Five things we know we know

Cold, Hard Football Facts for Jan 07, 2007



The "pundits" like to tell you what they think they think.
 
Who gives a sh*t what they think? You have a brain. You can think for yourself.
 
The Cold, Hard Football Facts choose instead to tell you things we know we know ... and soon you'll know, too.
 
Five: Nobody picks playoff games with the same success of the Cold, Hard Football Facts
The Cold, Hard Football Facts accurately picked three of four wild-card round games this weekend. We would have been 4-0 if Tony Homo was able to place a snap on the ground for kicker Martin Gramatica.
 
It was a bitter pill to swallow for all of us. But it improves our mark to 20-6 picking postseason games since we launched this shabby site back in 2004.
 
We went 10-1 in the 2004 playoffs, a shoddy 7-4 in the 2005 playoffs, and are now 3-1 here in 2006 after the wild-card round.
 
That's a .769 mark using our Quality Stats to pick postseason games.
 
Not bad, folks. As we've said many times before, if you're getting your football analysis elsewhere, you're wasting your time.
 
Four: Brady and Montana are joined at the statistical hip
If ever two players were joined at the statistical hip, it's Tom Brady and Joe Montana. From their uncannily similar Super Bowl performances to their zip-zip passing offenses to their virtually unmatched success as field generals, Brady is the Montana of 21st-century football.
 
Here's one more for you: Brady and Montana are the only two QBs in history who have had 10 more postseason wins than losses.
 
Montana at one point in his career had a 14-4 postseason record (heading into the 1990 NFC title game, that aforementioned loss to Belichick and the Giants). He increased his mark to 16-5 with Kansas City in the 1993 playoffs – +11 in the win-loss column – before losing the final two games of his postseason career to finish with a 16-7 postseason record.
 
Brady, of course, was 10-0 in the playoffs before losing to Denver last year.
 
Following Sunday's win over the Jets, he's now 11-1 ... the only quarterback in NFL history, as of this moment, with 10 more wins than losses in postseason play.
 
Three: New England's turnaround continues
For 35 years, New England was the biggest joke of an organization in the NFL.
 
But if the Patriots can beat San Diego – a huge if – they will become the winningest postseason franchise in NFL history (among organizations with 10 or more playoff games).
 
New England now boasts an 18-11 (.621) postseason record. That's second all-time to the Packers (24-14; .632). With a win over the Chargers, New England's postseason record will be 19-11, a winning percentage of .633.
 
The Patriots were third on the list entering yesterday's game against the Jets. But with the win, they jumped over the Steelers into second place. Pittsburgh has a 28-18 (.609) postseason mark.
 
The Ravens are actually No. 1 on the list, but they have played just seven postseason games (5-2; .714). The Panthers are No. 2, but they have played just nine postseason games (6-3; .667).
 
Two: Interceptions mean everything in the playoffs
Most football fans know that Brady's postseason record of 11-1 is the best for a quarterback in NFL history.
 
Want to know the secret to his postseason success?
 
It's no more difficult than this: Brady does not throw interceptions in the postseason. He's thrown just 5 INTs in 401 postseason pass attempts (1.25 percent) – the lowest rate in NFL history.
 
We know it's more than an isolated incident because the same man stands at No. 2 all-time in both categories.
 
Green Bay Hall of Fame quarterback Bart Starr, perhaps the most underappreciated QB in history, threw just 3 INTs in 213 postseason pass attempts (1.41 percent). He had a postseason record of 9-1. As we noted earlier, Starr also has the best postseason passer rating in NFL history, too.
 
One: Belichick owns quarterbacks in the postseason
Chad Pennington acquitted himself quite well in the Jets' 37-16 loss to the Patriots on Sunday.
 
He completed 23 of 40 passes for 300 yards, 1 TD, 1 INT and a 79.2 passer rating.
 
It actually stands as one of the better performances ever against a Bill Belichick defense in the postseason.
 
Belichick has coached 28 playoff games as a defensive coordinator or head coach. Pennington was just the sixth quarterback in those 28 games to reach the 300-yard mark.
 
Here's a look at the cumulative passing performance of opposing quarterbacks in these 28 postseason games against a Belichick defense:
 
534 for 1,016 (51.6%), 6,530 yards, 6.5 YPA, 30 TDs, 39 INTs, 66.5 passer rating
 
Eleven of those games were played against MVP-award-winning QBs; six were played against future Hall of Fame quarterbacks.

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