Game Over: Nate Silver came out with his Super Bowl prediction today. In light of the Super Quant’s eerily accurate predictions in the last two presidential elections, the 49ers and Ravens have agreed to ditch playing the game and let Silver’s prognostication determine the winner.

The creation of "Kaepernicking." San Francisco 49ers QB Colin Kaepernick flexes in the end zone during his team's playoff win over the Green Bay Packers. Photo by Harry How/Getty Images.
Colin Kaepernick after hearing Nate Silver likes the 49ers’ chances. (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)

Silver says: all things considered, it’s a 49ers’ world right now.

His reasoning:

Of the 92 teams to have played in the Super Bowl before this year, I identified those with the 20 best defensive and offensive ratings, according to [a statistic called the Simple Rating System, which evaluates each team’s offense and defense]. The defensive list contains teams that you would expect, like the 1985 Bears. These teams have compiled a 14-6 record (.700) in the Super Bowl. Their winning percentage is actually nearly 80 percent when you ignore the three cases, Super Bowls IV, VIII and XLV, when two of the all-time great defensive teams faced each other.

The 20 best offensive teams, however, are just 10-10 in the Super Bowl. There have been successes in this group, like the Saints under Drew Brees, but there have been just as many failures, including two of Brady’s Patriots teams…

The reasons that exceptional defenses fare so much better in the Super Bowl are still somewhat murky, but this factor bodes well for this year’s 49ers, whose defense belongs in the elite group, according to S.R.S. (it ranks 17th among Super Bowl teams). The Ravens, despite all the hype surrounding Ray Lewis, allowed a rather pedestrian 21.5 points per game this year. Full article

And the Niners also have the better offense, to boot.

Actually, Silver’s prediction is in line with the people who make money analyzing such things. Most sports lines list the 49ers as a 3.5 point favorite. And no, Silver didn’t say whether he thought they’d beat the spread.

Update: This just in: The puppies are also leaning 49ers, and it looks like it’s going to be a shutout…

  • http://twitter.com/NorthBayTeky Pamela Greaves

    Nate should watch more football and then he would understand “The reasons that exceptional defenses fare so much better in the Super Bowl are still somewhat murky…”

    It’s not murky to me at all.

Author

Jon Brooks

Jon Brooks writes mostly on film for KQED Arts. He is also an online editor and writer for KQED's daily news blog, News Fix. Jon is a playwright whose work has been produced in San Francisco, New York, Italy, and around the U.S.

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