Oct 22, 2012; Chicago, IL, USA; Chicago Bears quarterback Jay Cutler (6) scrambles during the second half against the Detroit Lions at Soldier Field. The Bears won 13-7. Mandatory Credit: Dennis Wierzbicki-US PRESSWIRE

Mathematical NFL Power Rankings

It’s time for another installment of my mathematical power rankings. With the short week last week for the Seahawks, I didn’t have a chance to get them posted a week ago, but they are back this week.

Since we have so many new readers, here’s the basics of what this is. About a year ago, I started a massive project looking at tons of different stats and looked for correlation to winning. The result, after months of work, was a mathematical model of how each thing a team does that effects winning. I’ve parlayed that knowledge into a formula for that determines a “power” level for each team based on their stats.

This week, the Bears ride a great performance against the Lions and take over the league’s top spot. On the strength of their defense, special teams and third down efficiency (both offense and defense), they’ve been able to overcome having a fairly average offense into becoming statistically the league’s best team.

The Seahawks continue to drop, all the way to 16th this week. The Defense is still the league’s 3rd best, so thats not the reason. Offensively, the team is fairly mediocre, mostly because the passing offense is still one of the league’s worst. (I should note that this has nothing to do with total yards, but rather yards per attempt, and when the passes are completed) One of the biggest reason for the Seahawks fall is the complete lack of production on 3rd down on both sides of the ball, where the Seahawks rank in the bottom third in the league.

The big winner this week was Green Bay. With their offense finally returning to the form they showed last season, their stats are making big positive changes each week, leading to some quick jumps in the rankings.

Rank Last Team

O

D

ST

3rd%

Power

1

2

Chicago

13.65

11.95

7.32

12.2

92.0

2

3

Houston

13.4

12.05

-13.06

17.7

87.1

3

1

San Francisco

16.45

11.6

-10.24

1.5

86.0

4

4

New England

13.7

13.05

7.92

3.6

80.2

5

6

Atlanta

12.95

15.4

8.3

3.6

75.7

6

8

NY Giant

14.65

16.2

5.4

8.7

74.4

7

7

Minnesota

13.35

12.25

9.42

-8.9

69.6

8

5

Baltimore

14.35

13.5

8.7

-6.3

68.4

9

11

Washington

16.7

13.85

-2.72

-13.8

68.3

10

17

Green Bay

13.45

13.3

6.72

5.6

67.3

11

12

Denver

13.3

12.25

3.38

-0.3

65.9

12

14

Pittsburgh

12.75

12.35

1.52

6.6

65.5

13

13

Miami

13

12.15

14.74

14.4

64.8

14

19

Tampa Bay

14.2

13.15

-10.96

-6.2

64.4

15

10

San Diego

12.95

12.45

-8.54

0.5

64.0

16

9

Seattle

13.15

11.75

-1.42

-5.9

63.2

17

16

Arizona

11.7

12.7

-3.26

2.1

61.4

18

15

St. Louis

13.5

12.9

-9.78

-3.3

58.8

19

22

New Orleans

13.25

16.25

-3.7

10.5

53.9

20

24

NY Jets

12.25

13.5

14.78

-5.7

53.8

21

20

Philadelphia

13.25

12.35

-22.68

12.3

52.1

22

23

Dallas

13.2

13.3

-0.02

5.9

51.7

23

26

Detroit

13.15

12.95

-25.06

-3.7

50.7

24

18

Cincinnati

13.65

14.4

4.82

-10.3

50.2

25

21

Carolina

15

13.65

1.1

-13.4

48.9

26

27

Cleveland

12.3

13.95

5.32

-5.7

48.1

27

28

Buffalo

14.55

16.6

24.48

-4.9

44.2

28

29

Oakland

12.6

12.9

-8.52

-10.8

43.1

29

25

Indianapolis

12.25

14.5

-6.14

-0.1

42.2

30

32

Tennessee

13.1

14.35

8.22

-1.6

36.9

31

31

Jacksonville

11.45

13.8

-4.48

-15.2

32.7

32

30

Kansas City

13.5

15.95

-10.02

7

26.7

O – Index of many offensive stats, including yards rushing attempts and yards per passing attempt

D – Index of many defensive stats, including yards rushing attempts and yards per passing attempt. Lower numbers are better, since that means the D gave up fewer yards.

ST – index of many special teams stats, including yard per return, both offensively and defensely, for both punts and kick returns.

3rd% – relative success on third down, both offensively and defensively.

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