The Madden video game simulation has been providing Super Bowl predictions since Super Bowl 38. In that time, Madden has cruised to a 10-5 record. A record that is one win away from all but guaranteeing them a playoff spot. You know, if they were a real team in a real league and didn’t exist in a virtual reality…
So why did we get to a place in which we’re allowing video games to give us a surprisingly accurate view into who is going to hoist the Lombardi trophy? Because Madden has changed the shape of the NFL. Just look at this formation the Patriots ran in the AFC championship game against the Chiefs.
Video games rule and people want to see both how far our technology has evolved and how far it can can continue to evolve.
It’s interesting because the simulation doesn’t tend to correctly predict the scoreline. Super Bowl 43 was predicted to be the Steelers over the Cardinals 28-24. It was one point off for each, with the Steelers actually prevailing 27-23. This was the sixth season of Madden predictions and the closest the game had come to picking the score correctly.
It wasn’t until the Malcolm Bulter pick off Russell Wilson at the end of Super Bowl 49 that Madden had finally reached their virtual promised land. They predicted a Patriots 28-24 victory, got a Patriots 28-24 victory, and I was jumping up and down like a madman on top of a bar in Austin, Texas. But that’s neither here nor there.
What’s wild is in the earlier stages of the simulator it was wildly accurate in picking a winner. The first four were correct, and they were on a roll for almost 10 years. However the last six have been split 3-3.
Super Bowl 53
If the trend of the last six years is to continue, then Madden will be flipping from the loss column to the win column this year. Much to the dismay of Patriots fans like myself, the simulator has predicted a Rams victory. 30-27.