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Pro Football Prospectus 2006: Statistics, Analysis, and Insight for the Information Age Paperback – August 1, 2006

4.3 out of 5 stars 10 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews


“Indispensable to fantasy football players and fans who simply want to dig into the real reasons teams play well.”
— The Washington Times (The Washington Times )

“Essential reading for fans who want more than clichés—Pro Football Prospectus tells you not just who will win, but why.”
—Ron Jaworski, ESPN (ESPN ) --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.


“The most accurate insight into why teams really win and lose.”
— Jim Schwartz, Defensive Coordinator, Tennessee Titans --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Product Details

  • Series: Pro Football Prospectus
  • Paperback: 496 pages
  • Publisher: Workman Publishing Company (August 1, 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0761142177
  • ISBN-13: 978-0761142171
  • Product Dimensions: 8.5 x 1.3 x 10.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.7 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (10 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,343,868 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By K. W. Schreiter on August 28, 2006
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Like its sister publication `Baseball Prospectus', this book is stuffed with information. `Standard football statistics are heavily context dependent - the down, distance, the location on the field, the time remaining - all of these elements influence both the goal of the play and its outcome.' The Football Prospectus team strives to improve conventional football statistics by `filtering out context-dependent effects' with mathematical formulas to best anticipate the results of the coming season. The authors claim to have predicted more playoff teams over the last two seasons than any other major football medium.
`Defense-Adjusted Value Over Average' (DVOA) is the primary criterion - this compares specific plays, players and teams to the league average. Top players have DVOAs near 30% - Peyton Manning had a 41.7% DVOA in 2005 while Brett Favre's was 1.8%. DVOA skews negative for better defenses, so top defenses like the 2005 Bears approach a -30% DVOA. The authors also use 'Defensive-Adjusted Points Above Replacement' (DPAR) to measure a player's impact for an entire season. For example, if a player dominates in his first few games but then suffers a season ending injury, he is of little overall value to his team that season. Accordingly, he will have a high DVOA but a low DPAR. The introduction offers simple explanations of the complex statistical analysis, but the book can also be enjoyed without studying the authors' methodology.
The first half of the book contains an informative and entertaining write-up for each NFL franchise. These capsules are often supplemented with short essays like `Do NFL Teams Get Jet Lag' for the Oakland Raiders and `How Impressive are Adam Vinateri's Clutch Field Goals' for the New England Patriots.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
A long time reader of the Baseball Prospectus series, I decided to pick up a copy of the Football Prospectus to see if it was as enlightening. The book begins with a chapter explaining all the statistics that are presented throughout the book. This section is a must because in addition to the standard statistics the NFL keeps, there is an abundance of new statistics, most of which are completely unique to this publication. The next section contains 7 or 8 pages devoted to each NFL team, complete with countless statistics, 2 or 3 pages of written analysis, and a couple short essays. There is then a section where each NFL skill player is evaluated with a short paragraph and their statistical line. The end of the book contains a short fantasy football section and finally some other essays related to the statistical analysis of football.

This book offers something no other football magazine or publication can offer. That is an objective, statistic based approach to solving not just what teams will win and what players will be productive, but WHY certain teams will win and WHY certain players will be productive.

The reason I say this book is not for the average football fan is because the average fan may find it too complicated and difficult to understand. Similar to the Baseball Prospectus, many of the statistics presented here are hard to grasp because they are new and some people won't want to take the time to learn how they work.

Note: Fantasy football players beware. Don't plan on relying on this book alone for your fantasy draft. Despite the small fantasy section in the back, the entire book is too complex to skim through for 30 minutes before the draft and succeed. Fantasy magazines are better for that. If you have the time though, reading the book and understanding the statistics just might be able to win the league for you.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I've been a reader of [...] for about two years. After reading numerous articles, I still can't figure these guys out. They can be downright hilarious at times, get all serious and scientific later, and yet on every single article you'll find something, big or small, that slowly changes the way you look at games, and at the sport as a whole.

Many people regard them as "stats geeks" and complaint that you need a math degree to understand their articles; however, that's not true. If you don't have any mathematical background, you can simply skip the tables, graphs and numbers, and go straight to the commentary, in plain english. However, taking the time to learn where they're coming from (which they also explain, on the site and in the book) makes the experience all the richer, leaving you with that "wow... that's good" feeling.

This book (and last years' edition) lets you have some very interesting new analysis at the tip of your hands. While it might sometimes seem harsh (particularly if you're a homer, for any team) it's the most accurate I've read about my team or any other. I really can't overstate just how groundbreaking the numbers are - pointing out things that you just know about your team, that no one else even notices, while backing it up with solid mathematical bases. For three years now, they've been predicting stuff no one else could, and the principles of it all are really very simple. As for the book itself, the fact that they have a chapter for every team gives it the feel of a preview magazine, even though the content is far (trust me - FAR) superior than that of any magazine in the market. It has commentary on every single skill player in the league, and it will most definitely help you if you're into fantasy football.
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