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January 29, 2014 at 1:54 PM

Super Bowl: Nate Silver picks Seahawks, Madden 25 has Broncos

The predictions are starting to trickle in, but so far the most interesting aren’t from NFL media, such as sportswriters or TV analysts.

In fact, one comes from a self-described  nerd, and three others aren’t from people at all. They’re from computers and video games.

Nate Silver, the numbers-crunching nerd, favors Seattle. That sounds like good news for Seahawks fans, since Silver became famous for predictions about the presidential election. Silver, whose Five-Thirty-Eight blog has moved to ESPN.com, doesn’t sound nearly as certain about the Super Bowl. His luke-warm prediction came Wednesday night 0n “The Colbert Report.”

He went on to say the game is a toss-up but he’s sticking with the Seahawks because he picked them to start the season. He didn’t guess the score.

Two video games – Madden 25 and Tecmo Super Bowl – both gave the Broncos narrow victories in overtime. Madden said Denver would win by three on a field goal, and Techmo thought it would be on a safety.

Don’t fold, spindle or mutiliate those computer-game predictions just yet, though. A computer model, Machine’s Predictalator, ran 50,000 simulations, and the score that came up most often was 24-21, Seattle. The Seahawks won 54.2 percent of the time.

Here are links to each prediction and YouTube video of the Madden 25 highlights. Stay tuned for more predictions and comments in the days leading up to the game.

Madden 25 video game

The Denver Broncos will win 31-28 in overtime. according to EA Sports’ Madden 25 video game. Denver will win it on a 48-yard field goal by kicker Matt Prater.

Tecmo Super Bowl simulation

In the Tecmo simulation, the Broncos win 40-38 on a safety in overtime, according to New England Sports Network (NESN). Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson, who  rushed for a 1-yard touchdown to give Seattle a 38-35 advantage, but is sacked by Broncos cornerback Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie on the first play of OT. A Prater field goal sent that simulated game into overtime.

Marshawn Lynch went all Beast Mode, running for 155 yards and three touchdowns on 13 just carries. Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning passed for 318 yards and four TDs.

CBS Local Philadelphia

Prediction Machine’s Predictalator ran a simulation 50,000 of  Super Bowl, and predicted that the most likely score would be the Seahawks 24, Broncos 21, according to CBS Local Philadelphia. Seattle won 54.8 percent of the simulations.

Nate Silver, ESPN Five-Thirty-Eight blog

Nate Silver, famous for his presdential-election predictions, picked the Seahawks this week during an appearance on “The  Colbert Report” – sort of. He actually hedged a lot, before siding with Seattle.

He said both teams are “really good,” and added: “This is only the eighth time that the two best teams have actually met in the Super Bowl. Usually someone gets upset along the way, so that makes my job really tough. …

“The numbers say it’s going to be a tie …  But a year ago I predicted Seattle would win Super Bowl and I’m going to stick with that.”

Keith McMillan, Washington Post

I’ll predict that Denver beats Seattle at its own game, playing rugged, somewhat ugly football. Instead of Manning passing for 400 yards, he’s held under 200, and only 30 points total are scored. Yet the Broncos’ 17-13 win comes down to the last possession and is plenty exciting.

Bleacher Report

Seven of 13 writers pick the Broncos.

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