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Abarsn20 t1_j3purfh wrote

It’s hilarious that my Vikings are basically the median team all year


nobecauselogic t1_j3r21dy wrote

I loved watching the Vikes hunt down dead center. Something poetically Minnesota about it.


BilllisCool t1_j3r8z3b wrote

And still finished 13-4.


Abarsn20 t1_j3rp0z5 wrote

Hell yeah we did. Made it to the dance. I love KOC and was more excited to see what he builds in the future. Was pleasantly surprised by the immediate success this year. I really just want to see the Vikings in the Super Bowl before I die


BilllisCool t1_j3rre5d wrote

I’m a Cowboys fans, so if we don’t make it, I’d definitely be rooting for the Vikings on the NFC side. Hate Brady, hate the 49ers, hate the Eagles/Giants, indifferent to the Seahawks, but I do like Kirk.


Walkapotamus t1_j3saeej wrote

Best part about this whole graphic is being able to tell exactly when the Cowboys game was. Defense, slightly below average, about the same, about the same, HOT GARBAGE. Found the Cowboys game.


relpmeraggy t1_j3r3h8j wrote

Balanced football is how you win. Hopefully it’ll pay off for you guys.


freedomfightre t1_j3ri6dh wrote

Vikings did not have a median defense and that's a hill I'll die on.


deg0ey t1_j3rl82k wrote

I don’t really understand the details of how EPA is calculated, but only the Bears and Cardinals gave up more points per game. How can they be league average in ‘expected points’ but almost last in ‘actual points’?


Abarsn20 t1_j3rpwzq wrote

The bend don’t break defense has been stressful all year but has worked during the regular season. My fear is that history shows it doesn’t work in the playoffs.


Poincare_Confection t1_j3psjhu wrote

The big takeaway for me is that offense has more impact on win rate than defense.

Compare the Patriots and Chiefs. Very symmetrical positions on this chart, but Patriots are defense heavy whereas Chiefs are offense heavy. Yet the Chiefs went 14-3 and Patriots went 8-9. According to this, the Patriots had the 2nd best defense in the entire league and had a middle of the pack offense, and yet they went 8-9. That says a lot to me.


tensigh t1_j3q96xj wrote

How do you explain the Niners? Highest rated defense and the offense slowly crept up, they’ve won 10 straight with a third string QB.


Krogsly t1_j3qqrxs wrote

SF was 4-3 before acquiring arguably the best offensive player in the NFL, then lost to KC before their 10 straight. Their 3rd string qb might not be the biggest reason they're winning. Replacing Trey Lance and acquiring McCaffrey are most likely the reasons their offense got better and had more impact on winning.


CodyNorthrup t1_j3rgbbk wrote

Lance has almost no impact on the rating. He started week 1 and was hurt early in the 1st quarter in week 2


tensigh t1_j3r1htm wrote

True, they shifted their offense once they acquired McCaffrey. But their defense has always surpassed their offense this year so in their case you could say their defense had a bigger impact than their offense. At least, looking at this graph that could be a conclusion. Watching the games it's clear their offense has had a great psychological edge, but that isn't reflected in the numbers in this graph since the defense rating is consistently higher than the offense.


Yayareasports t1_j3v2hrn wrote

*3-3 but otherwise generally yeah. Also Trent Williams got healthy around then


Krogsly t1_j3vr4co wrote

Trent Williams was huge, agreed.


hallese t1_j3qua2s wrote

In other words, as their offense improved, they won more games. I feel like OP already explained that.


tensigh t1_j3r0xii wrote

The OP said that offense had more impact than defense, but with the Niners their defense always surpassed their offense.

You could call it an anomoly but in their case defense had a "bigger impact" on their success.


hallese t1_j3r2jfd wrote

Yet the ten game win streak correlates with their offensive improvements, right? This has been a trend for decades. Hell, I wrote about this in grad school and started my professional career off that project. The - at the time - ten highest scoring teams in NFL history had all finished .750 or better, but only one of them had won the Super Bowl up to that point. In the playoffs, and I suspect this is due to good defenses appearing to be more consistent than good offenses, defense became a better indicator of success. For instance, in 2010 the top two defenses were Pittsburgh and Green Bay, who played each other in the Super Bowl that year. Top two offenses? San Diego and New England who combined for zero playoff wins that year.


Antani101 t1_j3r4gog wrote

They had a good defense but without a good offense they weren't winning 10 straight


tensigh t1_j3ri1b9 wrote

I agree totally. My assertion was that the Niners were an anomoly because their defense consistently outperformed their offense. The statement was "offense had a bigger impact", using the Chiefs as an example. The Niners, however, seem to refute that, or at least, are an exception.


Antani101 t1_j3rxs2d wrote

No they don't.

Even with a consistently good defense they weren't going anywhere.


Red_n_Gold_Tears t1_j3v620p wrote

Offense and defense both improved week after week, primarily after the Chiefs game and after our bye week which I believe was 2 weeks later.

Garoppolo was still recovering from his surgery and had to regain that on-field synergy after Lance went down. Kittle came back I think week 3, and also had still been recovering. Niners also had quite a few defensive injuries that finally started coming back gradually, also losing our CB1 for the year, and our FS (Jimmy Ward) was playing nickel ever since. Greenlaw was out quite a few games early on as well and eventually came back. We had 2 DL out between Armstead and Kinlaw out for a good while too.

Niners just have so many good players on both sides of the ball... And they have depth that just has this step-up and next-man-up mentality. Everyone on that team really holds each other up. I mean look at when Garoppolo went down and they all rallied behind Purdy... So many great motivators and you can really see and feel they all excited to play for and with one another. This group is really somethin special.

And I really dont think we have a single bad apple on the team... And the ones they did have they weeded out. They understand this is a "team" and a team game. And probably the only 2 that come to mind is possibly Deebo Samuel and Jeff Wilson Jr causing a lil drama... Deebo wanted a paycheck, and JWJ didnt want to continue being a RB3 since they picked up CMC and Mitchell was coming off IR. Maybe even McKinnon having a bad attitude when asked if he thought the Niners would bring him back replying with "Fuck naw".

When was the last you seen a current Niner act like Diggs complaining about not gettin the ball and requesting a trade cause your QB isnt targeting you enough to your expectations. Or Brady/Rodgers basically throwing temper tantrums on the field or on the sideline breaking tablets. Or Antonio Browns stripping off his pads and quitting mid game.

That's the ShanaLynch culture theyve built from the ground up since theyve arrived in 2017.


Poincare_Confection t1_j3qqsac wrote

The 49ers have one of the best offenses on this chart. Looks like 5th best. They only support my belief.


tensigh t1_j3r14ub wrote

Except that their defense has surpassed their offense, even as offense improved. So the defense had a larger impact than their offense, yes?


Poincare_Confection t1_j3r341h wrote

I can be more precise: My suspicion is that offensive rating would correlate better with win rate than defensive rating would correlate with win rate.


tensigh t1_j3rigdu wrote

I'm a Niner fan so I've been watching them all year. Clearly their offense has improved and psychologically it's lifted the team up. Purdy's first game as a starter resulted in 35 points - a HUGE offensive impact. But the Niners' and Chiefs data in this chart seem to point in opposite directions.


MasterMacMan t1_j41uzvk wrote

Brock Purdy was playing at an Pro Bowl level in those games though.


tensigh t1_j41xucu wrote

No doubt, I'm a Niner fan and have been crying tears of joy for this.

I was trying to refute the original statement that offense had more impact than defense. This is often true but looking just at this chart, the Niners seemed to paint a different conclusion.

And yeah, Purdy's been awesome, I want him to be the permanent starter. He's proven himself whereas Lance hasn't, and Jimmy is on his way out.


Unlucky_Sherbert_468 t1_j3uha56 wrote

Patriots probably just have a coach who doesn't know how to win.

Source: Me, a Bills fan


kllinzy t1_j3pxgie wrote

Idk I'm in a mood so I'm commenting the same thing again, but, I think the scaling is messing up your logic here.

So the pats looked pretty close to the top corner, but this chart doesn't actually say how much they were beating the chiefs in defensive EPA or how much they were losing in offensive EPA.

They could have been winning the defensive EPA by 3 points and losing the offensive one by 5, and the chart wouldn't be able to show it, so long as the spread on the defensive axis was much tighter than the spread on the offensive could go the other way too, I'm just saying this chart doesn't necessarily lead to your conclusion.

I think this is amusing, because basically, to draw the conclusion about who is better in overall EPA in any given week, the pats or the chiefs, you must also consider how bad the lions and bears played (or whoever is setting the 0 that week on each axis).


iDEN1ED t1_j3r2dk7 wrote

As a pats fan we were just killed by terribly untimely mistakes and bad special teams. I mean the offense wasn’t great but we gave away at least 3-4 games with just some idiotic shit.


dsvigos t1_j3qv2tx wrote

How about the Bears? Middled around 0.5 offense but worse defense in the league. Finished with the #1 overall pick. All their wins came early when the defense was higher rated than the offense.

In my opinion football is all about matchups and coaching strategies. In the last two super bowls the more defensive team beat the more offensive one. But obviously things always change.

My biggest example I can think of is when that Super Bowl where the Giants d line basically beat the undefeated Patriots on their own.


shoeless_sean t1_j3py7h1 wrote

It does in the regular season yes

But in the playoffs almost every team has a good/great offense. Only a few also have a good defense and that’s what separates a playoff team from a SB contender


hoffmanmclaunsky t1_j3r5knu wrote

Those teams aren't symmetrical though. The Chiefs have the best offense and a slightly above average defense. The Pats have a good defense and a well below average offense. At a glance on this chart maybe they seem similar, but it's misleading.

Just look at their season point differential. The Pats scored 17 more points than they allowed for the whole season. The Chiefs scored 127. Regardless of their offensive/defensive ranks, it's very clear from those numbers that the Pats are a middling team and the Chiefs are great team.


No_Manners t1_j3r6exh wrote

Lions were at zero for defensive rating for basically the entire season and ended with a winning record.


Dude_man79 t1_j3r6k93 wrote

As the late John Madden said, "Usually the team that scores the most points wins the game."


AlsoIHaveAGroupon t1_j3rk71n wrote

  1. Patriots offense (pretty bad) is worse than the Chiefs' defense (average)
  2. Patriots defense (very good) is worse than the Chiefs' offense (great)
  3. Special teams is not included in this graph. I don't have numbers on overall special teams, but I know the Patriots surrendered 3 kickoff returns for TDs and had either the worst or second worst punting unit in the NFL, so that cost them a fair amount as well.
  4. There's luck/clutchiness involved in converting expected points to actual points, and then again luck/clutchiness in turning actual points to actual wins. The math says the points for/points against for the Patriots would normally lead to 9.0 wins in a 17 game season (they won 8) and the Chiefs would normally have 11.4 wins in a 17 game season (they won 14). So their expected wins are quite a bit closer, but the Chiefs were better at closing out wins, and the Pats blew some close games.

These numbers are scaled so that the best offense and the best defense are 1.0, but the EPA/play models do tend to show good offenses with higher EPA numbers than good defenses. But that may reflect the EPA model more than the actual truth of the connection between offense and defense and wins. The 49ers likely have the best defense this year, and the Chiefs or Bills likely had the best offense, and all three teams have 13 or 14 wins. So... both are good?


Apprehensive-Ad-5009 t1_j3sa5mh wrote

A point scored is worth a point prevented. If the rating was a points scored/prevented per possession with some factor accounting for a turnover, the graph would make more sense.


SuperSimpleSam t1_j3wjk27 wrote

But look at Cowboys (12-5) vs Giants (9-7-1). Cowboys are dead last in offense and only slightly better in defense. My take away is these ratings don't really match with records.


kynthrus t1_j3q0hft wrote

Seeing the bears at the bottom of a defense rating breaks my soul.


riotacting t1_j3qrtux wrote

That's what happens when you intentionally nuke your roster by trading your two stars mid-season after getting rid of your other pro bowler (mack) prior to the season and also get injuries in your secondary.

But we have the #1 overall, a clear franchise quarterback for the first time ever, and a shit ton of cap space... so that's something.


Notacop9 t1_j3qx9ul wrote

And a 100 year old owner who is more focused on moving the team out of the city than building a winning team. Tickets are going to sell regardless of the success of the team. They can make more money in Arlington Heights than they can by winning the Superbowl. So that is where the focus is.


NaturalProof4359 t1_j3tvvci wrote

Side bar:

Excluding the logistical issues, the City of Chicago had every chance to resolve their issues. They chose not to, numerous times.

Politics aside - Good on Ted to move them out.


Craig_White t1_j3r2cn2 wrote

Heard the front office was toying with the idea of fielding actual bears next year. Can’t do worse than the humans did this season!


kynthrus t1_j3r2mhp wrote

I mean. In a lot of ways they can only do better.


deg0ey t1_j3rb59x wrote

After the first few ‘roughing the passer’ penalties each game the other team will probably have run out of living QBs and defense will become considerably easier


NaturalProof4359 t1_j3tvngd wrote

Rod Marineli used to play clips of the animal kingdom for the bears D.

We were solid.



ChiefQuimbyMessage t1_j3red0h wrote

The Lions kept the floor warm for the first several cycles. I wouldn’t feel too bad.


Bischrob OP t1_j3p9zry wrote

Made in R with gganimate package with data from the nflfastR package. Scaled EPA is a measure of offensive and defensive efficiency.


Gigzla207 t1_j3ptqsm wrote

What is R?


nunixnunix04 t1_j3qto5x wrote

is scaling from 0 to 1 based on worst and best a norm in the NFL stats field? I feel like doing a more typical scaling based on z-score (0 is league average, value is based on standard deviations from mean, no theoretical bounds) would be better, since one team doing especially well/badly can make the other teams seem significantly worse/better than they actually might be (you especially see this in the first weeks with the red dashed lines)


Bischrob OP t1_j3qwla8 wrote

In this case it was a constraint of the animation. Teams varied so much week to week (particularly at first) that the scales changed too much). This kept everything steady.


orad t1_j3r6fi6 wrote

That’s too bad. I think this information would be better displayed if it showed the absolute rating instead of relative


Eroe777 t1_j3pqfr7 wrote

I’m surprised to see the Vikings so close to the mean considering how bad their defense was this season. 13-4 with a negative point differential? How the hell does that happen?


Awpss t1_j3svoo7 wrote

It’s because the games they won were close and then the games they lost were landslides, 40-3 against cowboys and 41-17 against packers


miskathonic t1_j3qwued wrote

Interesting that, by the end of the seasons, you have a couple of teams with very good offense and defense (Bills, Eagles, Cincy)

But basically no teams with very bad offense and defense. It's either average offense + bad defense (Bears) or vice versa (Texans).


iamthepeach79 t1_j3pkrx4 wrote

So KC is technically the best team through the regular season


pussyslayer6ixty9ine t1_j3pu9ug wrote

Technically the best all around team would be the one consistently closest to the top right corner since that is both the best offense and defense combined. Which is either the Bills or Eagles.


kllinzy t1_j3pwnc5 wrote

I think the scaling makes this unclear.

Since the top team is scaled to 1 and the bottom scaled to 0, the axis with the largest spread is being undervalued and the axis with the tightest spread overvalued.

It's possible that the defensive 0-1 axis is only 1 expected point, but the offensive 0-1 is axis 50 expected points.

Could be the opposite, too, or it could be different week to week. Basically, I think this is a terrible chart to answer that exact question (but a very interesting chart in general).


pussyslayer6ixty9ine t1_j3q6zqm wrote

Buy if the red lines represent the average for any given week then there is only a couple teams that consistently better than average and the chiefs aren’t one of them. With whatever matrix is being used


Earthwick t1_j3qyoyp wrote

Well technically the best team is impossible to tell from a chart since not all teams play each other and different divisions/schedules are more or less difficult. Take the chiefs having the hardest schedule into account and nothing on this changes but it makes it more impressive their offense was able to make up for their lack of defense. Doesn't matter how you win just if you win and if you win when it matters.


Bischrob OP t1_j3pkvk3 wrote

Pretty close, on offense certainly


88adavis t1_j3qrhai wrote

KC had the best offense but their defense is average. The best overall teams would be the Bills, Eagles and 49ers (as of late).


GloriousVintage t1_j3pqk4h wrote

My Tua / Waddle stack will never forget that legendary week 2 performance from the dolphins.


Gunner_Runner t1_j3r3qw1 wrote

Same here. Plus being an actual Dolphins fan made it amazing.


Gloomy_Possession-69 t1_j3r1d7u wrote

I suggest adding some time to the end of the gif so it is more user friendly to see the results at the end of the time period before auto loop. Very cool though


znoopyz t1_j3qwwqa wrote

Ladies and gentlemen you MVP Patrick Mahomes.


Rounder057 t1_j3pu96l wrote

More proof that Pete Carrol is what makes a QB great


GongBor t1_j3pwo9v wrote

Pete Carrol can suck a fat one. It’s all about getting the ball down the field and putting points on the board.


SplangyII t1_j3qcik8 wrote

And preventing the other team from scoring.


InSACWeTrust t1_j3r036q wrote

EPA is not a common term. Needs a definition.


itsjfin t1_j3qrpo0 wrote

It’s kind if interesting how it take them an entire season basically to organize into offensive or defensive quadrants


chickenlounge t1_j3r55m6 wrote

With about 8 seconds left, the bears try to squish the lions but they jump out of the way.


mart1373 t1_j3rx19w wrote

At least we ended with a better defense than the Bears :-)


hiveminer t1_j3tpndr wrote

What sorcery is this? Name the tech to make the logos dance like that or be burnt at the stake you heathen!!


NaturalProof4359 t1_j3tvelg wrote

Bears trade away their defense and get smooooooked


moleman1976 t1_j3ut2ye wrote

It offends my soul to watch the Bears' Defensive rating fall so, so low! I can live with a mediocre offense, but Da Bears should be better on defense, as a rule. We need a lot of help right now!


danmur15 t1_j3qiz1b wrote

The duality of the Patriots 😭


EAS893 t1_j3rlyk8 wrote

We've had a few years since the Belichick-TB breakup, and I think I'm coming to an opinion on the relationship.

Belichick is a defensive genius. His defenses will consistently play well enough to keep his team in the game most of the time, but if he doesn't have an offensive playmaker on the field who can take advantage of those opportunities, it doesn't really matter.

TB is clutch af. He may be the clutchest player in NFL history and quite possibly the clutchest player in the history of any American sport, but he can have VERY long stretches where he looks and plays pretty average and needs a solid defense to put him in a position where those clutch plays actually matter.

That's my current working hypothesis. I think most people have come to the conclusion that the dynasty was mostly Brady, because of the success he has had in Tampa Bay whereas New England hasn't had much success, but since the breakup, Brady has had a pretty good defense every year in Tampa Bay whereas New England has not had a good offense in any of those years.


flubbaOG t1_j3topcg wrote

Yep those 2 worked well in covering up their weaknesses. Goat qb and coach that was able to compliment each other at an all time level.


88adavis t1_j3qrajb wrote

Great stuff, but I think this would be more revealing if you used the absolute EPA values.


Bischrob OP t1_j3qy1iw wrote

It makes the chart jump around too much. Sacrifices must be made.


88adavis t1_j3r1lw8 wrote

Ahh makes sense. Very cool visualization (and cool to see you did it using R)!


onemany t1_j3qym7x wrote

It's interesting but I wonder how much meaningful analysis can be extracted from such a small sample set.


PhanSiPance t1_j3qzaop wrote

You can see the moment the Bears traded away their defense.


Xaviermuskie78 t1_j3r5e51 wrote

How did the Bengals go up in both after week 17?


Gnome_Stomperr t1_j3thw44 wrote

There were still plays in that game. They scored a touchdown on their first drive, held bills to a field goal, and then were driving down field to potentially score again


Xaviermuskie78 t1_j3tjxyj wrote

But they weren't official. I watched the plays happen but according to the NFL they never did.


Jawaad13 t1_j3r5zfz wrote

I have no idea how NFL works, but this is cool!


gbru015 t1_j3r65a1 wrote

I like watching Denver's incredible defense slowly lose hope throughout the season.


THE_GR8_MIKE t1_j3r79bk wrote

The fucking Bears lmao. Born and raised here, listening to all of the older people talking about how good the Bears were. Like, I'm a full ass grown adult and can barely remember any of that. That Super Bowl was something, though.


eruditeimbecile t1_j3rb31l wrote

Man, KC's offensive rating consistency is insane.


QuinticSpline t1_j3rbrmo wrote

What are the bills doing up there

The world makes no sense


kingbirdy t1_j3re72l wrote

Why do you immediately loop after the final frame, it's impossible to read the data


Bischrob OP t1_j3rjc8o wrote

I put in a 5 second pause, Reddit automatically cuts it out. Drives me nuts.


CodyNorthrup t1_j3rg15j wrote

Wait, offensive rating went down after scoring 37 from week 17-18? Odd


KJ6BWB t1_j3rkyih wrote

Have you considered putting in a dotted line showing where teams had previously been? Too confusing for me to make anything from this. Who's on top, who's on bottom, who's doing better and worse overall?


Bischrob OP t1_j3rl3bt wrote

Interesting idea. I'm not sure how to do that.


jermification101 t1_j3rolem wrote

You should do another one with 1-32 rankings of Offense & Defense by team per week


hammer43215 t1_j3rq3mu wrote

I'm annoyed that the eagles logo isn't turned the other way 🤨


robertdowneysoft t1_j3s2xjr wrote

The broncos at week 8, such a wild disparity between the offense and defense


AmazingMojo2567 t1_j3scnw9 wrote

Bottom of the barrel bears.... maybe next year


Bombxing t1_j3se17p wrote

It's using the Lions as a fucking broom


wonder_bear t1_j3sehe8 wrote

So 9ers v. Chiefs in Super Bowl. Nice.


danny0wnz t1_j3sxah4 wrote

How the giants never hit the forbidden quadrant…


Taco6J t1_j3u64ih wrote

Gotta love the colts. Near 0 offensive rating at times lol


marq25274 t1_j3u84h0 wrote

Shows how much the broncos Offense did their defense wrong


lostboy005 t1_j3qpx41 wrote

The Detroit lions just need to be disbanded


mauriciomb t1_j3qyhf0 wrote

but they're my favorite shit team to watch...


Frog_Brother t1_j3r3dib wrote

It was a lot of fun watching them take down the Packers, that’s for sure 😂


adolphtitler t1_j3u3pw1 wrote

Hell yeah it was! Also to ask the haters out there. You take away the first, what, 8 weeks and the lions put together a pretty impressive half season. Plus we almost made the playoffs in 1954.