Seattle Seahawks fans already knew this, but now the smarty-pants at Harvard have confirmed it: CenturyLink Field provides the Seahawks with the best home field advantage in the NFL.
Most Seahawks fans will probably tell you they are the reason the Seahawks lead the league in opponents’ false starts since 2005. Andrew Mooney of the Harvard College Sports Analysis Collective says it’s more than that.
“… you can’t separate the noise they make from the environment in which they make it, the stadium. It’s possible that fans in Seattle truly go bananas for the Seahawks, but the stadium’s architecture (or even its PA system) likely contributes at least some part to pumping up the volume at CenturyLink Field,” writes Mooney.
Instead of using home and away win-loss records, Mooney looked at the point differentials at home and away. He cites what he calls “considerable evidence” that point differentials are more reliable of a team’s quality than wins and losses.
Photos: Sea Gals on soggy Seahawks Sunday
Mooney divided each team’s point differential at home and on the road by the number of seasons they have been in their current stadium. The Seahawks have been at CenturyLink since 2002. He did not include teams that have been in their current stadium for five years or less, which eliminates the Colts, Cowboys, Giants and Jets.
The result was this chart. Seattle ends up on top, followed by stadiums in Baltimore, St. Louis, Arizona and Kansas City. Ranking dead last was Gillette Stadium in New England followed by the Superdome in New Orleans.
The Harvard College Sports Analysis Collective describes itself as “a student-run organization at Harvard College dedicated to the quantitative analysis of sports strategy and management.”