Super Bowl Super Study Says Patriots, Broncos Built Like Champs

Cold, Hard Football Facts for Jan 06, 2013



11. Point Margin

Teams with a strong point margin last the test of 60 minutes or more in each game. Some experts believe point margin to be more reliable than record, simply because the point differential involves a much larger sample size. In a football game, only one team wins while an unlimited amount of points can be scored.

If playoff teams don’t possess a strong point margin, it suggests that those teams are not as good as their records say. Furthermore, it suggests they aren’t able to hang with the playoff teams that outscore their opponents as well as their records say. The table below supports this theory.

Winners

Losers

SB

Team

Margin

 

SB

Team

Margin

I66 Packers

+172

 I66 Chiefs

+172

II67 Packers

+123

 II67 Raiders

+235

III68 Jets

+139

 III68 Colts

+258

IV69 Chiefs

+182

 IV69 Vikings

+246

V70 Colts

+87

 V70 Cowboys

+78

VI71 Cowboys

+184

 VI71 Dolphins

+141

VII72 Dolphins

+214

 VII72 Redskins

+118

VIII73 Dolphins

+193

 VIII73 Vikings

+128

IX74 Steelers

+116

 IX74 Vikings

+115

X75 Steelers

+211

 X75 Cowboys

+82

XI76 Raiders

+113

 XI76 Vikings

+129

XII77 Cowboys

+133

 XII77 Broncos

+126

XIII78 Steelers

+161

 XIII78 Cowboys

+176

XIV79 Steelers

+154

 XIV79 Rams

+14

XV80 Raiders+58 XV80 Eagles

+162

XVI81 49ers

+107

 XVI81 Bengals

+117

XVII82 Redskins

+62

 XVII82 Dolphins

+67

XVIII83 Raiders

+104

 XVIII83 Redskins

+209

XIX84 49ers

+248

 XIX84 Dolphins

+215

XX85 Bears

+258

 XX85 Patriots

+72

XXI86 Giants

+135

 XXI86 Broncos

+51

XXII87 Redskins

+94

 XXII87 Broncos

+91

XXIII88 49ers

+75

 XXIII88 Bengals

+119

XXIV89 49ers

+189

 XXIV89 Broncos

+136

XXV90 Giants

+124

 XXV90 Bills

+165

XXVI91 Redskins

+261

 XXVI91 Bills

+140

XXVII92 Cowboys

+166

 XXVII92 Bills

+98

XXVIII93 Cowboys

+147

 XXVIII93 Bills

+87

XXIX94 49ers

+209

 XXIX94 Chargers

+75

XXX95 Cowboys

+144

 XXX95 Steelers

+80

XXXI96 Packers

+246

 XXXI96 Patriots

+105

XXXII97 Broncos

+185

 XXXII97 Packers

+140

XXXIII98 Broncos

+192

 XXXIII98 Falcons

+153

XXXIV99 Rams

+284

 XXXIV99 Titans

+68

XXXV00 Ravens

+168

 XXXV00 Giants

+82

XXXVI01 Patriots

+99

 XXXVI01 Rams

+230

XXXVII02 Bucs

+150

 XXXVII02 Raiders

+146

XXXVIII03 Patriots

+110

 XXXVIII03 Panthers

+21

XXXIX04 Patriots

+177

 XXXIX04 Eagles

+126

XL05 Steelers

+131

 XL05 Seahawks

+181

XLI06 Colts

+67

 XLI06 Bears

+172

XLII07 Giants

+22

 XLII07 Patriots

+315

XLIII08 Steelers

+124

 XLIII08 Cardinals

+1

XLIV09 Saints

+169

 XLIV09 Colts

+109

XLV10 Packers

+148

 XLV10 Steelers

+143

XLVI11 Giants

-6

 XLVI11 Patriots

+171

The threshold for the outlier in this part of study is an average scoring margin less than +5.0 points per game (PPG). The 2011 Giants set a new precedent by becoming the first team with a negative scoring margin to make (and win) the Super Bowl. However, anything under a +80 margin normally will fall short of the Super Bowl.

This postseason has a quintet of teams looking to break the trend. The 2012 Colts are the only playoff team to finish the regular season with a negative margin, as they were outscored by 30 points. A big part has to do with their seven one-possession victories against non-quality teams and their three blowout losses. Meanwhile, the 2012 Redskins (+48) and 2012 Vikings (+31) both have an average scoring margin of +3.0 PPG for or worse. The Redskins can blame their defense for failing to fully support the dominance of Robert Griffin III, while the Vikings can look at their average passing game on both sides of the ball. Finally, the 2012 Ravens (+54) and 2012 Bengals (+71) also fail to reach the threshold. Both teams can look at their losing streaks to blame.

 

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