Injuries and Records
As I was watching the New England Patriots play against the Buffalo Bills on Monday night, I could not help but notice a recurring theme from the ESPN folks calling the game. "The Patriots are amazing, considering all of the injuries to this team". Being a curious type of guy, I went out to the world of the interwebs to determine how badly beat up the 10-0 Patriots were compared to the 2-8 Chargers.
And then I looked further... So, here is a challenge for all of you: I am going list teams (with a letter being their only identification) by #of guys on IR, with a little more info, and then I am going to list records, with a number. Without using Google or any other research, match the letter (injuries) to the number (record) in the poll section. I'll reveal the teams and the answers in a follow-up article along with separate comments 24 hours after this post goes live. Sound fun? Sure it does! Here you go:
6 on IR, including 2 starting Offensive Linemen and 2 significant defensive contributors.
9 on IR, including one starting o-lineman, 2 defensive starters and significant depth. Lost leading receiver earlier in November.
6 on IR, including one starting offensive lineman and starting WR. Remainder are back-ups and role players.
2 on IR, both starting offensive linemen.
4 on IR, 2 significant defensive contributors. (Another defensive starter has not played this season due to suspension.)
4 on IR, 2 including a starting WR and 2 defensive starters. Another significant contributor lost 4 games this season for violating the PED policy.
8 on IR, including 1 starting O-lineman, the team's leading rusher from last season, and significant depth on both sides of the ball.
Another Clue For You All
The walrus is Paul! But I digress...
It is possible to measure games lost due to injury, but even that is imperfect. If a starter got hurt in the pre-season and never showed up on the opening day roster, he has statistically not missed any games. It is easy to track "Man Games Lost" in a season, but it is harder to measure the impact of the PLAYER lost.
Not all injuries are equal. The 7 games that Tony Romo missed may have cost the Cowboys their season; the 6 games missed by Sen'Derrick Marks for the Jaguars, meh, not so much.
With that said, I'll offer you the Man Games Lost numbers for our teams:
I have given you 4 choices in the poll. One correctly matches the team with their record. The other 3, well, if any of you took a class with Dr. Toole at SDSU, I took his lead by rigging this multiple choice quiz to play right into your perceptions and biases and made the choices as tough as possible.
While you can probably do some research and find out which team goes with which record, DON'T DO IT! Just pick the answer you "know" is right and discover how injuries and time lost due to injury may not (or it just might...) correlate with winning or losing games in the NFL. Look for the article tomorrow.