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FF success....Luck or Skill??

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Postby Matthias » Thu Oct 27, 2005 1:38 pm

204BC wrote:And how do I do that? By smashing his fingers with a baseball bat so that he can't click on his mouse and update his team for the week? I suppose I could also gouge his eyes out and cut out his tongue so he couldn't have anyone do it for him. Other than doing that, I can't think of any way to play "defense" in FF.


kensat. made. a. joke.

his phrase, "defense wins championships" is a general sports adage... he was making a funny. i feel really bad spelling it out like this, but you seem to be taking it seriously, so i feel like it's necessary.

because, really, we all know that the key to winning is (from john madden): (1) offense; (2) defense; (3) special teams; (4) turnovers; and (5) intangibles.

my guess is if you have a good roster and still losing, look to your intangibles.
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Postby 204BC » Thu Oct 27, 2005 1:39 pm

I know he was joking. So was I.
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Postby 204BC » Thu Oct 27, 2005 2:49 pm

There is a week to week luck factor but overall the skill is what gets you into the playoffs. I have played in the same 8 person league every year for the past 6 seasons and we have had 3 of the players make the playoffs 5 of those 6 seasons and then each year one other person makes it in on luck. And again our commissioner and I have had the top 2 teams in the league the last 3 seasons last year he won it all the year before I did, and this year we are once again sitting on top of the league at 7-0 and 6-1. If FF was 80% luck then we wouldn't have the same 3 team dominant every year.


I see your argument, however consider my situation. I am the #1 scoring team and yet I have lost 4 games in a row. In three of these contests, the team that beat me was the only team that would have beaten me that particular week. This is a 14 team league, so out of 13 possible opponents, I got matched up with the one that would beat me. If you look at this using a Binomial probability calculation and assume for the sake of the math that you are the second highest scoring team every week, the likelihood that you would lose one game during the season is 42.8%. That means there is a 57.2% chance that you go undefeated. The chances of losing 3 times over the course of the entire season is 1.2%, which means that there is a 98.8% chance that you would not lose 3 times. The chance that you would lose 3 times out of 7 weeks is .0085%, which is exactly what has happened to me. I’d say that’s bad luck.
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Postby BrutallyHuge » Thu Oct 27, 2005 2:52 pm

204BC wrote:I’d say that’s bad luck.


Indeed. If you have the highest point total each week, your chance of winning is 100%, according to my preliminary calcuations.
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Postby 204BC » Thu Oct 27, 2005 3:05 pm

Not bad. If I plug that in using a Binomial or Poisson solution it works out at 100% both ways. You must be some sort of statistician or something.

Actually, my math was wrong earlier. The probablility of losing 3 out of 7 and being the second highest scoring team each week is .085%, not .0085%, which is slightly better odds.
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Postby josebach » Thu Oct 27, 2005 3:15 pm

Cornbread Maxwell wrote:
smnbuv wrote:There is a week to week luck factor but overall the skill is what gets you into the playoffs. I have played in the same 8 person league every year for the past 6 seasons and we have had 3 of the players make the playoffs 5 of those 6 seasons and then each year one other person makes it in on luck. And again our commissioner and I have had the top 2 teams in the league the last 3 seasons last year he won it all the year before I did, and this year we are once again sitting on top of the league at 7-0 and 6-1. If FF was 80% luck then we wouldn't have the same 3 team dominant every year.


My guess is that there are a couple of guys who study more than the others in your league.

Thats the whole point.

What if every person in your league read everything you read heading into the season - or at least read as much as you did - not necessarily the same magazines and articles, but similar ones and put the same amount of dedication into it that you did? Do you think you would still dominate your league if the other 7 people put as much time into it as you?


This sums it up exactly.

My guess is that as a general rule people's opinions on how much skill is involved inversely relates to how good their league is.

BrutallyHuge wrote:
204BC wrote:I’d say that’s bad luck.


Indeed. If you have the highest point total each week, your chance of winning is 100%, according to my preliminary calcuations.


LOL. You are an asset to the cafe. ;-D
Last edited by josebach on Thu Oct 27, 2005 4:16 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby footballchick23 » Thu Oct 27, 2005 4:01 pm

This is the guy who has won the last 6 games and is currently in first place (6-1) in my 12-team Yahoo league:

QB- McNair, Green
RB- S. Jax, J. Jones, P. Pass
WR-Boldin, Ward, Mason
TE- Shockey, Graham
K- Feely, Longwell
DEF- DET, ATL

He beat the #1 team (the guy with LT) 2 weeks ago and had J. Jones and Ward in his line up and they didn't even play! This guy didn't mark guys off during the draft and tried to pick up Edge in the 6th round! His team isn't horrid and his defense have done well, but it's certainly not 1st place caliber, IMO. If that's not luck, I don't know what is.
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Postby gablefan » Thu Oct 27, 2005 4:57 pm

It is probably closer to 50/50 than we would all like. We probably all need to feel like we can control it, but we can't. However there are always going to be things we can't control. A good draft is key, but not as key as health. Think of it this way: You could feasably have drafted LT, Moss, TO, S Jackson and E Manning, good draft huh? Great Prep and execution, What happens when they all tear their ACL's. Skill is good, but luck is better!
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Postby Where's Ryan Leaf? » Thu Oct 27, 2005 5:54 pm

What do you call it when Anquan Boldin scores 0, LT scores 5, Frank Gore scores 10 and Donald Driver scores 19? Sorry, I'm still bitter after last week.

But, on to my point: No matter how much preparation you put into a team, there are going to be those weeks when all it comes down to is luck. Week to week, luck plays a bigger role in H2H competition. I think luck matters less if you play in a total points based league.

I'm glad this thread came back up.
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Postby Timbathia » Thu Oct 27, 2005 7:18 pm

204BC wrote:Not bad. If I plug that in using a Binomial or Poisson solution it works out at 100% both ways. You must be some sort of statistician or something.

Actually, my math was wrong earlier. The probablility of losing 3 out of 7 and being the second highest scoring team each week is .085%, not .0085%, which is slightly better odds.


Arent you in fact proving using your example that luck plays an extremely minor part in FFL? Since the odds of it happening are so small, it means it rarely happens in the thousands of other leagues going on right now. Everyone can find unlucky incidents, but in the bigger picture, luck gets minimalized.

I think skill is a VERY appropriate word to use in this discussion. Knowledge is not a skill, but the application of knowledge most definitely is. Knowing football inside-out does not necessarily translate into a good FFLer. Knowing that Holt is a better receiver than Chambers, and Jordan looked like having a good year this year is knowledge, but how you draft, who you pick up during the year in WW, how and when you trade, etc. are all about how you apply your knowledge.

If you think that all it takes to be good at FFL is for you to have read loads of info and predictions about players, then you are obviously playing against average opponents. Knowledge is necessary, but how you use it is what separates us.
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