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Suck it Simmons (Colts Luck)

Colts are five plays away from potentially being 3-9

-Bill Simmons (and many others)

Columnists and commentators have whined about the Colts luck, tried to dismiss their accomplishments by picking key plays (including plays made by the Colts, rather than mistakes, by the opposing team) and hypothetically reversing them and saying that the other team then wins the hypothetical game. This is ridiculously dumb for a varity of reasons, but lets cut right to the big picture.

Both Football Outsiders and Advanced NFL Stats produce "expected wins" from their statistical breakdowns giving the number of games a team with the team in question's schedule and overall performance would win on average. This allows you to get a rough value for a teams "luck" the wins they got over or under what a team that played at their level and against their schedule would be expected to win.

The Colts, as usual outperformed their expected wins (the gap isn't entirely random non-predictive events, but includes factors that can't really be factored in objectively like coaching and Peyton Manning being consistantly awesome on 3rd down). The Colts were "lucky" but they weren't even in the top 5 of either sites listing.

The sites disagree on most of the of the top luck teams, but one team exceeded it's expected wins by 2 games on both sites ratings. That team that was ahead of the Colts and one of the two luckiest on both sites?

The New England Patriots.

Whine and moan all you want about the Patriots being robbed and the "lucky" Colts Simmons, other ignorant Pats homers and the other assorted Colts haters, but the Colts performed up to their win total more than the Patriots (and many other teams)