Sunday, February 2, 2014

Profiting by Learning: The After Game Analysis of Super Bowl #48

updated at  02.03.2014  (3:33 hr)

Playing the Super Bowl on the same weekend as the celebration of the Chinese New Year of the Horse does not mean that the Broncos team was going to win the Super Bowl.   ... An offense that depends on an one dimensional approach and tactical gimmicks, usually have trouble against a "complete" defense that is injury-free. 

Defeating the New England Patriots by a grand score does not mean that Broncos was going to win automatically. Especially, when the Patriots defense had a massive amount of injuries and no personnel depth. It also does not mean that the Broncos defeated a quality opponent.   In some instances, this 19 game marathon is about last man standing. Regardless of the quality of the competition, the competitor must focus on getting to the last game.

One could defeat a roster of injury-prone opponents by a high number of points and be declared a stronger competitor while another unknown team with an inexperienced QB defeated a roster of non-injury-prone opponents by an average of 10-14 points and be declared an underdog.   . . .  Most amateurs preferred to focused on the obvious rules of thumb. They take things for granted.  ... Then, there is the smaller group of professionals who carefully viewed the stats, read between the lines, and always looking for that hidden strategic inflection point (sip) that could lead to an advantageous gain.   . . . (This practice is quite deep. We will touch on it in our Scripting Book project one day.)  Sometimes, the quality behind certain stats could be questionable at best.   . . .  One should always test the quality of information before accepting it.  ...  For those who compete in the information economy, think carefully about that last point.

While Seattle defense disrupted the protection of the Denver quarterback by using an assortment of three to four rushers, they also prevented the offense from gaining any relevant offensive momentum.  

The Bronco choked from the first play of the game to the end.  In spite of what some of the news media experts opinions,  the quarterback does not win any of the games.  The entire team wins the games.  ...  Seattle played and scored as a team.   It is expected that the offense contributed to the majority of the total score.  Their defense and their special team also scored a touchdown.

After gaining the 29-0 lead, the Seattle teams continued with the tactic of pounding the ball toward the line of the scrimmage while the defense played a "prevent" formation.  Its motive was to control the clock and soften the Broncos defensive line.   Psychologically, the true rationale of "the continuously run" tactic was to break the Broncos will to win.   ...

In summary, Seattle was victorious with the score of 43-8. 

Side Note 
Based on our previous assessment,  we knew that Seattle had a superior special team. 

Historical Notes
In 1978, the Broncos lost to the Dallas Cowboys in Super Bowl XII .  They also lost to  the San Francisco Forty Niners (1990) in Super Bowl XXIV.  Interestingly, both years were also the Year of Horse.  In the 1978 defeat and this year's defeat, the MVP were defensive players.

Many years later, history repeats itself again in its own unique way.   

The Orange Crush were flushed into mush by the Seattle's team.  . . .   

Remember that the game  is won on the field not by predictions by the numerous illogical and overpaid sport experts and clueless celebrities.  They are the victims of the Occam Effect.  ...  Offense always thrill the non-experts and the ADD-based speculators but it is usually "the defense that  usually win the championships. "  . . .  You could take that principle to the bank.  . . . 

In the history of Super Bowl games,  defense have won about 60% of the games.  The number of games that favored the defense, would have increased if it were not for the increasing number of the "favoring the offense" rules 

As in baseball, football, basketball and hockey,  defense rules in most strategic situations.  ... If the opponent cannot score, winning becomes a zero possibility.

Side Notes (updated) 
"If I know our troops can attack, but do not know the enemy cannot be attacked, it is only halfway to victory. If I know the enemy can be attacked, but do not realise our troops cannot attack, it is only halfway to victory. Knowing that the enemy can be attacked, and knowing that our army can attack, but not knowing the terrain is not suitable for combat, is only halfway to victory. Thus one who truly knows the army will never be deluded when he moves, never be impoverished when initiating an action.

Thus it is said if you know them and know yourself, your victory will not be imperiled. If you know Heaven and Earth, your victory can be complete." - Art of War 10

Our assessment tells me that the Seattle defense had the advantageous move of being a minimum of one step ahead of the Broncos offense by quietly knowing one or more of the following three tactical factors:
  • what was the play call (run or pass); 
  • when was the ball going to be snapped; and 
  • where the quarterback was going to pass the ball.   
Since the QB threw ducks, it became easy for the pass defenders to anticipate his objective. In this terrain,  securing the two second advantage is the name of the game.  ... I do not expect the Denver's QB to ever meet the standard of this season's feat again. The smart opposing scouts now know his weaknesses and their employers will be exploiting it next season.  

Quarterbacks who preferred to improvise by reading and responding, regularly dislikes to following the scripting process model, will be telegraphing his play calling habits at some point.  

You could learn more about this "reading the competition" skill by reading this translation of Li Quan's essay of Tai Pai Yin Jing   (Dr. Sawyer's translation of a Chinese strategic classic is excellent.) or you could talk to us.

The Seahawks defense assessed the actions of the Broncos QBpositioned themselves ahead of the play and influenced them to fail. 

Second Thoughts
If the Super Bowl was played today (Monday), Denver would have been forced to run the ball and Manning's duck passes would been intercepted numerous times.  In most instances, the Denver's offense would have not been score one touchdown.  ... Ducks rarely fly well in cold and windy weather. 

From our own experience, we learned that one could not deploy the same set of strategems repeatedly in our information economy, especially against very smart strategists and very clever and aggressive field expediters.   The Broncos coaching staff should have known that. They were focusing too much of their time and their attentiveness on their predictable strengths and did not creating variational changes in their offensive play calling and proper contingency plans. Their inability to read their competition and the state of their playing  terrain became the beginning of their downfall.

It is always amusing to speculate on what happens to certain chief decision makers who underestimate the severity of the situation and does not understand the risk consequences of bad strategic planning.

In extreme competition, some people believed too much on their strengths without ever considering their subtle weaknesses.  This is another reason why some entities just lose greatly.  . . .  Wait until next season.   . . .  Time for some NHL Hockey and MLB.

If you think that you could really assess strategically, try your skill in the "ever-shifting" stock market. =))

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