TOPEKA, Kan. (WIBW) -- Maybe they’re expecting Patrick Mahomes to suffer from a sophomore slump. Maybe they factor in the Madden Curse. But, somehow, the ESPN Analytics department’s computers determined the Kansas City Chiefs superstar quarterback will have plenty of time on his hands when the season ends.
According to its simulation, the Chiefs aren’t even going to make the playoffs, let alone finish atop the AFC West for the fourth straight time. The team that won 12 games, and the division, last year won’t even win ten in the coming season, it predicts.
The simulation, which was based on the ESPN Football Power Index, said they will end the year at 9-7, in second place and tied with three other teams for the second Wild Card spot. The Titans would take the tiebreaker and the Steelers (through the benefit of a tie game) would take the other slot, leaving Mahomes, Travis Kelce, Andy Reid, and the rest of the team sitting on their couch.
If the computers are right, though, New Orleans Saints fans will end up a lot happier than they did last year when the controversial “no-call” ended their 2018 campaign during the 2018 NFC Championship Game. They predict Drew Brees and company will edge the San Diego Chargers, 40-33, in the Super Bowl. But, if you think a slow start by the Saints proves the computers wrong, that’s already in the cards, with the team expected to start only 4-4 before roaring back in the second half.
ESPN said it ran the simulations 20,000 times, using factors like preseason performance, returning starters, and who the quarterback is, to come up with its Football Power Index. The analytics department then uses that to come up with a strength rating for each team. For their predictions, they took one of the simulations – the 1,721st one, for what that’s worth – and a little “creative license” to fill in the blanks.
For now, though, Chiefs fans can only hope Simulation 1,721 just doesn’t know what it’s talking about.