These 2015 Ravens predictions will enrage fans


Sep 21, 2014; Cleveland, OH, USA; Baltimore Ravens head coach John Harbaugh talks with line judge Mark Perlman during the fourth quarter at FirstEnergy Stadium. The Ravens won 23-21. Mandatory Credit: Ron Schwane-USA TODAY Sports

Most everyone in media land (along with a vast majority of fans) wholly expect the Baltimore Ravens to not only secure a playoff spot in 2015, but to contend for a Super Bowl title as well.  After all, they have been a consistent playoff team year in and year out under the tutelage of John Harbaugh.

Regardless of how confident the masses are of continued success for the Ravens, a recent Harvard study reports quite the opposite.  Using some “advanced statistics” that attempt to estimate team strength and translate that into predicting 2015 team-by-team success (or failure), Kurt Bullard came up with some interesting results.

There has been a lot of attention (and some emotional outrage) directed toward the results.  For example, behind the Packers and Seahawks lie the Dolphins and Chiefs as favorites for the Super Bowl. Impossible?  No.  Probably?  Unlikely.

But Ravens fans should be quick to take note that their beloved team is predicted not only to regress from 2014’s performance, but to miss the playoffs entirely.  As far as Super Bowl predictions go, the Ravens’ chances exceed only the Jaguars, Buccaneers, Titans, Raiders.  Basement dwellers, really?

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Converting that into playoff odds, the Ravens are similarly dissed.  Bullard’s playoff calculations give the Ravens a mere 9% chance at the postseason.  The Ravens trail such contenders as the Browns (20%), Redskins (18%), and Jets (56%?!).

Obviously, there’s a lot to debate here.  While Bullard’s methods are interesting to say the least, and there is a lot of data that went into this study, true football fans simply know better.  Each NFL season brings its fair share of surprises, but I can confidently say that I doubt these findings will hold up by season’s end.

Next: This Raven is due for a breakout

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