Surprisingly successful 'Madden' simulation predicts Super Bowl thriller

“Madden” has a surprisingly successful track record of predicting Super Bowl winners.

The EA Sports NFL video game has simulated Super Bowls before they happened since 2004. Ten out of 15 times it has predicted the winner.

In 2015, it picked the exact score of the New England Patriots’ 28-24 win over the Seattle Seahawks. Three years later, it picked the Patriots to come from behind to beat the Atlanta Falcons.

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Rams, Patriots arrive in Atlanta for Super Bowl LIII
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Rams, Patriots arrive in Atlanta for Super Bowl LIII
Los Angeles Rams' Nickell Robey-Coleman arrive sat the Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport for the NFL Super Bowl 53 football game Sunday, Jan. 27, 2019, in Atlanta. (AP Photo/David J. Phillip)
Los Angeles Rams' Jared Goff gets off the team charter as they arrive at the Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport for the NFL Super Bowl 53 football game Sunday, Jan. 27, 2019, in Atlanta. (AP Photo/David J. Phillip)
Los Angeles Rams' Ndamukong Suh arrives at the Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport for the NFL Super Bowl 53 football game Sunday, Jan. 27, 2019, in Atlanta. (AP Photo/David J. Phillip)
New England Patriots' Tom Brady arrives at the Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport for the NFL Super Bowl 53 football game Sunday, Jan. 27, 2019, in Atlanta. (AP Photo/David J. Phillip)
New England Patriots' Devin McCourty, front, and brother Jason McCourty arrive at the Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport for the NFL Super Bowl 53 football game Sunday, Jan. 27, 2019, in Atlanta. (AP Photo/Matt Rourke)
New England Patriots' Kyle Van Noy arrives at the Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport for the NFL Super Bowl 53 football game Sunday, Jan. 27, 2019, in Atlanta. (AP Photo/Matt Rourke)
New England Patriots' Stephon Gilmore, front, arrives at the Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport for the NFL Super Bowl 53 football game Sunday, Jan. 27, 2019, in Atlanta. (AP Photo/David J. Phillip)
Jan 27, 2019; Atlanta, GA, USA; New England Patriots running back James White (28) arrives at the Hyatt Regency Atlanta. Mandatory Credit: Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports
Jan 27, 2019; Atlanta, GA, USA; New England Patriots kicker Stephen Gostkowski (3) arrives at the Hyatt Regency Atlanta. Mandatory Credit: Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports
Jan 27, 2019; Atlanta, GA, USA; Fans watch on the street corner as the New England Patriots arrive at the Hyatt Regency Atlanta. Mandatory Credit: Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports
Jan 27, 2019; Atlanta, GA, USA; General view of Super Bowl LIII signage near the Hyatt Regency Atlanta. Mandatory Credit: Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports
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Madden simulates Rams in a thriller

So if that means anything to you and you’re a Los Angeles Rams fan, here’s some good news.

“Madden NFL 19” simulated a 30-27 Rams win over the Patriots on Sunday.

And the game flow reads like a reasonable path to a Rams win.

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Madden predicts that Bill Belichick will hone in on the strength of the Rams by limiting Todd Gurley and forcing them to beat the Patriots elsewhere. That, of course, is Belichick’s calling card. C.J. Anderson leads the Rams with 64 rushing yards in the simulation.

Aaron Donald goes wild

But beat them elsewhere, the Rams do, rallying from a 17-3 halftime deficit behind a second-half offensive explosion and dominant effort from defensive lineman Aaron Donald.

Donald records four sacks in the simulation to earn MVP honors. Punching Tom Brady in the mouth is a formula that worked twice for the New York Giants in their pair of Super Bowl wins over the Patriots.

Meanwhile, Jared Goff outgains Tom Brady through the air with 303 passing yards compared to Brady’s 287. With Gurley limited, receiver Robert Woods becomes a star with eight catches for 104 yards and touchdown.

Gurley finds his Super Bowl moment

But Gurley gets his moment in the end, breaking through for the game-winning touchdown on a five-yard run.

It’s a completely believable game story that could be the formula for a Rams win. So regardless if “Madden” ends up getting it right again, it’s a solid effort from EA Sports.

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