If you need help figuring out who will win next Sunday’s Super Bowl, Madden simulations aren’t a bad place to start.
For the past 12 years, the EA Sports football video game franchise has simulated the Super Bowl and correctly picked nine champions for a 75 percent success rate.
Last year, its simulation was eerily spot-on, predicting not only the correct champion (Patriots), but the exact final score (28-24), Tom Brady winning Super Bowl MVP, Brady’s stats (328 yards and four touchdowns vs. a predicted 335 yards and four touchdowns), and the fact that New England came back from a 24-14 deficit.
This year, Madden NFL 16 — the second most-popular game in 2015, according to NPD — is picking the Carolina Panthers to beat the Denver Broncos, 24-20, with Cam Newton taking home MVP honors after throwing for 216 yards and a touchdown.
In the simulation, the Panthers jumped out to a 17-0 lead, but Denver stormed back and led 20-17 late in the fourth quarter. In the end, though, it was Newton running for a game-winning touchdown with less than one minute left that sealed the deal for Carolina.
Microsoft Bing, meanwhile, is also picking Carolina to win its first Super Bowl ever with a 64 percent probability rating.
“Both defenses are stout, so our models expect Carolina’s much stronger offense to be the difference, becoming the first 18-win champion in 30 years,” Bing wrote today.
Before the NFL playoffs kicked off in January, Bing’s prediction model picked New England to beat Carolina in the Super Bowl. Bing is 10-4 in the playoffs and ended the regular NFL season with a 161-95 (63 percent) record.