Tag Archives: American Football Conference

NFL playoff seeds: Does it really matter?

Created by Jason R Remy (Jayron32)

(Photo credit: Wikipedia)

With one week left in the 2013 regular season, there is still a lot of uncertainty about which teams will make the playoffs and which seed they have.

Back in 1990, the NFL went to a 12-team playoff system with six teams making the post-season from the two conferences; each conference is seeded from the top seed to the #6 seed. So with all this jockeying for playoff position, the question becomes… does it really matter what seed a team is in the playoffs? The obvious answer is “Yes.” To back up that statement, let’s look at how well each seed has done in the playoffs since 1990 when the current 12-team playoff format was put in place.

Division Seed 1990-99     2000-12         Total
AFC #1                     11-9               13-12       24-21 .533
AFC #2                    11-10             16-10       27-20 .574
AFC #3                    10-10            14-12        24-22 .522
AFC #4                    15-9              14-11         29-20 .592
AFC #5                     4-10              7-13         11-23 .324
AFC #6                     1-10              9-12         10-22 .313

NFC #1                   22-4              16-12         38-16 .704
NFC #2                   15-8              12-12         27-20 .574
NFC #3                    5-10             11-13          16-23 .410
NFC #4                    7-10             14-12         21-22 .488
NFC #5                    3-10               8-12         11-22 .333
NFC #6                    6-10               9-12         15-22 .405

Here’s a look at the win-loss records if we combine the seeds for the two conferences.

AFC/NFC combined W-L, Pct
#1 Seed 62-37 .626
#2 Seed 54-40 .574
#3 Seed 40-45 .471
#4 Seed 50-42 .543
#5 Seed 22-45 .328
#6 Seed 25-44 .362

Did you know? Thirty-four of the 46 Super Bowl teams since 1990 have either been a #1 or #2 seed. The NFC #1 seed has won seven Super Bowls since 1990, most during that time. The AFC #2, NFC #2 and AFC #4 have each won three during that time. The NFC #1 seed has played in 12 of the 21 Super Bowls since 1990.

Did you know? (Part 2) The AFC #5 seed and the NFC #3 seed have not won a Super Bowl since 1990; in fact, an AFC #5 seed has not appeared in the Super Bowl since the NFL went to the current playoff format in 1990.

Follow Jerry on Twitter @StatsonTapp

NFL playoff seed history points to an Atlanta-New England Super Bowl

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

Logo of the National Football League Playoffs,...

(Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The final piece of the 2012 NFL playoff puzzle was completed last night when the Washington Redskins defeated the Dallas Cowboys 28-18 to win the NFC East title and the fourth seed in the NFC.

With the 12 playoff teams set on the journey for this year’s Super Bowl, the big question is: Who will face off in Super Bowl XLVII? (Super Bowl 47 for those of you who might be Roman-numerally challenged) Based on a few stats from the past 22 NFL playoffs, it  wouldn’t seem too far-fetched to see an Atlanta Falcons-New England Patriots Super Bowl. Before you start throwing things at your screen, let me explain:

Back in 1990, the NFL went to a 12-team playoff system with six teams making the post-season from the two conferences; each conference is seeded from the top seed to the #6 seed (it is the system that is currently in place). As teams jockeyed for playoff position and seeding yesterday on the final week of the 2012 season, the question ultimately needs to be asked… does it really matter what seed an NFL team is when the playoffs begin?

The obvious answer is “Yes!” Let’s take a look at how well each seed has done in the NFL playoffs since 1990 when the current playoff format was put in place.

Division Seeds win-loss in playoffs from 1990-2011

AFC #1 seed: 24-20 .545
AFC #2 seed: 26-19 .587
AFC #3 seed: 23-21 .523
AFC #4 seed: 25-20 .556
AFC #5 seed: 11-22 .333
AFC #6 seed: 10-21 .323

NFC #1 seed: 37-15 .712
NFC #2 seed: 25-19 .568
NFC #3 seed: 15-22 .405
NFC #4 seed: 21-21 .500
NFC #5 seed: 10-21 .323
NFC #6 seed: 15-21 .417

The best winning percentage in the AFC is the #2 seed (good news for the Patriots), while the best winning percentage in the NFC and also best in the league is the #1 seed (good news for the Falcons).

Let’s take it a step further by combining the seeds for the two conferences:

#1 seed: 61-35 .635
#2 seed: 51-38 .573
#3 seed: 38-43 .469
#4 seed: 46-41 .529
#5 seed: 21-43 .328
#6: seed: 25-42 .373

Did you know? Thirty-three of the 44 Super Bowl teams since 1990 have either been a #1 or #2 seed. The NFC #1 seed has won seven Super Bowls since 1990, most during that time. The AFC #2 seed and NFC #2 seed have each won three during that time. The NFC #1 seed has played in 12 of the 22 Super Bowls since 1990; the AFC #1 seed is second with nine Super Bowl appearances in the last 22 years.

Bad news for Green Bay and Indianapolis. The NFC #3 seed and the AFC #5 seed have not won a Super Bowl since 1990; in fact, an AFC #5 seed has not appeared in the Super Bowl since the league went to the current format in 1990.

Follow Jerry on Twitter @StatsonTapp

SIX STATS you might not know about… NFL Conference Championship Games

AFC Championship Game logo

Image via Wikipedia

“SIX STATS…” is a bonus feature of Sports Stats ‘on Tapp’ and is published every Friday.

(Note: The following stats reflect the NFC and AFC Conference Championship games that have been played since the 1970 merger of the NFL and AFL… 41 years, a total of 82 games.)

1. The home team has won 55 and lost 27 in conference championship games (a .671 winning percentage). In the last five conference championship weekends, the home teams are 8-2. In the 41 seasons, there has been only twice where the home teams have both lost: 1992 and 1997.

2. In 26 of the 82 games (31.7%) the game has been decided by eight points or less. Ten of the 82 games were decided by three points or less; 15 of the 82 were decided by 20 points or more. In the last five seasons, six of the 10 conference championship games have been decided by one score (eight points or less).

3. Teams that scored less than 20 points in a conference championship game since 1970 has won only 13 and lost 64 (a .169 winning percentage). Teams that scored 30 or more points have won 30 and lost only 2 (a .938 winning percentage). The only teams to score 30 or more points in a conference championship game since 1970 and lose? Cleveland in 1987 when they scored 33 in their loss to Denver; and in 2006 when the Patriots scored 34 in their loss to the Colts.

4. Teams that had the better regular season record have won the conference championship game 52 times and lost 19 (a .732 winning percentage). In 11 games the teams playing for the conference championship had the same regular season record.

5. Scoring more points the playoff game the weekend prior to the conference championship is not a big factor in determining who will win the conference title game. The team that scored more points of the two conference championship game foes the previous week won 42 and lost 36 (in four cases the teams scored the exact number of points the previous week).

6. Winning the playoff game the weekend prior to the conference championship by a bigger margin than your conference championship game foe was a little bit more of a determining factor to who wins the conference championship game. The team that won the divisional playoff game by a bigger margin the week before won 51 times and lost 25 (a .671 winning percentage). In six cases the conference championship game teams won by the same margin the previous week.

NFL playoff seeds: Does it really matter? (Part One)

Created by Jason R Remy (Jayron32)

Image via Wikipedia

Sports Stats ‘on Tapp’ is a biweekly blog published every Wednesday and Sunday with a bonus “SIX STATS…” posting every Friday.

As we get ready to close the book on the 2011 NFL regular season, there are still a handful of questions that are not answered concerning the playoffs: Who will get the number one seed in the AFC? Who will win the NFC East? Who will win the AFC West? Will San Francisco or New Orleans get a first-round bye as the number two seed in the NFC?

The one thing we do know is that the Green Bay Packers will enter the playoffs as the top seed in the NFC. And it’s a good thing… for them (more on that in a minute).

Back in 1990, the NFL went to a 12-team playoff system with six teams making the post-season from the two conferences; each conference is seeded from the top seed to the #6 seed. So with all this jockeying for playoff position, the question becomes… does it really matter what seed a team is in the playoffs? The obvious answer is “Yes.” To back up that statement, let’s look at how well each seed has done in the playoffs since 1990 when the current 12-team playoff format was put in place.

Division Seed                 1990-99           2000-10                   Total

AFC #1                                      11-9                     11-10                    22-19 .537

AFC #2                                     11-10                   14-8                      25-18 .581

AFC #3                                     10-10                  12-10                    22-20 .524

AFC #4                                     15-9                      9-10                    24-19 .558

AFC #5                                      4-10                     7-11                      11-21 .344

AFC #6                                      1-10                     9-10                     10-20 .333

NFC #1                                     22-4                    15-10                     37-14 .725

NFC #2                                     15-8                      9-10                    24-18 .571

NFC #3                                      5-10                     9-11                     14-21 .400

NFC #4                                      7-10                    10-11                    17-21 .447

NFC #5                                      3-10                     7-10                    10-20 .333

NFC #6                                      6-10                     9-10                    15-20 .429

Here’s a look at the win-loss records if we combine the seeds for the two conferences.

AFC/NFC combined                         W-L, Pct

#1 Seed                                                      59-33 .641

#2 Seed                                                     49-36 .576

#3 Seed                                                     36-41 .468

#4 Seed                                                     41-40 .506

#5 Seed                                                     21-41 .339

#6 Seed                                                     25-40 .385

Did you know? Thirty-two of the 42 Super Bowl teams since 1990 have either been a #1 or #2 seed. The NFC #1 seed has won seven Super Bowls since 1990, most during that time. The AFC #2 and NFC #2 have each won three during that time. The NFC #1 seed has played in 12 of the 21 Super Bowls since 1990; the AFC #1 seed is second with eight Super Bowl appearances since 1990.

Did you know?(Part 2) The AFC #5 seed, NFC #3 seed and the NFC #4 seed have not won a Super Bowl since 1990; in fact, an AFC #5 seed has not appeared in the Super Bowl in the last 21 years.

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