National Football League Computer Ratings


Introduction

This is my rough attempt at a computer rating that can, among other things, come somewhat close to predicting final game scores. The actual computer rating, which describes team performance based on games played to date, is found under the "Rating" column. To determine a hypothetical margin of victory, use the "Points" column (just subtract the teams in question) and add in home field advantage (on the right). Predictions are already calculated for upcoming games, on the right.


Ratings last updated Monday 02/05/18, 08:34 AM ET Rank Team W L Rating Points BCS 1 Philadelphia 16 3 3.58 57.91 1 2 New England 15 4 2.73 56.79 4 3 Minnesota 14 4 2.64 54.57 2 4 New Orleans 12 6 2.39 56.54 6 5 Pittsburgh 13 4 2.33 54.41 3 6 Jacksonville 12 7 2.12 56.68 9 7 LA Rams 11 6 2.11 55.99 8 8 Seattle 9 7 1.79 54.39 7 9 Baltimore 9 7 1.71 55.37 11 10 Carolina 11 6 1.62 52.92 5 Rank Team W L Rating Points BCS 11 Atlanta 11 7 1.17 52.82 10 12 Kansas City 10 7 0.93 53.25 14 13 Detroit 9 7 0.73 51.91 13 14 LA Chargers 9 7 0.58 52.06 15 15 Dallas 9 7 0.53 50.89 12 16 Green Bay 7 9 0.04 49.71 16 17 Buffalo 9 8 -0.46 47.72 18 18 Washington 7 9 -0.66 47.75 20 19 Arizona 8 8 -0.70 46.38 17 20 San Francisco 6 10 -0.70 47.90 21 Rank Team W L Rating Points BCS 21 Tennessee 10 8 -0.87 46.43 19 22 Miami 6 10 -1.35 45.73 22 23 Denver 5 11 -1.40 47.05 24 24 Chicago 5 11 -1.52 46.70 25 25 Cincinnati 7 9 -1.71 45.54 23 26 Tampa Bay 5 11 -1.74 47.27 28 27 NY Jets 5 11 -1.85 46.13 26 28 Oakland 6 10 -1.96 45.96 27 29 Houston 4 12 -2.49 44.90 30 30 NY Giants 3 13 -2.89 43.23 31 31 Indianapolis 4 12 -3.03 42.08 29 32 Cleveland 0 16 -3.69 43.02 32
(The "BCS style" ranking is one based entirely on wins and losses, similar to what is used in college football.)

 

PREDICTIONS FOR UPCOMING GAMES Date Away Team Home Team Total Prediction ----------- -------------------- -------------------- ----- --------------

Current home field advantage is: 1.95 MAE for games to date: 9.54 These ratings fit to produce 0.70 of the correct winners. Pct when predicted MOV is above 3.90: 0.74 A favored away team rarely loses when favored by more than -6.91. A favored home team rarely loses when favored by more than 8.36.

Above are some statistics about the ratings model. The MAE is the mean absolute error of the ratings fit to all the games played to date. This number is usually larger than you think it should be, but it's a good measure of how variable (or maybe "predictable") game outcomes can be.

Immediately below that, you can see how this best fit does in retro-predicting (there's a better word I'm sure) just the game winners. My favorite stats are the last two--when the home or away team is favored by the given margin, they only lose 30 percent of the time. This is the kind of information that people in the sports wagering world might find useful.


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