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Tuesday, August 7, 2012
ChatWrap: Averaging 30 points per game

By Kevin Seifert

Tuesday's SportsNation chat brought the predictable number of jokes -- some nice, some not so much -- about canceling at the last minute. We also hashed through CampTour'12 as it stands thus far and began drawing conclusions about the impact of our observations on what we think about the 2012 season.

One question in particular merited further discussion:

William (Texas)

Over-under: 2.5 teams average 30 points from the North?

Kevin Seifert (2:12 PM)

I'll take the under. That's a high margin.

As many of you have noted, I know nothing about betting. So I don't know if I made a strategic error here. What I do know: I would be really surprised if more than two NFC North teams average at least 30 points per game this season, which -- if my math is correct -- would translate to at least 480 points for the season.

The awesome database at pro-football-reference.com shows us that 20 teams have averaged at least 30 points per game since the NFL moved to the 16-game schedule in 1978. That's an average of fewer than one per season, if my calculator is working correctly. Multiple teams have done it in four of those 34 previous seasons: 2011, 2004, 2000 and 1998.

Historically speaking, then, the odds are against three NFL teams averaging 30-plus points per game in a season, much less three in one division. The Green Bay Packers, Chicago Bears and Detroit Lions all have the capacity to achieve it under ideal scenarios, but odds are at least one of them will fall short.