Each day over the next two weeks we will reveal a Prediction of the Day, where we share an interesting player or team prediction leading into the 2013 NFL season. Rams vs. Falcons, Tampa Bay's defense, Broncos/49ers, Ravens repeat?, Sacks will Skyrocket.
Prediction: The Minnesota Vikings, Indianapolis Colts, Washington Redskins, Atlanta Falcons and Cincinnati Bengals will not make the playoffs.
Why it is likely:
On average, each year, almost half of the previous season’s NFL Playoff participants fail to make the postseason the next year. This is not necessarily because of total flukes in previous seasons or with bad luck or injuries in the current season (though those are contributing factors in most cases), but is more directly tied to the nature of parity in the league. Going into this season, we give the Broncos, 49ers, Seahawks, Patriots and Texans each greater than 65% chance to make the postseason. On the other end of the spectrum, the Jaguars, Raiders, Cardinals, Vikings, Titans and Browns each have less than a 20% chance to get into the playoffs. What happens to the other 21 teams is essentially up for grabs.
Technically, the chance of all five of those teams missing the postseason is only 12.1%. None of these teams is greater than 45% likely to get in (Cincinnati is 44.1%), but it is unlikely that all five of these teams miss the playoffs.
In order, the least likely 2012 NFL Playoff teams to make the 2013 postseason are Minnesota Vikings (8.1%), Indianapolis Colts (35.2%), Washington Redskins (38.9%), Atlanta Falcons (40.3%) and Cincinnati Bengals (44.1%).