Friday, January 8, 2010

2010-01-08: NFL Playoffs Wildcard Weekend

The NFL playoffs have arrived so grab some snacks and find a good spot to watch the games. We are going to have our own playoffs here by pitting the best performing algorithms from the regular season against each other to see which one does the best job predicting the playoffs and superbowl.

While I was running the algorithms I contemplated how New England was going to perform without Welker and especially after reading that Brady has been playing with broken fingers on his throwing hand. How can my algorithms take things like this into account to improve the accuracy.

Having the Colts sandbag the last few games of the regular season by benching their starters already throws a monkey wrench into the works. Then there was the Dallas-Philly game, Philadephia had the playoff spot already so did they really take it easy and let Dallas stomp all over them like that last week or are they in for another beating? I am sure Frank would say that Dallas really is that good. If their defense can keep it together they might be able to pull it off.

For our playoff predictions we used three algorithms. All three algorithms use only box score data for training. They are a Support Vector Model, Google's PageRank, and a third model that bagged all of the predictors by giving each predictor a vote for the winner and the teams with the most votes is the predicted winner.

Enough talk the algorithms have finished running. Without further ado here are our predictions for the wildcard games.


--Greg Szalkowski

1 comment:

  1. Yes, Dallas *is* really that good. ;-)

    The question is now: can Romo keep his head while playing against his longtime hero?