For the second week in a row, a Cowboys' loss has cost someone a 10-for-10. Last week, it was HonorTheStar, trying to go back-to-back for the first time ever, and the Monday night massacre closed his bid with a thud.
This week, slowmotion80 was one of twelve who were perfect through the early Sunday games. They avoided the Thursday night fiasco when half the field blew a 10-for-10 by picking Denver. He got the hardest part right - beating or dodging the trap games (picked Buffalo and Pittsburgh, when most of us lost those two games; and, avoided Denver, New England, Philadelphia, New Orleans, and Detroit). With the Cowboys up 26-3 at the half, this one was in the bag. ~sigh~
Finally, no more Thursday night games on NFL Network. Each week this year, the Thursday night games are an adventure for 10-for-10 players. Where is KD's page? Is hookerhome taking early picks somewhere? Oh, bleep, I forgot to post a Thursday pick. And, each week, one or two players play the Thursday game as late as Sunday morning.
This week has fifteen Sunday games, and the final Monday Night game on ESPN. Next week, all sixteen games are on broadcast TV, and are all on Sunday.
After a record 242 in week #1, we settled into a plateau in the 190-200 range each week through week #10. New players came in and kept the weekly numbers steady, even as others dropped out.
In previous years, the bottom fell out between Thanksgiving and Christmas, with fewer than a hundred participants after beginning with over two hundred. This year, we've dropped some, but we have hit a second plateau - around 150 per week - and have seen steady participation the past five weeks.
We have added at least one new participant each week, with over three hundred individual participants this season (more than sixty added since week #1). This is the first week that non-participants have outnumbered participants. The last two years, we hit that mark two weeks earlier, and we still have a strong nucleus of 116 players who have played every week, and thirteen more who only missed once.
Here is the participation table:
|Week||Played This Week||Missed This Week||Total|
Week #15 began with a thud, as nearly half of this week's participants blew their 10-for-10 hopes on Denver. Our consensus was actually 0-3 on the night games, as our Sunday (Cincinnati) and Monday (Detroit) picks both lost as well.
After the past two Cowboys' seasons ended with disappointing 8-8 records, I have begun disliking anything having to do with 8-8. Well, that's how we did. We had a good run in the early games, and in the CBS late games. There were five games where we were great - a combined 646-7 on our picks of Indianapolis, Seattle, San Francisco, Carolina, and Kansas City. There were two games where we were awful - combined 11-162 on our picks of Dallas and New Orleans.
We actually got more picks right this week - 845-617 - an average of 5.8-for-10 per person. But, the devastating come-from-ahead Cowboys loss dominates this week's report, costing most of us a game and costing slowmotion80 a 10-for-10.
Here are our results this week:
|Week #15 Results (Home in CAPS)|
|Win||Winners (we're great)||Lose|
|138||CAROLINA||New York Jets||2|
|138||Seattle||NEW YORK GIANTS||2|
|119||San Francisco||TAMPA BAY||2|
|Win||Losers (we're bleep)||Lose|
|2||ST. LOUIS||New Orleans||124|
After three weeks in a row of missing with Miami - picking them to win and watching them lose, or picking them to lose and watching them win - I avoided that trap and stayed away from them. However, many of you didn't, and they got us again. Miami is now our single-worst team to pick. Look for them at the bottom of this table.
Here's a complete look at how we have picked each team, each week (first letter - our pick; second letter - actual result; again, a tie counts as a loss):
|Picks/Results for Each Team/Each Week|
|Team||Wk 1||Wk 2||Wk 3||Wk 4||Wk 5||Wk 6||Wk 7||Wk 8||Wk 9||Wk 10||Wk 11||Wk 12||Wk 13||Wk 14||Wk 15||Wk 16||Wk 17||W||L|
|New York Giants||LL||LL||WL||LL||LL||LL||WW||LW||Bye||WW||WW||LL||WW||LL||LL||12||2|
|New York Jets||LW||LL||LW||LL||LW||WL||LW||LL||LW||Bye||WL||LL||LL||LW||LL||6||8|
Each week, One.Cool.Customer hosts a pick-em page (week #15 picks / week #16 picks) where all the Front Page Writers offer picks in every game for the week. I track their consensus picks for each game and compare it to our consensus for each game. This week, we had identical preferences in all sixteen games. We each finished a miserable 8-8, and our consensus maintains our slender one-game lead over the FPWs.
All season long, jstaubach has been posting picks for every game. Most weeks, he makes a Thursday pick, then comes in during the weekend and posts the rest of his ten. And, then, he posts picks on the "other" games (three-six other games that the rest of us are all too happy to avoid).
I promised him all season that I was going to tally his picks and compare how he did along with our consensus and the FPW consensus. Two weeks ago, I finally got them all counted, and he was outpicking all of the Front Page Writers.
jstaubach rocks! His every-game-every-week picks are not only ahead of either consensus; he would be in first place on the FPW page. After weeks #12-13, he was one better than their co-leaders (Dave Halprin and rabblerousr). Last week, he really rocked, only missing Seattle and Dallas. His stellar 14-2 widened his lead over Dave (10-6) and rabble (9-7). This week was more of the same. jstaubach's 10-6 was better than any Front Page Writer and widened his lead over their top picker. Compare jstaubach's 148 with their best (rabble leapfrogged Dave and now leads with 140).
Qualifier - he does have an easier time; the FPWs have to turn their picks in on Wednesday for all games, so the Google can publish his page early on Thursday. Typically, jstaubach will post a Thursday-Only pick on Thursday, and then his other nine on Sunday morning, followed by his "other games". If there weren't a benefit to posting at the last minute, jstaubach (and many or you) wouldn't do it.
Actually, several of you have already taken advantage of the Holiday Bonus #2 and posted your picks for the final games of the season. Your picks for weeks #16-17 are in the books. That is NOT waiting until the last minute.
The updated table no longer lists losses, just wins. Instead, the first column is how many games there were in a week (sixteen is normal; thirteen-fifteen when teams have byes), followed by our 10-for-10 wins, the FPW wins, and jstaubach's wins.
Here is that updated table:
|2013 10-for-10 Consensus / Front Page Writers / jstaubach|
|Week||Games||10-for-10 Wins||FPW Wins||Jstaubach Wins|
Our average score this week was 5.8-for-10, and the largest group did score 6-for-10. 97% of us were within two games of 7-for-10. We had one that finished better than 8-for-10 and three that finished worse than 4-for-10, but two of those were late entries who didn't enter ten games.
slowmotion80 was that close to his second 10-for-10. Technically, he didn't go 9-for-9 and get shot down by the Cowboys (like HonorTheStar last week). The Cowboys lost in the late afternoon, and he still had one more game remaining - the home underdog Steelers against our consensus favorite Bengals on Sunday night. His card was solid - he picked seven winners that our consensus also picked; he picked two winners in "trap games" that most of us missed; and he dodged games that killed the rest of us (our consensus was 1-5 in games he avoided). Well done! The failure was not yours, but our beloved Cowboys. No one matched your 9-for-10, and only two others scored 8-for-10.
As one who had his first two 9-for-9s shot down by Cowboys losses in the tenth game, I understand and feel his pain and frustration - both a Cowboys loss and a missed 10-for-10. Unlike slowmotion80, I am still looking for my first, but I'm not giving up I am 0-for-49, but this week is my fiftieth attempt, and I'll try my best - again - to go 10-for-10.
Look at the table below. It's long again this week, because I again included everyone with 6-for-10 or better (our average score this week), and then a whisker more so I could like my overall score (and KD's).
We had some jockeying and tightening at the top of the overall leaderboard. Eleven of the top nineteen had 6-for-10 while four moved up with 7-for-10, and four settled back with 5-for-10. Among those moving up was lsttexas, no longer tied and our leader by one over last week's co-leader, JDobermans, and two ahead of four others.Two who dropped back this week are the past two overall champions - CowboyBaby and Jebediah Flibberbrush. Their 5-for-10s drop them from two back to four back. They're not out of it, but we are more likely to have another first-time champion than a two-timer this year.
There are actually twelve now within four picks of the lead. Since two-game shifts are common (happened this week), all of them are still very much in it.
With only two weeks left, it is crucial to get picks in on time. I am already taking week #16 and week #17 picks on my Holiday Bonus #2. Again, some have already posted picks on it to get them through the end of the season.
Our overall scores are down this year, and I think that parity is the primary cause. Too many games are shrug-the-shoulders and flip-a-coin choices.
Each year, the overall champion has set a new record high score. BishopWest was first in 2010, Jebediah Flibberbrush beat his score in 2011, and CowboyBaby raised the bar in 2012. This year, our top score is lower (109 by lsttexas is lower than the leaders' scores in 2011 and 2012). Plus, after week #15 last year, we already had fifty-eight members of the 100 Club (overall scores of at least 100). This year, we only have thirty-four after week #15. I was one of those last year, but I will do well to just break 100 this year (104 at this time last year, only 92 this year). There were significantly fewer participants in 2011, but there were thirty who had already broken 100 (I was there too, with 102).
Here are the top scores this week, and the top scores on the overall leaderboard:
|Top Scores Through Week #15|
|This Week||Score||This Week||Score||2013 Overall||Score||2013 Overall||Score|
|CowboysBarry||7||Hookem Up||6||Realist Larry||106||CDMac24||97|
|DoomsDay Dub||7||illcowboy||6||Jebediah Flibberbrush||105||mdlusk||97|
|jtiddahr||7||Jessy S||6||beastygaming||102||Cowboy Joe||96|
|scotscowboyfan||7||pugbuddy||6||BigHat in NewTexas||100||BigBad Joe||95|
|Scurrah Jurrah||7||Realist Larry||6||geof||100||cee-los||95|
|traceabides||7||Ride Together, Die Together||6||lucke||100||traceabides||95|
|Vancity Cowboy||7||Souna21||6||Sean N||100||BoydNation||94|
|Aggie Man||6||starbury_to_s-jaxci2000||6||Through Thick And Thin||100||CowboysBarry||94|
|BishopWest||6||Through Thick And Thin||6||jamesvb||99||Mikellie||94|
|Canadian Cowboy_74||6||44 tied with||5||Specific||99||Sandmann||93|
|CarloRue||6||10 tied with||4||StarloverinWNC||99||hookerhome||92|
|Chad Loveland||6||3 tied with||3||swanhooch||99||KD Drummond||92|
|damnarab2||6||ginge159||98||5; tied with||91|
You requested, and I have begun to list a comparison of our scores to previous years. Again, I don't have access to KD's 2010 records, but I can provide that comparison to 2011 and 2012. However, the different bye schedules, and the different week-to-week difficulties make a direct comparison fairly difficult.
Because of the way I maintain my records, it would be very time consuming to recreate 2011 and 2012 leaderboards after week #15. Rather than do that, I will name some of the top scores here, and give the links to my FanPosts from those weeks, so you can see my tables from 2011 - Week #15 and 2012 - Week #15.
I'm not handing the overall title yet to lsttexas, although he had led or co-led more weeks than anyone else this season. But, in the past two seasons, the overall champion was also the leader after weeks #14 and #15.
Week #15 in 2011 was similar to our own week #15 - an 8-8 consensus, and a tightening at the top of the leaderboard. Jebediah Flibberbrush had his two-game lead narrowed to only one. Our 2012 champion was exactly where he is today - four out of the lead.
Top scores after week #15 in 2011:
- 112 - Jebediah Flibberbrush
- 111 - illcowboy
- 110 - Hookem Up
- 109 - mdlusk
- 108 - ChiaCrack (Archie Barberio), qbfannn (CowboyBaby), and Travlr
- 107 - ziggy19
Week #15 in 2012 saw a Cowboys win (over Pittsburgh), a perfect 10-for-10 (Nord15), and the continued dominance of CowboyBaby. After coming close in 2011, he changed his handle from qbfannn and took careful aim on the winning in 2012.
For the sixth week in a row, he was the overall leader, and for the fourth week in a row, his lead was two. However, ChrisMan was starting to gain notice, as he rose to second and was gaining fast.
Top scores after week #15 in 2012:
- 111 - CowboyBaby
- 109 - ChrisMan
- 108 - BishopWest, Hawkeye101 (Yellowbeard) , and ziggy19
- 107 - Rex Pfister
- 106 - BigBad Joe, krikaley, and mdlusk
- 105 - Aggie Man, Jebediah Flibberbrush, jstaubach, k@s!, mushpuppy, Nord15, oldboysfan, Panzer84, Switters023, and Through Thick And Thin
I'm not wavering any more. Last week, I told you that I was wavering between running my I Did the Math series or not. I have decided to go ahead and write it.
I started to "do a little math" here at the end of this FanPost, but it got out of hand. So, it will follow sometime this week.
Remember, I'm not taking picks on here. Make week #16 picks on my Holiday Bonus #2 FanPost.