Who Wins Saints at Falcons? A.I. Predicts

It’s a low-confidence pick, but one that was made quite quickly.

p.p1 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; font: 18.0px Georgia} Dan Anderson/Zuma Press/Icon Sportswire

The New Orleans Saints are trying to figure out what happened in the first two weeks of the season. After a shocking Week 1 upset by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, the Saints almost took an L in week 2 to Hue Jackson and the Cleveland Browns. What a world.

The Falcons are looking a bit on the upswing. After dropping the opener to the Eagles, they bounced back with a convincing win against the Panthers last week. These two teams meet in a fierce division rivalry. Since both teams are hoping to be in contention in December, this is a bigger game than your typical Week 3 matchup.

To predict the result of this Week 3 match-up, Unanimous A.I. used what’s known as swarm intelligence to forecast the week’s slate. About 40 NFL enthusiasts worked together as a hive mind to make picks. As you can see in the animation below, each participant controlled a little golden magnet and used it to drag the puck toward the answer they thought was the most likely outcome. As the users saw the puck move toward a particular decision, it triggered a psychological response. They readjusted their decision-making, building toward the consensus you see below.

Swarm is predicting an Atlanta victory. It’s a low-confidence pick, but one that was made quite quickly. We can chalk this up to a home turf advantage. Both teams need a win, but Atlanta looks like they are in a bit better position to get one.

The Saints play the Falcons at 1 p.m. Eastern Sunday on Fox.

Unanimous A.I. has made some scarily accurate predictions in the past using swarm intelligence, as our this article explains. For instance, the swarm picked this year’s Oscar winners with 94 percent accuracy. Here’s Unanimous A.I. founder Louis Rosenberg explaining swarm intelligence at a recent TEDx Talk:

In related news, Unanimous A.I. recently presented a scientific study of its ability to forecast games in the National Hockey League. In a 200-game, 20-week-long study of its Swarm AI in the NHL, it was able to easily outperform Las Vegas expectations, and its “Pick of the Week” was right 85 percent of the time, producing a 170 percent ROI. The paper, titled “Artificial Swarm Intelligence versus Vegas Betting Markets,” was presented at the at the IEEE Developments in eSystems Engineering Conference (DeSE 2018) this month at Downing College in Cambridge, England. In a press release issued with the study, co-author Gregg Wilcox says the technology can be applied to matters outside sports, too. “While it’s fun to predict sports, we are currently applying the same techniques to a wide variety of other domains, including financial forecasting, business forecasting, and medical diagnosis, all with positive results.”

Want to join the hive mind that picks NFL matches every week? Sign up to participate in future predictions

Related Tags