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Sunday School

Sunday School

 

Since there is no one around on Sundays to listen to me rant and rave during the off-season. I welcome you to Sunday school.

 

 

 

 

Today's lesson... mathematics.

For those of you out there with blinders on (or those cool glasses Ted wears), prepare to be polarized.

 

Problem: Using simple addition, figure out who the best team in NFC North is right now.

 

Offensive Line

Bears: 2
Lions: 1
Packers: 3
Vikings: 4

Running Back

Bears: 3
Lions: 2
Packers: 1 (go ahead and try to argue this one)
Vikings: 4

Quarterback

Bears: 3
Lions: 1 (no matter what)
Packers : 4
Vikings: 2

Receiver

Bears: 1
Lions: 3
Packers: 4 (Greg Jennings)
Vikings: 2

Tight End

Bears: 4
Lions: 1
Packers: 2
Vikings: 3

Defensive Line

Bears: 3
Lions: 1
Packers: 2
Vikings: 4

Linebackers

Bears: 2
Lions: 1
Packers: 3
Vikings: 4

Secondary

Bears: 2
Lions: 1
Packers: 4
Vikings: 3

 

The Answer:

1. 26 - The Minnesota Vikings
2. 23 - The Green Bay Packers
3. 20 - The Chicago Bears
4. 11 - The Detroit Lions

 

Now of course, the draft could move these numbers a little bit. However, nearly every team in the division is forced to draft for need, and the chance of landing an impact player that will be a driving force in their first NFL season will always be a big unknown.

Don't let your fan-hood hoodwink you... it's officially a three way race.

Class dismissed.

 

(Stay Tuned)

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Fan friendly comments only: off Comments (42) This filter will hide comments which have ratio of 5 to 1 down-vote to up-vote.

cow's picture

So - according to your math - having the best tight end in the division is worth just as much as having the best quarterback in the division.

Is that why you see so many tight ends earning NFL MVP awards?

Must be.

Alex Tallitsch's picture

There have only been 3 players in the last 50 years to win an MVP that weren't a RB or QB. So, yes I do.

Quarterbacks best friend.

cow's picture

Your saying that you believe a team's tight end is just as important as a team's quarterback.

Seriously?

That's just silly.

Alex Tallitsch's picture

In order to have a balanced running and passing attack yes I am.

What is your eggheaded argument anyway? Do you disagree? Do you think the Pack should be ahead of the Vikings. If so why?

All I am reading right now is, "I got nothing."

longtimefan's picture

cow must have missed the 96 and 97 years for the pack with jackson and chewy

Alex Tallitsch's picture

"Udderly" ridiculous.

jeremia's picture

minnesota's LB are the best in the division? really? i think this is a cool idea alex but i think you either need to explain yourself more or break it down farther and be mre objective.

you were so quick to say that kevin smith is better than ryan grant and then you have MN with the best LB.

i don't want to sound like some sort of math nerd... but if you are going to use SIMPLE math, then this is pointless. you need to assign every player( or psition) a value on a simlilar scale(1-100), by awarding them points( in the same denominations, i.e. +5 for being the best route runner, +10 for TDs/ rec./ etc...). you also have to be just as objective with one position as you are with another one. if kevin simth is really better than grant i would at least like to see your reasoning.

but like i said, i like the idea

Alex Tallitsch's picture

I am not going to break it down with calculus. It's a simple way of looking at things.

Chad Greenway, Ben Leber, and E.J. Henderson. Both familiar with scheme, and all making progress, also behind that D-line they get the top spot.

Our backers are good, but coming off injury, and going into a new system which includes some holes and a guy who never played the position. No way they top out that list.

Kevin Smith, for those who don't know, is going to be a stud. He showed it a the end of the season. He nearly broke all of Barry Sanders records in college, and has been mentioned in the same breath. If he ever gets a team, he will be a dangerous player.

EDIT: I think if you did break it down 1-100 player by player, you end up with the same result. Perhaps even worse.

cow's picture

You're right, longtimefan. The keys to the SB teams were the tight ends. It wasn't Favre. It wasn't Reggie. It wasn't Butler. It wasn't Holmgren. It was Chmura and Jackson.

Think about what you're saying.

They were great TE's but you could have replaced them with probably 10 other guys in the league at that time and still have been just as successful. How many QB's or DE's playing at that time could you have plugged in for #4 or #92 and had the same results?

I never said the TE wasn't important. All I AM saying is that the TE is never as important as the QB. How many TE's have been drafted #1 overall?

Alex - I disagree with your assessment that a TE has the same value as a QB. If that makes me an "egghead", so be it. In fact, I agree that the vikings are the team to beat. I just don't agree with the idea that all positions are equal in value.

If you do - that's fine. Agree to disagree, I guess.

The article is a cool idea, but (in my opinion) it's flawed. I feel each position should be weighted in some manner.

Alex Tallitsch's picture

Again, I am not going to break out SPSS to come up with correlations and scatter plots. The point Longtime is trying to make is that a well rounded team team (including tight-ends) is what wins games.

I think the bigger point I am trying to make is that Chicago is not the team to beat by any stretch, as well as this being a tight division right now.

PackersRS's picture

Cmon, Tight ends should not be given that much importance, you should consider them in the o-line or in the receiving corpse... And also, the bears Linebackers are way better than the vike's... Urlacher and Briggs, cmon!

Alex Tallitsch's picture

Ill agree there can be some debate on the linebackers, but I looked at it more as effectiveness as a team. The D-Line as it is, will limit those guys.

Okay, so take the TE's out, it really doesn't change anything. If TE's weren't that important, no one would care about them. If Jason Witten came on the market tomorrow, don't tell me there wouldn't be severe interests. TE's can be game changers just as much as anyone else.

See: Tony, Antonio

cow's picture

Who"s Antonio Tony?

kidding.

Alex Tallitsch's picture

Heh. Hopefully the next Packer.

Asshalo's picture

you're judging everything on paper. not that easy bud. the only thing that matter is how they play come september.

Alex Tallitsch's picture

Asshalo, dissappointed. I thought you were my guy. Speaking of guys who judge things on paper...

Asshalo's picture

haha, touche. true, i do judge our depth chart on paper, but it's not like i'm looking at pro bowlers and saying they're inadequate. I'm looking at undrafted free agents. And sure its me and a lot of other talking heads in the media, but its also two seasoned vets on the team, By the statistics, I say it looks extremely risky to rely on that many undrafted free agents.

I've always said its risky, never a perfect indicator of the season ahead. Just saying those numbers don't judge intangible play. We pretty much kicked the bears ass both times (when you look at independent stats except score) we played them this year, but we lost once and ended up three games begind them.

Tyler Bohms's picture

I would take Grant and Jackson over Kevin Smith any day.

Alex Tallitsch's picture

We have a no drug podcasting policy. I just wanted you to know since obviously you are fried right now.

BobbyOShea's picture

guess i'm fucked then..

IronMan's picture

LOL

jeremia's picture

alex-

so do you really believe that minnesota is the best team in the division?

BobbyOShea's picture

i know i'm not alex, but no way until they get a relevant passing game.

Alex Tallitsch's picture

Do I think they are the team to beat over Chicago and Detroit right now? Yes.

Dale Z's picture

I disagree with a lot of this.

Don't have a cow, cow!

Alex Tallitsch's picture

Quote Dale:

<blockquote cite="comment-2804">

<strong><a href="#comment-2804" rel="nofollow">Dale Z</a></strong>: <P>I disagree with a lot of this.</P>
</blockquote>

There is a surprise.

Dale Z's picture

It's okay, it seems most others see the flaw in this lesson too. Next week, I want some Chemistry!

longtimefan's picture

COW:

show me where I said that Favre wasnt important

I just pointed out the great tight ends that they had when they went to the SB

vikesrule's picture

Heed the words of the Right Reverend Alex, for verily he knows of what he speaks. :)

Alex Tallitsch's picture

This comment makes me both happy and sad.

jeremia's picture

"Do I think they are the team to beat over Chicago and Detroit right now? Yes."
that's all well and good but i asked if you thought they were the best in the division...

using my powers of deduction and intelligent reasoning, i figured out from you above statement that the vikes are better than chicago and detroit. so..........

who is better alex? the packers or the vikings?

Alex Tallitsch's picture

On paper, right now, its a toss-up.

PackersRS's picture

Sorry that I didn't clear that up early. Tight ends play a MAJOR role in a team. But as BLOCKERS or RECEIVERS. That's my point. Antonio Gates makes SD receiving corpse GREAT, without him they would be GOOD. That's equal for Olsen, and Clark is the blocking one. You have to consider the FB too. So, IMO, you have to acknowledge if the TE or the RB makes their OLine better (Lorenzo Neal), their runners better (Le'ron Mcclain) or their receivers better (Antonio Gates)...

Alex Tallitsch's picture

That's a good point, no doubt. I think if you threw all that together, or seperated it with full-backs, you still have about the same answer.

I also considered throwing in kickers.

Graham's picture

I dont know where you get off saying Grant is the worst starting RB in our division. The Lions were 30th in rushing yards in the NFL last year with 1332 as a team, Ryan Grant had 1203 by him self, a mere 129 yards less, and if Grant could have been healthy an extra game or two he would have beaten the Lions by himself.

Also lets take a poll,

You get to choose Ryan Grant or Kevin Smith to start for the Packers week 1

I choose Grant.

If you are still close on Grant/Jackson/Wynn vs. Smith/Morris/Cason lets take a look at what seems to be your tie breaker. You are judging LB's by the D-Lines, why not your RB's by their O-Lines. That would move us ahead of the Lions no doubt. You ranked the Lions a 1 on OL, and the Packers a 3.

Alex Tallitsch's picture

Sorry man, Kevin Smith will be a stud.

Also, all the OL's could easily be 1's. The Packers got the benefit of the doubt there.

Graham's picture

At the end of the day I guess Minnisota is still the team to beat in our division. Their only question mark is at QB, and they won the division last year with that same problem. Our question mark is our entire D. That is half the team. I think, unlike most, Dom Capers was our best FA signing this year. Our D is a question mark, but the answer is Dom. If I'm betting right now I probably take Minnisota, after week 3, I'm guessing we will see enough from our D to bet on the Packers.

Its good to be a hungry underdog, I can't wait to rip some stuff up!!

jeremia's picture

i don't think it is fair to say that our entire D is a ?. now, as far as MN being the team to beat, i agree. and only because A) they won the division last year and B) the bears still suck. if the packers were not implimenting a new defensive scheme, i would say that they were the division favorites. but, they vikigs get the edge, in my book, because of the switch. do i think the viks are a better team? NOPE. they almot lost to the lions TWICE last year. they got ALOT of favorable calls, and breaks (like missed game winning ield goals).

write this down- (as we stand right now, barring any huge gains by CHI, MN, or DET inthe draft) if the packers can stay healthy this year, they win at LEAST 9 games.

PackersRS's picture

The whole point of this post is to say that the division is wide open. And I agree totally with that. But the comparison putting MN ahead, even slightly, of GB is what bothers me. You need to remember that last year's what the first time they won the division in god knows when, and that in 2007, when we were healthy, we didn't just win the division, we had a Regular Season record of 13 (thirteen) wins. And comparing to our REAL rivals (not the Lions), we have the best draft picks. As much as it is a close call, we are the better team...

jeremiah's picture

well said RS.

Robert Greenfield's picture

Interesting post. I might throw coaching in there too. There's no way I give the edge to the Lions in the running game though. The Packers had over 1,800 yards rushing last year (with a 4.1 average) while the Lions only had 1300+ (with a 3.8 average).

Andyman's picture

You can't discount Kevin Smith though - once Detroit starts using him like they should, he can probably be the 2nd best back in the division (in Minn. actually uses AP like they should, as well) If the Packers actually give BJ his shots, I think he can (and should) usurp Grant. The running back talent is there - we just need the o-line to make those holes.

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