Thursday, May 11, 2017

/r/NFL Grades the Draft: Survey Results/Analysis

On Tuesday, I asked /r/NFL to participate in a survey where users gave grades to how they thought the teams drafted. I got 394 responses over the past couple days, closed the survey, and have brought you the results.

Best Draft

/r/NFL had pretty clear thoughts on this one, regardless of fandom. A near majority of users, 49.7%, awarded best draft status to the Cleveland Browns. The 49ers were a clear second place. After the Eagles, no team received more than single-digit votes.

Team Votes Percentage of Votes
Cleveland Browns 194 49.7%
San Francisco 49ers 66 16.9%
Los Angeles Chargers 20 5.1%
Tampa Bay Buccaneers 17 4.4%
Philadelphia Eagles 11 2.8%

Fun Facts

  • Users were of course somewhat more likely to say their own team had the best draft than the crowd. For example, 10 of 12 Browns voters picked their own team--83.3% to 49.7%.

  • The only votes for the Lions, Chiefs, Broncos, Steelers, Dolphins, Raiders, Giants, Packers, Bears, Vikings, and Cowboys came from their own fans.

  • The "most homer" fanbase of any particular size, though, is certainly the Colts, whose 9 votes for best draft include 6 of their own fans' (66.6%). Runner-up: the Eagles, with 7/11 (63.6%).

Worst Draft

The consensus on worst draft is even more clear-cut. /r/NFL was really not enamored of the Chicago Bears' move up for Mitch "Mitchell" Trubisky. The Bears received 53.4% of the votes, and the gap between them and the next team (the Patriots) is far larger than the Browns-49ers "winner" gap.

Team Votes Percentage of Votes
Chicago Bears 204 53.4%
New England Patriots 27 7.1%
Kansas City Chiefs 18 4.7%
Los Angeles Rams 14 3.7%
Cincinnati Bengals 13 3.4%
New York Jets 13 3.4%
Seattle Seahawks 11 2.9%
New York Giants 10 2.6%

Fun Facts

  • The most self-hating fanbase is probably the Bears, with 2 of 10 total votes (20%) agreeing that their draft was the worst. There was one vote for the 49ers from a 49ers fan... and that was it, nobody else did it.

  • Shockingly, rivals were somewhat likely to vote for teams their division. The Falcons' and Panthers' only votes came from a Saints and Falcons fan, respectively. The team most affected by one rival was of course the poor Jets. 5 of 13 votes, 38.4%, were from Patriots fans.

  • But the team with the most divisional hate overall was the Chiefs, with 8 of 18 (44.4%) from collective AFC West rivals. Broncos voters were the only of the only fanbases to not pick the Bears as the consensus draft loser, with 7 of 16 saying the Chiefs and 4 saying the Bears.

  • For some reason I allowed free responses on this one, so we had a vote for "Roger Goodell" as the worst drafter. From, naturally, a Patriots fan.


Users were asked to rate their own team's draft performance on a 1-10 scale. To the surprise of nobody, users were generally positive, and the total average rating is 7.9898 out of 10 (effectively, 8). Browns and 49ers fans were the two most positive fanbases, while Bears and Jets fans were the most pessimistic, going as low as 6.3. The table below shows the top 5 most and least positive fanbases:

Team Average Self-Ranking
Cleveland Browns 9.16
San Francisco 49ers 9.04
Indianapolis Colts 8.80
Los Angeles Chargers 8.50
Carolina Panthers 8.42
... ...
Detroit Lions 7.53
New York Giants 6.88
Los Angeles Rams 6.75
Chicago Bears 6.36
New York Jets 6.33

"Random" Ranking of Other Team

I wanted to compare self-evaluations to a random evaluation from another fanbase. Because I was lazy, it wasn't truly random; I instead asked fanbases to rank the team just below them in alphabetical order (example: New York Giants fans ranked the Jets' draft, while Jets fans ranked the Raiders' draft, and so forth).

The average of all these rankings came out to be significantly lower, dropping from 8 to 6.5. No matter who the other team was, users were far lower on it than their own teams' draft. Bengals fans were by far the most positive on the Browns' draft, with an average of 8.83, while Panthers fans were clearly the lowest on the Bears' draft, with an average of 4. Essentially, the random picks do correspond to the overall best/worst, as you can see above.

That's not to say there isn't anything interesting to talk about with these, though! I wanted to ID the biggest gaps between a fanbase's 1-10 ranking of their picks and the perception of the "objective" fanbase. The top 10 biggest discrepancies are in the final table. The Patriots and Bears have tied for most disagreement between their fanbase's take and the ranking fanbase's take, indicating /r/nfl found them the most incorrectly optimistic.

Team Discrepancy Between Ranking
New England Patriots 2.64
Chicago Bears 2.64
Atlanta Falcons 2.23
Denver Broncos 2.18
Los Angeles Chargers 2.17
Indianapolis Colts 2.13
Buffalo Bills 2.07
Seattle Seahawks 2.00
Dallas Cowboys 1.92
Pittsburgh Steelers 1.86

Fun Facts

  • Note that I did of course put "objective" in quote marks for a reason. There were a couple examples of fans rating their divisional rivals that show in the table and probably need an asterisk: the 49ers fans ranked the Seahawks' draft, the Chiefs ranked the Chargers, and the Texans ranked the Colts.

  • The Browns saw the smallest discrepancy between their own rating and the other fanbase's, with a mere 0.33 difference on average.

  • Amazingly, the Jets are lower on their own draft on average (6.33) than their ranking fanbase (6.66). They're the only team that hated their own draft more than the rankers.

If you want to look at the rawa data yourself... Here's a link to the results.

I love surveys and the off-season is long and full of boredom, so if you can think of anything else you'd like to see, let me know!

Submitted May 11, 2017 at 09:15AM by Super_Nerd92
via reddit

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