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A New Way to Look at the Cowboys, NFL, and Fantasy Football

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100 Fantasy Football Tips in 100 Days, Day 16: Week-to-Week Consistency

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For the most part, I think week-to-week consistency is an illusion based on small sample sizes. I explained in my book Fantasy Football for Smart People: What the Experts Don’t Want You to Know:

While certain players possess more season-to-season consistency than others, the short NFL season makes over-analysis of each game unavoidable. When a baseball player goes 1-for-10 over a two-game period, we often chalk it up to being unlucky. Meanwhile, when a quarterback turns in two poor performances in a row, the sky begins to fall in fantasy land.

Imagine cutting up the MLB season into 16-game segments. Each player would have a few segments of really poor play and a few periods of outstanding play. Over the course of the entire 162-game season, those peaks and valleys tend to even out, which is why baseball players have such consistent stats from year to year.

Well, the NFL season is too short for those tendencies to always even out. Thus, we often place more emphasis on individual games than we should because, well, it’s all we have to analyze. We label Player X as ‘consistent’ and Player Y as ‘injury-prone,’ not realizing we’re really just looking at the equivalent of one of those little 16-game slivers that MLB players participate in 10 of each season.

You can buy What the Experts Don’t Want You to Know for Kindle, as a PDF, or in paperback.

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