The Colts gallop down to Houston to take on the Texans in a battle of Comeback Kids this afternoon. Both of these teams overcame slow starts to arrive at this particular moment. The Texans lost their first three games, then bounced back to win their next nine in a row before finishing 11-5 and capturing the AFC South division title. Just don’t expect much room on the bandwagon: after many wrote them off following their 0-3 start, Texans head coach Bill O’Brien has declared that they are “not looking for train riders”.
The Colts also began the season at a trot (to put it nicely), having dropped five of their first six games, before rebounding to win nine of their next ten, finish 10-6, and snag the sixth and final playoff spot in the AFC. Not bad for a team whose quarterback missed the entire 2017 season due to complications from offseason shoulder surgery. Fortunately for Indy, star QB Andrew Luck looks right as rain, having thrown for more than 4,500 yards and 39 touchdowns on the season, with a 67 percent completion rate.
With both of these teams having overcome significant adversity to get here, expect a hard-fought battle. If recent history serves as any indicator, we can also anticipate a close margin of victory: Houston edged Indianapolis by three points in overtime back in Week 4, while the Colts knocked off the Texans a month ago, again by a mere three points. With such tight margins, we’ll give the slight nod to the home team. Texans forever. Houston 27, Indianapolis 24, is my prediction, but how does a hive-mind of NFL experts predict this NFL playoff match-up turning out?
To predict the result of this 2018 NFL post-season match-up, Unanimous A.I. used what’s known as swarm intelligence. A “swarm” of 37 NFL enthusiasts worked together as a hive mind to make their prediction, and as you can see in the animation below, each participant controlled a golden magnet and used it to drag the puck toward the result they thought was the most likely outcome. This is where it gets interesting: As a user sees the puck move toward a particular decision, it triggers a psychological response. They might readjust their thinking as the group builds toward a consensus. It’s an artificial intelligence, produced by human brains, working together as a swarm.
As the replay above shows, the swarm of 37 NFL experts has low confidence than Luck and the Colts will end Houston’s season early.
The Colts play at the Texans at 4:35 p.m. Eastern Saturday on ESPN.
Here’s how Unanimous A.I. has predicted previous NFL games this season.
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: