So I blew it with my last two predictions, plain and simple. My record now stands at 4-2. Now it’s time for the big one – the Super Bowl. I’ll admit it, I, like Luke Skywalker before me, got cocky. So sure was I that my O vs D spreadsheet was infallible I didn’t stop to review the audaciousness of the predictions themselves. Blake Bortles to defeat GOAT Brady? Preposterous! Oh how I wish I’d had Han Solo on hand to help me rein in my brazen attitude. Sure I was bang on for the first three quarters of football but that means nothing to the GOAT. In that very article I’d hurled abuse at the Falcons of Super Bowl LI for their inability to play defense for all 60 minutes. Meanwhile, the Jaguars were about to commit the very same crime – quitting while they were ahead… and being subsequently caught from behind. How did I not see that coming?
Bill Shakespeare once wrote, “Everything that’s past is prologue to this,” so we must move on from our failures, regardless of how inept they may have shown us to be. So I shall.
Once again I consult my trusty spreadsheet.
I looked back at the GOAT’s previous Super Bowl appearances, all seven of them. I suggest you take note of the following:
- In the Super Bowl, the GOAT’s Pats have scored 4.2 less points than their season average
- They have allowed 12 more points than their season average
- Their average offensive rank is 4.7
- Their offensive rank this season was 2.0
- Their average defensive rank is 5.3
- Their defensive rank this season was 5.0
So on average they’re a better football team than they have been in past seasons. But so is their opponent it would seem.
- Their opponent’s average offensive rank is 8.4
- The Eagles’ offensive rank this season was 3.0
- Their opponent’s average defensive rank is 13.1
- The Eagles’ defensive rank this season was 4.0
Well now I’m stumped. The Pats are better than they have been in past Super Bowls, but so is their opponent. I know, I’ll look at each team’s statistics from the 2017 season. Then it’ll be obvious as to who the winner will be.
- The Pats scored 28.6 PPG this season – The Eagles scored 28.6 PPG this season
- The Pats allowed 18.5 PPG this season – The Eagles allowed 18.4 PPG this season
Okay, now I’m really stumped. I’ve got one last idea.
- Tom Brady is the GOAT – Nick Foles is from Texas and may or may not own a goat
And there it is, folks. This one is just too close for my spreadsheet to call. When the numbers are essentially the same, we need to fall back on intangibles. Obvious things like team chemistry, experience, each Quarterback’s GOATy-ness… you know, the basics. After taking all of this in to account, after analyzing all of the data, there’s really only one way this could go…
Patriots 27 – 19 Eagles