Of all the historical trends and other metrics that get used to determine who people feel will make the playoffs and win the Super Bowl, the website PredictionMachine.com is taking it one step further.
Or, more accurately, 50,000 steps farther.
Using a data system the call the Predictalator, the website provides 50,000 simulations of full seasons to determine a Super Bowl champ, which comes with good news and bad news for the Minnesota Vikings.
The good news is that the Predictalator projects the Vikings to make the playoffs as a wild card seed this season. The bad news is that it predicts that the Vikings have just eight wins on average and a 2.1 percent chance of winning the Super Bowl.
In all, the 50,000 simulations have the Vikings winning the division 20.8 percent of the time and making the wild card round 22.5 percent of the time – which would appear to indicate the Vikings would be in the playoffs under a little more than 43 percent of the scenarios.
The most popular result from all the simulations has the Seattle Seahawks winning the Super Bowl – topping all teams by winning in 14.3 percent of the scenarios. Their most common opponent in the Super Bowl is the Pittsburgh Steelers, despite the Steelers being picked to win it all just 2.9 percent of the time.
The simulations tend to skew toward the NFC being dominant. The Green Bay Packers finish second as the team most likely to win the Super Bowl at 10.7 percent. The Arizona Cardinals are currently ranked as the best team in the NFL, but are third in the overall simulations, winning the Super Bowl 10.2 percent of the time.
Five other teams have a Super Bowl winning percentage of 5 percent or higher – New England, Carolina, Denver, the New York Giants and Cincinnati.
The percentage of making the playoffs is a different story. Nine teams have a better than 50 percent chance of making the postseason based on the simulations – Seattle (79 percent), Green Bay (78 percent), New England (67 percent), Pittsburgh (67 percent), Arizona (65 percent), the New York Giants (62 percent), Cincinnati (59 percent), Carolina (57 percent) and Denver (54 percent).
In the most common brackets that project playoff teams, the AFC field would have New England as the top seed, followed by Pittsburgh, Kansas City and Houston as division champions and Cincinnati and Denver as wild cards. The most common championship game prediction has Pittsburgh going on the road to beat New England to represent the AFC in the Super Bowl.
In the NFC, Seattle gets the No. 1 seed, followed by division champions Green Bay, the Giants and Carolina, with Arizona and Minnesota both being wild cards eliminated in the first round. The simulations most likely project Seattle beating Green Bay to get to the Super Bowl.
While the 50,000 simulations have the Vikings winning 8.3 games, they have a higher win percentage in 10 games. Their wins are projected at Tennessee (57 percent) vs. the Giants (51 percent), vs. Houston (56 percent), at Philadelphia (60.3 percent), vs. Detroit (66.5 percent), at Detroit (56.5 percent), vs. Dallas (51.9 percent), at Jacksonville (51.2 percent), vs. Indianapolis (60.3 percent) and vs. Chicago (59.3)
Their six losses are projected to come vs. Green Bay (44.1 percent), at Carolina (38 percent), at Chicago (49.3 percent), at Washington (49.7 percent), vs. Arizona (41.7 percent) and at Green Bay (35.9 percent).
As convoluted as the system may be that a win percentage says 10 wins, but the average wins per season simulation comes out to 8.3 wins, only the Predictolator can say. But, as long as they have the Vikings in the playoffs, their fans won’t be complaining.