NFL Preview

Last updated on 7/30/2012

NFL Preview Pages:

Over/Under Win Total Picks
Projected Standings and Playoff Probabilities
In-Depth Team Analysis
NFL Team Rankings
Fantasy Football Projections and Rankings
NEW Weekly Fantasy Projections
Play the Games
Buy Picks

The Predictalator has already played the 2012 NFL season 50,000 times before it's actually played. The Philadelphia Eagles turn their "Dream Team" into Super Bowl champions, winning it all league-high 18.0% of the time. In the most likely Super Bowl, Philadelphia defeats the New England Patriots 54.3% of the time and by an average score of 28-26. New England, the AFC's top-seed, wins the Super Bowl 14.2% of the time. The Green Bay Packers (9.2%), Houston Texans (9.2%) and Pittsburgh Steelers (7.2%) follow the Eagles and Patriots in Super Bowl likelihood.

Below, we explain How This Works and breakdown every team division-by-division. In each team's preview, the "Most Important" players are those whose play is most critical to the team's success. Typically, they will be young, injury-prone or inconsistent players who could just as likely play well and help the team as play poorly or miss games to hurt the team. Also, the Offensive and Defensive Rankings are based on how many points a team would score (offense) or allow (defense) if each team played the same, league-average schedule.

Since launching in January 2010, this remarkable technology is over 60% against-the-spread with football Locks of the Week, over 60% ATS with Paul's Picks in the NFL, college football and the NCAA Tournament, over 57% with "normal" or better picks all-time in the NFL, NBA and MLB combined and over 53% with all playable picks. And finally, with a perfect 2011 postseason, the Predictalator is now 20-3 against-the-spread in NFL playoff games. In 2011, Paul's Picks in the NFL went 49-28 (64% ATS) on the season, while preseason O/U picks are 36-26 (58% O/U) all-time. Check out the Shop now to learn more.

See: How This WorksSeason Summary and Division Previews: AFC EastAFC NorthAFC WestAFC SouthNFC EastNFC NorthNFC West and NFC South

How This Works
Just as the Predictalator plays each individual NFL game 50,000 times before it's actually played, it can also play the entire NFL season 50,000 times before it's actually played. The actual 2012 regular season and playoff schedules have been played 50,000 times, allowing us to compute average records and likelihoods of each team making the playoffs, winning their division and bringing home the Super Bowl trophy.

The Predictalator's technology is built to handle such a demanding task. Making sure that we have the best possible inputs for players' statistics, progression over time and age, roles, health and playing time as well as teams' coaching styles and weather are keys to the accuracy of the output.

In general, we apply strength-of-schedule-adjusted, relevant statistics from every player's careers (weighted more heavily on the most recent 16 games) to a fairly traditional player development curve that considers age and previous playing time. Not only does this development curve help to set average inputs, it combines with health history to dictate the variance ("boom or bust" potential) of a player's inputs.

Playing time estimation is more of an art than a science for all players who are expected to see significant starting time in 2012. That being said, gaps have been filled in by our best approximations of average bench and role players on teams. This has a very minor impact on average results.

Once that math and statistical analysis is evaluated, importing a schedule and running the games 50,000 times each is simple.

See: How This WorksSeason Summary and Division Previews: AFC EastAFC NorthAFC WestAFC SouthNFC EastNFC NorthNFC West and NFC South

Season Summary

The Philadelphia Eagles assembled an impressive roster heading into the 2011 season. Yet, with little time to prepare for the season with so many new parts, the Eagles lost four of their first five games, including three losses by a touchdown or less. The team finished the year on a four game winning streak and ultimately missed the playoffs by just one game. In total, the Eagles lost five of the seven games they played where the margin was seven points or less. Philadelphia was also incredibly unlucky, turning the ball over 38 times and suffering many critical injuries throughout the season. With a full offseason, a tremendous draft and some better fortune, the Eagles, who have the best roster in the NFL, look like the most likely team in the league to win it all. Even assuming starting quarterback Michael Vick misses two games on average (but he is assumed to be healthy for this playoff simulation), Philadelphia wins a league-high 10.8 games to take the NFC East, which has four teams projected to win 7.3 or more games, 56.9% of the time, ultimately making the playoffs 84.0% of the time. The Eagles go on to make the Super Bowl 29.5% of the time, winning it 18.0% of the time.

It is not as necessary to make an argument about the New England Patriots. We expect this team to be in the playoffs and among the best in the league. Last season, New England was let down by its defense at points during the regular season and, ultimately, in its loss to the New York Giants in the Super Bowl. The defense does not look much better, but that should not matter. The Patriots still rank as a top three team overall and as the best AFC team. The Patriots win the AFC East 61.3% of the time, earning the conference's top seed with an average of 10.7 wins. The Patriots take advantage of that homefield advantage to make the Super Bowl 26.6% of the time, winning it 14.2% of the time.

The Eagles, San Diego Chargers and Buffalo Bills - replacing the New Orleans Saints, Denver Broncos and Cincinnati Bengals respectively - represent new teams in our most likely playoffs that did not make last year's post-season. Most notably, the Bills capitalize on several great offseason additions to finish .500 or better for the first time since 2004 and make the playoffs for the first time since 1999. 

Looking at the results, as the New York Giants displayed last season and the Buffalo Bills clearly noticed when adding Mario Williams and others, while downfield passing offenses dominate the headlines, an elite pass rush is the ultimate equalizer. Only the Pittsburgh Steelers (who have a great all-around defense otherwise) and Atlanta Falcons make our most likely playoffs with a below-average pass rush. And, in our Preseason Team Win Total  O/U Picks,  we are favoring the "under" for only three teams with a top 12 pass rush. 

Based on the analysis, here is the projected NFL 2012 Playoff bracket. It should be noted however, that this exact bracket only occurred 416 of the 50,000 seasons played by the Predictalator:

AFC

Wild Card Round
#6 Buffalo 16 @ #3 Pittsburgh 23
#5 Baltimore 20 @ #4 San Diego 21

Divisional Round
#3 Pittsburgh 17 @ #2 Houston 20
#4 San Diego 24 @ #1 New England 34

AFC Championship 
#2 Houston 23 @ #1 New England 29

NFC

Wild Card Round

#6 New York Giants 19 @ #3 San Francisco 20
#5 Detroit 23 @ #4 Atlanta 26

Divisional Round
#4 Atlanta 17 @ #1 Philadelphia 26
#3 San Francisco 19 @ #2 Green Bay 27

NFC Championship 
#2 Green Bay 24 @ #1 Philadelphia 28

Super Bowl
Philadelphia 28 over New England 26

Other Info:
Teams that should surprise (good): Buffalo Bills, Seattle Seahawks, Kansas City Chiefs, Washington Redskins, St. Louis Rams
Teams that should surprise (bad): Denver Broncos, New Orleans Saints, Chicago Bears, Miami Dolphins, Minnesota Vikings
Most Important Player (AFC): Peyton Manning, QB, Denver Broncos
Most Important Player (NFC): Michael Vick, QB, Philadelphia Eagles
Most Important Rookie (AFC): Mike Adams, OT, Pittsburgh Steelers
Most Important Rookie (NFC): Robert Griffin III, Washington Redskins

See: How This Works, Season Summary and Division Previews: AFC East, AFC North, AFC West, AFC South, NFC East, NFC North, NFC West and NFC South

AFC East Preview

New England Patriots
Power Rank: 3
Offensive Rank: 1
Defensive Rank: 25
Division Standing: 1
2011 Playoff Teams on Schedule: 4
Projected 2012 Playoff Teams on Schedule: 5
Projected Record: 10.7 - 5.3
Playoff Probabilities: 86.5%
Super Bowl Win%: 14.2%
Biggest Strength: Belichick-Brady(-McDaniels) Braintrust
Greatest Weakness: Pass Defense
Most Important Offensive Player: Brandon Lloyd
Most Important Defensive Player: Steve Gregory
Fantasy Stud: Rob Gronkowski
Fantasy Dud: Deion Branch
Fantasy Sleeper: Shane Vereen

New York Jets
Power Rank: 15
Offensive Rank: 29
Defensive Rank: 3
Division Standing: 2
2011 Playoff Teams on Schedule: 5
Projected 2012 Playoff Teams on Schedule: 6
Projected Record: 8.7 - 7.3
Playoff Probabilities: 48.6%
Super Bowl Win%: 1.9%
Biggest Strength: Shutdown Pass Defense
Greatest Weakness: Offense
Most Important Offensive Player: Mark Sanchez
Most Important Defensive Player: LaRon Landry
Fantasy Stud: Defense
Fantasy Dud: Everyone Else
Fantasy Sleeper: Stephen Hill

Buffalo Bills
Power Rank: 17
Offensive Rank: 22
Defensive Rank: 12
Division Standing: 3
2011 Playoff Teams on Schedule: 4
Projected 2012 Playoff Teams on Schedule: 6
Projected Record: 8.6 - 7.4
Playoff Probabilities: 53.5%
Super Bowl Win%: 2.1%
Biggest Strength: Offseason Upgrades (from Free Agency, Health and Draft)
Greatest Weakness: Run Defense
Most Important Offensive Player: Chris Hairston/Cordy Glenn
Most Important Defensive Player: Stephen Gilmore
Fantasy Stud: Fred Jackson
Fantasy Dud: Scott Chandler
Fantasy Sleeper: TJ Graham

Miami Dolphins
Power Rank: 27
Offensive Rank: 25
Defensive Rank: 17
Division Standing: 4
2011 Playoff Teams on Schedule: 5
Projected 2012 Playoff Teams on Schedule: 6
Projected Record: 6.5 - 9.5
Playoff Probabilities: 13.6%
Super Bowl Win%: 0.2%
Biggest Strength: Defensive Front Seven
Greatest Weakness: Passing Game
Most Important Offensive Player: Jonathan Martin
Most Important Defensive Player: Richard Marshall
Fantasy Stud: Reggie Bush
Fantasy Dud: Everyone Else
Fantasy Sleeper: Lamar Miller

See: How This Works, Season Summary and Division Previews: AFC East, AFC North, AFC West, AFC South, NFC East, NFC North, NFC West and NFC South

AFC North Preview

Pittsburgh Steelers
Power Rank: 4
Offensive Rank: 11
Defensive Rank: 9
Division Standing: 1
2011 Playoff Teams on Schedule: 6
Projected 2012 Playoff Teams on Schedule: 6
Projected Record: 10 - 6.0
Playoff Probabilities: 64.4%
Super Bowl Win%: 7.2%
Biggest Strength: Passing Game (Offense and Defense)
Greatest Weakness: Running Game (Offense and Defense)
Most Important Offensive Player: Mike Adams
Most Important Defensive Player: James Harrison
Fantasy Stud: Antonio Brown
Fantasy Dud: Rashard Mendenhall
Fantasy Sleeper: Isaac Redman

Baltimore Ravens
Power Rank: 8
Offensive Rank: 20
Defensive Rank: 2
Division Standing: 2
2011 Playoff Teams on Schedule: 8
Projected 2012 Playoff Teams on Schedule: 6
Projected Record: 9.1 - 6.9
Playoff Probabilities: 53.3%
Super Bowl Win%: 5.9%
Biggest Strength: Defensive Core (even without Terrell Suggs)
Greatest Weakness: Difficult Schedule
Most Important Offensive Player: Torrey Smith
Most Important Defensive Player: Paul Kruger
Fantasy Stud: Ray Rice
Fantasy Dud: Anquan Boldin
Fantasy Sleeper: Bernard Pierce

Cincinnati Bengals
Power Rank: 13
Offensive Rank: 21
Defensive Rank: 6
Division Standing: 3
2011 Playoff Teams on Schedule: 6
Projected 2012 Playoff Teams on Schedule: 7
Projected Record: 8.1 - 7.9
Playoff Probabilities: 28.3%
Super Bowl Win%: 1.2%
Biggest Strength: Young Offensive and Defensive Core
Greatest Weakness: Run Offense
Most Important Offensive Player: Kevin Zeitler
Most Important Defensive Player: Taylor Mays
Fantasy Stud: A.J. Green
Fantasy Dud: BenJarvus Green-Ellis
Fantasy Sleeper: Armon Binns

Cleveland Browns
Power Rank: 28
Offensive Rank: 27
Defensive Rank: 19
Division Standing: 4
2011 Playoff Teams on Schedule: 8
Projected 2012 Playoff Teams on Schedule: 7
Projected Record: 5.8 - 10.2
Playoff Probabilities: 3.8%
Super Bowl Win%: 0.1%
Biggest Strength: Youth and Athleticism
Greatest Weakness: Inexperience and Mistakes
Most Important Offensive Player: Brandon Weeden
Most Important Defensive Player: Ahtyba Rubin
Fantasy Stud: Trent Richardson
Fantasy Dud: Ben Watson
Fantasy Sleeper: Josh Gordon

See: How This Works, Season Summary and Division Previews: AFC East, AFC North, AFC West, AFC South, NFC East, NFC North, NFC West and NFC South

AFC South Preview

Houston Texans
Power Rank: 6
Offensive Rank: 15
Defensive Rank: 5
Division Standing: 1
2011 Playoff Teams on Schedule: 5
Projected 2012 Playoff Teams on Schedule: 5
Projected Record: 10.3 - 5.7
Playoff Probabilities: 91.7%
Super Bowl Win%: 9.2%
Biggest Strength: Explosive Playmakers (Offense and Defense)
Greatest Weakness: Fragility
Most Important Offensive Player: Matt Schaub
Most Important Defensive Player: Kareem Jackson
Fantasy Stud: Arian Foster
Fantasy Dud: Andre Johnson (relative to most expectations)
Fantasy Sleeper: Lestar Jean

Tennessee Titans
Power Rank: 26
Offensive Rank: 17
Defensive Rank: 29
Division Standing: 2
2011 Playoff Teams on Schedule: 7
Projected 2012 Playoff Teams on Schedule: 8
Projected Record: 6.6 - 9.4
Playoff Probabilities: 11.5%
Super Bowl Win%: 0.2%
Biggest Strength: Dynamic Offensive Playmakers (when healthy and motivated)
Greatest Weakness: Defensive Front Seven
Most Important Offensive Player: Kenny Britt
Most Important Defensive Player: Alterraun Verner
Fantasy Stud: Chris Johnson
Fantasy Dud: Kendall Wright
Fantasy Sleeper: Jared Cook (again)

Jacksonville Jaguars
Power Rank: 30
Offensive Rank: 32
Defensive Rank: 8
Division Standing: 3
2011 Playoff Teams on Schedule: 6
Projected 2012 Playoff Teams on Schedule: 6
Projected Record: 5.6 - 10.4
Playoff Probabilities: 4.5%
Super Bowl Win%: 0.0%
Biggest Strength: Maurice Jones-Drew (if he wants to play)
Greatest Weakness: Blaine Gabbert
Most Important Offensive Player: Blaine Gabbert
Most Important Defensive Player: Tyson Alualu
Fantasy Stud: Maurice Jones-Drew (if he wants to play)
Fantasy Dud: Mike Thomas
Fantasy Sleeper: Rashad Jennings

Indianapolis Colts
Power Rank: 32
Offensive Rank: 31
Defensive Rank: 27
Division Standing: 4
2011 Playoff Teams on Schedule: 5
Projected 2012 Playoff Teams on Schedule: 6
Projected Record: 4.6 - 11.4
Playoff Probabilities: 1.5%
Super Bowl Win%: 0.0%
Biggest Strength: Quarterback of the Future
Greatest Weakness: Emphasis on "Future"
Most Important Offensive Player: Andrew Luck
Most Important Defensive Player: Tom Zbikowski
Fantasy Stud: Reggie Wayne
Fantasy Dud: Delone Carter
Fantasy Sleeper: Vick Ballard

See: How This Works, Season Summary and Division Previews: AFC East, AFC North, AFC West, AFC South, NFC East, NFC North, NFC West and NFC South

AFC West Preview

San Diego Chargers
Power Rank: 16
Offensive Rank: 8
Defensive Rank: 18
Division Standing: 1
2011 Playoff Teams on Schedule: 7
Projected 2012 Playoff Teams on Schedule: 4
Projected Record: 8.1 - 7.9
Playoff Probabilities: 34.4%
Super Bowl Win%: 1.5%
Biggest Strength: Vertical Passing Game
Greatest Weakness: Norv Turner
Most Important Offensive Player: Robert Meachem
Most Important Defensive Player: Jarret Johnson
Fantasy Stud: Ryan Mathews
Fantasy Dud: Defense
Fantasy Sleeper: Vincent Brown

Denver Broncos
Power Rank: 14
Offensive Rank: 10
Defensive Rank: 22
Division Standing: 2
2011 Playoff Teams on Schedule: 7
Projected 2012 Playoff Teams on Schedule: 7
Projected Record: 8.0 - 8.0
Playoff Probabilities: 41.0%
Super Bowl Win%: 1.9%
Biggest Strength: Pass Rush
Greatest Weakness: Running Game (Offense and Defense)
Most Important Offensive Player: Peyton Manning
Most Important Defensive Player: Von Miller
Fantasy Stud: Peyton Manning
Fantasy Dud: Knowshon Moreno
Fantasy Sleeper: Jacob Tamme

Kansas City Chiefs
Power Rank: 20
Offensive Rank: 16
Defensive Rank: 10
Division Standing: 3
2011 Playoff Teams on Schedule: 7
Projected 2012 Playoff Teams on Schedule: 5
Projected Record: 8.0 - 8.0
Playoff Probabilities: 36.4%
Super Bowl Win%: 1.2%
Biggest Strength: Elite Talent Getting Healthy
Greatest Weakness: Vertical Passing Game (or lack thereof)
Most Important Offensive Player: Jamaal Charles
Most Important Defensive Player: Eric Berry
Fantasy Stud: Ryan Succop
Fantasy Dud: Matt Cassel
Fantasy Sleeper: Tony Moeaki

Oakland Raiders
Power Rank: 23
Offensive Rank: 13
Defensive Rank: 32
Division Standing: 4
2011 Playoff Teams on Schedule: 6
Projected 2012 Playoff Teams on Schedule: 5
Projected Record: 7.6 - 8.4
Playoff Probabilities: 26.8%
Super Bowl Win%: 0.7%
Biggest Strength: Run Offense (when Darren McFadden is Healthy)
Greatest Weakness: Run Defense
Most Important Offensive Player: Darren McFadden
Most Important Defensive Player: Ron Bartell
Fantasy Stud: Darren McFadden
Fantasy Dud: Tight Ends
Fantasy Sleeper: Carson Palmer

See: How This Works, Season Summary and Division Previews: AFC East, AFC North, AFC West, AFC South, NFC East, NFC North, NFC West and NFC South

NFC East Preview

Philadelphia Eagles
Power Rank: 1
Offensive Rank: 7
Defensive Rank: 4
Division Standing: 1
2011 Playoff Teams on Schedule: 8
Projected 2012 Playoff Teams on Schedule: 6
Projected Record: 10.8 - 5.2
Playoff Probabilities: 84.2%
Super Bowl Win%: 18.0%
Biggest Strength: Talented Roster
Greatest Weakness: Schedule and Michael Vick's Health
Most Important Offensive Player: Michael Vick
Most Important Defensive Player: DeMeco Ryans
Fantasy Stud: LeSean McCoy
Fantasy Dud: NONE
Fantasy Sleeper: Mike Kafka

New York Giants
Power Rank: 5
Offensive Rank: 5
Defensive Rank: 16
Division Standing: 2
2011 Playoff Teams on Schedule: 7
Projected 2012 Playoff Teams on Schedule: 7
Projected Record: 8.8 - 7.2
Playoff Probabilities: 50.6%
Super Bowl Win%: 4.7%
Biggest Strength: Pass Rush
Greatest Weakness: Run Offense
Most Important Offensive Player: Ahmad Bradshaw
Most Important Defensive Player: Michael Boley
Fantasy Stud: Victor Cruz
Fantasy Dud: Martellus Bennett
Fantasy Sleeper: Rueben Randle

Dallas Cowboys
Power Rank: 7
Offensive Rank: 9
Defensive Rank: 13
Division Standing: 3
2011 Playoff Teams on Schedule: 7
Projected 2012 Playoff Teams on Schedule: 7
Projected Record: 8.4 - 7.6
Playoff Probabilities: 43.4%
Super Bowl Win%: 2.9%
Biggest Strength: Explosive Offensive Playmakers
Greatest Weakness: Meddling Owner
Most Important Offensive Player: Dez Bryant
Most Important Defensive Player: Morris Claiborne
Fantasy Stud: Jason Witten
Fantasy Dud: Felix Jones
Fantasy Sleeper: Andre Holmes

Washington Redskins
Power Rank: 19
Offensive Rank: 14
Defensive Rank: 11
Division Standing: 4
2011 Playoff Teams on Schedule: 7
Projected 2012 Playoff Teams on Schedule: 7
Projected Record: 7.3 - 8.7
Playoff Probabilities: 18.5%
Super Bowl Win%: 0.6%
Biggest Strength: Balance (QB Improvement neutralizes previous greatest weakness)
Greatest Weakness: Brutal Division
Most Important Offensive Player: Robert Griffin III
Most Important Defensive Player: Tanard Jackson
Fantasy Stud: Fred Davis
Fantasy Dud: Defense
Fantasy Sleeper: Roy Helu

See: How This Works, Season Summary and Division Previews: AFC East, AFC North, AFC West, AFC South, NFC East, NFC North, NFC West and NFC South

NFC North Preview

Green Bay Packers
Power Rank: 2
Offensive Rank: 3
Defensive Rank: 21
Division Standing: 1
2011 Playoff Teams on Schedule: 6
Projected 2012 Playoff Teams on Schedule: 5
Projected Record: 10.5 - 5.5
Playoff Probabilities: 70.5%
Super Bowl Win%: 9.2%
Biggest Strength: Passing Offense
Greatest Weakness: Pass Defense
Most Important Offensive Player: Marshall Newhouse
Most Important Defensive Player: Nick Perry
Fantasy Stud: Aaron Rodgers
Fantasy Dud: Donald Driver
Fantasy Sleeper: Defense

Detroit Lions
Power Rank: 11
Offensive Rank: 4
Defensive Rank: 26
Division Standing: 2
2011 Playoff Teams on Schedule: 5
Projected 2012 Playoff Teams on Schedule: 6
Projected Record: 9.2 - 6.8
Playoff Probabilities: 46.6%
Super Bowl Win%: 3.0%
Biggest Strength: Passing Game (Offense and Defense)
Greatest Weakness: Running Game (Offense and Defense)
Most Important Offensive Player: Jahvid Best
Most Important Defensive Player: Chris Houston
Fantasy Stud: Calvin Johnson
Fantasy Dud: Jahvid Best
Fantasy Sleeper: Mikel Leshoure

Chicago Bears
Power Rank: 18
Offensive Rank: 19
Defensive Rank: 14
Division Standing: 3
2011 Playoff Teams on Schedule: 6
Projected 2012 Playoff Teams on Schedule: 6
Projected Record: 8.6 - 7.4
Playoff Probabilities: 35.5%
Super Bowl Win%: 1.1%
Biggest Strength: Run Defense
Greatest Weakness: Offensive Line
Most Important Offensive Player: Gabe Carimi
Most Important Defensive Player: Chris Conte
Fantasy Stud: Brandon Marshall
Fantasy Dud: Devin Hester
Fantasy Sleeper: Alshon Jeffery

Minnesota Vikings
Power Rank: 31
Offensive Rank: 28
Defensive Rank: 31
Division Standing: 4
2011 Playoff Teams on Schedule: 6
Projected 2012 Playoff Teams on Schedule: 6
Projected Record: 5.2 - 10.8
Playoff Probabilities: 1.1%
Super Bowl Win%: 0.0%
Biggest Strength: Pass Rush
Greatest Weakness: Elite Division
Most Important Offensive Player: Christian Ponder
Most Important Defensive Player: Harrison Smith
Fantasy Stud: Percy Harvin
Fantasy Dud: Blair Walsh
Fantasy Sleeper: Kyle Rudolph

See: How This Works, Season Summary and Division Previews: AFC East, AFC North, AFC West, AFC South, NFC East, NFC North, NFC West and NFC South

NFC South Preview

Atlanta Falcons
Power Rank: 10
Offensive Rank: 12
Defensive Rank: 7
Division Standing: 1
2011 Playoff Teams on Schedule: 5
Projected 2012 Playoff Teams on Schedule: 4
Projected Record: 9 - 7.0
Playoff Probabilities: 60.4%
Super Bowl Win%: 4.1%
Biggest Strength: Easy Schedule
Greatest Weakness: Run Offense (Michael Turner Wearing Down)
Most Important Offensive Player: Julio Jones
Most Important Defensive Player: Akeem Dent
Fantasy Stud: Julio Jones
Fantasy Dud: Michael Turner (relative to most expectations)
Fantasy Sleeper: Jacquizz Rodgers

New Orleans Saints
Power Rank: 12
Offensive Rank: 2
Defensive Rank: 31
Division Standing: 2
2011 Playoff Teams on Schedule: 6
Projected 2012 Playoff Teams on Schedule: 7
Projected Record: 8.5 - 7.5
Playoff Probabilities: 38.4%
Super Bowl Win%: 2.6%
Biggest Strength: Drew Brees
Greatest Weakness: Uncertainty with Coaching Staff and Defense
Most Important Offensive Player: Drew Brees
Most Important Defensive Player: Curtis Lofton
Fantasy Stud: Jimmy Graham
Fantasy Dud: Defense
Fantasy Sleeper: Mark Ingram

Carolina Panthers
Power Rank: 21
Offensive Rank: 6
Defensive Rank: 23
Division Standing: 3
2011 Playoff Teams on Schedule: 6
Projected 2012 Playoff Teams on Schedule: 5
Projected Record: 7.4 - 8.6
Playoff Probabilities: 22.8%
Super Bowl Win%: 0.7%
Biggest Strength: Cam Newton and the Linebackers
Greatest Weakness: Defensive Secondary and Pass Rush
Most Important Offensive Player: Cam Newton
Most Important Defensive Player: Ron Edwards
Fantasy Stud: Cam Newton
Fantasy Dud: Defense
Fantasy Sleeper: David Gettis

Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Power Rank: 23
Offensive Rank: 30
Defensive Rank: 16
Division Standing: 4
2011 Playoff Teams on Schedule: 6
Projected 2012 Playoff Teams on Schedule: 6
Projected Record: 5.1 - 10.9
Playoff Probabilities: 1.9%
Super Bowl Win%: 0.0%
Biggest Strength: Upgrades to Pass Offense
Greatest Weakness: Overturning Roster and Coaching Staff
Most Important Offensive Player: Doug Martin
Most Important Defensive Player: Gerald McCoy
Fantasy Stud: Vincent Jackson
Fantasy Dud: Dallas Clark
Fantasy Sleeper: Michael Smith

See: How This Works, Season Summary and Division Previews: AFC East, AFC North, AFC West, AFC South, NFC East, NFC North, NFC West and NFC South

NFC West Preview

San Francisco 49ers
Power Rank: 9
Offensive Rank: 24
Defensive Rank: 1
Division Standing: 1
2011 Playoff Teams on Schedule: 5
Projected 2012 Playoff Teams on Schedule: 5
Projected Record: 9.2 - 6.8
Playoff Probabilities: 62.7%
Super Bowl Win%: 4.4%
Biggest Strength: Defense
Greatest Weakness: Offense
Most Important Offensive Player: Alex Smith
Most Important Defensive Player: NaVorro Bowman
Fantasy Stud: Vernon Davis
Fantasy Dud: Michael Crabtree
Fantasy Sleeper: LaMichael James

Seattle Seahawks
Power Rank: 22
Offensive Rank: 28
Defensive Rank: 15
Division Standing: 2
2011 Playoff Teams on Schedule: 5
Projected 2012 Playoff Teams on Schedule: 6
Projected Record: 7.7 - 8.3
Playoff Probabilities: 26.8%
Super Bowl Win%: 0.6%
Biggest Strength: Run Defense
Greatest Weakness: Uncertainty at Quarterback
Most Important Offensive Player: Matt Flynn
Most Important Defensive Player: Barrett Ruud
Fantasy Stud: Defense
Fantasy Dud: Kellen Winslow/Zach Miller
Fantasy Sleeper: Robert Turbin

Arizona Cardinals
Power Rank: 24
Offensive Rank: 18
Defensive Rank: 24
Division Standing: 3
2011 Playoff Teams on Schedule: 6
Projected 2012 Playoff Teams on Schedule: 8
Projected Record: 7.1 - 8.9
Playoff Probabilities: 22.2%
Super Bowl Win%: 0.5%
Biggest Strength: Being Average (or just below in pretty much everything)
Greatest Weakness: Being Average (or just below in pretty much everything)
Most Important Offensive Player: Kevin Kolb
Most Important Defensive Player: Patrick Peterson
Fantasy Stud: Larry Fitzgerald
Fantasy Dud: Todd Heap
Fantasy Sleeper: Ryan Williams

St. Louis Rams
Power Rank: 25
Offensive Rank: 20
Defensive Rank: 28
Division Standing: 4
2011 Playoff Teams on Schedule: 5
Projected 2012 Playoff Teams on Schedule: 6
Projected Record: 7.0 - 9.0
Playoff Probabilities: 14.6%
Super Bowl Win%: 0.3%
Biggest Strength: Young Pass Rush
Greatest Weakness: Offensive Line
Most Important Offensive Player: Roger Saffold
Most Important Defensive Player: Cortland Finnegan
Fantasy Stud: Stephen Jackson
Fantasy Dud: Austin Pettis
Fantasy Sleeper: Chris Givens

NFL Preview Pages:

Over/Under Win Total Picks
Projected Standings and Playoff Probabilities
In-Depth Team Analysis
NFL Team Rankings
Fantasy Football Projections and Rankings
NEW Weekly Fantasy Projections
Play the Games
Buy Picks

Archive

Ad

The Predictalator

The Predictalator is the most advanced sports forecasting software available today because it has the ability to account for all of the relevant statistical interactions of the players (playing or not playing/injured), coaches, officials, fans (home field advantage) and weather in each game.

04/14/2014 Highlight: Using the ResultsFinder for the week of April 7th - 13th, one could find that all highlighted, MLB "normal" or better picks went 26-19 (58% ML, O/U, RL). This includes "normal" over/under picks going 10-4 (71% O/U). All-time (since the start of the 2012 season), all normal over/under MLB plays are 270-212 (56% O/U).

As the regular season concludes, NBA plays are heating up. All normal plays for the week in the NBA went 7-4 (64% ATS & O/U). Total picks continue to be strong, going 4-2 (67% O/U) with "normal" picks last week. Such "normal" plays are 43-32 (57% O/U) since the beginning of the year in the NBA.

The Predictalator plays every game 50,000 times before it's actually played. This provides us the ability to assign probabilities to the likelihood of just about any outcome occurring in any contest including straight-up, against-the-spread and over/under winners of each game.

Ad
Ad