Week 15 NFL Predictions

Boxscores and stats from every upcoming game
By Paul Bessire, WhatIfSports.com
December 9th, 2008

Each Tuesday morning, we will preview every NFL game of the upcoming week. All of our NFL content, including our most recent power rankings and weekly fantasy projections, is located here. If you want to take WhatIfSports weekly college football and/or NFL picks with you (to your MySpace, Facebook or personal homepage), please see the widget below on the right or at this page.

The inputs to the 10,001 simulations of each upcoming game are based on a rigorous analysis of each team that considers strength-of-schedule-adjusted team and player ratings and then makes modifications for injuries and depth at each position.

Game of the Week: #3 Pittsburgh 12 @ #2 Baltimore 15
The three best teams in the NFL right now are in the AFC and the Patriots, Colts, Jaguars and Chargers are not among them. Who saw that coming? Two of those top three teams are playing each other this week in Baltimore. After carefully reviewing these teams, it is almost impossible to give either team the edge. Baltimore and Pittsburgh's ranks in the league in the most relevant statistics to our simulation are (Ravens listed first): strength of schedule (12 and 14), scoring defense (3 and 1), yards-per-pass for (14 and 13), yards-per-pass allowed (3 and 1), yards-per-rush for (27), yards-per-rush allowed (3 and 2) and turnover margin (6 and 7). Out of 32 teams, the Steelers and Ravens are ranked within two in EVERY major statistical category. I don't know if we have ever seen two more evenly matched teams at this point in the season. The only discernible advantage to either team is homefield, which goes to Baltimore on Sunday. With two hard-hitting defenses in the Steelers and the Ravens, it's probably even money as to whether there will be more injury timeouts or points scored. According to 10,001 simulations, the latter figure will be 27 (I guess we'll have to track injury timeouts in the future, but it could be close). Baltimore uses its advantage to win 57.2% of the time and by an average score of 15-12.

Click on the Boxscores below to see detailed team and player stat projections for every game.

Week 15 Scores for Every NFL Game

MatchupHome Win%Avg Score
Detroit @ Indianapolis94.411-34Boxscore
Cleveland @ Philadelphia94.47-27Boxscore
Denver @ Carolina87.817-34Boxscore
Buffalo @ New York77.717-29Boxscore
Minnesota @ Arizona70.718-25Boxscore
San Francisco @ Miami57.920-24Boxscore
Pittsburgh @ Baltimore57.212-15Boxscore
New York @ Dallas46.621-21Boxscore
New Orleans @ Chicago38.723-21Boxscore
Green Bay @ Jacksonville36.324-21Boxscore
New England @ Oakland34.225-21Boxscore
Tennessee @ Houston32.425-21Boxscore
Seattle @ St. Louis30.525-21Boxscore
Tampa Bay @ Atlanta30.325-20Boxscore
San Diego @ Kansas City15.530-19Boxscore
Washington @ Cincinnati11.222-10Boxscore

Paul Bessire is the Senior Quantitative Analyst and Content Manager for WhatIfSports.com and a member of the Pro Football Writers of America. With any comments, questions or topic suggestions, Paul can be reached at BtB@whatifsports.com. Thanks!

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