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Can't Miss Slants

Nailed It! 2014: The Halfway Point

The football season has passed the halfway point, but our prognosticators do not seem like they are in midseason form. Granted, we did quadruple last week’s point total this week. However, that still means that only eight points were scored this week. I do like to see that we rebounded nicely from last week’s debacle, but there is still a lot of room for improvement.

Since we have reached the halfway point of the season, let’s take a look at how we’ve done thus far. There have been a total of 146 points scored this season, and four correct final score predictions. That is very good, but it might also be an indication as to how unpredictable this season has been thus far. I decided to compare how our prognosticators have done through nine weeks this season, with how they performed through nine weeks last season to find out.

As you recall, we did not use the point system last year, and instead only counted entries into the Pantheon’s halls. To make the comparison better, I applied this year’s point system to last season to see how it stacks up. Here’s the result: through nine weeks last season, our prognosticators had scored a total of 216 points, with eight correct final score predictions. So at this point last year, we had double the correct final score predictions, and 70 more total points. Wow. What a difference a year makes.

Due to my belief in the abilities of our prognosticators (having witnessed their abilities for years now), I can only assume that such a large point differential is indeed due to this being such an off year in the NFL. And it has been an off year. You only need to look at the standings of most divisions to see that. So keep your heads held high, and keep those amazing prognostications coming!

While that was a fun exercise, let us now focus on to the games for this week.

The Games

As always, here is the slate for next week’s games. Simply copy and paste it to the comments, and add your predicted scores after the team names. (Substitute scores for the XX and YY.)

  • Miami Dolphins XX @ Detroit Lions YY
  • San Francisco 49ers XX @ New Orleans Saints YY
  • Atlanta Falcons XX @ Tampa Bay Buccaneers YY
  • Chicago Bears XX @ Green Bay Packers YY
  • Carolina Panthers XX @ Philadelphia Eagles YY

With all of that out of the way, read on to find exactly who Nailed It!

Final score

These are the people who have (somehow) correctly predicted the final outcome of a game. The only shot that was called that could be considered more famous than these belongs to Babe Ruth. Bow down before their wisdom! (And make sure you ask them for next week’s lotto numbers.)

  • None this week.

Scoring differential

These are the ones who correctly predicted the margin by which the victors would best their competition. These are also the ones to consult if you want to bet the spread.

  • New Orleans @ Carolina – ethanfitz correctly predicted that the Saints would win by 18 points.
  • Tampa Bay @ Cleveland DanOnWis23 and LaCW both correctly predicted that the Browns would win by five points.
  • Washington @ Minnesota – cd4packers, curtisfryer_p, natesweet, natradamus, and Preparation_A all correctly predicted that the Vikings would win by three points.

Total combined score

These are those who somehow managed to pick the correct total score but did not have any clue in how the teams would actually get there. Still, if you want to bet an over/under, you could do worse than consulting with them.

  • None this week.

Winning team’s score

  • None this week.

Against the grain

Oftentimes, our picks will be unanimous. However, there are those who will sometimes walk their own path.

  • None this week.

ESPN The Magazine

In their NFL preview issue, the writers at ESPN The Magazine predicted the score for every single NFL game to be played in the regular season. Let’s see how they did this week. Here are their predictions:

  • New Orleans Saints 24 @ Carolina Panthers 28
  • Tampa Bay Buccaneers 12 @ Cleveland Browns 33
  • Washington Redskins 35 @ Minnesota Vikings 33

The “pros” had yet another scoreless week, and so are still sitting at 4 points for the year. We now have 18 of our prognosticators that have matched, or exceeded their point total.

Week 9 Leaderboard

Now on to the leaderboard!

With an additional point this week, natesweet extended his lead to two points over those tied for second place. The other movement of note is that there are four more names that appeared on the leaderboard this week. Scoring one point each allowed curtisfryer_p, DanOnWis23, LaCW, and Preparation_A to move into a six-way tie for fourth place.

There are still plenty more people that have a chance to appear on the leaderboard in the near future. Currently there are three people just off of the leaderboard with five points, and six more with four points. One strong week from any of these people could have their names up here.

With that said, here is the leaderboard after Week 9 (in the case of a tie, the names are arranged alphabetically):

  1. natesweet – nine points
  2. FalconsFan0125 – seven points
  3. smtate – seven points
  4. curtisfryer_p – six points
  5. DanOnWis23 – six points
  6. LaCW – six points
  7. Maized and Confused – six points
  8. Preparation_A – six points
  9. thebaskett – six points

This was a better week than the previous one, but I still know we can do better. But, in the meantime, let’s give a little congratulatory clap to all the people who are listed in this article. Or not. Your choice.

If you would like to have your name forever enshrined in the vast expanse that is the internet, simply call your shot in the comment section below for the games of the NFC North and the NFC South. I will be reviewing the comments and keeping track as the season goes on. And who knows? Maybe you’ll even see your name in the leaderboard!

If you cannot call your shots on Thursday, as is custom, it is still possible to participate. As long as your called shots are posted to the comments of this article before the games start, I will include them.