Monday, August 25, 2008

NFL: Preseason Power, Week 3

Preseason Power Rankings?!

Yeah, preseason. I've done some (as yet unposted) analysis on preseason games that suggests there's at least some correlation between the way teams perform in the preseason and how they do (at least early) in the regular season.

I was going to do a more in-depth analysis of this during the summer, and present my findings, but computer troubles have derailed that project (for the moment, anyway).

Here's How it Works

Each team's power is computed, based on the APR algorithm. But instead of the game's final score, the game's half-time score is used, instead. Of course, this isn't the steadiest ground in the world: teams don't play for the win like they do in the regular season, and they certainly don't play to be ahead at half time like they play for the win.

On the other hand, good offenses score points, and good defenses get stops, even in preseason. I (somewhat arbitrarily) cut off the second-half results to winnow out the effects of teams playing their second-string and soon-to-be-cut players.

I plan to do a more careful (quarter by quarter and week by week) comparison of preseason to regular season results, but probably not until after the Super Bowl.

The Preseason Half-time Power Rankings for Week 3

1) 1.5256 Buffalo Bills
2) 1.5124 Miami Dolphins
3) 1.4891 Carolina Panthers
4) 1.4540 Arizona Cardinals
5) 1.4314 San Diego Chargers
6) 1.4303 New Orleans Saints
7) 1.3582 Detroit Lions
8) 1.3417 Minnesota Vikings
9) 1.3386 Kansas City Chiefs
10) 1.2998 Seattle Seahawks
11) 1.2982 Tampa Bay Buccaneers
12) 1.2885 Jacksonville Jaguars
13) 1.2881 Oakland Raiders
14) 1.2704 Indianapolis Colts
15) 1.2559 Cincinnati Bengals
16) 1.2381 New York Giants
17) 1.2379 Pittsburgh Steelers
18) 1.2251 Denver Broncos
19) 1.2185 San Francisco 49ers
20) 1.2170 New York Jets
21) 1.2143 Philadelphia Eagles
22) 1.2135 Tennessee Titans
23) 1.2034 Houston Texans
24) 1.1895 Washington Redskins
25) 1.1790 Dallas Cowboys
26) 1.1714 Atlanta Falcons
27) 1.1596 Chicago Bears
28) 1.1476 Cleveland Browns
29) 1.1452 Saint Louis Rams
30) 1.0414 Green Bay Packers
31) 1.0365 Baltimore Ravens
32) 0.8355 New England Patriots