Podcast: New England, fumbles and the Super Bowl

Back in 2015, Deflategate hit the NFL. Did deflated footballs give New England an advantage over Indianapolis in the AFC championship game?

The number suggested yes. Warren Sharp looked at fumbles and showed that New England led the NFL over the previous 5 seasons.

In this episode of The Football Analytics Show, I look back at the real insights from the fumble data in 2015. New England wasn’t an outlier in fumbles but another turnover metric.

Now, we can look at four more years of fumble data. Did deflated footballs help New England reduce fumbles, an edge now gone? Or is there skill in fumbles, which will help New England in the Super Bowl against the Rams?

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To check out the Chase Stuart article on fumbles I discuss, click here.

Podcast: Chris Andrews on predicting the Super Bowl

On this episode of The Football Analytics Show, Chris Andrews, director of the South Point sports book, joins me for a wide ranging discussion.

Among other topics, we discuss:

  • How he uses analytics in bookmaking (5:24)
  • How he approaches Super Bowl props, sharps vs public (12:34)
  • How Chris sets the first college football win totals (17:28)
  • What he means by “an aggressive bookmaker is actually conservative” with New England in the Super Bowl as an example (22:50)
  • What he thinks of bookmakers that swear by the Don Best screen (good for a laugh, 26:40, and continue listening for which way Super Bowl spread will go)

I really enjoyed getting the bookmaker perspective, and I hope you do as well.

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Podcast: Dr. Eric Eager on football analytics, NFL conference championship games

On this episode of The Football Analytics Show, Dr. Eric Eager, data scientist at Pro Football Focus, joins me to talk analytics and make predictions. Eric got his Ph.D. at the University of Nebraska Lincoln and was a professor at the University of Wisconsin La Crosse.

Among other topics, we discuss:

  • whether you need a Ph.D. to do data science in 2019 (7:30)
  • how PFF makes predictions based on charting grades (9:17)
  • the predictive stat for quarterbacks relevant to Tom Brady vs Pat Mahomes (23:28)
  • how to evaluate pass rush better than looking at sacks (30:38)
  • the frontier in football analytics that most excites Eric (35:50)

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Podcast: Whale Capper on predicting NFL Divisional Playoffs based on seismic engineering

On this episode of The Football Analytics, I talk with Drew, who goes by Whale Capper on Twitter. He uses his background in earthquake engineering to handicap NFL games.

Among other topics, we discuss:

  • How preparing buildings for earthquakes translates to predicting NFL games (3:09)
  • How the total can help you find value on a side (7:54)
  • How Drew uses numbers to find value in the NFL markets, an approach I wholeheartedly endore (12:20)
  • The volatile NFL team that hits the road for their next playoff game (17:23)
  • The one player who has befuddled Whale Capper over the past 2 seasons (25:21)

The breakdown of the NFL Divisional Playoff games start at 9:20.

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In the last section, Drew and I talk about having dinner with Isaac Newton (31:08). This reminds me the Cosmos episode that tells the amazing story of his collaboration with Edmund Halley. To watch this episode, click here.

Podcast: College football title game and Super Bowl odds

On this episode of The Football Analytics Show, I start with the college football championship game between Alabama and Clemson, and how it’s a much different game from last year’s match up. (1:12)

Then I dig into my new calculations for Super Bowl win probabilities and identify the team with the best chance. But can this team’s defense hold up? (5:29)

Last, I look at a sleeper team to win the Super Bowl. But really, the NFL playoff system is working against this team. (9:00)

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To listen on Apple Podcasts, click here.