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BWTB: Analyzing preseason records

Posted Aug 12, 2014

A look at last season's preseason records and how they correlated to regular season success.


Last year, two teams went undefeated during the preseason.

Any guesses as to who those teams are?

One should be obvious. The Seattle Seahawks, who went on to win the 2014 Super Bowl, finished the preseason with a perfect 4-0 record.

The second team?

That would be the Washington Redskins. Washington ended up having more in common with the Houston Texans than the Seahawks, finishing the year with a 4-12 record. Had the Redskins not previously traded away their first round pick (in the RGIII deal), they would have selected right behind the Texans in last year's draft.

That same Washington squad was coming off a playoff appearance in 2012 and viewed by some as a dark horse candidate to make a Super Bowl run in 2013. Sound familiar?

The point of the comparison isn't to disparage the Redskins, but to remind everyone that preseason stats are in large part meaningless. While everyone wants their team to play well every time they hit the field, the games before the actual games are hardly a certain precursor of regular season success. Sure, the Seahawks were perfect, but for every Seattle there is a Washington that goes in the opposite direction.

Of the 12 teams that went to the playoffs in 2013, six had winning records in the preseason. The other squads were below .500, including Green Bay and San Diego Chargers who were a combined 2-6 during the month of August. The team Seattle faced in the Super Bowl, Denver, was 2-2.

Looking further back, the 2013 Super Bowl Champion Baltimore Ravens were 2-2 during that preseason.

Remember when the Detroit Lions went 0-16 in 2008? Their preseason record that year? 4-0.

The most important parts of the preseason slate is staying free from injury and building some momentum for the start of the year. If you win games along the way, that's great.

The key is to maintain perspective. As they say, it is a marathon, not a sprint.

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