Sep 08

NFL 2016 Pick’em

With a three-game, six-point cushion on the rest of the Pick’em competition, there isn’t a whole lot of drama in Week 17 from this vantage point. If other experts get more aggressive with picks — and it happens to work out in their favor — there may be some interesting things to discuss before the postseason. However, unless something notable happens, this Pick’em champion is in the books.

Ultimately, there aren’t many games that could swing this top part of this competition. At best, five games may play a significant role: Ravens-Bengals, Texans-Titans, Bills-Jets, Cowboys-Eagles and Raiders-Broncos. Four match-ups have no playoff “leverage,” meaning the teams are either eliminated from postseason competition or already have their playoff seed locked up. Both the Ravens and Bengals are out, so motivations are more individual than team-based at this point. The edge goes to Baltimore, given that Steve Smith will play his last NFL game. The Texans already have the fourth seed locked up, by virtue of Pittsburgh’s guaranteed tiebreaker over Houston via strength of victory, while the Titans are now eliminated. Advantage goes to Houston, now that Marcus Mariota heads into the offseason having to rehab his broken leg. Both the Bills and Jets will miss the postseason, and definitely will simply play out the string. Although the Bills are a much better team overall, the firing of Rex Ryan and benching of Tyrod Taylor makes Week 17 seem quite unappetizing. At least Ryan would’ve been motivated to beat his former team. The Taylor benching makes a bigger impact, as EJ Manuel is a far step down from Taylor (which makes his benching for financial purpose quite unsettling). Suddenly, this game is a true toss-up but the consensus among top experts has the Bills winning. Finally, the Cowboys locked up the NFC’s top seed, while the Eagles begin prep for the offseason on Monday. This outcome will ultimately be dictated the usage of quarterbacks Tony Romo and Mark Sanchez. If Romo plays significant time, the Cowboys will still win despite resting several players. However, if Sanchez gets the majority of snaps, the Eagles will come away victorious. Mixed signals reached the media’s air waves, meaning this can go either way. This match-up best represents the typical Week 17 conundrum.

As for the fifth match-up — Raiders-Broncos — this one has plenty on the line. Oakland fights for an AFC West title and a first-round bye, but suddenly have to deal with losing quarterback Derek Carr to a broken leg. Denver is out of the playoffs, but now possibly has the motivation of playing for a retiring head coach. Late week speculation states that Gary Kubiak will retire due to health reasons. It already seemed likely the Broncos would want to use Week 17 as means for a quality win to get off on the right foot for 2017. Now they can also send out their Super Bowl winning coach in style. For this season, along with the match-up advantage against backup Matt McGloin, the Broncos should roll to a win.

Games of the Week (3 points each)
(10) New York Giants (10-5) at (8) Washington Redskins (8-6-1)

Non-GOTW Divisional Games (2 points each)
(9) Baltimore Ravens (8-7) at (25) Cincinnati Bengals (5-9-1)
(21) Houston Texans (9-6) at (18) Tennessee Titans (8-7)
(22) Carolina Panthers (6-9) at (12) Tampa Bay Buccaneers (8-7)
(27) Jacksonville Jaguars (3-12) at (24) Indianapolis Colts (7-8)
(1) New England Patriots (13-2) at (16) Miami Dolphins (10-5)
(28) Chicago Bears (3-12) at (15) Minnesota Vikings (7-8)
(14) Buffalo Bills (7-8) at (31) New York Jets (4-11)
(3) Dallas Cowboys (13-2) at (19) Philadelphia Eagles (6-9)
(32) Cleveland Browns (1-14) at (6) Pittsburgh Steelers (10-5)
(17) New Orleans Saints (7-8) at (5) Atlanta Falcons (10-5)
(20) Arizona Cardinals (6-8-1) at (29) Los Angeles Rams (4-11)
(2) Oakland Raiders (12-3) at (13) Denver Broncos (8-7)
(4) Kansas City Chiefs (11-4) at (26) San Diego Chargers (5-10)
(11) Seattle Seahawks (9-5-1) at (30) San Francisco 49ers (2-13)
(7) Green Bay Packers (9-6) at (23) Detroit Lions (9-6)


Results: Record and Points
Week 17: 11-5 and 22 points (out of 33 possible points)
Season: 170-84-2 and 290 points (66.80 win and 66.21 point percentage)
GotW: 0-1 record (31-19-1 overall… 61.76 win percentage)
Divisional: 11-5 record (66-29-1 overall… 69.27 win percentage) [includes 10-5-1 in GOTW]
Upsets: 10-6 overall (163 ranking points)
Locks: 14-2 overall (best streak: 8 weeks)


Week 17: Expert Records and Points (2 ties = 1 win + 1 loss)

Rank Expert Record Rank Expert Points
1 Adam Dobrowolski, TABM 171-85 1 A. Dobrowolski 290
2 Chris Burke, SI 168-88 2 KC Joyner, ESPN 286
3 Lorenzo Reyes, USAT 167-89 3 C. Burke 283
4 Mike Middlehurst-Schwartz, USAT 166-90 4 Kurt Warner, NFLN 282
5 K. Joyner 165-91 4 L. Reyes 281
5 Gordon McGuinness, PFF 165-91 6 FiveThirtyEight Elo 279
5 Steve Palazzolo, PFF 165-91 6 Pete Prisco, CBSS 279
5 K. Warner 165-91 8 G. McGuinness 277
9 FiveThirtyEight 164-92 9 M. Middlehurst-Schwartz 276
9 Football Outsiders 164-92 10 FB Outsiders 275
11 P. Prisco 162-94 11 Mike Golic, ESPN 273
12 Vinnie Iyer, SN 161-95 11 S. Palazzolo 273
12 Steve Mariucci, NFLN 161-95 13 Adam Caplan, ESPN 271
12 Jeff Ratcliffe, PFF 161-95 M Mean Points 269.27
M Mean Record 160.43-95.57 14 V. Iyer 269
15 Matt Bowen, ESPN 160-96 15 Dan Graziano, ESPN 268
15 M. Golic 160-96 15 Kevin Seifert, ESPN 268
15 D. Graziano 160-96 17 S. Mariucci 267
15 Tom Pelissero, USAT 160-96 18 M. Bowen 266
15 K. Seifert 160-96 18 Seth Wickersham, ESPN 266
20 A. Caplan 159-97 20 Jarrett Bell, USAT 265
20 Nate Davis, USAT 159-97 20 Merril Hoge, ESPN 265
20 S. Wickersham 159-97 20 J. Ratcliffe 265
23 M. Hoge 157-99 23 T. Pelissero 264
23 Ron Jaworski, ESPN 157-99 24 Marshall Faulk, NFLN 263
25 J. Bell 156-100 25 N. Davis 260
25 M. Faulk 156-100 26 R. Jaworski 259
27 Neil Hornsby, PFF 155-101 27 Mike Renner, PFF 256
28 M. Renner 153-103 28 N. Hornsby 255
29 Sam Monson, PFF 149-107 29 Nathan Jahnke, PFF 253
30 N. Jahnke 148-108 30 S. Monson 246

NOTE: M = mean (average of the 30 competitors)

Well, there it is! Despite correctly picking only one of those five potential swing match-ups, the 2016 regular season Pick’em championship belongs to TABMathletics. Most of the best movers this week were in the middle of the pack, with only KC Joyner of ESPN doing something of note to dwindle our lead (re: down from six points to four points). Despite struggles through much of November and December, the stellar Week 16 made the difference in the end. The 170 wins and two ties also marked the best total of the season (along with Sam Farmer of the Los Angeles Times, Andrew Lynch of Fox Sports and Elliot Harrison of NFL Network), according to the great folks at NFL Pickwatch. Once again, it’s TABMathletics shining among the best in the world.

And yet there’s more. The postseason begins next weekend, providing 11 more match-ups worth 78 points. Even a one-game difference accounts for at least a six-point difference. Here’s where our Four Postseason Factors will come to play. Check out the website throughout to learn everything you need to know for the postseason match-ups, all of which culminate with the week-to-week postseason picks. Let’s see if the Pick’em overall championship can be earned for the third time in four years!


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  1. Robert Anderson

    Adam – It would really help the pickers and give you more cred if you posted your picks before the games actually started.

    1. tabm1327

      Apologies for a busy week, but all picks in during the London kickoff!

      1. Robert Anderson

        Thanks! Really enjoy your work!

        1. tabm1327

          HOPEFULLY, it’s quicker next week and all done before the Thursday Night Football kickoff!

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