Close Article Return to stream X
NFL

ESPN the Magazine Projects Green Bay Packers to go 16-0

Ever since the NFL permanently moved to a 16 game schedule in 1978 just one team has finished the regular season unbeaten: the 2007 New England Patriots.

If ESPN the Magazine’s September 3rd football preview issue’s projections are correct, the 2012 Green Bay Packers will join that exclusive list.

But just how accurate are these projections?

In the history of the NFL, teams have played 953 16-game seasons (strikes in 1982 and 1987 led to shortened seasons). This means that roughly .1% of teams have gone 16-0.

ESPN’s projections, which were done by simulating games using the sports betting website AccuScore, also projects the Rams to go 0-16. 0-16 has also happened just once in the history of the NFL.

They also predicted a tie between the New York Jets and the Houston Texans. Some NFL players aren’t even aware that a game can end as a tie.

Are these projections possible? Yes. Are they likely? No.

There are simply too many variables to factor in to confidently say that the Packers will go 16-0. Aaron Rodgers could tear his ACL on the first play of the season making Graham Harrell (Vince Young?) the starting quarterback. Unless he turned out to be the second-coming of Matt Flynn, the Packers would probably struggle to make the playoffs.

Furthermore, the Packers have huge issues on the defensive side of the ball. Their line never really recovered from loss of Cullen Jenkins to free agency after Super Bowl XLV. Last year they couldn’t get a consistent pass rush all season despite having possibly the league’s best outside linebacker in Clay Matthews.

They addressed these issues in the draft by selecting USC linebacker Nick Perry and Michigan State defensive end Jerel Worthy with their first two picks, but until these two young players can prove themselves, questions will remain about the Packers’ ability to get to the quarterback.

All NFL teams are flawed. This team is no exception. Despite their relatively easy schedule, someone will beat the Packers.

That being said, they should still win at least 12 games, make the playoffs, and possibly fulfill ESPN’s other projection: a Super Bowl win.

Follow Evan on twitter @EvanReam

Your Favorites
 
 
Close Article Return to stream X
NFL Videos

Cardinals' Palmer Hits Fitzgerald For Huge Gain

Following a shocking hail Mary touchdown at the end of regulation by the Green Bay Packers, the Arizona Cardinals immediately went down the field in overtime with this huge completion from Carson Palmer to Larry Fitzgerald. This game has been unbelievable.

Comment 0 Comments
 
 
Close Article Return to stream X
NFL Videos

Watch Fitzgerald Send Cardinals To NFC Title Game

I pronounce this the greatest game I've ever witnessed. There aren't enough words to describe the ebbs and flows that occurred during the fourth quarter of this NFC Divisional Playoff. Both teams should be proud of the way they played, but the Cardinals will be the ones moving on after this Larry Fitzgerald touchdown.

Comment 0 Comments
 
 
Close Article Return to stream X
NFL Videos

Watch Packers Complete Hail Mary As Time Expires

You have got to be kidding me! The Green Bay Packers sent the game to overtime with this insane Hail Mary completion. What are Patrick Peterson and Justin Bethel doing so deep in the end zone. This game has been absolutely insane.

Comment 0 Comments
 
 
Close Article Return to stream X
NFL Videos

Watch Cardinals' Palmer Throw Ugly Interception

For someone who played like a MVP all season long, Carson Palmer has looked anything but tonight against the Green Bay Packers. If he doesn't redeem himself in the fourth quarter, the No. 2 seed Arizona Cardinals will be sitting at home watching the playoffs with the rest of us next week.

Comment 0 Comments
 
 
Close Article Return to stream X
NFL Videos

Packers' Lacy Needs Oxygen After This Run

Green Bay Packers running back Eddie Lacy doesn't look like he's missed any meals recently, if you catch my drift. Despite the extra weight he's carrying around these days, Lacy was able to bust out into the open field for this huge 61-yard run.

Comment 0 Comments