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Thursday, September 16, 2010
NFC South predictions

By Pat Yasinskas
ESPN.com

I had a letter in the mailbag this morning that made me do some serious thinking.

Jesse in Trevezant, Tenn., wrote: I am a Big East man and enjoy seeing Brian Bennett's predictions for all the teams in the Big East every week. Have you considered doing this for the NFC South? I know that you do not like predictions (although you do give some from time to time), but this would be fun. You have a better grasp in the NFC South than most people since this is your area of expertise. You are in the perfect position to do this. Please consider...

My response is that I’ve thought about this for nearly the full time I’ve been at ESPN.com and probably will continue to think about it in the future. The bosses in Bristol give us freedom in this area. Some bloggers do predictions and some don’t.

I don’t and, after even more thought this morning, I’m going to continue that way. My basic philosophy behind this is I really don’t care who wins and who loses and there are tons of other people out there that make predictions that really don't mean anything. Yeah, I could throw out a guess each week, but I don’t feel like there’s anything to be gained from that – other than getting fans riled up and I try not to make that the purpose of the blog.

Besides, if I were really good at picking scores, I probably would be living in Las Vegas and not doing this. However, Jesse’s letter provided another reminder that fans do like to see predictions.

With that in mind, I’m going to start a new feature. Like I said, I won’t make predictions, but we’re going to start running predictions from Accuscore.

Those folks run 10,000 simulations of each game and provide an average score for each team. Sounds like a much more scientific and accurate way to do it than me just throwing out a guess.

So let’s turn to what Accuscore says about this week’s NFC South games.
There you have it. We’ll see how the Accuscore predictions work out for a few weeks. If we’re not happy with the results, maybe I’ll just start flipping a coin.