There’s a moment during every football season when I check the calendar and think: This year is flying by. We’ve reached that point. It’s already Week 5 of the NFL season, which means that all but two NFL teams have played one quarter of their regular-season schedule. Anyone reading this column is closer to one third of the way through his or her fantasy regular-season schedule (the default length on ESPN.com is 13 weeks of a regular season). We’re flying by.
Beyond that, bye weeks are here.
You probably took note of that tiny number next to the player you drafted before the season, but we always encourage people to largely make season-long decisions when drafting (unique exceptions can include drafting a player who is expected to fill in for a suspended player for a defined length, as was the case with Darren McFadden for Ezekiel Elliott before his suspension was overturned).
Look, we know what this is about: the defense.
In four games this season, the defense has added negative expected points every time. It has clearly cost New England so far, and no one would argue that point.
But there’s also this: Defense is less consistent than offense. Past defensive performances don’t predict future defensive performances to the degree that offensive performances predict future offense. In the Patriots’ case, that variance works in the favor of their future prospects.
Here’s what FPI cares about: performance against expectation, while taking Cheap Jerseys Supply into account circumstantial factors such as opponent strength and game location. It has a separate expectation for the offense’s strength depending on which quarterback is expected to be Cheap Jerseys Wholesale China under center, and it keeps in mind the information it held on teams in the preseason.