even though they have the same record. IMO, Seattle is on par with Washington, with a much easier schedule.

Seattle's remaining schedule = vs Panthers, @ San Fran, vs Falcons, @ Bucs, vs St. Louis.

Washington's remaining schedule = @ Giants, vs Bucs, @ Cowboys, @ Jags, vs Giants.

Granted, for the NFC West to get a wildcard, Seattle and St. Louis would need to win out and get some luck from the rest of the league, which is highly unlikely. My point is that I find it just as unlikely that Washington gets a playoff spot.
 
OP
st dude

st dude

The dotless one
Super Moderator
Diamond VIP Contributor
Joined
Feb 1, 1998
Messages
15,466
Reaction score
16,956
Offline
I understand what you are saying, but I happen to disagree. You list Washington as a possible playoff team, but count out Seattle (as well as the rams, but lets assume they win the division) even though they have the same record. IMO, Seattle is on par with Washington, with a much easier schedule.

Seattle's remaining schedule = vs Panthers, @ San Fran, vs Falcons, @ Bucs, vs St. Louis.

Washington's remaining schedule = @ Giants, vs Bucs, @ Cowboys, @ Jags, vs Giants.

Granted, for the NFC West to get a wildcard, Seattle and St. Louis would need to win out and get some luck from the rest of the league, which is highly unlikely. My point is that I find it just as unlikely that Washington gets a playoff spot.

This seems a bit picky. I did not include Washington in the main discussion because they have so little chance of getting a wild card. I mentioned them because it was possible if they win out.

For an NFC West team to get a wild card not one, but two very bad teams would probably have to win out. It takes a while to write the kwtpf post and I thought that the odds of two bad teams winning out were so remote it was not worth mentioning.

Its hardly worth mentioning that the Redskins are in it, but the chances of one bad team winning out are way, way greater than the chances two bad teams win out.

This is all overlooking the more important fact that neither you or I will ever get back the time in our lives we spent debating these nonsensical scenarios. :ezbill:
 
Last edited:

endlessHIMdark

Hall-of-Famer
Joined
Sep 23, 2008
Messages
2,569
Reaction score
427
Location
Arlington, WA
Offline
This seems a bit picky. I did not really Washington in the main discussion because they have so little chance of getting a wild card. I mentioned them because it was possible if they win out.

For an NFC West team to get a wild card not one, but two very bad teams would probably have to win out. It takes a while to write the kwtpf post and I thought that the odds of two bad teams winning out were so remote it was not worth mentioning.

Its hardly worth mentioning that the Redskins are in it, but the chances of one bad team winning out are way, way greater than the chances two bad teams win out.

This is all overlooking the more important fact that neither you or I will ever get back the time in our lives we spent debating these nonsensical scenarios. :ezbill:

So true. For that, you get this: :potd:
 

LSSpam

Practice Squad
Joined
Jun 2, 2002
Messages
28,419
Reaction score
8,141
Age
39
Location
Oxford, MS
Offline
4-7 San Francisco @ 7-4 Green Bay - Green Bay scares me.

Green Bay has quite effectively established themselves as San Diego East. Or San Diego North. Whatever. Point is, if we play well I have zero fear of them in the playoffs. Unless Drew Brees is to Green Bay as Peyton Manning is to San Diego. counterjinxcounterjinxcounterjinx
 

LSSpam

Practice Squad
Joined
Jun 2, 2002
Messages
28,419
Reaction score
8,141
Age
39
Location
Oxford, MS
Offline
All things being equal one might divide 5 by 7 and conclude each team has a 71% chance of making the playoffs. All things are not equal. Atlanta is two games up on four of the teams and is a heavy favorite to make the playoffs as a division champ or wildcard. New Orleans and Chicago have better odds than the four 7-4 teams. This does not factor in the relative difficulty of the team's remaining schedules. I would say New Orleans has better than an 80% chance of making the playoffs, odds that could go significantly down if the Saints get upset this week.:no:

Someone actually took the time to do the statistical analysis for us.

This involves FO DVOA formula, which you may or may not agree with. It's definantly debatable. But regardless of whether you consider it effective or gimmicky, it does do, at least, a fairly good job of ranking teams into tiers (top 10, bottom 10, etc) so that the results presented are fairly predicative.

Anyways the odds for the Saints right now, based on FootballOutsiders is that have a
14.8% for the #1 seed
69.7% for the WC
and the combined playoff odds (not just #1 or WC, but #2-#4 seeds) is 87%
 
OP
st dude

st dude

The dotless one
Super Moderator
Diamond VIP Contributor
Joined
Feb 1, 1998
Messages
15,466
Reaction score
16,956
Offline
Someone actually took the time to do the statistical analysis for us.

This involves FO DVOA formula, which you may or may not agree with. It's definantly debatable. But regardless of whether you consider it effective or gimmicky, it does do, at least, a fairly good job of ranking teams into tiers (top 10, bottom 10, etc) so that the results presented are fairly predicative.

Anyways the odds for the Saints right now, based on FootballOutsiders is that have a
14.8% for the #1 seed
69.7% for the WC
and the combined playoff odds (not just #1 or WC, but #2-#4 seeds) is 87%

That is a pretty cool site that gets linked to this thread from time to time. I did not look at it before posting but I figured even with the simple math I did we would be in the 85% range. You have seven teams going for five spots and we are in the top three of the seven teams so that seems about right.

The Bengals game is big because of our remaining schedule. If we win we go to 9-3 and get the Rams at home next week. I figure the Saints would be somewhere between 8 and 10 point favorite over St Louis. Getting to 10-3 would take a lot of pressure off making the playoffs.

The scary part of our schedule is the last three weeks. Going on the road to Baltimore and Atlanta will be tough. We do get Tampa at home and that is good in the sense that if we do stumble and Tampa catches or passes us, we get them at home and all we would need to do to win a head up tie break with them is beat them at home and have at least as good a record.

The Saints learned last year the value of home field advantage. The Hartley miss (and the game was not all his fault) could be what makes us travel in the playoffs. The Saints are getting healthy and playing well. If we are a wild card, I bet the team that draws us is disappointed.
 

rich006

Guest
Joined
Oct 21, 2010
Messages
30
Reaction score
31
Offline
I'll pull for Tampa this week and trust the Saints to do what they need to do. The bye week and home field advantage are worth a lot.

If the Saints end up fighting Tampa for the last wild card spot in week 17, then I'll be satisfied with that. Until that becomes our best hope, I want the division title.
 

Mackenzie

Black and Gold Forever
Joined
Jun 4, 2006
Messages
5,334
Reaction score
6,199
Location
new orleans
Offline
shoot the whole nfc west is still in it to win their division

Yes and it sickens me to think we could win out and that the Falcons can still win the division if they win the other games besides our's. A team in the west could go 7-9 and still win the division. We could have the same record as last year and have to fight throught the wild card round. Unbelievable.
 

neworleanshoo

hoodat
VIP Contributor
Joined
Jul 9, 1999
Messages
8,989
Reaction score
6,107
Location
Carrollton
Offline
The Atlanta-Tampa game is possibly the biggest kwtpf game of the past several years. An Atlanta win essentially sews up the division & ensures that we'd have to play an additional playoff game PLUS play on the road (most likely three times) to get back to the big game.

there's no ambivalence about this one whatsoever... we're past the point of just wanting to the make the playoffs. we want to win the whole ball of worms! (again). and we have the talent to do it. an atlanta win makes this weekend makes that much, MUCH more difficult.

on the other hand, as you say, a falcons division loss suddenly leaves us controlling our own destiny & the possibility of 2 home playoff games is very real.

kwtpf games don't come any bigger.
 

TheRealJRad

The Artist Formerly Known as AgentJRad
Staff member
Tech-Admin
VIP Subscribing Member
VIP Contributor
Joined
Dec 16, 2009
Messages
11,258
Reaction score
13,164
Age
38
Location
Baton Rouge
Online
Random thought...Does the 2 seed have to be a division winner? I've never seen the scenario (that I remember), but imagine if we and the Falcons both go 13-3. We'd lose the division by tiebreaker to Atlanta, but still have a better record than the other 3 NFC division winners.
 

Create an account or login to comment

You must be a member in order to leave a comment

Create account

Create an account on our community. It's easy!

Log in

Already have an account? Log in here.

Users who are viewing this thread

 

New Orleans Saints Twitter Feed

 

Headlines

Top Bottom