We enter the final week of the regular season prediction contest. Howtheyscored will have a FanPost explaining a lot of the playoff details, but for now, the top 12 at the end of week 17 will advance to an elimination playoff bracket that will culminate in the Super Bowl. We have a bit of a log jam around the 12th spot, meaning we could have a tie. We're working on various tiebreaker options, one of which would include total combined yards of offense.
If you think you have a chance to be tied for the last playoff spot, please predict the total yards of offense for the Bengals-Jets game. This will not be the #1 tiebreaker at this point. I need to speak with howtheyscored about it first. If it were to become the #1 tiebreaker, I'll make sure and post something on the front page, so people know to make the yardage prediction if they haven't yet.
For those who do not make the final 12 (playoff teams can compete in this as well), we'll also have a free-for-all where you pick every game during the postseason and highest total score (based on the same scoring as during the regular season) wins, with the next spot or two likely getting a prize as well. But we'll have more on that in the coming days.
Prediction format and scoring rules are after the jump. As always, the times are pacific. There's no Monday Night Football, so all the games are Sunday.
49ers @ St. Louis - Sunday 1/3 10:00am
Cincinnati @ NY Jets - SNF 1/3 5:20pm - NET YARDS TIEBREAKER
Pittsburgh @ Miami - Sunday 1/3 10:00am
NY Giants @ Minnesota - Sunday 1/3 10:00am
Baltimore @ Oakland - Sunday 1/3 1:15pm
Philadelphia @ Dallas - Sunday 1/3 1:15pm
IMPORTANT NEW RULE
Up until now, folks have just posted their scores in any particular fashion, although howtheyscored has made requests for a specific format. Given the amount of time and effort howtheyscored has to put into determining the final results, I am implementing a requirement for how to format your scores (based on the spreadsheet howtheyscored has created). If you fail to follow this format, any incorrectly formatted scores for the week will be disqualified. The format is "Team A @ Team B: A score - B score." That basically is visitor @ home: visitor score - home score." Here's an example of how to do it:
Using Pittsburgh @ Miami below, if you think Miami will win 24-14, here's how it HAS to look:
Pittsburgh @ Miami: 14 - 24
If you think Pittsburgh will win 24-14, it needs to appear as this:
Pittsburgh @ Miami: 24 - 14
If you'd like you can bold the winner (Pittsburgh @ Miami: 14 - 24), but that is not required (although probably a good backup in case you reversed the score by accident.
If you make a mistake in the formatting I'll reply to your score reminding you to correct it. To correct it, simply reply to your picks and post them in the correct format. Do not post your scores again at the bottom of the thread. I'll make sure and include these directions each week so people do not forgot and lose out on points. As I mentioned above, we're doing this to make howtheyscored's life easier in figuring out the scores. The # of regular commenters has increased dramatically since last season, so we're anticipating a greater # of prediction contest participants. While this is a new rule, I don't think it's all that difficult for folks to follow it.
Every score is made up of two parts: Point total and point differential. First we see how close your prediction’s point total is to the actual score’s point total. The closer you are to zero, the better. Then, we see how close your prediction’s point differential is to the actual point differential. Again, closer to zero is better. Then, we add those two numbers together. That number gives you a raw score for your prediction.Then, we rank each game by raw scores. The players with the five lowest raw scores get points. The lowest get five points. Next lowest get four. And so on.
As an example of the scoring system, in week 7, the Vikings lost to the Steelers by a score of 17 - 27. The actual score had a point differential of 10 (27-17=10) and a point total of 44 (27+17=44).
For that game, let's look at three predictions: 1) 17 - 23, Pitt; 2) 23 - 27, Pitt; and 3) 17 - 27, Pitt.
Remember, nobody who predicted the Vikings to win the game was eligible for points.
The first prediction had a point differential of 6 (23-17=6). This was 4 away from the actual point differential. It had a total score of 40 (23+17=40). This was 4 away from the actual point total. All in all, that gives the prediction a raw score of 8.
The second prediction had a point differential of 4 (27-23=4), which was 6 away from the actual point differential. It had a total score of 50 (27+23=50), which was 6 away from the actual point total. That gives the prediction a raw score of 12.
The third prediction had a point differential of 10 (27-17=10), which was 0 away from the actual point differential. It had a total score of 44 (27+17=44), which was 0 away from the actual point total. That gives the prediction a raw score of 0.
Since the lower your raw score is, the better your prediction, the third prediction is ranked as the best and gets the most points (and since it was a perfect prediction, there is no arguing that it was the best). The first prediction had the next lowest raw score, so it ranks as the second best prediction of the group, netting the next most points. The second prediction, therefore, came in third.
If anybody has any questions at all about this, or anything else, feel free to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.