2010 NFL Week 17 Beatpaths Power Rankings

Evening…er, morning…er, whatever, folks! Kenneth here, with another set of rankings. I decided to finish off these rankings before this weekend’s games, so let’s not delay with pleasantries!

Instead, let’s go over something more significant–the Beatpaths predictions for this week’s playoff games!

New York Jets versus Indianapolis: There’s no beatpath here. But Indianapolis is ranked #4 to New York’s #9, so the rankings would give the edge to the Colts.
Baltimore versus Kansas City: Baltimore has a clear beatpath to Kansas City through Houston, so they are definitely the favorites.
New Orleans versus Seattle: Shockingly enough, there is no direct beatpath here. But the rankings have New Orleans at #11 and Seattle at #21. I think we can safely call the Saints the pick here.
Green Bay versus Philadelphia: No beatpath here. But the rankings are the clearest here: Philadelphia is the #3 team, and Green Bay is a distant #16. This is the strongest discrepancy in rankings (even more so than Baltimore-Kansas City), and is clearly a pick of Philadelphia.

So that’s one beatpath pick of Baltimore over Kansas City, and 3 other picks by rankings. Officially, we would count Ravens-Chiefs as our strongest pick. We’ll see how well it holds up this weekend!

You can see the graph for this week here.

Rank Team Notes Last Week EdgePower

1

(Beat MIA) The Patriots cap off an impressive season with a win over the Dolphins. In the process, they end up even further ahead of the pack than they were last week. It’s starting to get hard to imagine a situation in which they don’t take home the Lombardi trophy, but then, we’ve been in this situation before. No matter how good you are, winning 3 games against tough opponents is always hard. Still, I bet hard on the Patriots in my playoff fantasy league, because I think they’ll back it up.

1

78.16

(58 – 0) / 103

#1 – #8

2

(Beat CIN) Hallelujah! The Great Injustice of 2010 has been reversed, with the Ravens finally looping away their early season loss to the Bengals with a season split. That gave them back wins over the Bills, Dolphins, and Buccaneers. They didn’t get back their win over the Jets, but it was used in a larger 4 team loop of BAL=>NYJ=>PIT=>ATL=>BAL to loop away their loss to the Falcons. The end result is a rocket ship trip up the rankings to #2. We here at Beatpaths, plus many of our commenters, knew this was coming. If the NFL sticks to its “late season divisional matchup” plan, it could cause considerable harm to the Beatpaths stability. Something to work on in the offseason, I guess.

15

68.45

(38 – 0) / 103

#1 – #14

3

(Lost to DAL) The loss makes a season split between these two teams, but little harm is done to the Eagles by losing the beatwin. As noted above, Beatpaths has Philly as the heavy favorite in this game, but I think it’ll be a tougher go. The big question I have is about their defense–with all the Vickapalooza hype, I haven’t gotten a good idea of how strong it is. They’ll need to be firm to go deep in the playoffs.

6

65.53

(32 – 0) / 103

#1 – #16

4

(Beat TEN) Indianapolis and Philadelphia, by the way, are in almost the same position, beatpaths wise. The only difference is that the Colts are under the Patriots, and the Eagles are not. In any case, the Colts pulled out a win against the Titans for a season sweep and the #3 seed. Neither seems too important to me–I’d consider the Ravens and Jets to be six of one, half a dozen of the other, though Beatpaths clearly disagrees with me.

4

65.05

(32 – 1) / 103

#2 – #15

5

(Beat CLE) Pittsburgh beats up the Browns–pretty heavily, too–but still falls down the rankings. What gives? Well, the key is in that 4 team beatloop from above. It cost the Steelers their win over the Falcons, while not gaining them anything (their loss to the Jets was already wiped out by another 4 team loop). That took out a fair amount of their support, so they tumble down the chart.

2

64.08

(29 – 0) / 103

#1 – #19

6

(Beat CAR) Well, that was uneventful. The Falcons easily dispatched the Panthers–even considering the failed fourth down attempts. Also, due to others’ work, they shed their last remaining beatloss (to Pittsburgh). Unfortunately, some of the other teams aligned themselves on top of other teams better, and ended up zooming past the Falcons, who mostly have the same resume as last week.

3

64.08

(29 – 0) / 103

#1 – #21

7

(Lost to GB) The loss causes a season split, but it doesn’t do much; the loss to Green Bay was already wiped out in a three team loop with the New York Giants, a loss which is covered in a three team loop with Philadelphia. So, there could be some interesting effects if the Bears and Eagles meet up in the next round. As a Bears fan, I honestly don’t find last week’s game to be distressing at all; it was basically an exhibition game for the team, and in that context they showed admirable dedication. I have no doubt that when the games are for real again, they will show more discipline and better strategy.

5

64.08

(30 – 1) / 103

#2 – #15

8

(Beat WAS) The Giants get a season sweep over the Redskins, but it does little to their cause. The Giants are the highest rated team in these rankings not to be headed to the playoffs, but that’s solely because of the impact of divisions and the horrible NFC West. I think most would agree that we’d put the Giants in a list of the top 12 teams before we would put the Seahawks, so I don’t feel bad about this ranking at all.

7

61.65

(27 – 3) / 103

#4 – #17

9

(Beat BUF) It’s a New York Daily Double, as the Jets take the next spot in the rankings. Unlike the other teams involved in that 4 team loop above, the Jets were unaffected; both of the paths involved in the loop (loss to Baltimore, win over Pittsburgh) were looped away already.

12

59.71

(22 – 2) / 103

#3 – #19

10

(Beat NO) Tampa Bay continues its climb up the rankings by earning a season split against the Saints. This seems a bit disingenuous–as far as I could tell, the Saints gave up once it was clear they weren’t catching the Falcons. In any case, this win gives the Buccaneers back a beatpath over the Browns. It also breaks up a three team loop with Arizona, which lets TB=>ARI to survive a level and make a four team loop of TB=>ARI=>DAL=>DET=>TB–but that ends up not mattering to the Bucs as much, because they already had looped away their loss to the Lions.

13

56.31

(17 – 4) / 103

#4 – #23

11

(Lost to TB) Well, let’s go over the flip side of that game! The losses to Cleveland and Arizona are still wiped out by other loops, so no big deal in losing them. What does hurt the Saints, however, is the Ravens evening up with the Bengals, which puts BAL=>NO back in the graph. Although that does give the Saints back their beatwin over the Bengals, so that’s nice, I guess.

9

55.83

(13 – 1) / 103

#2 – #23

12

(Beat KC) The Raiders sweep the division and end up at .500 for the season. With this result, they decided they should fire their coach? I know there was an issue with the offensive coordinator maybe being the brains of the operation and possibly leaving, but still–shouldn’t you recognize this accomplishment?

16

54.85

(11 – 1) / 103

#2 – #25

13

(Beat JAC) Houston, a big mover of the week! What’s the skinny? Well, they split with the Jaguars, which did two things. First, it broke up a three team loop with the Chiefs, which put HOU=>KC back in the graph, giving the Texans some support again (they went from having 0 positive edgepower to 16 in one week). Second, it broke up a three team loop with Washington. That allowed HOU=>WAS to survive one level deeper in the graph, where it formed a four team loop of HOU=>WAS=>JAC=>DAL=>HOU. That looped away the Texans’ loss to the Cowboys, which gave them more room to rise.

28

53.40

(16 – 9) / 103

#8 – #21

14

(Lost to OAK) The Chiefs are hurt by circumstances out of their control, as shown above. But they also got dinged by this loss, which formed a four team loop of KC=>CLE=>MIA=>OAK=>KC, costing the Chiefs their win over the Browns.

8

51.94

(15 – 11) / 103

#9 – #22

15

(Lost to HOU) Way to show up small in these last few weeks, Jacksonville. I guess you’re not ready for the big time yet. How much longer is Jack Del Rio going to get?

14

51.94

(9 – 5) / 103

#5 – #25

16

(Beat CHI) Yeah, I was surprised, too. The Packers beat the Bears, but fall. Part of this is that the win over the Bears doesn’t give them any support back–the only loop broken up was with the Giants, and that win is looped away lots of ways. Part of this is a dip in strength of Minnesota. And part of it is the Packers losing their win over Dallas. How? Well, pay attention now: Detroit beat Minnesota, earning a season split. That broke up 3 team loop of DET=>MIA=>MIN=>DET, leaving the path DET=>MIA in the graph at the 4 team level. That’s where it formed a loop of GB=>DAL=>DET=>MIA=>GB. And that’s how the Packers’ win over the Cowboys disappeared. Good luck in the playoffs, guys!

10

51.46

(4 – 1) / 103

#2 – #28

17

(Beat MIN) A strong showing at the end by the Lions gives hope for next year. I kept saying that they were playing better than their record, just not getting the wins they should. I guess they know how to win now. Watch out next year, the Lions have a taste for blood! Meanwhile, this win did some major restructuring for the Lions. You know about the one 4 team loop above from the Packers comment, but there were 5 other ones involving the Lions that showed up. One of them was described in the Buccaneer’s part; the other 4 were also generated by DET=>MIA being loosened, and got rid of the Lions’ losses to the Bills and Jets. That gave the Lions a lot of room to move up, and they did so.

29

51.46

(9 – 6) / 103

#5 – #25

18

(Lost to NE) Stay classy, Miami. Apparently they tried to give the head coaching job to Jim Harbaugh, then when he said no tried to extend Sparano? Yeah, that sounds like it’s going to end well. This is looking like a big Tuna mess.

11

50.49

(6 – 5) / 103

#4 – #26

19

(Beat PHI) Congrats Cowboys, I guess, for earning the season split with the Eagles. The Cowboys have moved up more by the work of others. The Lions got them out from under the Vikings and Packers, the Bucs got them out from under the Cardinals, and the Texans freed them from the Jaguars grasp.

27

48.06

(0 – 4) / 103

#5 – #32

20

(Lost to DET) It seems like the Vikings committed to Leslie Frazier based on the strength of a not particularly impressive set of games here at the end. But then, that seems to be a pattern for this team. They committed to Brad Childress when he didn’t really seem to be doing that well, and they committed to Tavaris Jackson for so long, too. I wish former Bear Leslie Frazier luck, but my instinct tells me this is not going to go well.

18

46.60

(0 – 7) / 103

#5 – #32

21

(Beat STL) What a blight on the nation! Truly, this is the true travesty of our times. A sub-.500 team in the playoffs? That’s 1980s NHL talk! Not in my NFL, no siree! I’m going to interrupt this rant to mention that this split does little for the Seahawks–it breaks up a four team loop involving their win over the Bears, but that win is looped away in another four team loop, so no benefit. Now, back to this thing! Let’s get some bipartisanship on this thing. Surely we can stop arguing over Obamacare and Tea Parties to make sure this never happens again, right? Let’s go Washington (DC, that is), make it happen!

17

45.63

(5 – 14) / 103

#11 – #28

22

(Lost to IND) Sounds like Bud Adams decided to keep Fisher and ditch Young. I think that’s the right decision. I like Young, and I think he will do good things in this league still. But Fisher has shown himself to be a winner, and I wouldn’t expect Vince Young to hold the team together and lead them to success while they transition to their first new coach in over a decade. The best scenario would have been for Fisher to pull his head out of his butt, trust Young and stop trotting out the decaying corpse of Kerry Collins, but since that wasn’t an option, this is probably a good plan B.

20

45.63

(0 – 9) / 103

#7 – #32

23

(Lost to PIT) I would have thought I would be happy to hear that the Manginious (sp?) had been fired. But I’m really ambivalent. I guess part of it is that the Browns seemed to be fun to watch this season, with their “plucky determination” and “ability to beat the Patriots” (always a plus in my book). We’ll see how things go now. I think it’s key, however, to prevent Holmgren from coaching. I don’t think he can do that and GM.

22

45.15

(4 – 14) / 103

#10 – #28

24

(Lost to NYJ) Buffalo loses their win over the Lions, but gets back their win over the Bengals (due to Baltimore splitting with Cincinnati). It ends up being a net positive for the Bills.

26

42.23

(5 – 21) / 103

#12 – #27

25

(Lost to SEA) Boo, Rams! We needed you to hold off the Seahawks! In any case, this loss broke up a four team loop, and ends up putting the Rams under the Lions again. Here’s hoping they build off this season, though.

23

41.26

(8 – 26) / 103

#16 – #26

26

(Beat DEN) Too little, too late, Chargers. And it sounds like both AJ and Norv will be staying–which is causing great anguish to the one San Diego fan I know.

24

36.41

(1 – 29) / 103

#17 – #31

27

(Lost to NYG) Um…well, good luck next year, Shanahananahanahanahan*slap*. You’re going to need it.

25

35.44

(0 – 30) / 103

#17 – #32

28

(Lost to BAL) Their win over the Ravens gone, the Bengals fall below teams that they were keeping at bay. This whole Marvin Lewis thing is really weird. I don’t get how a coach with his record gets to make demands of the front office. And yet, from what I hear of the situation, I actually support Lewis. Weird.

19

33.01

(4 – 39) / 103

#17 – #28

29

(Lost to ATL) Bummer for the Panthers. They lose again, and they lose out on Andrew Luck. Even worse, there’s been so much talk about it that I have to assume that the Panthers more or less talked themselves out of Matt Moore or Jimmy Clausen being the long term situations. Which means they’ll be pressured to take a QB with the number 1 spot, but of course he won’t be as good as Luck and they’ll end up putting #1 pick money and pressure on a kid who doesn’t deserve/can’t handle it (see: Alex Smith). I guess what I’m saying is, see you here for the next 4 years, Panthers!

30

17.48

(3 – 70) / 103

#23 – #29

30

(Beat ARI) Soooo…Jim Harbaugh is the coach now, huh? Haven’t we pretty much established that hiring a college coach to be head coach in the NFL is a bad idea? Has one year of Pete Carroll making the playoffs in the worst division in history really erased everyone’s heads of the memories of Steve Spurrier, Nick Saban, and Bobby Petrino?

31

14.08

(2 – 76) / 103

#25 – #30

31

(Lost to SF) I almost hit publish before I wrote something for the Cardinals. Shows you how the might have fallen, now that the Cardinals are just an afterthought. The Cardinals are hurt by the season sweep, which shoves them under the 49ers. A sad state of affairs for this team, although historically not unusual.

21

11.65

(0 – 79) / 103

#26 – #32

32

(Lost to SD) And so, the team of our site’s proprietor, whose low reputation at one time was basically responsible for the creation of this site, end up at the bottom of our rankings. They do have the Tim Tebow future to look forward to, though. You could look at that as good or bad, of course…

32

7.77

(0 – 87) / 103

#27 – #32

One Response to 2010 NFL Week 17 Beatpaths Power Rankings

  1. JT says:

    That Oakland thing is kinda strange. I wonder how many times it’s happened that a team sweeps all of it’s division games and doesn’t make the playoffs. The way these things go, probably more than I think it does.

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