Wednesday, November 23, 2016

Guess the Lines - Week 13

Here are the week 12 results and week 13 predictions for this installment of "Guess the Lines". This is a weekly feature in which I put my Vegas NFL rankings to the test by predicting the point spread of upcoming NFL games. I compare the accuracy of my prediction against those of Bill Simmons and Cousin Sal, as featured on their weekly NFL podcast. In addition, I also calculate an implied point spread from ESPN Chalk's weekly Vegas NFL rankings.

Here are the week 12 results. Cousin Sal was the winner for the second straight week, with a mean absolute prediction error of 1.22 points. My rankings and Bill Simmons' guesses were close behind. The ESPN Chalk rankings came in a relatively distant 4th.

Week 12 Resultspredicted point spread:
gameaGPFhGPFmeespnbillsalactual
MIN @ DET 0.6 -1.2 -0.5 +3.0 -1.0 -2.0 -3.0
WAS @ DAL 0.2 3.9 -6.0 -7.0 -5.5 -6.0 -6.5
PIT @ IND 2.8 -2.1 +2.5 +0.5 +2.5 +2.0 +3.0
LA @ NO -2.5 1.3 -6.5 -5.0 -5.0 -6.0 -7.0
TEN @ CHI -2.1 -4.3 -0.5 +1.0 +1.0 +3.0 +2.5
ARZ @ ATL 2.9 2.9 -2.5 -3.5 -5.0 -4.0 -4.5
NYG @ CLE -0.2 -8.7 +6.0 +6.0 +6.0 +11.0 +6.5
SD @ HOU 0.4 -2.3 0.0 -2.5 -2.0 -3.5 -1.0
JAC @ BUF -4.9 1.0 -8.5 -7.5 -6.0 -8.5 -7.0
CIN @ BAL 2.2 -0.7 +0.5 0.0 -4.5 -3.0 -4.0
SF @ MIA -7.6 -1.2 -9.0 -10.5 -10.0 -10.0 -8.0
SEA @ TB 4.9 -2.7 +5.0 +4.0 +3.5 +4.0 +6.0
NE @ NYJ 8.3 -3.7 +9.5 +8.0 +11.0 +7.5 +9.0
CAR @ OAK 2.7 2.1 -2.0 -4.0 -6.5 -3.5 -3.5
KC @ DEN 2.7 3.0 -3.0 -4.0 -3.0 -3.5 -3.5
GB @ PHI 0.4 1.8 -4.0 -1.5 -3.0 -3.0 -3.0
Mean Absolute Error 1.38 1.75 1.28 1.22

The closest prediction for each game is shown in bold. As a reminder, my predictions and the ESPN predictions were made a week ago Tuesday, so as not to be influenced by the week 12 opening lines. Bill and Sal have the advantage of making their guesses after the Week 11 games have been played. Notice that they were much closer on the Bengals-Ravens spread, having been able to factor in injuries to AJ Green and Giovani Bernard into their line predictions.

Here is a summary of the weekly results. A lower score is better (we are measuring average prediction error). Despite Sal having the better score two out of three weeks, my rankings still hold the overall lead.

Mean Absolute Prediction Error:
week me espn bill sal
10 1.29 1.86 1.89 1.68
11 1.11 1.46 1.29 1.07
12 1.38 1.75 1.28 1.22
average 1.26 1.69 1.49 1.32


Week 13 Predictions

Here are the week 13 predictions for both my model (based on the Tuesday version of my Vegas rankings), as well as the November 22 rankings from ESPN Chalk.

Week 13 Predictionspoint spread
gameaGPFhGPFmeespnbillsalactual
DAL @ MIN 4.7 0.5 +1.5 -1.5
SF @ CHI -7.2 -6.0 -3.5 -6.5
PHI @ CIN 1.5 -0.1 -1.0 -2.0
WAS @ ARZ 0.7 1.8 -3.5 -4.5
TB @ SD -2.5 0.6 -5.5 -4.5
KC @ ATL 2.4 3.1 -3.0 -4.5
DEN @ JAC 3.4 -4.1 +5.0 +6.0
HOU @ GB -2.0 0.0 -4.5 -3.0
LA @ NE -3.1 7.4 -13.0 -13.0
BUF @ OAK 1.2 3.0 -4.5 -4.5
MIA @ BAL -1.4 0.6 -4.5 -2.0
DET @ NO -0.4 1.3 -4.0 -3.5
CAR @ SEA 1.9 5.2 -6.0 -7.0
NYG @ PIT 0.0 3.2 -5.5 -5.0
IND @ NYJ -2.0 -3.2 -1.5 +0.5

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