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Espn Insider - Risers And Fallers Of The Nfc (Football Outsider)


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Risers

Atlanta Falcons

The Falcons lost seven games by eight points or less in 2013 and played without Julio Jones, their best player, for two-thirds of the season. With a depleted offense, Matt Ryan and Co. went up against one of the 10 most difficult defensive schedules in the past 25 years. There are question marks all over the defense, but with Jones back and first-round draft pick Jake Matthews solidifying the offensive line, Ryan -- who is criminally underrated, by the way -- should be able to lead the Falcons back into contention.

Ive been saying this all along.... A L is a L but with all the injuries we had and the D's we were going against..... We was in those games (except maybe 3 games when we first got hit by all the injuries)

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The '10 most difficult defensive schedules in the past 25 years' part is interesting but I take football outsiders with a grain of salt.

They are one of the places that seem waaaay too into their own stats. Anytime you have to use a page to explain how your statistic works it's never a good thing.

'Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication' - DaVinci

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The '10 most difficult defensive schedules in the past 25 years' part is interesting but I take football outsiders with a grain of salt.

They are one of the places that seem waaaay too into their own stats. Anytime you have to use a page to explain how your statistic works it's never a good thing.

'Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication' - DaVinci

I can agree with the stats part

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Rams, Jets, Bucs, AZ, Bills, 49ers, Panthers, Miami..

The '10 most difficult defensive schedules in the past 25 years' part is interesting but I take football outsiders with a grain of salt.

They are one of the places that seem waaaay too into their own stats. Anytime you have to use a page to explain how your statistic works it's never a good thing.

'Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication' - DaVinci

Rams, Jets, Bucs, AZ, Bills, 49ers, Panthers, Miami

best dlines sans detroit/cinci

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Rams, Jets, Bucs, AZ, Bills, 49ers, Panthers, Miami..

Rams, Jets, Bucs, AZ, Bills, 49ers, Panthers, Miami

best dlines sans detroit/cinci

Oh I don't doubt it was very tough defensively.

I was referring to outsiders in general and their DVOA/DBOA/DMOA/DYAR.

I would post their explanation of these stats but it's seriously 3-5 pages.

http://www.footballoutsiders.com/info/methods

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Guest MikeKennHOF

Anytime you have to use a page to explain how your statistic works it's never a good thing.

Unless it happens to say what you want to hear; then its perfectly ok.

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Guest MikeKennHOF

Nah, I tend to stay away from outsiders. You're confusing me with someone else.

I put more faith in Pro Football Focus.... at least they watch tape. I think outsiders just looks at stats.

I was speaking in general: not about you in particular.

But it makes sense to list us as a riser. Its not like we can fall much farther.

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I agree that last season we were not a complete team and many pieces were missing. And for us to hang in there does show some character...but we still dont have an identity on this team. We know who seattle, SF, NE, and Denver are and what they will bring to the field on game day. The Falcons, not so much... If the Falcons can find out who they are, then we are looking at a championship team.

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To be Honest, I think last year injuries were the best thing that could happen for long term success. It was very possible that Julio, Matt and co could have continued to cover up for the teams philosophical missteps but the injuries exposed a couple of core issues that could have held the team in a position of 'always a bridesmaid but never a bride'. I think with the teams new understanding of how important the trenches and how the small penetrating DT's are not working will pay off in a Super Bowl in the next 5 years.

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Don't forget that towards the end we started, "Playing the young guys" even as vets got back to the lineup... euphemism for get the highest draft position possible. If you REALLY think the Falcons were a 4-12 team last season you did not watch the 49ers game in which we looked like a playoff team that decided to remind everyone of that fact on MNF!

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I like to believe that over the past 6 years this regime has built a winning culture. That retention of good players and average to good drafting has kept us competitive and at least relevant.

We just need a Defense. Im so tired of watching the Geno's and Kirk's tear us apart, hopefully some of our younger Defensive players continue to ball. If our offense can keep Mr. Ryan upright there are going to be lots of broken hearts in the NFC South!

I think if we see a marked improvement in our Defense we can go all the way!

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Makes sense to me. We'd likely have had a winning season last year without injuries, and now that we realized our weaknesses on the lines and moves heavily to correct them it should be relatively easy to have a rebound year. Out of curiosity where are the other NFC South teams on their list, if they're mentioned at all?

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He probably did but is just a TOUGH SOB and wanted to stay out there to show leadership for our team.

There were reports after the season that he did actually get hurt fairly bad in game 1. Those following 4-5 games made it worse. The Rams game especially, he got absolutely demolished in that game on every play.

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The '10 most difficult defensive schedules in the past 25 years' part is interesting but I take football outsiders with a grain of salt.

They are one of the places that seem waaaay too into their own stats. Anytime you have to use a page to explain how your statistic works it's never a good thing.

'Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication' - DaVinci

Their stats, especially the big picture ones like team/unit DVOA are incredibly well correlated to team success in the last 25 years. The only thing that has a higher correlation to W/L is pythagorean expectation.

Team DVOA correlates to W/L over the last 25 years at about a .80 clip. Given how frequently teams over perform in terms of W/L, I can't imagine it would be possible for the correlation to be any higher.

I would really urge any football fan with any interest in really analyzing the game to spend the $12 bucks to download a copy of the new Football Outsiders Almanac. Read through it. Listen to what they have to say. If you think its ********, hey, it's only $12. But I bought my first one in 09 or so on the recommendation of Peter King and Bill Simmons. I've purchased every year since then. Its without question the best football book available.

(no, I don't work for them or get a kick back or have any association with them. I'm just a big believer in their approach to analyzing the game)

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