By Marc Lawrence, who has 2016 NFL betting preview of the AFC.
Not so coincidentally, the AFC stands 151-173-1 SU and 152-160-13 ATS in non-conference clashes against the NFC the past five seasons.
They have gone 170-151 ‘Over’ in those games, including 104-80-3 ‘Over’ when playing as a dog.
In intra conference games – AFC versus AFC – over the teams off a SU underdog win have struggled to get back up the following game, going just 66-86-9 ATS. Inside those numbers is a paltry 1-7-1 ATS mark as double-digit dogs, and a dismal 2-10 SUATS mark if the team owns a win percentage of less than .250 on the season.
Passer Rating Differential
In a passer-friendly league these days, it’s important to know that you win when you have a quality quarterback, and you lose when you don’t.
According to a study I recently completed, over the last four years of the 40 teams in the NFL that ranked in the Top 10 in season ending offensive pass efficiency, 31 of them made the playoffs.
Of the 40 teams n the NFL that ranked in the Top 10 in season ending defensive pass efficiency, 29 of them make the playoffs.
And of the 14 teams that combined to finish the season ranked in the Top in both offensive and defensive pass efficiency, 13 of them their way to the postseason.
The only one that did not: the 2015 New York Jets.
Note: team write-ups are excerpts from the 2016 PLAYBOOK Football Preview Guide magazine, on sale now at newsstands nationwide and available on the Playbook Cube App in the Apple Store, Google Play Store, and Amazon stores.
AFC EAST PREVIEW
TEAM THEME: WAITING ON THE HERD
With nary a trip to the Super Bowl in 23 years, and no playoff appearance in 17 years – the longest drought in the NFL – it’s been a long time between drinks of postseason water for the thirsting Bills. And with it the call went out to Rex Ryan last season. A .500 campaign resulted, making 2016 a year of promise in Buffalo. For that to happen, the Bills will need to shore up a defense that underachieved last year. Thus, you knew it was a Rex Ryan draft this season with the additions of DE Shaq Lawson (Clemson), ILB Reggie Ragland (Alabama) and DT Adolphus Washington (Ohio State) with the first three picks of Buffalo’s draft this year. The re-tooling should go a long way toward shoring up a stop-unit that surprisingly declined a whopping 44 YPG under Ryan last season, afterwards releasing not-so-super Mario Williams. Also gone from the offense is WR-KR Percy Harvin. It was the attack unit, though, that sparked the team. Led by superstar WR Sammy Watkins, the Bills offense improved 3 points and 44 YPG in 2015 while out-gaining 10 of its 16 opponents. In the process, QB Tyrod Taylor blossomed in his first year as a starter in the league, finishing with 20 TDs and 6 INTs in his 14 starts. Remember, in his first two years with the New York Jets, Ryan won 24 games, including four playoff victories. Buffalo fans can hardly wait.
STAT YOU WILL LIKE: Rex Ryan is 0-8 SU and 0-7-1 ATS the last three years in non-division games off one win exact.
PLAY ON: vs. Jacksonville (11/27) – *KEY
TEAM THEME: TUNSILITIS
Tick. Tick. Tick. “And with the No. 13 pick of the 2016 NFL Draft the Miami Dolphins select Laremy Tunsil, offensive tackle from Mississippi,” proclaimed commissioner Roger Goodell. As 12 other teams went silent, Tunsil plummeted from the potential No. 1 pick of the draft to Miami where the Dolphins said gas mask be damned, it’s been 15 years since our last playoff win, we’ll take him. He better fortifies an OL that features two Pro Bowl linemen in C Mike Pouncey and T Branden Albert. Its music to the ears for QB Ryan Tannehill, who has been sacked a league-high 184 times the last four years. And to new head coach Adam Gase, former Denver Broncos OC and QB whisperer. Word from Dolphins camp is Gase is enamored with Tannehill’s talent and work ethic, as is new QB coach Clyde Christenson, who coached Andrew Luck the past four seasons in Indianapolis. The drafting of gifted WR Leonte Carroo, a 3rd round pick from Rutgers, along with a finally healthy DeVante Parker (Miami’s top choice in last year’s draft) and continued development from Jarvis Landry (110 receptions last year) and Kenny Stills should give Tannehill plenty of weapons. The additions of DE Mario Williams, LB Kiko Alonso and S Byron Maxwell figures to shore up a defense led by stud DT Ndamukong Suh. Now, if Pro Bowl DE Cameron Wake bounces back, the Dolphin ‘D’ can become prominent once again.
STAT YOU WILL LIKE: Miami is 0-11 ATS in December since 2013.
PLAY AGAINST: at Baltimore 12/4 – *KEY
TEAM THEME: PATENT PENDING
Tom Brady not suiting up until Week 5.
After capturing its 7th straight AFC East title last season, and 12th in the last 13 years, it’s safe to say the Pats pretty much claim division copyright. Hoping not to let the patent expire, New England will be forced to start the season with Hall of Fame QB Tom Brady sidelined the first four games (read: Deflategate). Once Brady does suit up, he’ll be operating with a few new faces. WRs Chris Hogan (Buffalo) and Nate Washington (Houston) will look to replace Brandon LaFell, while TE Martellus Bennett (Chicago) joins Rob Gronkowski to form a lethal tight end tandem. Meanwhile, the Patriots traded DE Chandler Jones (12.5 sacks last season), released DT Dominique Easley (1st round pick in 2014) and lost DE Akiem Hick to free agency. They will look instead to newly acquired veteran DE Chris Long (Rams) and MLB Shea McClellin (Chicago) to fill the gap on defense. However, the best offseason acquisition may not be a player but a coach. That occurred when Bill Belichick convinced OL guru Dante Scarnecchia to return after a two-year absence. A two-year drop of offensive production (from 429 YPG in 2013 to 371 last year) commanded his coming back. With three of the first four games of the year at Gillette Stadium – where New England is 52-5 during the regular season since 2008 – expect veteran RB LeGarrette Blount, running between the aforementioned tight end tandem, to carry a heavy load until Brady’s return.
STAT YOU WILL LIKE: The Patriots are 0-6 ‘In The Stats’ the last six games with the Jets, averaging 271 YPG.
PLAY ON: vs. Denver (12/18) – *KEY as a dog
NEW YORK JETS
TEAM THEME: KNOCK, KNOCK
After enjoying the best offseason of all AFC teams in 2015, and arguably the entire league, the Jets parlayed that into a 10-win, six-game improvement last year. They then proceeded to make key free agent additions in RB Matt Forte, and OT Ryan Clady. Together, they will work with star WRs Brandon Marshall and Eric Decker (each with 1,000 yards and double-digit TD receptions) to help form a potent offense behind returning QB Ryan Fitzpatrick (still unsigned at press time). It was Fitzpatrick’s game skills that keyed a 6-point and 44 yards per game improvement, nearly knocking on the playoff door last year in Todd Bowles’ first season on the sidelines with the Jets. Thus, his re-signing as a free agent with the team is crucial. Especially with the team having to tackle six consecutive .500 or better opponents to open the 2016 season. Fitzpatrick worked with OC Chan Gailey in Buffalo and they appear to be in the same page in New York. Meanwhile, Bowles put his stamp on the defense down the stretch when his troops, behind a dominant secondary led by CBs Darrelle Revis and Marcus Williams (11 INTs combined), out-yarded each of its final six opponents, limiting them to 311 yards of offense in the process – while falling just short of the playoffs. It’s been six years since Rex Ryan last led Gang Green to the postseason. Bowles has what it takes to get them there this year, if he can overcome the ugly STAT YOU WILL LIKE below.
STAT YOU WILL LIKE: QB Ryan Fitzpatrick is 0-17 SU away vs. foes who ended the season with a winning record.
PLAY ON: at Buffalo (9/15) – *KEY
AFC NORTH PREVIEW
TEAM THEME: NOT-SO-SUPER JOE
After suffering a string of devastating injuries, as well as the Ravens’ first losing season under John Harbaugh last year, GM Ozzie Newsome went to work and injected youth on both sides of the ball in the draft with eight picks in the first four rounds. Add the fact that WR Breshard Perriman, last year’s No. 1 pick who missed his entire rookie season, takes the field for the first time, and suddenly a young crop of replacements is locked and loaded. In addition, the Ravens inked three big free agents in S Eric Weddle, WR Mike Wallace and TE Benjamin Watson. The return of star RB Justin Forsett, who broke his arm 10 games into the season, cannot be underestimated as the Black Birds’ running game slipped 30 RYPG last season. And then there is QB Joe Flacco, who simply has not lived up to the hype or the big contract he received after Baltimore captured Super Bowl XVVII. Like Forsett and Steve Smith Jr. and Terrell Suggs, Flacco ended the 2015 season on the injured list. His Total QBR ranking the past three years is No. 24, having tossed more INTs and fewer TDs than he did in the three years prior to winning the Super Bowl MVP award. Thus, with the help of a super-soft opening schedule, the Ravens become a “mission team” in 2016 in more ways than one.
STAT YOU WILL LIKE: 15 of the Ravens’ 20 division losses under John Harbaugh have been by a TD or less, with over half of those (8) by a field goal or less.
PLAY ON: at Jacksonville (9/25) – *KEY
TEAM THEME: BARREN von DALTON
A 12-4 season last year had the Bengals looking like they were possibly in position to win their first playoff game in 25 years – the longest drought in the league – until a late-season injury to Andy Dalton derailed their chances. Unfortunately, the red baron owned the 2nd best passer rating in the league (107.4) when he went down for the year, and Cincy fell to the Steelers in a ‘wild’ 18-16 Wild Card loss. Still, the Bengals have now made the playoffs five straight seasons, while capturing the division title two of the last three years. And though they did hit a home run in this year’s draft, the loss of OC Hue Jackson, who worked wonders with Dalton, is a major cause for concern. They’re hoping the addition of WR Brandon LaFell (New England) and 2nd-round WR Tyler Boyd from Pittsburgh will help fill the holes left by the free agent losses of receivers Marvin Jones and Mohammed Sanu. Despite opening the campaign against three salty teams that together averaged a dozen wins last season, based on the win-loss record of last year’s opponents, the Bengals (along with the Steelers) will face the 5th softest schedule in 2016 with foes a combined 125-142 (.468). Granted, a 13-3-1 ATS mark last season will be next to impossible to top, but with Dalton and his entire front line back in 2016, they’re more than ready to give that elusive playoff butterfly another try.
STAT YOU WILL LIKE: The Bengals are 11-3 SU and 12-1-1 ATS as a pick or dog of 3 or less points off a DD win under Marvin Lewis.
PLAY ON: at Pittsburgh (9/18)
TEAM THEME: BELIEVELAND
Though it seems the Browns have had more starting quarterbacks than wins the past 16 years, the truth is they’ve had only two winning seasons since returning to the NFL in 1999. But the hire of Hue Jackson as head coach should prove to be a stroke of genius. Masterful moves in this year’s draft awarded them the ‘top grade’ of all teams according to Pro Football Focus, while insuring repeated success in drafts to come with the trade of their No. 2 pick to Philadelphia. Granted, this year’s roster more closely resembles that of an expansion team, and the front office consists largely of first-time NFL execs, but they were moves that desperately needed to happen in order to wipe away the many years of incompetence. There’s no question the rebuild will take a few years to fully heal this fractured franchise, but in Jackson they are surely on the right path. The last five head coaches fired in the AFC North were Browns coaches, all of whom were canned after facing the Steelers in the final game of the season. Stopgap QB Robert Griffin III (the 25th starting signal-caller for this team since 1999) was signed in hopes of adding a jolt of stability behind center. And according to QB coach guru Terry Shea, “RG3 has never been healthier and is throwing the ball better than he ever has.” Yes, there are believers in Cleveland once again these days.
STAT YOU WILL LIKE: The Browns were outscored by a total of 154 points last year.
TEAM THEME: STAND UP AND BE COUNTED
Were it not for standby quarterbacks, the Steelers may likely have been home for the holidays last season. We’re talking opponent’s backups, by the way, not Pittsburgh’s. A quick perusal of last year’s schedule notes the Black Curtain faced a total of 6 reserve starting signal-callers during its final nine games of the season. To their credit, they went 5-1 in those contests, before finally bowing out to Peyton Manning and the Broncos. Ironically, the Steelers will face only one team in its final nine games after its Bye Week this campaign that actually owned a winning record last season. The better news, though, is that despite the fact that WR Martavius Bryant is suspended for the season, star RB Le’Veon Bell will be playing, and not suspended, to start the season this year. His backup last year, DeAngelo Williams, rushed for over 900 yards and 11 TDs. Together they will form a lethal combination. Unfortunately, TE Heath Bell retired but his replacement, large Ladarius Green, likely figures to become a frequent target for QB Ben Roethlisberger. Big Ben enters off the most productive season of his career, and benefited mightily from Mike Munchak’s OL schemes, but at age 34 one wonders how long he can keep the nuts and bolts in place. In addition, after finishing with the No. 21-ranked defense, the Steelers focused on that side of the ball in this year’s draft with their top three selections all protection players.
STAT YOU WILL LIKE: Roethlisberger is 20-3 SU in his NFL career games played in Ohio.
PLAY ON: vs. New England (10/23) – *KEY as a dog
AFC SOUTH PREVIEW
TEAM THEME: 72 LARGE
Yep. The man can coach. After taking over a 2-win squad in 2014, Bill O’Brien has led the Texans to a pair of 9-win seasons… largely without much of a quarterback. After trying to make lemonade from lemon QBs Brian Hoyer, Case Keenum, Brandon Weeden and T.J.Yates, O’Brien gets his wish in 2016 – in a large way, we might add – when career Peyton Manning backup 6’8” Brock Osweiller and his mega contract enters his first full year as a starter in the NFL. And with it the big bird becomes the face of the franchise. Working in tandem with star WR DeAndre Hopkins, rookie WRs Will Fuller and Braxton Miller will operate with new RB Lamar Miller as the offense looks to make strides inside a rapidly improving division. In order to repeat as AFC South champs, Houston will rely once again on a stout defense, led by sackmeister J.J. Watt (17.5 sacks last season – best in the NFL). Following its Bye Week last season, the Texans’ defense limited five foes to season-low yards. Any added effort from former No. 1 pick Jadeveon Clowney could make this unit special. In closing, though, keep these 2015 numbers in mind when evaluating the $72M spent for Osweiller – Hoyer: 158 of 262 for 60.3%, 1,847 passing yards with 12 TDs and 5 INTs. Osweiller: 156 of 251 for 62.2%, 1,821 passing yards with 9 TDs and 5 INTs.
STAT YOU WILL LIKE: The Texans are 12-2 SU and 11-3 ATS as favorites under O’Brien, including 8-0 SUATS versus an opponent off a loss.
PLAY ON: vs. Indianapolis (10/16) – *KEY as a dog
TEAM THEME: GOOD LUCK HORSESHOE
The ‘Greatest Shoe on Earth’ ended the season shoeless when star QB Andrew Luck went from bad-to-out after a myriad of injuries finally ended his season following the Denver game. Through it all the Colts concluded the season a league-worst 2-14 ITS (In The Stats), yet somehow managed 8 wins for the year. The first priority in this year’s draft became bolstering the offensive line, one that offered little-to-no resistance for opposing front sevens. Center Ryan Kelly and OT Le’Raven Clark became targeted commodities, while two other OL were tabbed later in the draft. Another main concern this year is finding a running game as 33-year old Frank Gore averaged a career-worst 3.7 YPR last season. RB Robert Turbin was acquired as a free agent from the Dallas Cowboys, but it appears the ball will be in Gore’s hands to start the season. Meanwhile 43-year old PK Adam Vinatieri, the league’s oldest player, continued to thrive when he nailed 25 of 27 FGs. A soft getaway this season, with 4 of their first 5 games coming against foes that sported a losing record last year, helps. Perplexing, though, is Luck’s mediocre 21-21 SU and 22-20 ATS mark in games outside the division. While that number is far from bad, it pales in comparison with his 17-2 SU and 14-3-2 ATS mark inside the division. But make no mistake, this team needs it’s lucky horseshoe back and will go only as far as a healthy Luck can carry them. Remember, Luck is 16-4 SUATS in games off a loss in his NFL career, including 5-1 SU and 6-0 ATS as a dog.
STAT YOU WILL LIKE: The Colts are 13-1 SU and 12-1-1 ATS when playing on Thursdays in their franchise history.
PLAY AGAINST: vs. Jacksonville (10/2)
TEAM THEME: OPERATION OVERHAUL
While a 5-11 season would normally be depressing for most teams, it was not the case for the Jaguars last year. For openers, 6 of the 11 losses were by a touchdown or less. Factor in that only Tom Brady threw more TD passes than QB Blake Bortles in 2015 and suddenly things go from bad to better. Sure, Bortles led the league in interceptions, and was sacked more than anyone in the league, but he also improved from 11 TDs in his rookie season to 35 TDs last year. A superlative draft coupled with the debut of last year’s No. 1 choice LB Dante Fowler – the No. 3 pick in last year’s draft lost for the year during rookie minicamp – suddenly puts a new spin on this troubled franchise. There is no refuting the fact that the pass defense was atrocious, but FS Jalen Ramsey, this year’s top draft pick, quickly figures to be an impact player. In addition, free agent pickups Prince Amukamara and Tashaun Gipson figure to add instant relief to the secondary. If LB Myles Jack can contribute, then the defense quickly goes from shoddy to duteous. With 6 of it seven choices from a fabulous draft this season coming on the defensive side of the ball, the Jags’ stop-unit figures to make major gains. Wideouts Allen Robinson and Allen Hurns are a dynamite WR tandem, and the addition of RB Chris Ivory makes the offense legit. Look out AFC South. There are new kids on the block and they’re for real.
STAT YOU WILL LIKE: The Jaguars will face only one opponent in their first seven games that owned a winning record last season.
PLAY AGAINST: at Indianapolis (1/1)
TEAM THEME: LISTEN TO THIS MULARKEY
Is head coach Mike Mularkey along for the ride, or can he head the Titans in the right direction? We’ll know sooner than later. Prized QB Marcus Mariota was inspiring in his debut last season, despite the firing of Ken Whisenhunt, the former head coach/quarterback whisperer. Tennessee once again struck gold in this year’s draft while also adding RB DeMarco Murray and WR Rishard Matthews to bolster its attack. In addition, they signed the best free agent center on the market in Ben Jones while adding OT Jack Conklin with its No. 1 pick in the draft. Along with 2014’s No. 1 selection OT Taylor Lewan, the OL is suddenly in good hands. Long-time league defensive coordinator Dick LeBeau fits with the Titans like peanut butter with chocolate. His hire last year helped solidify a Tennessee defense that was in denial as Tennessee improved 31 YPG in yardage allowed under his lead. As we pointed out on these pages last year, the Tennessean.com
said, “LeBeau is in the same union as Santa Claus and the Tooth Fairy. He shows up in the middle of the night and delivers great defense while we’re sleeping.” His defenses have earned five No. 1 rankings and he owns two Super Bowl rings with the Steelers. It’s said he makes average players good, good players great, and great players elite. And we live by our words. Don’t look now but the AFC South is suddenly up for grabs.
STAT YOU WILL LIKE: As an NFL head coach, Mularkey is 6-1 SUATS as a favorite of more than 3 points.
PLAY ON: vs. Cleveland (10/16)
AFC WEST PREVIEW
TEAM THEME: DRAINED
Let’s tell it like it is. Since 1980, defending Super Bowl champions are losers the following season… at least to the spread. Collectively they’ve managed to beat the spread less than 49% of the time, well below the 54% level needed to show a profit. Worse, only 3 of them have repeated as champions. So where does that leave retired Peyton Manning’s Broncos this season? Much like a lost traveler in cannibal country: mainly in hot water. Not only must Denver soldier on without Manning but they are also without his backup Brock Osweiler, who took the money and ran off to Houston. The Broncos also lost DE Malik Jackson and LB Danny Trevathan from a defense that led the league in sacks (52) last season. A sub-par draft won’t supply many answers this year, either. While they traded up to pluck QB Paxton Lynch in the first round, he figures to be holding the clipboard for Mark Sanchez for a while. Fourth-round RB Devontae Booker (Utah) may end up being a diamond in the rough while pushing C.J. Anderson for playing time. With an offense in transition, it appears the defense will once again be the key. It’s not often you find a team that won a Super Bowl yet was out-yarded in every playoff game in the process. Here’s hoping Von Miller and company keep their foot on the pedal. Otherwise, an orange flush could be in the offing.
STAT YOU WILL LIKE: The Broncos are 15-0 SU and 14-1 ATS away in division games the last five years.
PLAY AGAINST: vs. Oakland (11/6)
TEAM THEME: ANDY DANGERFIELD
One would think that a team who flung 10 straight wins together to clinch a playoff spot would be a hot commodity the following year. It’s not necessarily so, though, with the Chiefs. They flew under the radar during most of a 10-game win skein last season as they were installed as favorites of more than a touchdown only two times throughout the winning blitz. And speaking of underrated, QB Alex Smith, whose 18 TDs and 6 INTs equated into a rock-solid 93.4 QB Rating in 2014, bettered those marks in 2015 when he posted a 95.4 QB Rating on 20 TDs and 7 INTs. However, it’s head coach Andy Reid that is living high off the hog in Kansas City these days. With 32 wins in three seasons with the Chiefs, and sporting a 0-8 SUATS mark in postseason play dating back to 1994, KC finally managed to win a playoff game in stunning fashion last season when they blanked the Texans, 30-0, in Houston. So why is it Kansas City remains the Rodney Dangerfield of the NFL? For openers, the loss of star LB Justin Houston, the defense’s best player who averaged more than 11 sacks per year in his five-year career, to a possible season-ending ACL injury in March could prove devastating. And OC Doug Pederson is now the Philadelphia Eagles head coach. So the heat is now back on Andy. Right where he wants it.
STAT YOU WILL LIKE: Chiefs head coach Andy Reid is 17-0 SU with rest versus sub .888 opponents.
PLAY AGAINST: vs. Houston (9/18) – *KEY
TEAM THEME: JUST MOVE, BABY
In going 7-9 in his first season with the Raiders last year, head coach Jack Del Rio managed to put a halt to TEN double-digit loss seasons over the previous eleven years. They weren’t finished there, though. During the offseason Oakland brought in free agent LB Bruce Irvin and signed CB Sean Smith and S Reggie Nelson, who tied for the lead in interceptions with Cincinnati last season. The Raiders also aced the draft in acquiring Karl Joseph of West Virginia, the best safety on the board. By the time the dust had settled, the Vegas, err, Oakland Raiders earned the best offseason grade of all 32 NFL teams from Pro Football Focus. If Del Rio can manage a bi-polar schedule to his advantage, he could find his team back in the playoffs for the first time since 2003. That’s because the Raiders face the easiest slate in the league during the first half of the season, taking on only one foe with a winning record while the other seven owned a 38-74 mark combined last year. The second half of the itinerary is another matter when Oakland faces only one opponent that sported a losing record last year, with the other seven logging a 75-37 collective win-loss record. And amazingly, as a result CG Technology at the M Resort installed the Raiders as dogs in only 4 games this season. Coupled with 3 of their first 4 games in Eastern Time zones, and one of its home games in Mexico City, Oakland’s schedule will be challenging. With a franchise QB in Derek Carr, a superstar WR in Amari Cooper and arguably the best LB in the league in Khalil Mack anchoring the team, this team is hoping it doesn’t crap out this year.
STAT YOU WILL LIKE: The Raiders are 1-12 SUATS vs. foes off a pair of losses by 7 or more points each.
PLAY AGAINST: vs. Baltimore (10/2)
TEAM THEME: RIVERS’ EDGE
After taking the gas in every division game last season – the only team in the league to do so – the Chargers basically played two different halves in the season. During their first eight games, they managed to win the stats 7 times – while claiming just two wins for their effort. As a result, the white flag went up as San Diego went 2-6 ITS (In The Stats) while finishing with their lowest win total since 2003. Making matters worse, the Bolts took a major hit during the offseason, losing star S Eric Weddle, WR Malcom Floyd, and TE Ladaruis Green, all to free agency. The big news on offense was the signing of OC Ken Whisenhunt, whose lone season with QB Philip Rivers and the Chargers in 2013 concluded with a career year for Rivers when San Diego finished 5th in the league in total offense after having been 31st the year prior. It’s safe to say that at 34 years old, Rivers needs Whisenhunt at this stage of his career like Sonny needed Cher. Sure, Rivers is 32-12 SU in December throughout his NFL career, but even that record took a hit (1-3) last year. New target Travis Benjamin (Cleveland) figures to earn his keep, while the Chargers look to get one more upright year from creaky, 35-year old TE Antonio Gates. Should top receiver Keenan Allen bounce back from a season-ending injury last year, improvement looks to be in the offing.
STAT YOU WILL LIKE: San Diego is 10-1 ATS as a road dog of more than 4 points under Mike McCoy.
PLAY ON: vs. Oakland (10/9) – *KEY +4.5 or more points