The Pi-Rate Ratings

September 26, 2018

PiRate Ratings Selections for September 27-October 1, 2018

Another week, another minor profit-maker.  The PiRate Rating selections last week ended with a tiny profit of $60 on $900 invested, finishing 5-4.  For the season, the imaginary bank roll now stands at +$110 on an investment of $3,500 for a meager profit that gives us a Return on Investment of 3.14%.  It beats a loss, but the way the NYSE and Nasdaq have been accruing this year, your real money would be better invested.  On the plus side, that 3.14% return so far has been done in one month, so it isn’t that bad, just not matching some of our outstanding past seasons.

We are issuing a lot of official picks this week, 11 in all.  We have included 3, 10-point teaser picks after not using them last week.

Now, for what many of you really like this year–our 5 guest Land Sharps.  Guess what?  All 5 of our distinguished and honored contributors are in the black for the year.  Last week, Friday Dog 13 went 4-1 to bring his record for the season to 8-3.  With a Return on Investment of 42.7%, he is breathing down the neck of leader Buckeye Michelle, who at 11-4 has a Return on Investment of 44.0%.  Cal Gal Tiffy is 11-6 with a Return on Investment of 25.9%.  Dean615 is 6-5 with a Return on Investment of 4.5%, while the real pro, Stewed Meat is 8-7 with a Return on Investment of 2.0%.  Stewed is a bit stewed this week and says this will not stand.

The Land Sharps’ picks can be found after we issue our “official” PiRate Rating selections for the week.

PiRate Ratings Official Picks for September 27 to October 1, 2018

Games Picked Against the Spread 

Favorite Underdog Spread Pick
Army Buffalo 8.5 Army
Ball St. Kent St. 8 Kent St.
Purdue Nebraska 3 Purdue
Appalachian St. South Alabama 26 South Alabama
New Mexico Liberty 6 New Mexico
Hawaii San Jose St. 12.5 San Jose St.
Green Bay Buffalo 10.5 Buffalo
Indiana Houston 1 Indianapolis

 

10-Point Teaser Spreads (3-team parlays)

Favorite Underdog Spread Pick
UCLA Colorado 1 Colorado
North Carolina St. Virginia 15.5 Virginia
Ohio St. Penn St. 14 Penn St.

 

Favorite Underdog Spread Pick
Chicago Tampa Bay 13 Tampa Bay
Houston Indianapolis 9 Indianapolis
New England Miami 17 Miami

 

10-Point Teaser Totals (3-team parlay)

Home Visitor Total Pick
Green Bay Buffalo 35 Over
Dallas Detroit 33.5 Over
Jacksonville N.Y. Jets 28.5 Over

 

The Land Sharps Picks

Buckeye Michelle

  1. Bowling Green +28 1/2 vs. Georgia Tech
  2. Louisville +6 1/2 vs. Florida St.
  3. Army +8 1/2 vs.  Buffalo
  4. Kent St. +8 vs. Ball St.
  5. Western Michigan Pk. vs. Miami (O)

 

Friday Dog 13

  1. Purdue -3 vs. Nebraska
  2. Florida St. -6 1/2 vs. Louisville
  3. Penn St. +4 vs. Ohio St.
  4. LSU -11 1/2 vs. Ole Miss
  5. Stanford +5 vs. Notre Dame

 

Cal Gal Tiffany

  1. Tulane +14 vs. Memphis
  2. Colorado -9 vs. UCLA
  3. Arkansas +21 vs. Texas A&M
  4. Syracuse +24 vs. Clemson
  5. Bowling Green +28 1/2 vs. Georgia Tech
  6. Texas Tech +3 1/2 vs. West Virginia
  7. Virginia +5 1/2 vs. North Carolina St.
  8. Purdue -3 vs. Nebraska
  9. Penn St. +4 vs. Ohio St.

 

Dean615

  1. Notre Dame -5 vs. Stanford
  2. Michigan -14 vs. Northwestern
  3. Texas -9 vs. Kansas St.

 

Stewed Meat

  1. Texas Tech +3 1/2 vs. West Virginia
  2. East Carolina -5 vs. Old Dominion
  3. Clemson-Syracuse Under 67
  4. North Carolina St-Virginia Under 53
  5. Oklahoma-Baylor Under 69
  6. Texas-Kansas St. Under 48
  7. Michigan-Northwestern Under 48

 

Reminder:  With the exception of Stewed Meat, who is a professional handicapper, none of us here actually wager real money on our picks.  These are for entertainment purposes only, just for fun.  Additionally, Stewed does not reveal the actual picks played.  These are Stewed’s runner up games that are not used for real.  Stewed has 5 real picks this weekend, none of which are shown above.  Stewed routinely beats the spread 62% of the time over the last 12 years and has no intention of revealing the games Stewed really plays.

Let this be a lesson to all of you.  When a Sharp really is successful against the spread, he or she never lets others know who he or she is wagering on.  He/She wants the odds to stay as much in his/her favor as possible.  If Great Sports Handicapper John Doe can consistently win 5 out of every 8 wagers made, the books will eventually cut John Doe’s maximums if not totally kick him out of their book.

Occasionally, these books may need these John Doe’s to balance out when the public has come in hard on one side, which is why Stewed is still allowed to play at 6 or 7 books in Nevada.

When somebody tells you that he or she has a sure 5-star lock, and all you have to do is pay X dollars to get these picks (or call an 800 number and get the pick for free), believe us–they do not have a sure lock, because if they did, they’d be keeping it to themselves.  

Some of these fake touts are totally dishonest.  Depending on your area code, you might be told to take Team A or Team B on these 800 lines.  Somebody in Hartford, Connecticut, might be told to bet  on State and give the 4 1/2 points, while a customer in Portland, Oregon, might be told to bet on Tech and take the 4 1/2 points.

The goal of these bunko artists is to tell half the customers to take State and half to take Tech, guaranteeing that half will win.  Then, they can sell the big package to the half that won, since a large percentage will believe the bunko artist knows something.

If the crook can get 50,000 people to call his 800 number, and thus 25,000 win, then maybe 10,000 of these winners will then proceed to buy the big package for the rest of the year and pay $129 for this service.  That comes to $1.2 million, not bad for a total con game.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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August 12, 2018

2018 Mid-American Conference Preview

Note: The preseason ratings you see in the previews may not be the same as the ratings you see for the first game. We update every team’s rating based on player injuries, changes to the depth charts, and other factors that may change during preseason practice.

Some of our Group of 5 Conference won-loss predictions were figured before the beginning of August preseason practices. Thus, it could be that a player or players on some teams have already suffered season-ending or multiple game injuries or have left their teams, and these won-loss predictions no longer accurately reflect our ratings. We hope that by the time we preview the Power 5 conferences, we will know who is not going to be available (players and head coaches).

They call it “Maction.” The Mid-American Conference frequently produces teams capable of beating the lower half of the Big Ten and occasionally a weaker upper echelon team from their Big Brother rival conference. Additionally, the MAC has produced some star players that became NFL stars. It has also successfully placed its champion in the New Year’s 6 bowl that is reserved for a Group of 5 team.

2018 should be no different in these respects. The MAC has some strong teams, two or three of which are talented enough to make a run at the NY6 Bowl bid. On the other hand, these teams are good enough to beat each other and prevent the champion from running the table. Additionally, both divisions have more than one really good team, so it may be difficult to have either division champion go 8-0 in the league.

2018 could be another Year of the Quarterback in this league. Buffalo’s Tyree Jackson led the league in passing last year as a sophomore. Jackson missed four games, but when he was healthy, he was the top quarterback in the league. Against Bowling Green he topped 400 passing yards and three touchdowns versus no interceptions. He threw four TD passes the next week against Ball State, and he finished the year with 294 yards and two scores in a win over Ohio. If he stays healthy, Jackson could pass for 3,000 and run for 1,000 yards this year.

Another junior quarterback, Nathan Rourke makes Ohio’s offense potent. Rourke is also a dual-threat QB; his passing arm isn’t quite up to Jackson’s quality, but he is a little better runner and has a considerably better offensive line in Athens.

The MAC-East is rich with quality quarterbacks. Miami of Ohio’s Gus Ragland is the senior statesman of the division. Ragland became a star in the second half of the 2016 season, when he orchestrated a 6-0 finish after the Red Hawks began the season 0-6. He’s more of a move the pocket passer than Jackson or Rourke and will not beat opponents with his legs. Miami’s much improved offensive line should give Ragland a chance to compete for top passer in the MAC.

The West Division will have the best defensive team this year. Northern Illinois should have the best pass defense in the entire league, as their pass rush and pass coverage both rank as the tops in the MAC. NIU will face competition from Toledo, Western Michigan, Central Michigan, and even Eastern Michigan. The Huskies probably have the best chance at going 8-0 in the league, because the West is a little down compared to recent years.

One reason why no MAC team may qualify for the NY6 Bowl this year is a much tougher slate of non-conference schedules. Every team faces a tough Power 5 opponent, and the ratings call for the MAC to lose all of these games.  Northern Illinois could easily lose all four non-conference games having to play at Iowa, Florida State, and BYU and host Utah. Of course, our ratings cannot select upsets out of a hat, and usually there is always an upset or two, which is why we only rely on our ratings for picking the next game on the schedule for each team.

Here is how the MAC media voted in the preseason poll.

Mid-American
Team Votes
East Division 1st Place Total
1. Ohio 21 140
2. Buffalo 1 112
3. Miami (Ohio) 2 95
4. Akron 0 74
5. Bowling Green 0 58
6. Kent State 0 25
West Division 1st Place Total
1. Northern Illinois 15 133
2. Toledo 7 125
3. Western Michigan 1 87
4. Eastern Michigan 0 67
5. Central Michigan 1 58
6. Ball State 0 34

Picked to win 2018 MAC Championship Game
Ohio 13
Toledo 5
Northern Illinois 4
Miami 1
Central Michigan 1

The PiRate Ratings differ minimally from the media’s preseason opinions.

Mid-American Conference
East Division
Team MAC Overall PiRate Mean Bias Average
Ohio U 0-0 0-0 95.1 96.5 96.4 96.0
Buffalo 0-0 0-0 94.3 96.7 95.4 95.5
Miami (O) 0-0 0-0 91.5 93.9 93.4 92.9
Akron 0-0 0-0 90.5 92.1 90.7 91.1
Bowling Green 0-0 0-0 85.1 85.4 85.7 85.4
Kent St. 0-0 0-0 80.2 81.6 79.5 80.4
West Division
Team MAC Overall PiRate Mean Bias Average
Toledo 0-0 0-0 96.3 98.4 96.4 97.0
Northern Illinois 0-0 0-0 96.3 97.9 96.6 96.9
Western Michigan 0-0 0-0 91.5 93.8 92.9 92.8
Eastern Michigan 0-0 0-0 89.1 90.5 89.8 89.8
Central Michigan 0-0 0-0 84.8 88.5 85.2 86.2
Ball St. 0-0 0-0 77.7 80.4 77.4 78.5
MAC Averages 89.4 91.3 90.0 90.2

 

New Coaches

Kent State: Sean Lewis has some history in the MAC.  He was the offensive coordinator for Dino Babers at Bowling Green, when the Falcons torched MAC defenses for 45.6 points per game in 2015.  Lewis followed Babers to Syracuse, where he helped lead the Orangemen to new passing heights.  He played for Brett Bielema at Wisconsin, so he could incorporate some of his alma mater’s power game with the Baylor-style spread offense.

Predicted Won-Loss Records

East
Team Conference Overall
Ohio 7-1 10-3
Buffalo 6-2 8-4
Akron 4-4 5-7
Miami (O) 4-4 4-8
Bowling Green 1-7 3-9
Kent St. 0-8 1-11
West
Team Conference Overall
Northern Illinois 8-0 9-4 *
Toledo 7-1 9-3
Western Michigan 4-4 6-6
Eastern Michigan 4-4 5-7
Central Michigan 2-6 3-9
Ball St. 1-7 2-10
* Northern Illinois picked to win MAC Championship Game

Bowl Tie-ins
The MAC does not have a set bowl pecking order. They send teams to bowls to create the best overall games. These are the bowls tie-ins for 2018.

Boca Raton Bowl in Boca Raton, FL
Camellia Bowl in Montgomery, AL
Dollar General Bowl in Mobile, AL
Frisco Bowl in Frisco, TX
Idaho Potato Bowl in Boise, ID

There is a secondary bowl agreement with the Quick Lane Bowl in Detroit if it needs an at-large alternate.

Coming Tomorrow–The Mountain West Conference

January 1, 2018

PiRate Ratings NFL Forecast For Wildcard Playoff Round: January 6-7, 2018

All times given are Eastern Standard Time

Saturday, January 6, 2018

4:20 PM on ESPN

Tennessee Titans (9-7-0) at Kansas City Chiefs (10-6-0)

PiRate: Kansas City by 8.1

Mean: Kansas City by 8.0

Bias: Kansas City by 8.7

Total: 45

Estimated Realistic Score: Kansas City 27  Tennessee 17

 

8:15 PM on NBC

Atlanta Falcons (10-6-0) at Los Angeles Rams (11-5-0)

PiRate: Los Angeles by 5.4

Mean: Los Angeles by 5.0

Bias: Los Angeles by 5.7

Total: 48

Estimated Realistic Score: Los Angeles 27  Atlanta 21

 

Sunday, January 7, 2018

1:05 PM on CBS

Buffalo Bills (9-7-0) at Jacksonville Jaguars (10-6-0)

PiRate: Jacksonville by 9.4

Mean: Jacksonville by 8.9

Bias: Jacksonville by 9.5

Total: 42

Estimated Realistic Score: Jacksonville 26  Buffalo 16

 

4:40 PM on Fox

Carolina Panthers (11-5-0) at New Orleans Saints (11-5-0)

PiRate: New Orleans by 5.8

Mean: New Orleans by 5.9

Bias: New Orleans by 6.0

Total: 53

Estimated Realistic Score: New Orleans 28  Carolina 24

 

 

December 26, 2017

PiRate Ratings NFL Forecast For Week 17: December 31, 2017

Week 17 PiRate Rating Spreads

Home Visitor PiRate Mean Bias Total
Baltimore Cincinnati 13.1 12.6 13.6 38
Detroit Green Bay 3.2 3.0 3.7 46
Miami Buffalo 1.8 1.6 1.3 41
Atlanta Carolina 3.3 3.8 3.0 50
Tampa Bay New Orleans -7.9 -7.3 -8.0 49
Tennessee Jacksonville -2.4 -2.2 -2.8 45
New England N.Y. Jets 16.4 16.9 16.5 39
Indianapolis Houston 3.3 3.4 3.5 44
Pittsburgh Cleveland 18.8 18.3 21.8 39
N.Y. Giants Washington -4.9 -4.6 -5.0 42
Minnesota Chicago 12.7 12.3 13.4 34
Philadelphia Dallas 6.9 6.0 8.0 46
LA Chargers Oakland 9.3 8.4 10.2 44
Seattle Arizona 8.7 8.9 8.3 41
Denver Kansas City -6.0 -6.1 -6.4 42
LA Rams San Francisco 13.7 13.3 14.1 50

Current PiRate Ratings–12/26/2017

A F C
East PiRate Mean Bias Avg Totals W-L
New England 108.3 108.4 108.4 108.3 23 12-3
Buffalo 96.0 96.3 96.1 96.1 20 8-7
Miami 95.8 95.9 95.3 95.7 21 6-9
N. Y. Jets 94.3 94.0 94.4 94.3 16 5-10
             
North PiRate Mean Bias Avg Totals W-L
Pittsburgh 107.0 107.1 107.2 107.1 23 12-3
Baltimore 105.5 105.7 105.6 105.6 22 9-6
Cincinnati 95.3 96.1 94.9 95.5 16 6-9
Cleveland 90.7 91.4 87.9 90.0 16 0-15
             
South PiRate Mean Bias Avg Totals W-L
Jacksonville 103.3 103.2 103.4 103.3 23 10-5
Tennessee 97.8 98.0 97.6 97.8 22 8-7
Indianapolis 92.3 92.7 91.8 92.3 22 4-11
Houston 91.0 91.2 90.4 90.9 22 3-12
             
West PiRate Mean Bias Avg Totals W-L
LA Chargers 104.5 104.1 104.7 104.4 23 8-7
Kansas City 103.1 103.2 103.5 103.3 23 9-6
Oakland 97.7 98.3 97.0 97.7 21 6-9
Denver 95.2 95.0 95.1 95.1 19 5-10
             
N F C
East PiRate Mean Bias Avg Totals W-L
Philadelphia 106.7 105.4 107.7 106.6 23 13-2
Dallas 101.8 101.4 101.7 101.7 23 8-7
Washington 98.4 98.6 98.2 98.4 24 7-8
N.Y. Giants 91.5 92.0 91.2 91.6 18 2-13
             
North PiRate Mean Bias Avg Totals W-L
Minnesota 107.4 107.0 108.1 107.5 18 12-3
Detroit 99.4 99.7 99.2 99.5 27 8-7
Green Bay 98.2 98.7 97.5 98.1 19 7-8
Chicago 96.7 96.8 96.7 96.7 16 5-10
             
South PiRate Mean Bias Avg Totals W-L
New Orleans 107.4 106.8 107.9 107.4 28 11-4
Atlanta 103.9 103.7 104.1 103.9 24 9-6
Carolina 103.2 102.4 103.5 103.0 26 11-4
Tampa Bay 97.5 97.5 97.9 97.6 21 4-11
             
West PiRate Mean Bias Avg Totals W-L
LA Rams 107.3 106.6 107.9 107.3 25 11-4
Seattle 102.9 103.0 102.3 102.7 20 9-6
Arizona 97.2 97.1 97.0 97.1 21 7-8
San Francisco 96.1 95.8 96.3 96.1 25 5-10

Playoff Scenarios

You can go to any sports site online to see the generic playoff scenarios, where you can see what must happen for each potential playoff team to earn their spot.  Let’s take a look at the logical scenarios in the order that they are most likely to occur.

AFC

Baltimore

The Ravens have the overwhelming advantage among the teams vying for the two wildcard spots.  The 4 division championships have been clinched.  Baltimore is the number 5 seed if they win at home over Cincinnati Sunday.  The Ravens have about a 75% chance of winning this game and getting in at #5.  Even if the Ravens lose to the Bengals, if Either Buffalo or Tennessee lose but not both, the Ravens still get in as the number 6 seed.  If Baltimore loses, and both Buffalo and Tennessee lose, then Baltimore stays at number 5.

Baltimore falls out of the playoffs only if they lose to Cincinnati, and both Buffalo and Tennessee win.  The Ravens have about a 95% chance of making the playoffs.

Tennessee

The Titans have the best chance of making the playoffs as the 6-seed (or even 5-seed) of the remaining contenders.  If Tennessee beats Jacksonville on Sunday, the Titans are in as the 6-seed if Baltimore wins, and the 5-seed if Baltimore loses.  What Buffalo does in this instance does not affect the Titans moving up to number 5; only what Baltimore does affects the Titans seeding if they beat a Jacksonville team that has nothing to play for (3-seed win or lose) and will most likely rest their key players.

Tennessee can still make the playoffs at 8-8 if Buffalo and the LA Chargers lose.  They hold all tiebreakers over the Bills and Chargers.

Tennessee misses out on the playoffs if the Titans lose to the Jaguars and either Buffalo or the Chargers win.  The Titans chances for making the playoffs are about 55%.

Los Angeles Chargers

This is where the scenarios get a little tricky.  First, the Chargers can only get in the playoffs if they win and Tennessee loses.  However, they still need some help.  Either Baltimore must also win or Buffalo must lose, or else the Chargers will be eliminated.  If Buffalo and Baltimore win, then the Chargers get in over the Bills, but if Buffalo wins and Baltimore loses, then the Bills take the 6-seed.  Of course, if Tennessee and Buffalo lose, and the Chargers win, then the Chargers make it over both the Titans and Bills.  The Chargers have about a 37.5% chance of making the playoffs under these scenarios.

Buffalo

The Bills are on life support with only a 1 in 10 chance of making the playoffs.  There are at least two different sets of scenarios that will get the Bills in.  If they win at Miami in what will most likely be Jay Cutler’s real swan song, then they can get in if Baltimore loses, which will then eliminate the Chargers.  They would move up to a 5-seed in this scenario if Tennessee loses or gets the 6-seed if Tennessee wins.

The Bills will also make it as the 6-seed if they win and both Tennessee and the LA Chargers lose.  They can then earn the 5-seed if Baltimore also loses.

Top Seed

New England holds the tiebreaker over Pittsburgh, so the only way the Steelers can get the top seed is for the Jets to beat the Pats, while the Steelers send Cleveland to 0-16.

 

NFC

Philadelphia has clinched the top seed.  If Minnesota beats Chicago in Minneapolis, the Vikings get the 2-seed.  Minnesota can still get the 2-seed, if they lose to the Bears, and they will still get the 2-seed unless Carolina wins, New Orleans, loses, and the Rams lose. Then, Carolina would get this seed.  Chances are better than 95% that Minnesota gets the 2-seed.

For the 3-seed, the LA Rams hold the tiebreaker over New Orleans and Carolina, while New Orleans holds the tiebreaker over Carolina.

The 5-seed will go to either Carolina or New Orleans, whichever does not win the NFC South (New Orleans has about a 60% chance and Carolina a 40% chance).

The 6-seed is what is up for grabs

Atlanta

The Falcons earn this spot with a win over Carolina or a Seattle loss to Arizona.

Seattle

The Seahawks must win and Atlanta must lose.

Here are our Playoff Projections for this week.

AFC Seeding
1 New England
2 Pittsburgh
3 Jacksonville
4 Kansas City
5 Baltimore
6 Tennessee
NFC Seeding
1 Philadelphia
2 Minnesota
3 LA Rams
4 New Orleans
5 Carolina
6 Atlanta
Wildcard Round
Kansas City over Baltimore
Jacksonville over Tennessee
Carolina over New Orleans
LA Rams over Atlanta
 
Divisional Round
New England over Kansas City
Jacksonville over Pittsburgh
Carolina over Philadelphia
LA Rams over Minnesota
 
Conference Championship
New England over Jacksonville
LA Rams over Carolina
 
Super Bowl 52
LA Rams over New England

 

 

 

December 22, 2016

PiRate Ratings Money Line Parlay Picks–December 23-26, 2016

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , , , , , , , , , — piratings @ 5:26 pm

Our winning streak continued last week, as we won one of the two parlays.  By only playing parlays at better than EVEN money odds, simply going .500 guarantees a profitable result.

Last week’s 1-1 record returned $286 on our $200 investment for a return on investment of 43%.  For the year now, we have invested $6,300 (63 parlays at $100 each), and we have seen a return of $7,074 for an ROI of 12%.

Once again, we go only with NFL selections this week, and we go with two parlays.  The Thursday night game is not one of the selections, so we are coming out with this a bit later tonight.

Remember this important fact: These are presented to you just for fun.  We do not actually wager real money on these selections, and we urge you to think twice about doing so.  We have nothing to lose in our mythical investment’s, while you could lose your mortgage payment with a couple of bad weeks.

Okay, so here are our two picks for this week.  As you can see, all six teams in these parlays have a lot to play for in week 16.

December 23-26, 2016
1. NFL Parlay at +196
Buffalo over Miami
Tennessee over Jacksonville
Green Bay over Minnesota
 
2. NFL Parlay at +218
Washington over Chicago
Kansas City over Denver
Seattle over Arizona

 

October 12, 2016

PiRate Ratings Money Line Parlay Picks–October 13-17, 2016

Replayicide

A third consecutive winning week was practically in the bag thanks to a great Sunday comeback. Yes, a terrific 84.7% return on our investment was ours, as Joe Flacco guided the Baltimore Ravens on a fourth quarter comeback to defeat the Washington Redskins, allowing the PiRates to cash in on a really nice +199 parlay.

As Lee Corso says, “Not so fast my friends.” All scoring plays are reviewed. Breshad Perriman appeared to have both feet inbounds in real time with his heel of his second foot hitting green turf, but the instant replay told a different story, and by the distance of a few blades of grass, a big payoff turned into a 15% loss on our investment. Oh well, at least they are imaginary dollars, so we didn’t really lose anything but a little self-pride.

One good thing about doing this exercise just for fun is that you don’t become gun shy when you miss on a big payoff like this, and you don’t have to worry about trying to catch up after a loss or sustain any success; you just select the next week’s games as if the new week is in a vacuum.
We have chosen four new selections this week, three from college and one NFL. This is a strange season for the NFL, so we are lessening our amount of pro plays.

Enjoy these selections, but remember, we highly encourage you not to use them to wager real coin, currency, or plastic on them.

October 13-17, 2016

1. College Parlay @ +157
Idaho over New Mexico St.
Marshall over Florida Atlantic
Florida over Missouri
Georgia over Vanderbilt

We like the job Paul Petrino has done at Idaho and expect the Vandals to win in the Palouse this week; considering that this program has announced that they will leave FBS football to return to FCS and the Big Sky Conference in 2018, Petrino could be on the radar screen of other FBS schools should Idaho make it to 6-6 or better this year. Maybe, this year is their last-gasp effort to sneak into a bowl for the first and possibly last time since 2009 and only the third time ever. Here’s a bit of trivia for you: Idaho was once a member of what is the Pac-12 Conference today. From1922 to 1959, the Vandals were in the same league as USC, UCLA, Cal, Oregon, and Stanford. The Idaho-Washington St. rivalry remains strong since the two schools are within walking distance of each other.

Marshall is off to its weakest start in the Doc Holliday tenure, but the Herd should begin to thunder this week against FAU. The Owls lost at Charlotte last week, and Coach Charlie Partridge will be doing his cooing from another pear tree next year.

Florida and Missouri both had last Saturday off, with the Gators’ bye week coming unexpectedly. The good news for Florida was that by watching the most recent game film of the team they were supposed to play last week (LSU), they just happened to watch this week’s opponent. We think the Gators win a rather dull, low-scoring affair in the 14-10 range.

Georgia has not looked brilliant for 60 minutes in any game this year, but even playing 20 minutes brilliantly this week should be enough to win over a Vanderbilt team that is “0 for” on the road in the SEC under Coach Derek Mason and has no passing game.

2. College Parlay @ +192
Arkansas St. over South Alabama
Ohio St. over Wisconsin
Ball St. over Buffalo
Memphis over Tulane

Arkansas State might replicate what Texas A&M did in 1967. The Red Wolves began the season 0-4 and could run the table after that start. South Alabama is a team that gets up for big-time opponents and seems to not show up against opponents not considered big-time.

Wisconsin’s incredibly difficult schedule is about to come down hard in Badgerland. After losing at Michigan, we expect Ohio State to make the home team fans a bit sad as they exit Camp Randall Stadium Saturday. There is an issue of team speed in this game, and UW will eventually succumb to it.

Ball State is on the cusp of being a rather decent team in MAC football, but they are not there yet. However, this Buffalo team is at the bottom of the league, and they lost at home to Kent State last week. The Cardinals look to pick up their biggest point differential win of the season.

Memphis will have a tough time in New Orleans on Saturday, as Tulane is one of those pesky teams that opponents do not enjoy playing. First-year Green Wave coach Willie Fritz is known for his unique style of multiple option running and play-action passing plays, and his offense is eating up the clock with a true freshman quarterback guiding it, but it is the TU defense that is really getting the job done. It just goes to show that the best defense in football is a good time-consuming offense. Still, it is asking a bit too much to expect a green Green Wave squad to upset a team that thinks they can now win the West Division of the AAC.

3. College Parlay @ +172
Florida Int’l. over Charlotte
Ohio U over Eastern Michigan
BYU over Mississippi St.

Ron Turner has been in this boat before. When he coached at Illinois, Turner endured some lean seasons with just two wins, before surprising the nation with a trip to the Rose Bowl and upset of top-ranked Ohio State. Turner has slowly improved FIU from one to four to five wins in his three years in Miami, and the Panthers now could contend for a minor bowl. In order to do so, they have to beat a Charlotte team that just gained a little confidence with their first ever CUSA win last week. We expect FIU to win by at least 10-14 points.

Frank Solich has the Ohio Bobcats in the driver’s seat to win the MAC East this year, as his chief competition, Akron, has a tougher conference schedule, and the season finale between the two is in Athens. The Bobcats respect this EMU team, because this Eagles’ team is 4-2 and thinks it is going to win two more games this year. It was a tough choice, but we sided with OU in this game.

Mississippi State appears to be the 13th best team in the SEC this year, and the Bulldogs already have a home out-of-conference loss to South Alabama. Having to travel to Utah to face a BYU team that is about two touchdowns better today than they were at the start of the season means another loss for the SEC school.

4. NFL Parlay @ +220
New England over Cincinnati
Buffalo over San Francisco
Oakland over Kansas City

Do you expect Tom Brady to lose to anybody in his home debut? We’d go with the Pats to beat the NFC Pro Bowl team this week. Cincinnati could be out of the playoff race after this week, and Marvin Lewis could be in jeopardy of losing his job if the Bengals fall to third in the AFC North.

San Francisco must travel almost 3,000 to the Ontario border to face a mean Buffalo team that has turned things around since their Monday Night debacle against the Jets. Colin Kaepernick will get his first start, and we would not be surprised if subconsciously, the officials see an extra penalty here or there that costs the 49ers a crucial first down. Rex Ryan can sniff playoffs with this Bills’ team. It’s been a very long dry spell for Buffalo, even longer than the Raiders’ dry spell, and a win Sunday puts Buffalo at 4-2.

If you haven’t read our NFL preview from Tuesday, you should read what we had to write about the Oakland – Kansas City rivalry.

Link: https://piratings.wordpress.com/2016/10/11/nfl-ratings-and-spreads-for-week-5-october-13-17-2016/

This game promises to be one of the best between these two franchises since the old Daryle Lamonica vs. Len Dawson days. The game even shapes up to play like it was from 1968–Oakland has the wide-open high-octane offense and some big play defensive stars, while Kansas City has the better ball-control offense to go with a top-flight defense. All that will be missing is the odd characters like Ben Davidson, Buck Buchanan, Fred Williamson, and Fred Biletnikoff, who wore shoulder pads about as thick as tissue paper and used enough Stickem that he could catch a pass without using his fingers.

August 26, 2015

2015 AFC East Division Preview

Today, we begin our 2015 previews of each NFL division with a look at the AFC East Division. This year, we are going to concentrate mostly on stats and analytics.

You will see the following information in each preview.

  1. A current starting lineup based on multiple sources.  This will include players that are questionable for Week 1, and players suspended in the first four weeks.
  2. Team Information–Head Coach, Offensive and Defensive Coordinators, Last Year’s W-L Record and Average Offensive and Defensive Points Per Game
  3. 2015 Preseason PiRate, Mean, and Bias Ratings with an Average of the Three.
  4. Our PiRate Grades on Running Game, Passing Game, Defense Against the Run, Defense Against the Pass, Special Teams, and Coaching + Intangibles.  Note that these grades use advanced metrics and do not rely on regular statistics.  More about that in the footnote at the end of this entry.
  5. The PiRate Ratings won-loss predictions for 2015 and whether the team is picked to make the playoffs.  These predictions are based on a unique set of data and do not strictly correlate to our preseason ratings.  We actually have pre-adjustments in our ratings based on factors such as depth, age, schedule, travel, etc.

AFC EAST

New England has won this division six consecutive seasons, and the last time they didn’t win, they lost in a tiebreaker to the Miami Dolphins.  With Tom Brady sidelined for four games, a lot of pundits are picking the Patriots to begin the season trailing one or more contenders.  We remind them that Matt Cassel took over a Patriot team in 2008 and went 10-5 as a starter.  Jimmy Garoppolo should be able to at least split those four games, which should allow the Pats to seven-peat in the AFC East.

Rex Ryan takes over at Buffalo, and the Bills have enough talent on hand to make a playoff run, something Bills’ fans have not experienced since the fateful “Music City Miracle” in 1999.  With the addition of Matt Cassel, LeSean McCoy and to a lesser extent, Percy Harvin and Richie Incognito, Ryan’s Bills could take on the persona of the Oakland Raiders of the 1960’s and 1970’s.

Miami added Ndamukong Suh and Greg Jennings to a roster that was 7-5 before fading fast last year.  The Dolphins will make the Playoffs this year, or Joe Philbin will be history.

The New York Jets start over with a new coach, a new quarterback they did not expect to have, two new cornerbacks, and a commitment to open up the offense.  However, in order for the Jets to get off the ground in 2015, unexpected new starting quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick must find a way to avoid the interception bug for at least 4 or 5 games, or else rookie Bryce Petty will be in the Big Apple microscope.

BUFFALO BILLS

Starting Lineup
Offense
WR Sammy Watkins
WR Percy Harvin
WR Robert Woods
TE Charles Clay
LT Gordy Glenn
LG Richie Ingonito
C Eric Wood
RG John Miller
RT Seantrel Henderson
QB Matt Cassel
HB LeSean McCoy
FB Jerome Felton
Defense
DE Mario Williams
DT Marcell Dareus
DT Kyle Williams
DE Jerry Hughes
LB Nigel Bradham
LB Preston Brown
LB Manny Lawson
CB Leodis McKelvin
S Aaron Williams
S Corey Graham
CB Stephon Gilmore
N5 Nickell Robey
Special
Kicker Dan Carpenter
Punter Colton Schmidt
KR Percy Harvin
PR Marcus Thigpen
Buffalo Bills
Head Coach Rex Ryan
Off. Coordinator Greg Roman
Def. Coordinator Dennis Thurman
2014 W-L-T 9-7-0
Pts 21.4
Opp 18.1
Ratings
PiRate 99.8
Mean 100.6
Bias 99.6
Average 100.0
Grades
Running B-
Passing C-
Vs. Run B+
Vs. Pass B-
Special Teams C
Coaching + Intangibles C+
Predicted W-L 10-6-0
Division Rank 2
Conference Rank 9
Overall Rank 17
Postseason Yes

MIAMI DOLPHINS

Starting Lineup
Offense
WR Greg Jennings
WR Kenny Stills
WR Jarvis Landry
TE Jordan Cameron
LT Albert Brandon
LG Dallas Thomas
C Mike Pouncey
RG Billy Turner
RT Ja’ Wuan James
QB Ryan Tannehill
HB Lamar Miller
FB (None)
Defense
DE Cameron Wake
DT Ndamukong Suh
DT Earl Mitchell
DE Olivier Vernon
LB Chris McCain
LB Koa Misi
LB Jelani Jenkins
CB Brent Grimes
S Reshad Jones
S Michael Thomas
CB Jamar Taylor
N5 Brice McCain
Special
Kicker Caleb Sturgis
Punter Brandon Fields
KR Jarvis Landry
PR Jarvis Landry
Miami Dolphins
Head Coach Joe Philbin
Off. Coordinator Bill Lazor
Def. Coordinator Kevin Coyle
2014 W-L-T 8-8-0
Pts 24.3
Opp 23.3
Ratings
PiRate 98.7
Mean 100.3
Bias 98.0
Average 99.0
Grades
Running C-
Passing C+
Vs. Run C
Vs. Pass B
Special Teams C-
Coaching + Intangibles C
Predicted W-L 9-7-0
Division Rank 3
Conference Rank 10
Overall Rank 19
Postseason No

NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS

Starting Lineup
Offense
WR Reggie Wayne
WR Julian Edelman
WR Danny Amendola
TE Rob Gronkowski
LT Nate Solder
LG Josh Klein
C Bryan Stork
RG Ryan Wendell
RT Sebastian Vollmer
QB Tom Brady
HB LeGarrette Blount
FB James Develin
Defense
DE Rob Ninkovich
DT Alan Branch
DT Sealver Siliga
DE Chandler Jones
LB Jamie Collins
LB Jerod Mayo
LB Dont’a Hightower
CB Malcolm Butler
S Patrick Chung
S Devon McCourty
CB Logan Ryan
N5 Robert McClain
Special
Kicker Stephen Gostkowski
Punter Ryan Allen
KR Danny Amendola
PR Julian Edelman
New England Patriots
Head Coach Bill Belichick
Off. Coordinator Josh McDaniels
Def. Coordinator Matt Patricia
2014 W-L-T 12-4-0
Pts 29.3
Opp 19.6
Ratings
PiRate 107.9
Mean 107.9
Bias 107.9
Average 107.9
Grades
Running C-
Passing A+
Vs. Run C-
Vs. Pass C
Special Teams A
Coaching + Intangibles A+
Predicted W-L 12-4-0
Division Rank 1
Conference Rank 1
Overall Rank 2
Postseason No

NEW YORK JETS

Starting Lineups
Offense
WR Brandon Marshall
WR Eric Decker
WR Jeremy Kerley
TE Jeff Cumberland
LT D’Brickashaw Ferguson
LG James Carpenter
C Nick Mangold
RG Willie Colon
RT Breno Giacomini
QB Ryan Fitzpatrick
HB Chris Ivory
FB Tommy Bohanon
Defense
DE Muhammad Wilkerson
DT Damon Harrison
DE Leonard Williams
LB Quinton Coples
LB Demario Davis
LB David Harris
LB Calvin Pace
CB Darrelle Revis
S Calvin Pryor
S Marcus Gilchrist
CB Antonio Cromartie
N5 Buster Skrine
Special
Kicker Nick Folk
Punter Ryan Quigley
KR Chris Owusu
PR Jeremy Kerley
New York Jets
Head Coach Todd Bowles
Off. Coordinator Chan Gailey
Def. Coordinator Kacy Rodgers
2014 W-L-T 4-12-0
Pts 17.7
Opp 25.1
Ratings
PiRate 97.7
Mean 98.2
Bias 97.5
Average 97.8
Grades
Running C-
Passing D
Vs. Run A-
Vs. Pass B+
Special Teams C
Coaching + Intangibles D
Predicted W-L 7-9-0
Division Rank 4
Conference Rank 12
Overall Rank 23
Postseason No

Grade Constituents & Data

Running Game: Offensive Line & Running Backs

Mere average yards per carry or total yards gained matters little here.  We grade based on how effective the running game is.  So, if a player gained 1,200 yards and averaged 4.0 yards per carry last year, there is no guarantee that he is better than a player that gains 800 yards and averaged 3.5 yards per attempt.  Gaining three yards on third and two is a lot more important than gaining four yards on third and eight.  A player that gets a lot of attempts inside the two yard line will see his average yards per carry drop but will be more effective due to getting the job done.

Passing Game: Quarterback, Receivers, Backs, Offensive Line

We use a combination of average yards per attempt, air yards per attempt, yards after catch, sacks per attempt, and avoidance of turnovers.  A team with a better quarterback may have a lower grade than a team with less talented quarterback, if he has a better pass blocking offensive line and/or better receivers.

Defense: All 11 defensive players factor into both run and pass defense.  The defensive ends and cornerbacks count more against the pass than any other position, while the front seven counts more against the run than the secondary.

Special Teams: Punt and Kick Coverage count for a little more than punt and kick return, but with a little extra given weight to returners that have a proven history of becoming game-changers.  Actual punting and kicking have gotten to the point where there is not much difference between the best and worst.  If the top punter averages 46 yards per punt, and a replacement punter averages just 40 yards per punt, that six yards is not that much of a factor.  Coverage is much more important.  Not allowing the opponent to get a long return counts more than the six yards difference in the punters.

Coaching + Intangibles: The head coach is not the only coach that matters, but he counts more than the strength and conditioning coach.  We look at the entire coaching staff, with the coordinators receiving more consideration than all but the head coach.  Intangibles include a host of factors, including things like having a player break a teammate’s jaw, penalties from deflating balls, having a team that missed out of the playoffs by a tiebreaker last year, and many other little things.

August 28, 2013

2013 AFC East Preview

2013 A F C East Preview

The AFC East Division looks like a case of New England and the Three Dwarfs.  Miami has some promise, but they have lost a major component of their offense with the injury to Dustin Keller.  The Jets appear to be doing everything they can to rid themselves of Rex Ryan and guarantee themselves Jadeveon Clowney with the first pick of the 2014 NFL Draft.  Buffalo sure wishes they had not dumped Ryan Fitzpatrick, as they appear ready to start a rookie free agent at QB in their first game.

 

Even with the loss of Rob Gronkowski to injury for at least part of the season, and with the riddance of accused murderer Aaron Hernandez, it should still be a cruise to first place for New England.  A 10-6 record would be a down year, but the Pats would probably win the East by at least three games if they go 10-6.

 

Look for the NFC South and AFC North to take advantage of the weakened division, as the better teams in both divisions should go 3-1 or even 4-0.  This will help teams like Baltimore, Cincinnati, Pittsburgh, Atlanta, New Orleans, and even Carolina in the playoff picture.

 

We have added a new wrinkle to our coverage this year.  In the past, friends of ours have asked us if we knew how to recreate the exact colors of their favorite team so that they could print those colors on their computer.  We have found this information from multiple sites in the last couple of months, and we are going to show you the RGB numbers so you can replicate those colors.  These can be used in graphics programs, but it can easily be used in MS-Word and MS-Excel.

 

Here are the official colors for the AFC East

West

Color

Red

Green

Blue

Buffalo Bills

Royal Blue

0

51

141

 

Scarlet

198

12

48

Miami Dolphins

Aqua

0

98

101

 

Coral

249

70

28

New England Patriots

Nautical Blue

0

34

68

 

Red

198

12

48

New York Jets

Hunter Green

44

94

79

 

White

255

255

255

 

 

2012 Final Standings & PiRate Ratings

AFC East

PiRate

Mean

Biased

W-L-T

Pts

Opp

New England Patriots

112.7

111.2

110.2

12-4-0

557

331

Miami Dolphins

98.8

98.9

98.9

7-9-0

288

317

New York Jets

95.0

94.0

93.3

6-10-0

281

375

Buffalo Bills

94.6

94.2

93.9

6-10-0

344

435

 

 

2013 Preseason PiRate Ratings

East

PiRate

Mean

Biased

New England Patriots

109.2

103.6

109.9

Miami Dolphins

98.5

99.1

99.3

New York Jets

96.3

93.1

96.1

Buffalo Bills

94.7

92.9

95.0

 

PiRate Previews

Team

Buffalo Bills

               
Head Coach

Doug Marrone

O-Coord.

Nathaniel Hackett

D-Coord.

Mike Pettine

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Projected Starting Lineup

Position

Player

 

Offense

Quarterback

E. J. Manuel  (Jeff Tuel ?)

Running Back

C. J. Spiller

Fullback

Frank Summers

Wide Receiver

Stevie Johnson

Wide Receiver

T. J. Graham

Tight End

Scott Chandler

Left Tackle

Cordy Glenn

Left Guard

Colin Brown

Center

Eric Wood

Right Guard

Kraig Urbik

Right Tackle

Erik Pears

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Defense

Left End

Alex Carrington

Nose Tackle

Marcell Dareus

Right End

Kyle Williams

Left OLB

Mario Williams

Left ILB

Nigel Bradham

Right ILB

Kiko Alonso

Right OLB

Manny Lawson

Left CB

Leodis McKelvin

Right CB

Stephon Gilmore

Strong Safety

Da’Norris Searcy

Free Safety

Jairus Byrd

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Special Teams

Kicker

Dustin Hopkins

Punter

Shawn Powell

K-Return

Leodis McKelvin

P-Return

Leodis McKelvin

 

 

Predictions

 

Record

5-11

Division

3rd

 

Team

Miami Dolphins

               
Head Coach

Joe Philbin

O-Coord.

Mike Sherman

D-Coord.

Kevin Coyle

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Projected Starting Lineup

Position

Player

 

Offense

Quarterback

Ryan Tannehill

Running Back

Lamar Miller

Fullback

Evan Rodriguez

Wide Receiver

Brian Hartline

Wide Receiver

Mike Wallace

Tight End

Charles Clay

Left Tackle

Jonathan Martin

Left Guard

Richie Incognito

Center

Mike Pouncey

Right Guard

John Jerry

Right Tackle

Tyson Clabo

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Defense

Left End

Olivier Vernon

Left Tackle

Randy Starks

Right Tackle

Paul Soliai

Right End

Cameron Wake

Sam LB

Koa Misi

Mike LB

Dannell Ellerbe

Will LB

Phillip Wheeler

Left CB

Brent Grimes

Right CB

Dimitri Patterson

Strong Safety

Reshad Jones

Free Safety

Chris Clemons

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Special Teams

Kicker

Caleb Sturgis

Punter

Brandon Fields

K-Return

Marcus Thigpen

P-Return

Marcus Thigpen

 

 

Predictions

 

Record

6-10

Division

2nd

 

Team

New England Patriots

               
Head Coach

Bill Belichick

O-Coord.

Josh McDaniels

D-Coord.

Matt Patricia

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Projected Starting Lineup

Position

Player

 

Offense

Quarterback

Tom Brady

Running Back

Stevan Ridley/Shane Vereen

Fullback

James Develin

Wide Receiver

Danny Amendola

Wide Receiver

Kenbrell Thompkins

Tight End

Zach Sudfeld (Rob Gronkowski ?)

Left Tackle

Nate Solder

Left Guard

Logan Mankins

Center

Ryan Wendell

Right Guard

Dan Connolly

Right Tackle

Sebastian Vollmer

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Defense

Left End

Rob Ninkovich

Left Tackle

Vince Wilfork

Right Tackle

Tommy Kelly

Right End

Chandler Jones

Sam LB

Dont’a Hightower

Mike LB

Brandon Spikes

Will LB

Jerod Mayo

Left CB

Aqib Talib

Right CB

Alfonzo Dennard

Strong Safety

Steve Gregory

Free Safety

Devin McCourty

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Special Teams

Kicker

Stephen Gostkowski

Punter

Zoltan Mesko

K-Return

Leon Washington

P-Return

Julian Edelman

 

 

Predictions

 

Record

12-4

Division

1st

 

Team

New York Jets

               
Head Coach

Rex Ryan

O-Coord.

Marty Mornhinweg

D-Coord.

Dennis Thurman

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Projected Starting Lineup

Position

Player

 

Offense

Quarterback

Geno Smith

Running Back

Bilal Powell/Chris Ivory

Fullback

Tommy Bohanon

Wide Receiver

Stephen Hill

Wide Receiver

Jeremy Kerley

Tight End

Jeff Cumberland

Left Tackle

D’Brickashaw Ferguson

Left Guard

Vladimir Ducasse

Center

Nick Mangold

Right Guard

Willie Colon

Right Tackle

Austin Howard

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Defense

Left End

Muhammad Wilkerson

Nose Tackle

Kenrick Ellis

Right Tackle

Sheldon Richardson

Left OLB

Garrett McIntyre

Left ILB

Demario Davis

Right ILB

David Harris

Right OLB

Calvin Pace

Left CB

Dee Milliner

Right CB

Antonion Cromartie

Strong Safety

Dawan Landry

Free Safety

Antonio Allen

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Special Teams

Kicker

Nick Folk

Punter

Robert Malone

K-Return

Clyde Gates

P-Return

Jeremy Kerley

 

 

Predictions

 

Record

4-12

Division

4th

 

August 16, 2013

2013 Mid-American Conference Football Preview

2013 Mid-American Conference Preview

 

The MAC achieved special status last season, with two schools challenging for a BCS Bowl bid.  Kent State moved into prime position to grab that bowl with an 11-1 regular season that brought the Golden Flashes into the top 20 and just inside the parameters needed to steal a bid.

 

At the same time, Northern Illinois won 11 games in a row after an opening one-point loss at Iowa, and the Huskies moved into the top 20 as well.

 

In the MAC Championship Game, NIU bested Kent State in one of the most exciting conference championship games of all time.  The game went to double overtime, before the Huskies emerged victorious.  They earned an Orange Bowl bid to face Florida State, where they showed they really did not belong in a BCS Bowl.

 

Now, both of the two powers from 2012 must replace successful coaches who received nice pay increases to move to the big time.  Former NIU coach Dave Doeren now calls the shots at North Carolina St., while Kent State’s Darrell Hazell is the new man at Purdue.

 

2013 looks to be a typical year for the MAC, not one where one team should make a run toward a BCS Bowl bid, but one where as many as six teams could find themselves in a bowl at the end of the year.

 

This is one league that experiences no additions or departures.

 

Pre-season PiRate Ratings

 

Mid-American Conference  
East Division  
Team

Conf.

Overall

PiRate

Mean

Bias

 
Bowling Green

0-0

0-0

98.7

100.3

99.8

 
Buffalo

0-0

0-0

92.8

95.2

93.2

 
Ohio

0-0

0-0

91.9

97.8

93.4

 
Kent St.

0-0

0-0

89.5

93.8

90.1

 
Miami (O)

0-0

0-0

83.5

85.1

82.9

 
Akron

0-0

0-0

80.8

89.3

80.2

 
Massachusetts

0-0

0-0

70.6

81.1

70.2

 
     

 

 

 

 
West Division
Team

Conf.

Overall

PiRate

Mean

Bias

 
Toledo

0-0

0-0

98.6

98.3

99.2

 
Northern Illinois

0-0

0-0

97.8

97.0

99.6

 
Ball St.

0-0

0-0

97.1

99.3

98.3

 
Western Michigan

0-0

0-0

85.2

86.7

86.5

 
Central Michigan

0-0

0-0

84.4

89.9

84.6

 
Eastern Michigan

0-0

0-0

79.5

83.6

79.2

 
     

 

 

 

 
League Averages    

88.5

92.1

89.0

 

 

Official Pre-season Media Poll

 
MAC-East      

Pos

Team

Votes

1st Place

 

1

Ohio

164

15

 

2

Bowling Green

154

8

 

3

Kent St.

119

1

 

4

Buffalo

101

1

 

5

Miami (O)

78

0

 

6

Akron

53

0

 

7

Massachusetts

29

0

 
         
MAC-West      

Pos

Team

Votes

1st Place

 

1

Northern Illinois

138

16

 

2

Toledo

122

5

 

3

Ball St.

108

3

 

4

Central Michigan

67

1

 

5

Western Michigan

61

0

 

6

Eastern Michigan

29

0

 
         
MAC Championship Game Winner    

1

Northern Illinois

14

   

2

Toledo

3

   

3

Ohio

3

   

4

Bowling Green

2

   

5

Ball St.

2

   

6

Central Michigan

1

   

 

 

The Mid-American Conference does not announce a preseason All-MAC team.  In lieu, here are key players for each team:

 

MAC East

Akron: Cody Grice—DL, Malachi Freeman—DB, Jawon Chisholm—RB, Jerron Dillard—WR

 

Bowling Green: Matt Schilz—QB, Chris Gallon and Shaun Joplin—WR, Dominic Flewellyn—OL, Gabe Martin—LB

 

Buffalo: Branden Oliver—RB, Alex Neutz—WR, Khalil Mack—LB, Colby Way—DL, Najja Johnson—DB

 

Kent St.: Dri Archer and Trayion Durham—RB, Pat McShane—OL, Luke Wollet—DB, Roosevelt Nix—DL, Anthony Melchiori—P

 

Massachusetts: Mike Wegzyn—QB, Rob Blanchflower—TE, Colter Johnson—P

 

Miami (O): Dawan Scott—WR, Steve Marck—TE, Chris Wade—LB, Brison Burris and Dayonne Nunley—DB

 

Ohio: Tyler Tettleton—QB, Beau Blankenship—RB, Donte Foster—WR, John Prior—OL, Keith Moore—LB, Travis Carrie—DB

 

MAC West

Ball St.: Keith Wenning—QB, Jahwan Edwards—RB, Willie Snead and Jamill Smith—WR, Zane Fakes—TE, Jordan Hansel—OL, Jonathan Newsome and Nathan Ollie—DL, Eric Patterson and Jeffery Garrett—DB

 

Central Michigan: Zurlon Tipton—RB, Titus Davis—WR, Nick Beamish—OL, Justin Cherocci and Shamari Benton—LB

 

Eastern Michigan: Tyler Benz—QB, Bronson Hill—RB, Campbell Allison—OL, Donald Coleman—DB

 

Northern Illinois: Jordan Lynch—QB, Tommylee Lewis—WR, Tyler Loos, Jared Volk, Aidan Conlon, Andrew Ness, and Ryan Brown—OL, Jimmie Ward—DB, Jamaal Bass—LB, Mathew Sims—K

 

Toledo: Terrance Owens—QB, David Fluellen—RB, Bernard Reedy and Alzono Russell—WR, Greg Mancz—OL, Cheatham Norrils—DB, Trent Voss–LB (Reedy in return game)

 

Western Michigan: Tyler Van Tubbergen—QB, Jaime Wilson—WR, Johnnie Simon—LB/DB hybrid, Justin Currie—DB, Desmond Bozeman–LB

 

PiRate Ratings Summary

 

About Grades

93-100         A+

86-92           A

79-85           A-

72-78           B+

65-71           B

58-64           B-

51-57           C+

44-50           C

37-43           C-

30-36           D

0-29             F

 

About Predictions

Predictions are based on the PiRate Ratings with home field advantage factored in.  The PiRate Ratings use different home field advantages for every game, since the opponent factors into the equation.

 

EAST DIVISION

Team

Bowling Green Falcons

               
Head Coach

Dave Clawson

               
Colors

Orange and Brown

               
City

Bowling Green, OH

               
2012 Record              
Conference

6-2

Overall

8-5

               
Grades              
Run Offense

61

Pass Offense

72

Run Defense

63

Pass Defense

58

               
Ratings              
PiRate

98.7

Mean

100.3

Bias

99.8

               
Rankings              
PiRate

63

Mean

61

Bias

60

               
Prediction              
Conference

8-0

Overall

11-2 (win MAC title game)

 

 

Team

Buffalo Bulls

               
Head Coach

Jeff Quinn

               
Colors

Royal Blue and White

               
City

Buffalo

               
2012 Record              
Conference

3-5

Overall

4-8

               
Grades              
Run Offense

57

Pass Offense

62

Run Defense

58

Pass Defense

54

               
Ratings              
PiRate

92.8

Mean

95.2

Bias

93.2

               
Rankings              
PiRate

85

Mean

82

Bias

86

               
Prediction              
Conference

5-3

Overall

7-5

 

 

Team

Ohio Bobcats

               
Head Coach

Frank Solich

               
Colors

Hunter Green and White

               
City

Athens, OH

               
2012 Record              
Conference

4-4

Overall

9-4

               
Grades              
Run Offense

63

Pass Offense

67

Run Defense

52

Pass Defense

46

               
Ratings              
PiRate

91.9

Mean

97.8

Bias

93.4

               
Rankings              
PiRate

88

Mean

67

Bias

85

               
Prediction              
Conference

6-2

Overall

9-3

 

 

Team

Kent St. Golden Flashes

               
Head Coach

Paul Haynes

               
Colors

Blue and Gold

               
City

Kent, OH

               
2012 Record              
Conference

7-1

Overall

11-3

               
Grades              
Run Offense

75

Pass Offense

44

Run Defense

62

Pass Defense

44

               
Ratings              
PiRate

89.5

Mean

93.8

Bias

90.1

               
Rankings              
PiRate

94

Mean

88

Bias

94

               
Prediction              
Conference

4-4

Overall

6-6

 

 

Team

Miami (O) Redhawks

               
Head Coach

Don Treadwell

               
Colors

Red and White

               
City

Oxford, OH

               
2012 Record              
Conference

3-5

Overall

4-8

               
Grades              
Run Offense

36

Pass Offense

64

Run Defense

41

Pass Defense

48

               
Ratings              
PiRate

83.5

Mean

85.1

Bias

82.9

               
Rankings              
PiRate

111

Mean

116

Bias

112

               
Prediction              
Conference

3-5

Overall

3-9

 

 

Team

Akron Zips

               
Head Coach

Terry Bowden

               
Colors

 

               
City

Akron, OH

               
2012 Record              
Conference

0-8

Overall

1-11

               
Grades              
Run Offense

37

Pass Offense

59

Run Defense

38

Pass Defense

45

               
Ratings              
PiRate

80.8

Mean

89.3

Bias

80.2

               
Rankings              
PiRate

116

Mean

104

Bias

117

               
Prediction              
Conference

1-7

Overall

2-10

 

 

Team

Massachusetts Minutemen

               
Head Coach

Charley Molnar

               
Colors

Maroon and White

               
City

Amherst, MA

               
2012 Record              
Conference

1-7

Overall

1-11

               
Grades              
Run Offense

27

Pass Offense

40

Run Defense

35

Pass Defense

38

               
Ratings              
PiRate

70.6

Mean

81.1

Bias

70.2

               
Rankings              
PiRate

124

Mean

122

Bias

123

               
Prediction              
Conference

0-8

Overall

0-12

 

 

WEST DIVISION

Team

Toledo Rockets

               
Head Coach

Matt Campbell

               
Colors

Midnight Blue & Gold

               
City

Toledo, OH

               
2012 Record              
Conference

7-1

Overall

9-4

               
Grades              
Run Offense

62

Pass Offense

77

Run Defense

60

Pass Defense

54

               
Ratings              
PiRate

98.6

Mean

98.3

Bias

99.2

               
Rankings              
PiRate

65

Mean

65

Bias

64

               
Prediction              
Conference

6-2

Overall

8-4

 

 

Team

Northern Illinois Huskies

               
Head Coach

Rod Carey

               
Colors

Red and Black

               
City

DeKalb, IL

               
2012 Record              
Conference

8-0 (won MAC title game)

Overall

12-2

               
Grades              
Run Offense

71

Pass Offense

65

Run Defense

66

Pass Defense

52

               
Ratings              
PiRate

97.8

Mean

97.0

Bias

99.6

               
Rankings              
PiRate

70

Mean

74

Bias

61

               
Prediction              
Conference

7-1

Overall

9-4 (lose MAC title game)

 

 

Team

Ball St. Cardinals

               
Head Coach

Pete Lembo

               
Colors

Cardinal, Black, and White

               
City

Muncie, IN

               
2012 Record              
Conference

6-2

Overall

9-4

               
Grades              
Run Offense

64

Pass Offense

78

Run Defense

50

Pass Defense

54

               
Ratings              
PiRate

97.1

Mean

99.3

Bias

98.3

               
Rankings              
PiRate

73

Mean

63

Bias

69

               
Prediction              
Conference

7-1

Overall

10-2

 

 

Team

Western Michigan Broncos

               
Head Coach

P. J. Fleck

               
Colors

Brown & Gold (also Black & Silver)

               
City

Kalamazoo, MI

               
2012 Record              
Conference

2-6

Overall

4-8

               
Grades              
Run Offense

38

Pass Offense

69

Run Defense

39

Pass Defense

49

               
Ratings              
PiRate

85.2

Mean

86.7

Bias

86.5

               
Rankings              
PiRate

107

Mean

110

Bias

101

               
Prediction              
Conference

3-5

Overall

4-8

 

 

Team

Central Michigan Chippewas

               
Head Coach

Dan Enos

               
Colors

Maroon and Gold

               
City

Mt. Pleasant, MI

               
2012 Record              
Conference

4-4

Overall

7-6

               
Grades              
Run Offense

53

Pass Offense

57

Run Defense

40

Pass Defense

46

               
Ratings              
PiRate

84.4

Mean

89.9

Bias

84.6

               
Rankings              
PiRate

109

Mean

102

Bias

109

               
Prediction              
Conference

2-6

Overall

3-9

 

 

Team

Eastern Michigan Eagles

               
Head Coach

Ron English

               
Colors

Dark Green and White

               
City

Ypsilanti, MI

               
2012 Record              
Conference

1-7

Overall

2-10

               
Grades              
Run Offense

58

Pass Offense

35

Run Defense

39

Pass Defense

48

               
Ratings              
PiRate

79.5

Mean

83.6

Bias

79.2

               
Rankings              
PiRate

119

Mean

118

Bias

120

               
Prediction              
Conference

0-8

Overall

1-11

 

December 29, 2010

PiRate Ratings For NFL Football: Week 17–January 2, 2011

Did You Enjoy Your Christmas Gift?

Last week as our Christmas gift to you, we gave all our readers a free 13-point teaser parlay for you to play.  It was a winner!  Let’s take a look at it once again.

 

Pittsburgh – ½ vs. Carolina

Jacksonville +6 vs. Washington

Baltimore +9 ½ vs. Cleveland

Oakland +13 vs. Indianapolis

Thanks to an excellent QB draw by David Garrard, the Jaguars force overtime with Washington and lost on a field goal, which was okay for this parlay.  Oakland scored a late TD to prevent the Colts from threatening to ruin the parlay at the end of the day.  Pittsburgh and Baltimore were never in doubt.  Did you use this and win?

 

NFL Playoff Possibilities

NFC

East

Philadelphia

Clinched the division and will be the number three seed no matter what happens this week

 

New York Giants

Can get in as a Wildcard two ways

1. A win over Washington and Green Bay loses or ties

2. A tie with Washington and a both a Green Bay loss and Tampa Bay loss or tie

 

North

Chicago

Clinched the division and has earned a first round bye regardless of what happens this week

They can clinch home-field advantage throughout the NFC playoffs with a win plus an Atlanta loss and a New Orleans loss or tie

 

Green Bay 

Can earn a Wildcard spot three different ways

1. A win over the Bears automatically gives them a Wildcard

2. If they lose to the Bears, they still qualify if both the Giants and Tampa Bay also lose

3. If they tie the Bears, they qualify as a Wildcard if both the Giants and Tampa Bay lose or tie

 

South

Atlanta

Has not clinched the division, but a win or tie over Carolina clinches it 

They also would clinch with a New Orleans loss or tie 

If they win the division, they will also clinch a first-round bye. 

Can clinch home-field advantage throughout the NFC Playoffs if they win or tie or if Chicago and New Orleans both lose or tie

 

New Orleans

Has clinched a playoff spot 

If the Saints win and Atlanta loses, they would become division champions and earn home-field advantage throughout the NFC playoffs

 

Tampa Bay

Can still earn a Wildcard spot with a win over the Saints plus a Green Bay loss or tie and a Giants loss or tie

 

West

The winner of the St. Louis—Seattle game will clinch the division and earn the number four seed 

If they tie, the Rams win the division

 

AFC

East

New England

Has already clinched home-field advantage throughout the AFC Playoffs

 

New York Jets

Have clinched a Wildcard spot.

 

North

Pittsburgh and Baltimore have already clinched playoff spots

 

Pittsburgh

Can clinch the division and earn the other first-round bye three different ways

1. A win over Cleveland

2. A tie with Cleveland coupled with a loss or tie by Baltimore

3. A loss to Cleveland, coupled with a loss by Baltimore

 

Pittsburgh can be a #2 seed with a win, but they could fall all the way to #6 if they lose and both Baltimore and the Jets win.

 

Baltimore 

Can clinch the division and earn a first-round bye two ways

1. A win over Cincinnati coupled by a Pittsburgh loss or tie

2. A tie with Cincinnati and a Pittsburgh loss.

 

South

This division has not yet been decided 

The division winner will play in the opening week in the Wildcard Playoff round

 

Indianapolis

Clinches the division with a win or tie or a Jacksonville loss or tie 

 

The Colts would be the number three seed if they win and Kansas City loses and the number four seed if they win the division and Kansas City wins or ties

 

Jacksonville

Can clinch the division with a win over Houston and  Indianapolis loss to Tennessee 

The Jaguars would be the number four seed.

 

West

Kansas City

Has already clinched the division title and will play in the Wildcard Round of the playoffs 

If they win or tie or if Indianapolis loses or ties, the Chiefs would be the third seed 

If they lose and Indianapolis wins, the Chiefs will be the fourth seed

 

 Here is our projected Playoff bracket

NFC

#6 Green Bay at #3 Philadelphia

#5 New Orleans at #4 St. Louis

 

#2 Chicago hosts the better remaining seed that wins in the Wildcard round

 

#1 Atlanta hosts the worse remaining seed that wins in the Wildcard round

 

AFC

#6 Pittsburgh at #3 Kansas City

#5 New York Jets at #4 Indianapolis

 

#2 Baltimore hosts the better remaining seed that wins in the Wildcard round

 

#1 New England hosts the worse remaining seed that wins in the Wildcard round

 

Current NFL Standings, PiRate, Mean, and Biased Ratings
Listed By PiRate Rating                  
NFC East Won   Lost   Tied Pts Opp PiRate Mean Biased
Philadelphia  10 5 0 426 363 105.9 104.0 104.7
NY Giants 9 6 0 377 333 103.6 102.5 102.2
Dallas  5 10 0 380 423 97.9 98.4 96.6
Washington  6 9 0 288 360 94.3 97.0 97.4
 

 

                   
NFC North Won   Lost   Tied Pts Opp PiRate Mean Biased
Green Bay  9 6 0 378 237 111.2 109.2 106.8
Chicago  11 4 0 331 276 103.9 104.4 105.0
Detroit 5 10 0 342 356 98.4 100.5 100.1
Minnesota 6 9 0 268 328 97.4 98.1 99.4
                     
NFC South Won   Lost   Tied Pts Opp PiRate Mean Biased
New Orleans 11 4 0 371 284 107.0 105.3 107.0
Atlanta 12 3 0 383 278 106.6 105.7 105.8
Tampa Bay 9 6 0 318 305 100.0 100.2 101.0
Carolina 2 13 0 186 377 90.2 88.4 88.3
                     
NFC West Won   Lost   Tied Pts Opp PiRate Mean Biased
San Francisco 5 10 0 267 339 96.2 94.5 96.7
St. Louis 7 8 0 283 312 95.6 94.9 99.0
Seattle 6 9 0 294 401 92.0 91.6 94.1
Arizona 5 10 0 282 396 89.0 91.4 91.0
                     
AFC East Won   Lost   Tied Pts Opp PiRate Mean Biased
New England 13 2 0 480 306 115.3 113.2 112.0
NY Jets 10 5 0 329 297 102.7 102.9 103.9
Miami 7 8 0 266 295 99.1 99.2 98.2
Buffalo 4 11 0 276 387 95.8 96.3 95.8
                     
AFC North Won   Lost   Tied Pts Opp PiRate Mean Biased
Baltimore 11 4 0 344 263 107.0 106.2 106.0
Pittsburgh 11 4 0 334 223 105.5 105.7 106.2
Cleveland 5 10 0 262 291 99.3 98.2 94.4
Cincinnati 4 11 0 315 382 97.9 97.9 95.3
                     
AFC South Won   Lost   Tied Pts Opp PiRate Mean Biased
Indianapolis 9 6 0 412 368 102.2 102.5 103.1
Jacksonville 8 7 0 336 385 98.7 97.7 98.4
Houston 5 10 0 356 410 98.0 97.7 96.5
Tennessee 6 9 0 336 316 93.9 98.3 95.8
                     
AFC West Won   Lost   Tied Pts Opp PiRate Mean Biased
San Diego 8 7 0 408 294 104.3 105.0 102.2
Kansas City 10 5 0 356 295 100.9 101.8 102.7
Oakland 7 8 0 379 361 98.9 99.0 100.5
Denver 4 11 0 316 438 91.7 92.3 94.1

 

PiRate, Mean, and Bias Spreads
Home Team in CAPS          
Ratings Do Not Reflect Resting of Regulars by Teams That Have Nothing to Play for
Week 17: January 2, 2011          
Vegas Line as of 12:00 PM EST Wednesday          
             
Favorite Underdog PiRate Mean Bias Vegas Totals
KANSAS CITY Oakland 6.0 6.8 6.2 3 1/2 43 ½
NEW ENGLAND Miami 19.2 17.0 16.8 3    43   
INDIANAPOLIS Tennessee 11.3 7.2 10.3 9 1/2 48   
Jacksonville HOUSTON 2.7 2.0 3.9 2 1/2 49 ½
Pittsburgh CLEVELAND 2.2 3.5 7.8 6    37   
BALTIMORE Cincinnati 12.1 11.3 13.7 9 1/2 43   
DETROIT Minnesota 5.0 6.4 4.7 NL NL
WASHINGTON New York Giants 6.3 2.5 1.8 4    44 ½
GREEN BAY Chicago 10.3 7.8 4.8 NL NL
PHILADELPHIA Dallas 10.0 7.6 10.1 NL NL
NEW YORK JETS Buffalo 9.9 9.6 11.1 3    35 ½
ATLANTA Carolina 19.4 20.3 20.5 14 1/2 41   
NEW ORLEANS Tampa Bay 9.0 7.1 8.0 7 1/2 47   
SEATTLE

St. Louis 0.4 0.7 -0.9 3    41 1/2
SAN FRANCISCO Arizona 11.2 7.1 9.7 6    38 ½
San Diego DENVER 8.6 8.7 4.1 3 1/2 47   
             

 

Note to our subscription clients:  We will not issue an “official” pick for this week’s games because we do not like any of the possible parlays; too many teams have nothing to play for, but at the same time, this does not mean they will not use their regulars for four quarters.

 

 We will only issue three unofficial picks.  We advise you to take everything off the table unless you want to speculate with profits.

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