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Archive for December 2012

Minnesota Vikings 37 Green Bay Packers 34

HAPPY NEW YEAR!!

In this episode:

-Eric and Matt share their fan emotions after the loss

-What happened on Sunday? Is McCarthy to blame?

-Matt thinks that the Packers are better off starting in the Wildcard round; Eric thinks that the extra game dooms the Packers

-We discuss the other games coming up in Wildcard Weekend

-Lovie Smith is fired, Rex Ryan is not: we discuss if these were good moves

-Chip Kelly might change the NFL forever

-Our Packers/Vikings Picks and Rose Bowl picks (we recorded before the game; hear if we were right!!)

Let us know what you think in the comments below!!

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In the spirit of the season, the hosts of Green and Gold Forever have compiled their Football Wish lists! Let us know what you want For NFL Christmas gifts this season!

Matt’s List

1. I wish for Aaron Rodgers to make it through this season, and hopefully the rest of his career without another concussion. We always protect him horribly, and he seems like the kind of guy with enough perspective to walk away with potential long term ramifications on his health.

2. I wish somebody would put Jerry Kramer in the Hall of Fame already! ATTA BOY JERRY!

3. I wish the Detroit Lions would lose their last 2 games, hopefully forcing them to fire Jim Schwartz. Maybe they can hire a nice guy coach like Dave McGinnis and get rid of all that tomfoolery.

4. I wish the Giants would miss the playoffs! I like our chances against almost any other team, but we obviously don’t match up well against New York. A road to the Super Bowl that doesn’t include the Giants, is a much easier road indeed.

5. Last but not least, I hope the Pack get everybody back and healthy come playoff time, and instead of flaming out in the divisional round we at least make a serious run at another championship.

Eric’s List

1. I wish Brett Favre would come back to Green Bay before he goes into the Hall of Fame and retire his number. It just wouldn’t be right otherwise.

2. They are getting older, but just one last time, I wish Tom Brady would play Peyton Manning in the Playoffs

3. I wish the Packers to resign Greg Jennings and Clay Matthews for the long term, even if they have to let other people go.

4. I wish the Cincinnati Bengals would win a playoff game

5. I wish this year’s Super Bowl Champion would be a team that was nice all year, not a naughty team that started behaving in time for the playoffs.

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In this week's episode, we discussed the recent story that the NFL is considering expanding their playoff format to include 7 or 8 teams per conference. During that discussion, I had the following comment:

“If you add a 7th seed to the NFL Playoffs you will probably get an 8-8 team in there every 3 years and probably a 7-9 team every 5 to 7 years. Every 10 to 15 years you might even get a 6-10 team in there. Who wants that?”

In the days since that episode, I have begun to think about that statement. Is that actually accurate? Since accuracy with statistics is important to us here at Green and Gold Forever and I can’t possibly turn myself away from an NFL statistical research project, I went and looked up the historical data.

Using the correct tiebreakers for each era, I determined who would have been the 7th and 8th seeded teams in each conference for every playoff year since 1990. Are my concerns correct? Would the NFL playoffs be taken over by mediocre teams? Would horrible teams go to the postseason with shocking regularity?

Below is a chart that shows the number of times a team of a certain number of wins would have appeared in a 14-team playoff format over the past 22 seasons. I sorted them by conference and then combined them to form a league total.

7seed.jpg

As you can see by the chart, my predictions were hit and miss.

According to the recent historical data, if a 7th team was added to each conference’s playoffs, a 6-10 team would like make it less often than every 20 years instead of once every 10-15 years. In fact, no 6-10 team since 1990 has finished as high as 7th.  A 7-9 team would only make it about once every 20 years; not every 5-7 years. It seems that I overstated how often horrible teams would reach the postseason. The data shows that the majority of 7th seeded teams would have a 9-7 record, with the rare 10-6 team every 4-5 years.

My claim about the number of 8-8 teams making the playoffs was actually understated. The data shows that an 8-8 team would make the playoffs slightly more often than once every two seasons. While that sounds high, the current NFL playoff format has had a team that was .500 or worse advance to the playoffs 9 times since 1990, which is roughly the same rate that history shows it would occur with a 14-team playoff format.  So it appears that a 7th playoff team would not create an environment where bad teams would make the playoffs every year.

The same certainly cannot be said about a 16-team format with 8 teams from each conference. Here is the same chart as before, but with the hypothetical 8th seeded teams since 1990.

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Look at that mess! According to the historical data, an 8-8 team would be all but guaranteed to make the playoffs EVERY YEAR with a 16-team format. Worse yet, a 7-9 team would make the playoffs about once every 4 years! The data also suggests that a 6-10 team could make it every 10 years or so, however, both of the 6-10 teams that would have qualified in a hypothetical 16-team playoff were in the early 90s. A team that bad has not gotten that close to the postseason in 20 years.

The thing that strikes me about this chart is that of the 44 teams that would have been 8 seeds, only 13 had winning records. It just goes to show that if you are the 8th best team in your conference, there is a reason you didn’t make the playoffs. You didn't deserve to.

Conclusion

This quick study was to fact check my own statement from Monday and to give myself a frame of reference for what 14-team and 16-team playoffs would look like. While the 14-team playoff format doesn’t look like it would be as bad as I feared, I still think it’s a poor idea. From the oversaturation of the product to having to watch bad teams annually battle for the games richest prize, there are plenty of good reasons not to expand the playoffs. Besides, what is being lost? Sure, the rare 10-6 team might get screwed, but I’m willing to accept that to avoid having an 8-8 Super Bowl winner. And with 7 of the last 10 Super Bowls featuring a team that played on Wildcard weekend, you know it would happen sooner or later.

As far as the 16-team format goes, that really could cause some serious damage to the meaning of the regular season and would really cheapen the playoffs. It’s a horrible, horrible, horrible idea. Unless you thought that Vinny Testaverde’s 1990 Buccaneers were championship material and deserved the right to prove it!

Lastly, just for kicks, here is the complete list of the teams that would have made the playoffs as #7 and #8 seeds since 1990. Notice that had there been a 14-team format, the Packers would’ve made the playoffs 18 of the last 20 years. Wow…I take it all back!! Let everyone in the playoffs!! GO PACK GO!!!

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By Eric Drews

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Green Bay Packers 21 Chicago Bears 13

In this episode:

-Packers are 2012 NFC North Champions!

-The Packers' only identity this season: Winning

-The offense seems to have successfully adjusted

-Clay Matthews is a beast

-Burnett, Hayward, and Shields shine

-Julius Peppers roughing the passer penalty and Aikman's strange reaction to it

-What was up with that Punt Return fake? McCarthy and his unwillingness to play situational football

-Will Lovie Smith be fired?

-More surprising titleless run: Lovie’s Bears or Dennis Green’s Vikings?

-Should the Packers let the Vikings in the playoffs in Week 17 to keep the Giants out?

-NFL Playoff Expansion: good idea….or an absolutely horrible one?

Send us your feedback

http://www.facebook.com/GreenAndGoldForeverPodcast

@GreenGold4Ever on Twitter

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Green Bay Packers 27 Detroit Lions 20

How good are the Packers? What are their playoff scenarios if they lose to the Bears? And your questions in Crossfire!! Thanks for listening!

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Green Bay Packers 23  Minnesota Vikings 14

Mini episode.

-Quick recap of the Vikings game

-Packers lose James Starks, sign Ryan Grant. How well will he play?

-We talk about the Lions attitude and make our picks for Sunday Night

-Bret Bielema leaves Wisconsin. We discuss.

Thanks for listening!

Send us your feedback

http://www.facebook.com/GreenAndGoldForeverPodcast

@GreenGold4Ever on Twitter

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UPDATE!!

Well, we recorded a show tonight like we said we would...and my computer decided to record it in absolutely horrible quality. I tried my best to fix it for the last few hours, but it sounds terrible. We will instead post a very abbreviated version of the show WEDNESDAY NIGHT!! So check back here tomorrow and we will have a show for you.

Thank you for visiting the site!

-Eric and Matt

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UPDATE!!!!

Due to other obligations, Green and Gold Forever can be heard this week on TUESDAY NIGHT!

Thank you for visiting our page! If you have any topics you would like us to cover, leave them in the comments section below this post and we'll get to them tomorrow!

As a bonus, here is a What If...? episode from our early offseason archives. What if the 1989 NFL Draft had gone down differently? If Week 16 of the '88 season had been different.....

troy-aikman-packers

....this could have happened. What if it had?? What if the Packers had drafted Barry Sanders? How would the team have changed?

So give that a listen, sorry about the delay, and we'll see you tomorrow! (or you'll hear us tomorrow...I guess)

Thanks!

-Eric and Matt

Download this What If...? segment! (right click and save)

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