4 Game Suspension (05/12/15)

By John Ewing Director of Research and Analytics @johnewing
What impact will Brady's suspension have on the Patriots' season?

Update: The NFL and commissioner Roger Goodell has upheld the four-game suspension of New England Patriots' quarterback Tom Brady. When the suspension was originally announced we ran simulations to determine the impact of Brady's punishment on New England's season.

The NFL suspended Tom Brady for four games without pay. The league also fined the New England Patriots $1 million and two draft picks because of Deflategate

How will Brady's absence impact the Patriots' season?

If Brady played a full season, New England's average record after 50,000 simulations would be 10.1 wins (4th highest win total in the NFL) and 5.9 losses. The Patriots would win the AFC East by 1.1 games. Brady would complete 63.6 percent (364-of-573) of his passes for 4,435 yards, 35 touchdowns and 12 interceptions.

Without the future Hall of Famer for the first four games of the season the Patriots still win the AFC East. New England's average record is 9.4 wins and 6.6 losses. Brady is projected to throw for 3,241 yards, 25 touchdowns and 10 interceptions in an abbreviated season.

The defending champions will begin their title defense without the Super Bowl MVP on September 10th against the Pittsburgh Steelers. Brady will miss Week 2 at Buffalo, Week 3 at home against Jacksonville and a road trip to Dallas in Week 4.

With Brady, the Patriots would be favorites in all four of those games. Instead, assuming Jimmy Garoppolo is the starter, New England is the projected loser against Pittsburgh, Buffalo and Dallas. Even without Brady, the Patriots are still likely to rough up Jacksonville.

Brady's four game suspension will hurt the team but the Patriots will still end up on top of the AFC East.

The Impact of Tom Brady's Suspension

Projected Stats With Brady Without Brady
Record 10.1-5.9 9.4-6.6
Win AFC East? Yes Yes

Change in New England's Win Probability

Game With Brady Without Brady
vs. Pittsburgh 64.7% 44.5%
at Buffalo 51.4% 33.9%
vs. Jacksonville 85.9% 65.7%
at Dallas 55.2% 38.7%