First, my bold and completely serious prediction: Over the second half of the season, the Denver Broncos' defense, man-for-man, unit-for-unit, scheme-for-scheme, will be statistically and tactically better than the Kansas City Chiefs' defense.
There. I said it. A football blasphemy. I realize that.
But I believe it. I won't get deeply into the particulars, but for now I'll start with a little word association. "Von Miller" and "Phillip Rivers". "Jeff Tuel" and "470 yards". "Alex Smith" and "Twice".
Seven more games for the Chiefs and, potentially, seven solid QB matchups (Peyton, Phyllis, Peyton, RGIII, T Pryor, Luck, Phyllis). Are the Chiefs the NFL's most stout defense or just paper tigers feasting on backup QB's? In my humble opinion, the truth is somewhere in the middle -- and closer to "paper tigers" than most believe.
So, having imbibed heavily of the Orange and Blue Kool-Aid and, simultaneously, not really buying into the Chiefs' hype, I'm willing to risk my own personal dignity with a friendly wager to back up my prediction. Here are the terms:
We'll measure three defensive metrics over the last eight games of the season, starting with your Sunday win against Buffalo. Winner chooses the profile photo and tag line for the loser during the first week of the playoffs.
I had to put quite a bit of thought into the metrics, because there are some variables in play (like short offensive drives + garbage minutes for the Broncos or ball possession + lack of offensive turnovers for the Chiefs) that can skew traditional metrics like yards per game and points per game. We just want to isolate defense vs. defense.
So, here are my proposed metrics:
1) Net yards per possession, including penalties. We can pull those numbers off of any garden variety drive chart. Where did a possession start and where did it end?
2) Net points allowed per defensive possession. Defensive TD's and safeties reduce your total, which puts you at a -1 against the Bills (14 defensive points vs. 13 points allowed). Ouch. Nobody's even taken the wager yet and I'm already behind!!
3) Percentage of possessions ending in forced turnovers, including turnovers on downs.
Possessions that don't count
There are some possessions that need to be filtered out of the wager because they're garbage and will skew the numbers:
1) Any possession beginning after 7:30 of the third quarter with the Chiefs/Broncos leading or trailing by 17+ points ("garbage time")
2) Any possession beginning with less than 1:00 remaining in the first half inside the offense's 30-yard-line (running out the clock) or a true kneel-down situations at the end of the game. The Bills had one of those at the end of the first half on Sunday, so I filtered it out.
Results so far (Chiefs at Bills, 11/3/2013)
|1||13:23||BUF 9||KC 40||51||Punt||0||0|
|1||4:02||BUF 12||KC 0||88||TD||7||0|
|2||11:57||BUF 20||BUF 20||0||INT||0||1|
|2||7:30||BUF 21||KC 8||71||FG||3||0|
|3||15:00||BUF 20||KC 1||79||INT||-7||1|
|3||10:58||BUF 20||KC 36||44||Downs||0||1|
|3||3:57||BUF 20||KC 12||68||FG||3||0|
|4||14:10||BUF 13||BUF 13||0||Fumble||-7||1|
|4||12:47||BUF 20||BUF 40||20||Punt||0||0|
|4||7:30||BUF 3||BUF 6||3||Punt||0||0|
|4||2:13||BUF 20||KC 35||45||Downs||0||1|
1) Yards allowed per possession: 42.64
2) Points allowed per possession: -0.091
3) Forced turnover percentage: 45.45%
Who's eligible to participate
Sadly, I only have one tag line and one profile photo to contribute to this effort.
I'd like to offer it first to ArrowSpread and Pollard, with whom I've done some good-natured, respectful trash talking recently. And ArrowSpread can quote The Princess Bride, so that's pretty cool. ("It's possible, pig, I may be bluffing.")
Short of one of those two esteemed APers taking the challenge, I'll go with the first legit AP contributor. And who knows? Perhaps there are even some other MHR's getting drunk on the Von Miller/Wesley Woodyard Kool-Aid who would be willing to take the plunge along with me.
Personally, I am juuuuust stupid enough to believe I can win this wager (but I know I'm going in as the underdog)
What do you think, AP?
Candy from a baby.
Who's up for it?