None of this is my opinion, but I am so interested that I wanted to share it with everyone. The links are well worth following.
Last week, What If Sports—the computer simulation arm of Fox Sports—ran 10,001 simulations of the playoffs, and surprise, surprise, the Jets came out the clear favorites to win the Super Bowl. The Washington Post picked the story up, ran the numbers, and came to the conclusion that they were correct.
"NEW YORK JETS AT SAN DIEGO
"Can the Jets make it a perfect 2-for-2 in wild card teams making it to the AFC Championship? New York was the last team to get in the playoffs, winning the final game of Week 17 just to get in the field. Then they duplicated the feat by beating Cincinnati for the second straight week to advance through to the Divisional Round.
"The San Diego Chargers are there, ready and waiting after putting together an 11-game winning streak to end the year.
"As was noticed in last week's surprise, the Jets are the computer's favorite to win the Super Bowl thanks to a bevy of numbers that simply stack up well. New York had just the 21st-ranked total offense in the regular season in terms of yards per play, but they're a top-five team on the ground and that showed in a whole new way in the first round of the playoffs as Shonn Greene rushed for 139 yards on a career-high 21 carries.
"And defensively, the Jets are second to none as they gave up an astonishingly low 4.2 yards per play thanks to the top-ranked passing defense in terms of yards per attempt and the fourth-best rushing defense.
"Philip Rivers and the San Diego Chargers will have to tame that defense to extend their winning streak and advance to the conference championship. It could be tough for the Chargers' pass-heavy offense to make that happen, however. San Diego ranked fourth in the regular season at 5.9 yards per offensive play, but did almost all of that damage through the air.
"The Chargers rank first in passing yards per attempt—yes, better than Manning and the Colts or Brees and the Saints—yet they rank dead last with just 3.3 yards per carry. And defensively, the Bolts struggled against the run, giving up 4.5 yards per carry to rank near the bottom of the league for a defense that was simply middle of the run.
"In ground game versus aerial assault, yet again the computer likes the team that can run the ball and likes a battle of wild card teams in the AFC title game. The Jets win 70.3 percent of the time, winning by an average score of 24-19."
Link (scroll to bottom).
Here are the box score simulation results.
Maybe Rex Ryan isn't a wacky as some think.