Stat Head: Bucs “Pretenders”

October 8th, 2020

Projections don’t look good.

Joe has nothing at all against NFL Network’s Cynthia Frelund, a math head and stat geek (poor girl).

If you gawk listen to her on the NFL’s cable TV house organ, she seems to know the players’ and coaches’ names and their numbers. Joe maintains she doesn’t know a damn thing about strategy. All her information is strictly data regurgitation from computer software. She doesn’t gain information from X’s and O’s, she gets her information from 0’s and 1’s.

In fact, Joe would suggest she doesn’t watch games. Yeah, Joe has poked fun at her in the past, writing in jest she hangs on Sunday afternoons at some outdoor patio at a Malibu yacht club sipping white wine while nibbling on shrimp and monitoring games only from NFL app notifications she gets on her fantasy leagues.

Why does Joe say this? Some of the stuff she writes and babbles about is just plain out of left field.

“Projections,” of course.

Prior to the season, Frelund ranked Carlton Davis and Sean Murphy-Bunting to be the absolute worst starting corners in the NFL.


Well, Frelund dialed up her Excel spreadsheets again this week, and she does not have the Bucs in the playoffs this year. No, not even with the NFC (and AFC also) expanding to seven teams and the Bucs with a 3-1 record.

Frelund listed her two “pretenders” for the playoffs. Her top NFC pretender is the Bucs.

Before you start cursing my name and disparaging my model, allow me to explain a bit.

First, remaining-schedule win probabilities are factored in to help determine most likely playoff seeding. Then the predictors simulate the postseason, which factors in all potential matchups/opponents. As of now, I do not have the Buccaneers favored to win the division, with the Saints holding a narrow advantage in the percentages of 48.3 to 46.4. We’ll all get a better sense of the Bucs’ postseason potential when they play the Packers (Week 6), Rams (Week 11) and Chiefs (Week 12), not to mention the rematch vs. the Saints (Week 9). In this Thursday’s matchup with the Bears, one of the questions raised in my data will likely start to become clearer, and that is whether or not the offense can stop giving the ball away. Tampa has six turnovers, tied for ninth-most. Tom Brady’s adjustment to this offense, with its unique architecture and these specific surrounding castmates, was always going to occur on a learning curve. However, ball security has typically been a big strength for Brady, so we’ll soon see if the Bucs are getting over that curve or if mounting injuries will prolong it. The other concerning flag is on defense. Let’s be clear: Over the first four games, this defense has been extremely stout, ranking fourth in total D, third in sacks and second in takeaways. Still, there are some indicators that stopping the pass could be an issues against playoff-caliber teams. On third down, the Bucs are allowing a 122.1 passer rating (fourth-highest). Also, Next Gen Stats shows that Todd Bowles’ unit has blitzed on the second highest percentage of dropbacks (42.0) since 2019. The results have largely been positive, but rookie Justin Herbert shredded the Tampa’s blitzing last week (6-for-8, 122 yards, two TDs). Could this continue to be a problem going forward?

Yeah, it’s her “model.” Right.

Come on, Cynthia, can’t you think for yourself? Now she has an excellent point about the Bucs playing the Packers and Chiefs and Saints again. Those are fair questions and will certainly be tough games.

And it is not like the Bucs haven’t teased fans before with a decent season, before it ended with barf all over their shoes.

The Bucs do have three more games against rotten division foes like the Dixie Chicks (twice) and the Stinking Panthers. There is also Chucky’s Raiders, which seem on the cusp of circling the drain, the putrid Giants and the toothless Lions.

(The Rams game will be very tough and Joe still believes the Vikings are dangerous).

The only other team Frelund thinks is a “pretender?” The 1-2-1 Eagles.

Right now has the Bucs with a 65 percent chance of making the playoffs with 12 games left.

Frelund, to Joe, seems intelligent. Perhaps she should use her mind a little more to utilize critical thinking rather than just parroting whatever her computer software spits out.

And if Joe were Frelund, Joe would take her computer hard drives and toss them into the Pacific Ocean (though one of greasy Gavin Newsome’s goons might lock her up for endangering a seal).

22 Responses to “Stat Head: Bucs “Pretenders””

  1. Buczilla Says:

    Sorry Joes, I couldn’t get through reading all of her gobbledygook since it was giving me a headache. She does seem bright though and certainly is cute.

  2. AKicknTheBucNuts Says:

    Someone put a gag order on “Man Nose”.

  3. WillieG Says:

    It seems like 90% of sports media is guessing the future. The other 10% is reporting actual news, like what happened in various games, who’s hurt, etc.
    It’s a total waste of time since the prognosticators are wrong 90% of the time.
    I vow to waste no more time reading predictions from this day forward.

  4. SufferingSince76 Says:

    Computers provide nothing more than results based on the information loaded into it. The numbers say. The numbers say. The numbers don’t play the game.

  5. Allbuccedup Says:

    That’s a rough four games plus the Vikings. Lets just hope the Dixie chicks do not get red hot in the next few weeks. But look at the bright side if Quinn gets the ax, they will more than likely let Dirk be the head coach.

  6. Anonymous Says:

    Nice body, butter face.

  7. ocala Says:

    She does have the Bucs secondary as the worst in the NFL. IF you believe that then no the Bucs will not make the playoffs.

    I am confident in Tom Brady and I am confident in the Bucs roster. If the Bucs are able to win tonight with their skill positions so beat up that will only bolster my confidence that much more.

  8. geno711 Says:

    So this was the one very bad stat:

    On third down, the Bucs are allowing a 122.1 passer rating (fourth-highest).

    But we already know that passer rating does not include sacks since the QB did not throw the ball.

  9. mark2001 Says:

    She has a nose for data….and about everything else imaginable.

  10. ir8oldman Says:

    She’s absolutely fine to gawk at. But as with all other prognostications, they use the past for a model. People DO get better as they are coached up.. none of the excel spreadsheets can quantify personal growth. So all “Projections ” are total time wasting endeavors. Some come with eye-candy, others not so much.

  11. unbelievable Says:


    Joe clearly has multiple personal issues he needs to work out regarding females, California, etc.

  12. Coburn Says:

    Actually thought she was opposite of butterface. Waist bit that much smaller than chest.. but if you see her live now think she’s post wall. Makeup is caked on and not that hot

  13. orlbucfan Says:

    She has a plain face, nothing spectacular. Don’t watch her but I don’t watch sports talking heads. The Bucs secondary is improving so she blew that one. She is correct about the Packers, Chiefs, Rams and Vikings. Don’t know about the rest.

  14. bojim Says:

    Her Excel spreadsheet – tl;dr

  15. lambchop Says:

    With the way the Titans players are coming out Covid+ and might affect games, either with games being postponed or played with backups, you just can’t predict this season at all.

    Data Science is great for other things, like forecasting revenue, etc. But, sports is something entirely different. But, there is one dude who has MASTERED data science with his model and his name is Bill Benter albeit in horse racing which has far fewer variables than player-driven sports. Bill Benter is a billionaire from betting on horses with his software.

  16. Ryan Kraniger Says:

    This was an average to above – average article UNTIL the Newsom slight at the end. Nice .

  17. Big Stinky Says:

    That’s pretty funny! Before the season I expected to lose to the Taints twice, Packers, Chiefs, and the Rams or Falcons once. Figured 11-5 or so just because of Brady. Still not sure how good this defense is just because we haven’t beaten a winning team that I know of. Secondary is full of guys that can’t cover other than Carlton Davis but he’s not as good as Lattimore. Hope Bowles can keep calling the right defense to help them be in the right place at the right time. Kind of feel like they are pretenders too but Brady is starting to make them BELIEVE.

  18. David Says:

    Before anybody makes this a man/woman issue- it is not.

    Joe’s absolute right. She regurgitates statistics, that’s it. Statistics work very well in baseball. They don’t work in football, minimally at best.

  19. Rayjay1122 Says:

    Good thing that Football is not a math problem. Let her keep thinking that she is relevant.

  20. SlyPirate541 Says:

    She’s saying something that has been on my mind too. The Bucs Schedule is going to get a lot harder.
    Q1 – Easy
    Q2 – Medium (Chi, GB, LV, NG)
    Q3 – Difficult (NO, CAR, LAR, KC)
    Q4 – ? (MN, ATL, DET, ATL)

    The Bucs need to go 3-1 in Q2 (6-2). A 2-2 (8-4) or even a 1-3 (7-5) Q3 keeps them on place for 11 or 12 wins and the playoffs. If they drop two games in Q2 they will have an uphill batter to win the NFCS and possibly making the playoffs.

  21. Joe in Michigan Says:

    Question mark for Q4? The teams are a combined 2-10. They could get better, but probably 2 out of 3 will have folded up the tents at that stage of the season.

  22. ItzOK Says:

    I can see in the future.

    In today’s over sensitive politically correct world. Ms Frelund will tweet about this article commenting on her looks and questioning her. Garnering support from anybody on the internet with two opposable thumbs.

    Joe you attacked a Woman called her cute and tried to discredit her. There go your corporate sponsers on the website.

    Just remove the article. Today’s world it isn’t worth the hassle to criticize anybody on their merits.