Last September, nine Hogs Haven writers shared their preseason predictions for the upcoming NFL season. Each writer made 28 predictions, which included prognostications on everything from the Super Bowl to the Comeback Player of the Year. This is not uncommon for major sports websites, as ESPN, CBS, Sports Illustrated and many others participate in this same practice annually before the start of each NFL season. However, unlike just about everyone else, we are going to actually revisit our predictions and take a look back to see how each writer fared in general and against each other. So as promised in September, here are our picks alongside of the actual results.
|Mark Bullock||Dan Ciarrocchi||Keely Diven||James Dorsett||Kevin Ewoldt||Actual|
|NFC Wild Cards||Seahawks, Bears||49ers, Falcons||Giants, Seahawks||49ers, Packers||Seahawks, Rams||49ers, Saints|
|AFC Wild Cards||Ravens, Colts||Steelers, Ravens||Colts, Steelers||Ravens, Chiefs||Colts, Bengals||Chiefs, Chargers|
|1st Pick in 2014||Jets||Raiders||Raiders||Raiders||Cardinals||Texans|
|Comeback POY||Brian Orakpo||Maurice Jones-Drew||Brandon Marshall||Robert Griffin III||Brian Orakpo||Philip Rivers|
|Coach of Year||Marvin Lewis||John Harbaugh||Jim Harbaugh||Marc Trestman||Chuck Pagano||Ron Rivera|
|Offensive ROY||Tavon Austin||Kenbrell Thompkins||Eddie Lacy||Eddie Lacy||Tavon Austin||Eddie Lacy|
|Defensive ROY||Kenny Vacaro||Arthur Brown||Tyrann Mathieu||Ziggy Ansah||Alec Ogletree||Sheldon Richardson|
|Offensive POY||Jamaal Charles||Adrian Peterson||Adrian Peterson||Drew Brees||Peyton Manning||Peyton Manning|
|Defensive POY||Luke Kuechly||J.J. Watt||Luke Kuechly||Geno Atkins||Patrick WIllis||Luke Kuechly|
|MVP||Robert Griffin III||Tom Brady||Peyton Manning||Peyton Manning||Peyton Manning||Peyton Manning|
|Redskins Off. POY||Alfred Morris||Robert Griffin III||Alfred Morris||Pierre Garcon||Pierre Garcon||Pierre Garcon|
|Redskins Def. POY||Brian Orakpo||Ryan Kerrigan||Brian Orakpo||Ryan Kerrigan||Brian Orakpo||Brian Orakpo|
|Redskins MVP||Robert Griffin III||Robert Griffin III||Robert Griffin III||Robert Griffin III||Pierre Garcon||N/A|
|Playoff Finish||Super Bowl Win||Divisional Round Loss||Super Bowl Win||NFC Champ. Loss||NFC Champ. Loss||Missed Playoffs|
|Mike Harar||Ken Meringolo||Sean Patterson||Steve Shoup||Actual|
|NFC Wild Cards||49ers, Giants||Lions, 49ers||Seahawks, Buccaneers||Seahawks, Saints||49ers, Saints|
|AFC Wild Cards||Bengals, Texans||Dolphins, Texans||Chiefs, Colts||Texans, Ravens||Chiefs, Chargers|
|1st Pick in 2014||Jets||Raiders||Chargers||Raiders||Texans|
|Comeback POY||Robert Griffin III||Darrius Heyward-Bey||Robert Griffin III||Maurice Jones-Drew||Philip Rivers|
|Coach of Year||Mike Tomlin||Joe Philbin||Marvin Lewis||Chuck Pagano||Ron Rivera|
|Offensive ROY||Tavon Austin||Eddie Lacy||Tavon Austin||Montee Ball||Eddie Lacy|
|Defensive ROY||Tyrann Mathieu||Matt Elam||Barkevious Mingo||Jarvis Jones||Sheldon Richardson|
|Offensive POY||Peyton Manning||Aaron Rodgers||Calvin Johnson||Adrian Peterson||Peyton Manning|
|Defensive POY||J.J. Watt||Luke Kuechly||Luke Kuechly||Luke Kuechly||Luke Kuechly|
|MVP||Andrew Luck||Colin Kaepernick||Peyton Manning||Peyton Manning||Peyton Manning|
|Redskins Off. POY||Robert Griffin III||Robert Griffin III||Pierre Garcon||Alfred Morris||Pierre Garcon|
|Redskins Def. POY||Ryan Kerrigan||Barry Cofield||Brian Orakpo||Brian Orakpo||Brian Orakpo|
|Redskins MVP||Robert Griffin III||Alfred Morris||Robert Griffin III||Robert Griffin III||N/A|
|Playoff Finish||Super Bowl Loss||Super Bowl Win||Super Bowl Win||Wild Card Round Loss||Missed Playoffs|
Before I tally up the scores for each writer, I want to take a minute to touch on a few of the Redskins related predictions that were made. The writers picked both an offensive and defensive player of the year for the team. Unfortunately, the Redskins don't officially announce their player of the year selections until August. So for the purposes of this article I decided to go ahead and take the liberty of doing it myself.
For offensive player of the year I went with Pierre Garcon. He led the team in receptions, receiving yards, YAC, yards from scrimmage and first downs. He also led the NFL with a franchise record 113 receptions on the season. Garcon was the first Redskin to do so since Art Monk in 1984. Trent Williams is certainly in the conversation here as well; but these awards almost always go to skill position players, and I think Garcon's accomplishments really set him apart. On the defensive side of the ball, Brian Orakpo was the clear choice for me. In 15 games, he led the team in Sacks and QB hits and was 2nd in stops and hurries. I decided to eliminate the Redskins MVP category for a few reasons: we went 3-13, I found out that the Redskins themselves don't name a team MVP and because in my mind it would be too close to call between Orakpo, Garcon and Williams. I think these choices are pretty well-reasoned, but if you disagree then let me know what you think in the comments section.
Our predictions regarding the Redskins' final record and playoff finish were just plain bad. I can't help but be a little bit embarrassed, but I do take some comfort in knowing that we weren't the only ones that were drunk on the hometown Kool-Aid. It was tough not to be after witnessing Robert Griffin III lead us to an improbable run to the playoffs in his historic rookie season. It was even harder to fathom a team with such lofty expectations experiencing one of the worst seasons in franchise history. But in true
Murphy's Law Redskins fashion, anything that could've gone wrong, did in fact go wrong. So now that that's out of the way, let's try our best to forget that the 2013 season ever happened, and see how the writers' predictions stacked up against each other.
|Rank||Name||Total # Correct||Playoff||Super Bowl||NFL Awards||Redskins|
Maybe this will help take some of the sting out of the Redskins season for me (yeah, I can't shake the memory). I'll try to explain how I won without sounding like a total gloating douche. I was only slightly above average when it came to predicting the Redskins and NFL Awards. I really won on the strength of my playoff and Super Bowl picks. I picked the winner of every regular season game for about 15 teams (which were the only teams that I thought were worth a damn), and made my final predictions based off of that. I went with the Broncos in the AFC, because well, Peyton Manning. I always believed that the NFC and the eventual Super Bowl Champion was going to be decided by what happened in the inevitable playoff meeting between the Seahawks and 49ers. I had Seattle at 13 wins and San Francisco at 12, thus giving Seattle the home field advantage and making my decision much easier. I'll wrap this thing up with a few observations on the rest of the writers' picks.
- There were 8 categories that nobody correctly predicted: NFC East, NFC South, 1st Pick in the draft, Comeback POY, Coach of the Year, Defensive ROY, Redskins Record and Redskins Playoff Finish.
- The most popular incorrect predictions were: the Falcons winning the NFC South, the Redskins winning the NFC East and the Raiders owning the 1st pick in the 2014 draft.
- Every writer had either the Ravens or the Texans making the playoffs.
- The most popular correct predictions were: the Patriots, Packers, Bengals and Broncos each winning their respective divisions.
- Dan had the most unique picks of all of the writers, so when his home run swing didn't connect the end result was not a surprise.
- Props to Steve for making the most conservative Redskins predictions. He had the Redskins finishing far short of what the other writers did. Also, unlike most of the rest of us, he had the good sense to not pick a Redskin to win any major NFL award.
- Ken and I had the most Playoff picks correct with 7. Kevin and I had the most Super Bowl picks correct with 3. Keely had the most NFL Awards correct with 3. Kevin and Sean had the most Redskins picks correct with 2.