What We’ve Learned from the NFL Playoffs So Far

We’re now marching into Championship Sunday. In these inciting, riveting and awe-inspiring playoffs, we’ve seen-and learned a lot. Here’s a look at what we’ve learned from the 2012 playoffs so far.

(To view my AFC and NFC Championship game predictions, click here)

(Use the page navigation below to view things we’ve learned)

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31 thoughts on “What We’ve Learned from the NFL Playoffs So Far

  1. Great post Sam! We will learn a lot about what’s the best make up to win a super bowl after tomorrow and no doubt after 3 weeks from now. We have two teams with top tier QBs and high scoring offense and the other two teams have second teir QBs and top notch def., so which is the best blue print? We will fine out.

    Home field and turnovers are HUGE!

    • If the Giants and Patriots win, then it’s offense. If the 49ers and Ravens win, it’s defense. My pick is Giants and Ravens, which is why I said that both offense and defense win championships.

  2. I agree that A good defense is required to win championships, but I strongly feel that yards allowed is a greatly overrated stat in and of itself. Heck you could have 6 possessions moving the ball from your 20 to their 20 and come up with 6 FGS and still get crushed while accumulating over 500 yards of offense during a game. I also feel that the yards allowed stat never states when those yards are given up in the regular season as is the case with the Patriots who ranked 31st in total passing yards and total yards allowed yet gave up over 1700 of those yards passing while playing a prevent defense and leading by 10 or more points in the 4th quarter. When I look at counting stats such as yards gained or allowed I also have a need to look inside those numbers to see how they got there.

    I tend to view the quality of both offense and defense by turnover ratio, red zone offense, red zone defense and definitely 3rd down conversion rate on both sides of the ball. Those are what I term as evaluative statistical categories such as Passer Rating Differential. Which you did touch base on.

    There are certain things hidden inside stats that inflate or deflate the qualities of those teams that make them appear better or worse such as the above mentioned Pats passing defense. or the Ravens overall defense that has faced a Bottom 10 ranked offensive unit 7 times in the regular season and just crushed a 3rd string QB at home on the playoffs. Offenses and Defenses def play differently on the road as opposed to at home which greatly affects the records and home field advantage due to teh raucous crowds.

    Glad to see you diving into the numbers more Sam. The more you research them the more startling revelations they become.

    Great Post as always. Keep up the good work and Enjoy Championship Sunday!!!

    http://www.1313sports.com

    • I know that points matter more than yards, but, remember, more yards means more time of possession. Of the Ravens gain a lot of yardage, they will have the ball longer, thus, keeping Terrific Tom off the field.

      Enjoy the games!!

  3. Great post Sam! All your points were true, although the 49ers are potent right now because they have one of the best defenses and an offense that is clicking. Your T.E.A.M. thing at the end is really true.

  4. Great analysis of the playoffs. Another thing that is a key factor in most of the playoff games has been the team that has the most effective running game and stops the run has won.

  5. Sam, incredible work on your blog! You are an amazing writer! I enjoyed reading your articles and learning from them.

  6. Sam

    Billy Cundiff has my utter admiration and I’ll let you he’s sitting atop of my 2012 Christmas card list . The Niners’ Kyle Williams on the other hand is now persona-no-grata within the city limits of San Francisco . Death threats already ? This isn’t World Cup soccer and last I looked he wasn’t wearing the Colombian soccer uniform . What’s up with that ?

    tophatal ……..

      • Sam ,

        It’s not so much the teams’ performances at the time but specifically that of Cundiff’s and Kyle Williams and their given situations . These guys are professionals …. and how many times during practices have they not been placed in such situations ? Not a great deal was being asked of either at the time in reality . Cundiff , to split the uprights from no more than 30 yds and Williams to simply to keep a-hold of the damn ball .

        tophatal …………….

  7. Sam

    These guys mess up and it’s not necessarily curtains for their careers . Speaking as someone who was once in the military as a Royal Marine in the UK armed forces seeing active military action in certain parts around the globe . As a team member you could ill afford to mess up there when someone else is also dependent upon you.

    In the end it is just a game but these two guys simply were too were way too amped and should have been less stressed out .

      • Sam

        You say that neither should be defined by those actions ? The career of Marv Levy how is that clearly defined ? Is he a great coach or simply the known as the guy who guided the Bills to four straight …. Superbowls only to lose them all ? And in the case of Scott Norwood how is he best remembered ? One definitive act can have a lasting effect and testimony for a person and it can define them no matter how one tries to deflect from that moment .

        tophatal …………

  8. And at a price of $4million plus would you say that Ochocinco was overpaid this season given his overall lack of productivity ?

    Another thing we’ve learned from this postseason is that Gisele Bundchen might now just a little bit about the NFL but not enough were she can blame others for her husband’s own missteps during the game . Hey Tom , put me out of my misery by given Gisele something to smile about ! ‘nough said on the matter I think !

    tophatal ………….

    • Of course, I think his productivity was so low that there’s no way the Patriots are going to resign him.

      You asked me earlier about my prediction for Ochocinco’s Super Bowl performance, and I said 1 reception, 19 yards. He got 1 reception and 21 yards, so I was pretty darn close…

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