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2012 Wild Card Weekend


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#1 SoxScout


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Posted 05 January 2012 - 11:49 AM

SAT, JAN 7 TIME (ET) TV
Cincinnati at Houston 4:30 PM NBC
Detroit at New Orleans 8:00 PM NBC
SUN, JAN 8 TIME (ET) TV
Atlanta at NY Giants 1:00 PM FOX
Pittsburgh at Denver 4:30 PM CBS


#2 ivanvamp


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Posted 05 January 2012 - 11:53 AM

SAT, JAN 7 TIME (ET) TV
Cincinnati at Houston 4:30 PM NBC
Detroit at New Orleans 8:00 PM NBC
SUN, JAN 8 TIME (ET) TV
Atlanta at NY Giants 1:00 PM FOX
Pittsburgh at Denver 4:30 PM CBS


Houston over Cincy
Pittsburgh over Denver
New Orleans over Detroit
NYGiants over Atlanta

Sets up these matchups next week:

Pittsburgh at New England
Houston at Baltimore
New Orleans at San Francisco
NYGiants at Green Bay

#3 Carmine Hose

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Posted 05 January 2012 - 01:48 PM

POSTSEASON - MODIFIED SUDDEN DEATH

The modified sudden death system of determining the winner shall prevail when the score is tied at the end of regulation playing time of postseason NFL games. The system guarantees each team a possession or the opportunity to possess, unless the team that receives the opening kickoff scores a touchdown on its initial possession.

At the end of regulation time, the Referee will immediately toss a coin at the center of the field in accordance with rules pertaining to the usual pregame toss. The captain of the visiting team will call the toss prior to the coin being flipped.

Following a three-minute intermission after the end of the regulation game, play will be continued in 15-minute periods until a winner is declared. Each team must possess or have the opportunity to possess the ball unless the team that has the ball first scores a touchdown on its initial possession. Play continues in sudden death until a winner is determined, and the game automatically ends upon any score (by safety, field goal, or touchdown) or when a score is awarded by the Referee for a palpably unfair act. Each team has three time-outs per half and all general timing provisions apply as during a regular game. The try is not attempted if a touchdown is scored. Disqualified players are not allowed to return.

Instant Replay: No challenges. Reviews to be initiated by the replay assistant.

Key Definitions:

Possession: Actual possession of the ball with complete control. The defense gains possession when it catches, intercepts, or recovers a loose ball.

Opportunity to possess: The opportunity to possess occurs only during kicking plays. A kickoff is an opportunity to possess for the receiving team. If the kicking team legally recovers the kick, the receiving team is considered to have had its opportunity. A punt or a field goal that crosses the line of scrimmage and is muffed by the receiving team is considered to be an opportunity to possess for the receivers. Normal touching rules by the kicking team apply.



#4 tims4wins


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Posted 05 January 2012 - 01:54 PM

Hope we see a playoff OT game to see how it plays out. With kickoffs now on the 35, I'd be seriously tempted to attempt a surprise onside kick.

Just hope it's not in a Pats game!

#5 loshjott

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Posted 05 January 2012 - 03:21 PM

Say Team A receives the OT kick off and kicks a field goal, then Team B receives the ensuing kickoff and fails to score. Is the game over, or does Team A have to score again, either safety, FG, or TD? The rule quoted above seems to say Team A needs to score again.

#6 Super Nomario


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Posted 05 January 2012 - 03:26 PM

Hope we see a playoff OT game to see how it plays out. With kickoffs now on the 35, I'd be seriously tempted to attempt a surprise onside kick.

Just hope it's not in a Pats game!

It sounds like if you recover an onside kick, then kick a field goal, it's game over - the receiving team was considered to have an opportunity even though they never had a possession. But if you try an onside kick and your opponent gets a FG only, you still get a chance to match or beat. It's almost stupid not to try an onside kick.

#7 Kevin Youkulele


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Posted 05 January 2012 - 03:30 PM

Say Team A receives the OT kick off and kicks a field goal, then Team B receives the ensuing kickoff and fails to score. Is the game over, or does Team A have to score again, either safety, FG, or TD? The rule quoted above seems to say Team A needs to score again.

I read the "guarantee"--of possession/an opportunity for possession by the second team if the first kicks a field goal--as being the only way in which the sudden death scheme is "modified." That is, once the guarantee is satisfied (i.e., the second team's possession/opportunity ends), the game reverts to traditional sudden death, meaning that if the score is not tied, the game immediately ends.

#8 Kevin Youkulele


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Posted 05 January 2012 - 03:32 PM

It sounds like if you recover an onside kick, then kick a field goal, it's game over - the receiving team was considered to have an opportunity even though they never had a possession. But if you try an onside kick and your opponent gets a FG only, you still get a chance to match or beat. It's almost stupid not to try an onside kick.

Only if the other team is not expecting it, I think--if they are, then don't your chances go down to 10-15%? That seems like not much consideration for betting a lot of field position.

#9 johnmd20


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Posted 05 January 2012 - 03:46 PM

Only if the other team is not expecting it, I think--if they are, then don't your chances go down to 10-15%? That seems like not much consideration for betting a lot of field position.

Plus, if you recover the onside kick on the 40 and score a TD, it's game over. Kicking an onside kick would be a bad move.

#10 Super Nomario


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Posted 05 January 2012 - 04:08 PM

Yeah, at only 10-20%, the onside kick is a bad move. My math says about 45% would be the break-even point.

#11 tims4wins


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Posted 05 January 2012 - 04:12 PM

We can actually run some fun analysis using Football Outsiders drive stats. Let's do it for the Pats, and assume they are Team A, kicking off first.

To start with, the Pats D has given up TDs on 22.3% of possessions, and field goals on 21.7% of possessions. So 56% of possessions end with no points. The Pats have good special teams and rarely turn it over resulting in good field position for the opponents, so assume that these are the "true" percentages for the Pats.

The Pats offense has scored a TD on 32.9% of possessions, and field goals on 25% of drives. So 42.1% of possessions end with no points. Again assume that these are "true" percentages for the Pats.

If the Pats kick it deep, they can lose in 3 ways:
1) Give up TD on that drive
2) Give up field goal on that drive, match the field goal themselves, then give up the next score
3) Give up field goal on that drive, don't score

The chances of this happening:
1) 22.3% TD
2) 21.7% give up field goal x 25% chance of Pats kicking field goal x 44% chance of giving up points on next drive = 2.4%
3) 21.7% give up field goal x 42.1% don't score = 9.1%
Add these together, and you get a 33.8% of losing if you kick deep

If the Pats onside kick, they can also lose in the same 3 ways. Obviously TD% increase, FG% increases, chances of stopping the other team decreases. So let's make a few assumptions:
1) Chance of recovering a surprise onside kick = 33%
2) If Pats don't recover onside kick, TD% and FG% each double, to 44.6% and 43.4%, respectively (chance of no score = 12%)
3) If Pats do recover onside kick, TD% and FG% each increase 50%, to 49.4% and 37.5%, respectively (chance of no score = 13.1%)

If the Pats fail to recover the onside kick (66% chance this happens):
1) Give up TD = 44.6%
2) Give up field goal (43.4%), kick field goal (25%), give up next score (44%) = 4.8%
3) Give up field goal (43.4%), don't score (42.1%) = 18.3%
So if the Pats fail to recover, there is a 67.7% chance they lose. However, this only happens 2/3 of the time, so it's really a 45.1% chance of losing

If the Pats do recover the onside kick (33% chance this happens)
1) Don't score (13.1%) x give up score (44%) = 5.8% chance of losing
There is only a 33% chance this happens, so it's really a 1.9% chance of losing

Add the two scenarios together, and you get about a 47% chance of losing if you try the surprise onside kick, vs. a 33.8% chance of losing if you kick it deep. Of course, there are a lot of assumptions here, and this doesn't include scenarios like multiple punts, or turnovers for touchdowns.

Edit: to Super Nomario's point, given the assumptions about scoring %, the break even point is right around 45% for the surprise onside kick

Edited by tims4wins, 05 January 2012 - 04:16 PM.


#12 Super Nomario


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Posted 05 January 2012 - 04:18 PM

If the Pats kick it deep, they can lose in 3 ways:
1) Give up TD on that drive
2) Give up field goal on that drive, match the field goal themselves, then give up the next score
3) Give up field goal on that drive, don't score

4) Don't allow a score but then don't score and opponent scores.

Add the two scenarios together, and you get about a 47% chance of losing if you try the surprise onside kick, vs. a 33.8% chance of losing if you kick it deep. Of course, there are a lot of assumptions here, and this doesn't include scenarios like multiple punts, or turnovers for touchdowns.

I think these are too low.

#13 tims4wins


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Posted 05 January 2012 - 04:26 PM

4) Don't allow a score but then don't score and opponent scores.


I think these are too low.

Yeah, the 4th scenario is definitely possible, there is about a 10% chance of that playing out (56% chance Pats hold, 42.1% Pats punt, 44% Pats give up score), I was ignoring more complicated scenarios like that.

Regarding the percentages being too low, for an average NFL team they would be too low, but given the Pats score percentages on offense and defense, I think it's about right. If the Pats went to overtime in a playoff game, and kicked off deep, I think they'd win 2/3 of the time.

Edit: if you add the 4th scenario, of neither team scoring on its first possession, then the chances of losing when kicking it deep increase to about 45%.

Edited by tims4wins, 05 January 2012 - 04:28 PM.


#14 singaporesoxfan

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Posted 05 January 2012 - 04:58 PM

Incidentally, Barry Petchesky over at Deadspin noted that this season winning the OT coin toss and choosing to receive doesn't seem to have been very useful, and attributed part of that to the new kickoff rules (though it could of course just be a small sample). The record of receiving teams this season was 3-6 (33%) when he wrote it, far below the standard 60%. If I have my calculations right, counting the 4 OT games since, the record now stands at 4-9, for about a 30% winning percentage.

#15 MentalDisabldLst


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Posted 05 January 2012 - 05:35 PM

Back when we had the enormous "NFL Overtime Rules" thread and everyone was trying to come up with ideas, my favorite was the possession auction system. Each team gets to successively bid for initial possession of the ball by offering to start farther and farther back in their own territory. Yeah, you'll take the ball first if you get to start at your own 30. But what about your own 20? OK, how about your own 10? Your own 5? Let teams bid for it and have them show up each other's overconfidence. Keep all the other usual rules (sudden-death, first to score) in place. The system will sort itself out and it'll be FAIR.

Of course, this will never happen, because these players are pro athletes, not bond traders or characters on Storage Wars. But it would be f'ing awesome to watch.

#16 Dehere

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Posted 05 January 2012 - 07:06 PM

Still think the simplest and most fair OT system is: sudden death, home team gets the ball.

But it will be fun if we get an OT in the playoffs. Statistically we're due. We had none last year but 14 in the 16 years prior.

#17 Dogman2


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Posted 06 January 2012 - 01:28 PM

No link but the ESPN scroll just said Pouncey has been ruled out for Sunday in Denver.

#18 Titoschew

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Posted 06 January 2012 - 01:54 PM

No link but the ESPN scroll just said Pouncey has been ruled out for Sunday in Denver.


Maybe it's just me, but this game is starting to shape up as interesting. Can't believe I'm saying that, but things seem to really be piling up for PIT. Then again, Air Tebow...

#19 tims4wins


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Posted 06 January 2012 - 02:03 PM

Maybe it's just me, but this game is starting to shape up as interesting. Can't believe I'm saying that, but things seem to really be piling up for PIT. Then again, Air Tebow...

I am starting to think this way too. Also, the strength of the Steelers defense is shutting down the pass. They were #1 in the league in total defense, and #1 against the pass, but "only" #8 against the run in terms of yards allowed, and #9 in yards per carry allowed. So the strength of their D doesn't match up with the strength of the Denver offense, which is running the ball.

Tebow turned it over twice in his first 7 starts, and has turned it over 7 times in their 3 game losing streak. If he protects the ball, Denver has a chance of making it a game. If he turns it over, they have no shot. The Steelers have not been great at forcing turnovers this year - only 15 on the year, last in the NFL. 12 in the last 8 games of the season, however.

#20 Freddy Linn


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Posted 06 January 2012 - 02:07 PM

Clayton speculating that there will be challenges with Ben operating primarily out of the shotgun with snaps from a backup center.

#21 Marciano490


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Posted 06 January 2012 - 02:16 PM

Maybe it's just me, but this game is starting to shape up as interesting. Can't believe I'm saying that, but things seem to really be piling up for PIT. Then again, Air Tebow...


I'm usually a sucker for overs in the low 30s, but I'm thinking that 9 should be the over/under here, not the line.

#22 Al Zarilla


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Posted 06 January 2012 - 02:25 PM

Clayton speculating that there will be challenges with Ben operating primarily out of the shotgun with snaps from a backup center.

Because a backup center can't be counted on to accurately snap a football four yards? The perfessor never played football (obviously). Still, something to watch for. If a center is preoccupied with his blocking assignment, he may screw up one or two snaps.

#23 tims4wins


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Posted 06 January 2012 - 02:30 PM

Because a backup center can't be counted on to accurately snap a football four yards? The perfessor never played football (obviously). Still, something to watch for. If a center is preoccupied with his blocking assignment, he may screw up one or two snaps.

Some guys have trouble with shotgun snapping. The Pats have rotated centers in the past in shotgun formations.

#24 lithos2003

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Posted 06 January 2012 - 02:37 PM

Don't forget - Ryan Clark is being held out too... link

#25 loshjott

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Posted 06 January 2012 - 04:05 PM

I wish, but I fully expect something like a 13-3 Steelers win. Don't underestimate the suckitude of the Denver offense against a legitimate top 5 defense.

#26 SoxScout


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Posted 06 January 2012 - 04:21 PM

Quinn also told NFL.com -- both before and after an Internet report surfaced that he "has been getting roughly half the first-team reps in practice this week" -- that his repetitions have not changed at all this week.

Via text message, Quinn said he hasn't "gotten any extra reps" in practice. Quinn reiterated his stance during a follow-up conversation after the report from ProFootballTalk.com first surfaced Friday afternoon.

Quinn said he gets “maybe a couple of reps a day” with the first-team offense, adding that usually he gets one or two repetitions -- “if any” -- on Fridays. He said he got two repetitions with the unit Friday.


http://www.nfl.com/n...t-hasnt-changed

#27 bougrj1

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Posted 06 January 2012 - 04:46 PM

It would be great if Denver alternated series with Tebow and Quinn the entire game. Or go with whoever is playing better in the second half. Obviously this would never happen but seeing the Pitt D adjust would be interesting.

Edited by bougrj1, 06 January 2012 - 04:47 PM.


#28 bowiac


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Posted 06 January 2012 - 04:51 PM

It would be great if Denver alternated series with Tebow and Quinn the entire game. Or go with whoever is playing better in the second half. Obviously this would never happen but seeing the Pitt D adjust would be interesting.

Please god no. I'd like for Denver to have a shot of winning the game.

#29 Al Zarilla


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Posted 06 January 2012 - 04:54 PM

Some guys have trouble with shotgun snapping. The Pats have rotated centers in the past in shotgun formations.

I guess, but it's not that hard to snap a ball four yards to a stationary back. It's not as though he has to lead him or anything like on a sweep by a wildcat back.

#30 Super Nomario


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Posted 06 January 2012 - 04:56 PM

Please god no. I'd like for Denver to have a shot of winning the game.

Agreed. Quinn is like Tebow minus the athletic ability. His 52.5% career completion % is barely an improvement over Tebow, his 5.4 Y/A is quite a bit worse, and he hasn't thrown a pass in anger since 2009.

#31 Freddy Linn


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Posted 07 January 2012 - 12:00 AM

I guess, but it's not that hard to snap a ball four yards to a stationary back. It's not as though he has to lead him or anything like on a sweep by a wildcat back.


From Doug Legursky's draft profile:

Has no difficulties snapping with the center behind him, but his short arms cause him to be a bit erratic with his shotgun snaps (had several sail over the quarterback's head in 2007)


http://www.nfl.com/d...egursky?id=4269

#32 Al Zarilla


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Posted 07 January 2012 - 12:27 AM

From Doug Legursky's draft profile:
Has no difficulties snapping with the center behind him, but his short arms cause him to be a bit erratic with his shotgun snaps (had several sail over the quarterback's head in 2007)

Short arms? I've heard everything now. Maybe this guy?

Posted Image

Edited by Al Zarilla, 07 January 2012 - 12:34 AM.


#33 drleather2001


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Posted 07 January 2012 - 04:20 AM

I think the yips of starting in a playoff game might have more to do with it than his arms.

Whatever, if it causes some uneasiness, great.

#34 Al Zarilla


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Posted 07 January 2012 - 10:07 AM

I think the yips of starting in a playoff game might have more to do with it than his arms.

Whatever, if it causes some uneasiness, great.

I agree. The other thing is, if you get some deranged maniac like a Dick Butkus or Ray Nitschke type, come up right over center once in a while and threaten to take your head off, and your hands and arms are preoccupied for that split second centering the ball, you're liable to shit your pants and do other bad things.

Edited by Al Zarilla, 07 January 2012 - 10:09 AM.


#35 Freddy Linn


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Posted 07 January 2012 - 11:38 AM

I think the yips of starting in a playoff game might have more to do with it than his arms.

Whatever, if it causes some uneasiness, great.


interestingly, his first NFL start was the Super Bowl.

He replaced Pouncey in the AFC Championship and, with Roethlisberger, botched a snap for a safety.

#36 drleather2001


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Posted 07 January 2012 - 12:40 PM

you're liable to shit your pants and do other bad things.


If he literally shits his pants on the field, I will donate $100 to the Jimmy Fund.

#37 berezina

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Posted 07 January 2012 - 01:00 PM

To be fair, Brady Quinn looked great in the preseason. Of course, Tyler Palko looked pretty good in the preseason, so that doesn't count for much. Tebow had a bizarrely awful game against Kansas City, failing to pull the trigger when he had wide open receivers. I don't blame Fox for going into the game with a Plan B. Or kicking Tebow in the ass. Or both.

#38 ilol@u

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Posted 07 January 2012 - 02:56 PM

So everybody here is rooting for a Bengals, Lions (because we have New Orlean's first round pick) and Steelers win right?

#39 PedroKsBambino


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Posted 07 January 2012 - 03:02 PM

Back when we had the enormous "NFL Overtime Rules" thread and everyone was trying to come up with ideas, my favorite was the possession auction system. Each team gets to successively bid for initial possession of the ball by offering to start farther and farther back in their own territory. Yeah, you'll take the ball first if you get to start at your own 30. But what about your own 20? OK, how about your own 10? Your own 5? Let teams bid for it and have them show up each other's overconfidence. Keep all the other usual rules (sudden-death, first to score) in place. The system will sort itself out and it'll be FAIR.

Of course, this will never happen, because these players are pro athletes, not bond traders or characters on Storage Wars. But it would be f'ing awesome to watch.


Not to mention great for teams who really understood how to use probabilities....

#40 tims4wins


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Posted 07 January 2012 - 03:05 PM

So everybody here is rooting for a Bengals, Lions (because we have New Orlean's first round pick) and Steelers win right?

Well, only rooting for the Steelers if the Bengals win, but otherwise, yeah.

#41 Al Zarilla


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Posted 07 January 2012 - 03:09 PM

So everybody here is rooting for a Bengals, Lions (because we have New Orlean's first round pick) and Steelers win right?

I guess you mean Steelers so they soften up the Ravens for us (or Ravens soften up Steelers). Might be good to just get the Steelers outta here though because they're one of the two teams that on paper could beat the Pats. Might be fun if it's close to root for Tebow.

#42 TheYellowDart5


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Posted 07 January 2012 - 04:31 PM

My God, Tom Hammond looks like a corpse made up for a public viewing.

#43 mascho


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Posted 07 January 2012 - 04:32 PM

Yeah, at least we get Mayock.

#44 SoxScout


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Posted 07 January 2012 - 04:32 PM

Weird hearing him without unbelievably over the top ND homerism.

#45 mascho


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Posted 07 January 2012 - 04:33 PM

Weird hearing him without unbelievably over the top ND homerism.

It's early still.

#46 BernieRicoBoomer

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Posted 07 January 2012 - 04:33 PM

My God, Tom Hammond looks like a corpse made up for a public viewing.


I came on here just to see if somebody would mention this.

#47 Al Zarilla


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Posted 07 January 2012 - 04:34 PM

You like Mayock? I sort of did the first couple of times I heard him, then found he hardly ever says anything I couldn't already see. Wow, Bum Phillips walkon.

#48 mascho


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Posted 07 January 2012 - 04:36 PM

You like Mayock? I sort of did the first couple of times I heard him, then found he hardly ever says anything I couldn't already see. Wow, Bum Phillips walkon.

Bum walk-on was pretty cool.

I do like Mayock. I think he at least doesn't "dumb down" his commentary, and at times I've learned a few things watching him do a game. I think out of the list of color guys out there, he's at or near the top.

Was that Dennis Quaid in the Texans jersey out for the coin toss?

#49 Jed Zeppelin


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Posted 07 January 2012 - 04:37 PM

Dalton with a happy-go-lucky look on his face. Houston first-timers. Should be an interesting game.

#50 Jed Zeppelin


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Posted 07 January 2012 - 04:38 PM

Who didn't tell the RG they were saying their elementary schools?