# Predicting the Success of NFL Teams using Complex Network Analysis

### Matheus de Oliveira Salim, Wladmir Cardoso Brandão

#### Abstract

The NFL (National Football League) is the most popular sports league in the United States and has the highest average attendance of any professional sports league in the world, moving billions of dollars annually through licensing agreements, sponsorships, television deals, ticket and product sales. In addition, it moves a billionaire betting market, which heavily consumes statistical data on games to produce forecasts. Moreover, game statistics are also used to characterize players performance, dictating their salaries. Thus, the discovery of implicit knowledge in the NFL statistics becomes a challenging problem. In this article, we model the behavior of NFL players and teams using complex network analysis. In particular, we represent quarterbacks and teams as nodes in a graph and labor relationships among them as edges to compute metrics from the graph, using them to discover implicit properties of the NFL social network and predict team success. Experimental results show that this social network is a scale-free and small-world network. Furthermore, node degree and clustering coefficient can be effectively used to predict team success, outperforming the usual passer rating statistic.

Download#### Paper Citation

#### in Harvard Style

Salim M. and Brandão W. (2018). **Predicting the Success of NFL Teams using Complex Network Analysis**.In *Proceedings of the 20th International Conference on Enterprise Information Systems - Volume 1: ICEIS,* ISBN 978-989-758-298-1, pages 135-142. DOI: 10.5220/0006697101350142

#### in Bibtex Style

@conference{iceis18,

author={Matheus de Oliveira Salim and Wladmir Cardoso Brandão},

title={Predicting the Success of NFL Teams using Complex Network Analysis},

booktitle={Proceedings of the 20th International Conference on Enterprise Information Systems - Volume 1: ICEIS,},

year={2018},

pages={135-142},

publisher={SciTePress},

organization={INSTICC},

doi={10.5220/0006697101350142},

isbn={978-989-758-298-1},

}

#### in EndNote Style

TY - CONF

JO - Proceedings of the 20th International Conference on Enterprise Information Systems - Volume 1: ICEIS,

TI - Predicting the Success of NFL Teams using Complex Network Analysis

SN - 978-989-758-298-1

AU - Salim M.

AU - Brandão W.

PY - 2018

SP - 135

EP - 142

DO - 10.5220/0006697101350142