Ain’t no lie… time for NFL teams to go bye, bye, bye

Sports Stats ‘on Tapp’ is a sports statistics blog published with a focus on stats that go beyond the numbers.

The NFL begins its’ annual bye week format as two teams, the Green Bay Packers and Carolina Panthers get the first byes of the 2013 season this weekend. For the Pack, who are off to a 1-2 start, the bye will help them get some of their key players (see Clay Matthews, Jermichael Finley, James Starks) an extra week of rest. For Carolina, also 1-2, the bye comes after a big 38-0 victory over the New York Giants.

So do teams play better the week before their bye or after their bye? Looking at the last 10 seasons, it appears teams play a little better after their week off than before. In the past 10 seasons, NFL teams were 162-158 (a .506 winning percentage) the week prior to their designated bye, while teams were 174-143-3 (a .548 winning percentage) the week after their bye.

With byes starting this coming weekend (Week 4) and lasting until Week 13, here’s a look at each of the 32 teams and how well they have played before and after their bye week the past 10 seasons (does not include Green Bay and Carolina’s games from September 22, 2013).

Team                   Before the bye week     After the bye week

Arizona                             2-8                                      4-6
Atlanta                              7-3                                      7-3
Baltimore                         4-6                                      9-1
Buffalo                              0-10                                    5-5
Carolina                            5-5                                      6-4
Chicago                             5-5                                      6-4
Cincinnati                         4-6                                     3-6-1
Cleveland                          3-7                                      4-6
Dallas                                 7-3                                      6-4
Denver                              5-5                                       8-2
Detroit                               1-9                                      5-5
Green Bay                         7-3                                      8-2
Houston                            7-3                                      4-6
Indianapolis                      6-4                                      8-2
Jacksonville                       6-4                                      4-6
Kansas City                       5-5                                      4-6
Miami                                 5-5                                     5-5
Minnesota                         7-3                                      6-4
New England                     8-2                                     9-1
New Orleans                     8-2                                      5-5
New York Giants               7-3                                     6-4
New York Jets                    4-6                                     6-4
Oakland                              4-6                                     0-10
Philadelphia                      4-6                                      9-1
Pittsburgh                          5-5                                     7-3
San Diego                           6-4                                     6-4
San Francisco                    4-6                                    3-6-1
Seattle                                7-3                                      3-7
St. Louis                              4-6                                    3-6-1
Tampa Bay                         5-5                                     6-4
Tennessee                          6-4                                     5-5
Washington                        3-7                                    4-6

Two quick notes: The Buffalo Bills 0-10 record in games before the bye in the last 10 years extends even further. In fact, the Bills have not won the week prior to their bye since 1999, a streak of 13 games. The Oakland Raiders have lost 10 straight the week following the bye week; their last win after the bye week was in 2002.

Follow Jerry on Twitter @StatsonTapp

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