The exciting part about this exercise is that we can follow the ups and downs of our beloved Saints throughout the regular season via the variations of their odds not only to make it to the Super Bowl, but first to even make it to the playoffs, win the NFC South, or earn a first round bye in the playoffs.
My favorite website to look at Super Bowl odds throughout the regular season is Five Thirty Eight (FTE). They use the well-oiled Elo rating system. The system was invented by physicist Arpad Elo, and originally designed to rate players in zero-sum games, like chess. The system assigns a gain value to the winner and a loss value to the loser such that the sum of the winner’s gain and the loser’s loss is equal to zero.
Let’s look at the standings:
The Top 10
Wait, where are the Saints? Not in the top 10 for the second consecutive week. Atop the post-week 3 odds of winning the Super Bowl are the Los Angeles Rams, who battered the defending champions Buccaneers 34-24 in LA this past Sunday. Despite the loss, the Bucs remained in second place, ahead of the Bills, Chiefs and Ravens. Interestingly, despite a loss to the Saints in week one, the Green Bay Packers come in at 10, obviously ahead of New Orleans. This makes some sense however when you consider the division the Packers are in, one where they will face the hapless Detroit Lions and Chicago Bears, then the limping Vikings.
The Muddled Middle
And coming in with the 11th-best odds to win the Super Bowl, your New Orleans Saints! After being ranked 13th after last week’s loss to the Carolina Panthers, the Saints made up two spots following their win in New England. New Orleans has a 64% chance of making the playoffs and still a 25% chance of winning the NFC South. Note that despite being 3-0, the divisional foes Carolina Panthers aren’t getting a lot of love from the computer models, with only the 16th-best odds of winning the Big Game.
The Bottom 10
At the back of the classroom with all the troublemakers, we find the Saints’ next opponent, the New York Giants with the 28th odds of winning the Super Bowl. New York is 0-3 and has a slim 5% chance of making the playoffs. There is no doubt that the G-Men will be desperate for a win when they descend on the Caesars Superdome on Sunday afternoon. Let’s laugh a little before we go: the Atlanta Falcons are 27th, just ahead of the Giants, whom they just beat last Sunday. Seeing the Falcons suck is always enjoyable. Is it wrong to feel that way? Not for a second!
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