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Want to know how crowd noise impacts playoff road teams? Pay attention to the offensive tackles

By John Shirley, Sports Info Solutions Jan 10, 2019

 Divisional​ weekend​ is​ upon​ us,​ and​ as we​ look at​ the very​ loud​ home environments​ that​ the​ hosts​ will​​ enjoy — particularly the Superdome in New Orleans — it lends the question: Does crowd noise actually have a measurable impact on the events on the field? And if it does, how will it impact this season’s playoffs?

During wild-card weekend, the Chargers, Eagles, and Colts all won on the road, no small feat considering that over the last 10 postseasons home teams have won 65 percent of the time. While home winning percentage is inflated in the playoffs due to the fact that better teams usually get to play at home —though you can argue that’s not the case in any of the Chargers playoff games this year — home-field advantage still shows up in the regular season. During the past three regular seasons home teams have won 58 percent of the time, so it is clear that home-field advantage is real and is playing a role in the NFL. However, there is a disconnect between conventional football theory and current analytics when it comes to the effect crowd noise has on home-field advantage.

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