View Full Version : How big will HFA be in 2015

03-29-2015, 03:30 PM
Home field advantage will likely always be somewhat of a factor in the NFL, and I would generally expect home teams to win more games than road teams. However, lately, especially in 2014 it seems like HFA has become bigger than in many years in the past.

There have been several teams that play like the best team in football when at home, most of the time over the past few seasons. In the NFC playoffs, not a single home team lost in 2014. In the AFC, only 2 teams did. In the last 2 seasons, we've had 2 1 seeds in the Super Bowl. A lot of fans seem to like the idea that it doesn't matter where a game is played, the better team will win...however, after last year, it seems very 'pie in the sky' to believe that.

After all, it's hard to look at teams like GB and DEN, 8-0 at home and 4-4 on the road and not think it matters heavily where a game is played with them in terms of the outcome. The same could be said about NE and SEA, who also play much better at home. Until recently, the same could be said about NO. Even AZ, until they had a lot of injuries seemed to have a strong HFA. I remember when SEA beat the NO 34-7 up in SEA, but if it was in NO I'd have been surprised if the NO didn't win, because they were significantly better at home, and SEA was significantly worse on the road.

For you guys, at what point does this start to make the playoffs before the Super Bowl seem less interesting. Upsets could happen, however the odds are heavily stacked against a team traveling to a top seeded team, that is especially difficult to beat at home's stadium. Granted, we did see some instances of road teams putting up a good showing in the playoffs against teams with great HFAs. The Colts did upset the Broncos, the Cowboys gave the Packers a pretty good game imo, and may have won if not for the 'Calvin Johnson rule', though that was the right call, I don't dispute that. In the NFCC game, the Packers came close to upsetting the Seahawks, although that game wasn't very well played by either team imo.

However, the end result was still 2 1 seeds in the Super Bowl. I don't mind seeing that, however if it happens almost every year it would seem a bit too predictable, something where it's technically possible for a lower seeded team to win but seemingly highly unlikely. When it's only 1 or 2 teams that have a strong HFA, it isn't too bad for me. However, when several teams have one, it could start seeming like where a game is played has a huge role in too many games imo.

I wonder, will we see as many teams with a great HFA as we did in 2014, or will it not be as strong. What do you guys think?

03-29-2015, 03:53 PM
Home field has always been important to teams that don't travel well. If a team other than the Seahawks gets the #1 seed in the NFC, the Seahawks aren't getting to the Super Bowl.

The same can't be said with the same level of confidence about the Patriots, although AFC teams stand a better chance if they're hosting the Patriots.

From a football stand point, it shouldn't matter where the game is played, but teams obviously want to play in front of their home crowd. It provides a significant advantage and that's why it usually gets treated like a big deal.

03-29-2015, 03:59 PM
Also, it's very rare that both top seeds get to the Super Bowl so we shouldn't expect it to happen again this season. I don't think it's something that will eventually cause the NFL to tweak the rules or cause fans to lose interest.

03-30-2015, 03:04 PM
You may be right, the way so many teams had great HFAs in 2014 was probably a fluke imo.

I do think DAL would have a good chance to beat anyone in the NFC on the road. They seem to have a strong edge on SEA and beat them up in SEA, and came close to beating GB in GB.

Of course, when a team seemingly has the edge on another like DAL seemingly does with SEA, it seems they still play them well even in their home stadium. No team has beaten GB in GB other than SFO since 2012, however they are 2-0 when going up there. SD had a 5-1 edge over IND from 2005-2010, and IND were a very good team during that time span, especially tough at home, however SD beat them in IND every time they faced them during that span, their only loss to them actually came in SD.

It seems a team having a match up edge on a team overcomes HFA, even with a team that has a great HFA.

03-30-2015, 05:42 PM
It seems as if the majority of our tougher opponents will be played at home, so HFA will be a welcomed advantage.