Mar 20, 2014; Spokane, WA, USA; Harvard Crimson guard Siyani Chambers (1) celebrates after a men
Sports analytics departments at universities are becoming more and more popular. USC, my college, has one of the first MBA’s in Sports Business and a growing sports analytics program. MIT’s analytics department hosts the largest sports analytics conference in the world. Thousands of people listen to guest speakers, who include current players, coaches, commissioners, GMs, and other influential people in the sports world.
Just recently, Harvard’s sports analytics posted an article projecting which NFL teams were most likely to make the playoffs and reach the Super Bowl. The article has received tons of attention and made it onto Yahoo!’s home page. Of course not every fan was happy with Harvard’s analytics program, but Dolphins fans certainly were.
From the NFC, the Seahawks are considered the favorites to make it to the super bowl. This isn’t too surprising considering their recent track record and the acquisition of Jimmy Graham. Out of the AFC, the Dolphins are projected to make it to the super bowl. This is very surprising considering the team is very inexperienced. They have tons of talent and certainly are a sleeper team who made massive splashes in free agency.
The Texans were given a 54% chance at making the playoffs. The Colts sit at 62%, the Jaguars at 3%, and the Titans at 2%. The Texans play in debatably the worst division in the NFL and certainly helps their playoff chances. The Colts are the heavy favorites and I am surprised that their chance isn’t over 75%.
The Texans schedule is a lot harder this season, but the team certainly looks a lot better on paper. They made tons of good free agent moves and kept the players that needed to be kept. The defense certainly is top 3 in the NFL and has the power to single handedly to take the team to the playoffs, if not further.
The AFC seems up for grabs this year because the Patriots lost tons of defensive talent, especially in the secondary. The Broncos are a very talented team but Peyton Manning will need to stay healthy deep into the year, something he wasn’t able to do last season (torn quad).
After that, the Bills, Jets, Dolphins, Chargers, Chiefs, Bengals, Colts, and Steelers are all underdog teams that could make a long run in the playoffs. The Texans certainly are in the mix with this group. It all comes down to getting hot fast. The Texans play seven of the teams I mentioned above during the regular season.
Here is the link to the original article:
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