Chase Stuart of Football Perspective put up an interesting post at his site that projects NFL teams wins for the 2014 season. Stuart's objective method involves a formula based on Football Outsiders' DVOA numbers. If you're unfamiliar with the term, read more about DVOA at FO's site. Simply put: DVOA measures a team's strength.
Stuart's used his projection formula to predict the success of NFL teams in 2014. The Eagles finished third overall with a projection of 9.5 wins. They were only behind the two Super Bowl teams: the Seattle Seahawks and the Denver Broncos. The Panthers and 49ers ranked below the Eagles to round out the top five. A look how other NFC East teams finished: Cowboys (13), Giants (28), Redskins (29).
Stuart singled out an observation about the Eagles:
The Eagles are projected for nearly one full win more using the DVOA projection (9.5) than Pythagenpat (8.6). That makes some sense, I think, because Philadelphia had excellent offensive pass and rush DVOA grades, and the below-average special teams grade doesn’t mean much. Philadelphia did rank 4th in points, but I think their DVOA grades are farther from the mean than their points scored number indicates.
Stuart cautions that these rankings are far from perfect. There are many factors that can't be predicted: new coaches, scheme changes, player turnover, player development, injuries, regression, etc. But Stuart does maintain these numbers are a useful starting point for a team's 2014 projection as compared to something as a simple look at the 2013 standings.
So what's to glean from all of this? It's hard to say. Football is very hard to predict and things change very fast. But all of the signs seem to point towards the Eagles building on their first year of the Chip Kelly as opposed to taking a step back. Only time will tell if this projection holds true.
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