Turnovers matter? Right??

Tomorrow I will have successfully reached the age of 25 without ever having figured out how to make HTML tables in spite of the fact that I've been huddling half naked in a basement somewhere spitting Redskins related nonsense for the past year. If ever there was a person who should know HTML tables, it's me. If you saw me on the street, you would say "Now there goes a guy who can make HTML tables." And then I'd cast magic missile on you. [Note: I don't really know what that means.]

Coach Gibbs loves to talk about turnovers which means I love to talk about Coach Gibbs talking about turnovers. More importantly, the regular season has officially concluded and thus the time is appropriate to put the cliches to the test and examine what correlation there was in 2007, if any, between protecting the football while making the other poor bastard die turn the ball over and winning football games. No tables, so enjoy the unformatted glory of:

Team, Turnover Margin, W/L, Paloffs?

Taken from CNNSI which didn't feel the need to organize that stat column in a sensible way -- when you click to organize it crops all the negative nellies. Here we go... Update [2008-1-3 17:37:54 by Skin Patrol]: With much love to reader Redskinette, who happens to be all-time and also provided the glorious table below.


San Diego Chargers +24 11-5 Yes
Indy Colts +18 13-3 Yes
New England Patriots +16 16-0 Yes
Tampa Bay Bucs +15 9-7 Yes
Seattle Seahawks +10 10-6 Yes
Jacksonville Jaguars +9 11-5 Yes
Buffalo Bills +9 7-9 No
Cincy Bengals +5 7-9 No
Dallas Cowboys +5 13-3 Yes
Atlanta Falcons +4 4-12 No
Green Bay Packers +4 13-3 Yes
Pittsburgh Steelers +3 10-6 Yes
Carolina Panthers +1 7-9 No
Minnesota Vikings +1 8-8 No
Denver Broncos +1 7-9 No
Tennessee Titans 0 10-6 Yes
Chicago Bears -1 7-9 No
Detroit Lions -1 10 wins! 7-9 No
Cleveland Browns -2 10-6 No
NY Jets -4 4-12 No
Your Washington Redskins -5 9-7 Hell to the yes we did
New Orleans Saints -7 7-9 No
Arizona Cardinals -7 8-8 No
Miami Dolphins -7 1-15 No
Philly Eagles -8 8-8 No
NY Football Giants -9 10-6 Yes
St. Louis Rams -10 3-13 No
Oakland Raiders -11 4-12 No
Kansas City Chiefs -11 4-12 No
San Fran 49ers -12 5-11 No
Houston Texans -13 8-8 No
Baltimore Ravens -17 5-11 No

When I started accumulating data I did so with the (apparently wrong) assumption that the results would leap off the page at me. Something along the lines of: All playoff bound teams had a positive turnover ratio and most losing teams didn't. Instead I get this garbled mess where it is only slightly apparent that turning over the ball makes you lose games makes you miss playoffs makes you SADFACE :(:(:(

But then you've got the 31st ranked Texans that failed to buy the company line by avoiding a losing season. Two playoff teams from this division, Yours and their's the Giants weren't all that swell at holding on to the football. It would not have crossed my mind that Norval Turner would lead the league in what I assumed was one of the most consequential statistics in this game. Still... the top 6 teams in turnover margin all had great seasons that result in a 2nd chance. None of the bottom 6 teams had winning records and thus none of them made the postseason.

The dicta -- pause, giggle -- from this year is thus:

He who has a turnover margin of +10 will make the playoffs.
He who has a turnover margin of -10 will not make the playoffs.

It could have gone better. Enjoy the data.

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