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Frequently Asked Questions

We at PossessionPoints.com want to do everything we can to help people to understand what PossessionPoints are, how they can be used and why they give the avid fan a new and valuable view of the game of professional football.

Q: Why do you call PossessionPoints a "blended stat"?
A: We use the term "blended stat" to refer to a stat which isn't pure such as those that are based on the counting of single events like yard rushing, passing etc. For example, the well-known "Quarterback Rating" is also a "blended stat" since it is a calculated number based on completions, interceptions etc. PossessionPoints is a blended stat based on an offensive scoring drive using points, time of possession and quarter in which the drive was completed.

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Q: How is PossessionPoints any different from all the other stats that are available?
A: PossessionPoints is the only "scoring" stat that excludes points scored by special teams and the defense. In addition PossessionPoints is designed to give insight into how offensive performance plays a role in a team's defensive readiness as a game progresses.

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Q: Can you use PossessionPoint rankings to pick winners in future weeks?
A: We do not make "picks" on games, we will highlight for our members how teams next weeks games match-up from a PossessionPoints stats point of view. We will show which team has a better season, last week and 4 week moving average. As with all of our information we will give subscribers all of the detailed numbers and they can make their own choices. We want to underscore that it is most useful and revealing on a game-to-game basis. We would encourage coaches to know, understand and use this stat to measure the readiness of their defense much like a baseball manager would use "pitch count" to gauge how tired a pitcher might be.

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Q: What are the "indicators" you talk about?
A: There are 3 color based indicators we use to show when a team's PossessionPoints have reached a significant value. We call the 3 indicators the "offense effect", the "net effect", and the "defense effect".

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Q: What is the "Offense Effect" and why is it significant?
A: The “Offense Effect” is the PossessionPoints scored by a team's Offense during a game. When a team reaches 60 PossessionPoints, the indicator turns “Yellow”, when the PossessionPoints reach 100, it turns “Green”. This indicator starts in the “Red Zone” (with 0 PosessionPoints ) and can only change to Yellow and Green once. It is important to remember points scored by special teams and the defense are worth 0 PossessionPoints. When we talk about a team getting into the “Green Indicator Zone”, we are talking about the “Offense Effect”. If we comment on either of the other 2 indicators we will specifically state them.

In 2006 during the regular season, there were 256 games, and 253 times a team’s possession points put them in the green indicator zone which led to a victory 200 times or 75% of the time. This is the indicator that a team’s offense directly controls and is our most important indicator.

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Q: What is the "Net Effect" and why is it significant?

The “Net Effect” is simply the Offense Effect minus the Defense Effect (the other teams Offense Effect). This indicator’s color range is:

This indicator can change multiple times during a game, and although it is rare, it can go from red to green and back to red again.

During the 2006 season, the Net Effect was Green for a team in 154 games. A team with a Green Net Effect won 90% of the time. On this site you will hear us call that the "90% Net Effect".

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Q: What is the "Defense Effect" and why is it significant?

A: The third value we talk about is the “Defense Effect” which is the PossessionPoints scored by the other team during a game, or PossessionPoints allowed. The indicator colors are the opposite of the Offense Effect. At the onset of the game, this indicator is green (with 0 PossessionPoints) and stays Green until the other team reaches 60 PossessionPoints. When this happens, the indicator turns Yellow. If the opposing team reaches 100 PossessionPoints, the indicator turns “Red”. As with the “Offense Effect” it can only change in the one direction during a game.

Obviously, since this is the opposite of the Offense Effect, we know that a team will lose 75% of the time when their indicator is Red.

The more PossessionPoints an Offense scores, the easier it is for a Defense to hold the opposing team and keep their Defense Effect indicator Green. During the 2006 season, there were 79 instances when teams ended with all 3 indicators Green, 92% of the time these teams won. In only seven games out of the 256 total games played, did teams with all three indicators in the Red win. We refer to these games as anomalies.

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Q: How will regular fans use this stat?

A: While we hope to be able to provide live updates on PossessionPoints.com for all games in the future, initially only a limited number of games will have live updates. These live updates will show the graphic we expect PossessionPoints followers will become very familiar with. A graph like this:

Eagles Saints Game Graphic

The graphic above shows the state of the Eagles - Saints playoff game when the Eagles decided to punt as opposed to take their chances on 4th and 15. The top color box next to each team's score is the "offense effect", the middle color box is the "net effect", and the bottom box is the "defense effect." With the Saints Offense effect squarely in the green zone, we at PossessionPoints.com would say it was predictable that the Eagles would not get the ball back. Decisions like this will be the topic of a weekly column called "Hindsight Haven" in our "Points-Of-The-Week" newsletter. We expect this will give regular fans more enjoyment by giving them a new view of the game. There are many outlets for standard stories and stats, but PossessionPoints.com will give a new view and frequently challenge "conventional wisdom".

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Q: If coaches start using this information to make decisions like baseball managers use pitch counts won't it lower the percent correct that the indicators are?

Well, for those that asked this question, we must say you have a good understanding of PossessionPoints and how to use them. And you are absolutely correct. The indicators will tell a coach when he is up against tough odds and needs to take a chance. As coaches start using and relying on these indicators to take these chances, they will "beat the indicators" more frequently. As time goes, this will lower the percentage that the indicators are correct, but it will continue to make the value of the indicators themselves rise as they become essential information for coaches. We will always reference 2006 as a base when these indicators were unknown. Of course we may have to rename our weekly feature in our "Points-Of-The-Week" from "Hindsight Haven" to "Thumbs Up Coach". 

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Q: Even if a coach uses the PossessionPoints indicator to guide his decision, he can't be sure the decision will work out and his team will win-- right?

A: That is true, but you could say the same thing about a card counter at a Blackjack table. There is no guarantee that even if the count is in his favor he will win that hand. However, casinos ban card counters because they swing the odds in their favor, and they will win more often than not. Until PossessionPoints becomes a staple in stadiums and with coaches, we will use our "Points-Of-The-Week" letter to demonstrate where coaches could have made better decisions.

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Q: Why should I subscribe if  you are going to publish the PossessionPoints stats on the web each week?

A: We will have tons of information on our website, and we hope people check it frequently even if they don't subscribe. But, we at PossessionPoints.com live this stat and will be analyzing every game looking for interesting angles and points to report. Our professional writers will then convert this analysis into "fun-to-read" stories which will be e-mailed to you each week. You will also have access to our Matchup information as well as all of our Fantasy Player analysis. We realize fans root hard for their team to win, but we realize that football is a game and about fun as well. We intend to entertain our readers and have fun with these stats even when we think a coach could have made a better decision.

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Q: Why do I get this non-secure items being displayed message?

Security Warning

A: This occurs when you are on the site and your browser has https://. This warning is due to the Javascript Google ads that are served on many pages of this site. This often happens to new subscribers when they return to the site from their PayPal purchase, which requires security. If you change the browser heading to http:// this warning will go away. 

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