NFL: New Season, New Game

Over the course of the recent NFL season, a great deal of turbidity and volatility has beset most teams (with certain exceptions, such as the extremely consistent Dolphins and Bengals). Teams who were considered “Super Bowl favorites” have become second rate, and teams who seemed destined to mediocrity have arisen to never before seen heights. Whether this is unusual for a season or not is a point of debate, but nevertheless, the volatility in the NFL has exemplified its entertainment value.

Perhaps the team that best exemplifies this volatility has been our own San Francisco 49ers. In the beginning of the season, they were seemingly doomed to mediocrity once again. After a poor 2017-2018 season (going for 12 losses to 4 wins) with many injuries dooming the team, they seemed destined for another season of mediocrity. FiveThirtyEight’s sports model, for example, predicted a 7-9 losing season for the team, and it was ranked 18th-20th out of the 32 NFL teams according to most sports websites. 10 weeks later, the team has gone undefeated, and with the defeat of the Patriots last week, they remain the only undefeated team in the NFL. Most
rank them in the top 3, with the NFL’s power rankings ranking them number one in the entire NFL. The 49ers’ meteoric rise from a B-rate team to Super Bowl contenders exemplifies the volatility and entertainment value of the NFL. It shows that football isn’t an absolute and predictable sport, but instead is a dynamic, evolving, and entertaining one, constantly throwing up surprises to the delight of fans. No matter what happens, the NFL’s continued dynamism and volatility has proven that it will continue to captivate generations of Americans to come.

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