Super Bowl Excitement Index

This is just a quick hack to augment the Super Bowl matchups figure from FiveThirtyEight’s recent post to show the Excitement Indexes (

FTA: “The top-left quadrant represents games in which the teams were fairly evenly matched but not particularly great — like the Super Bowl we had two seasons ago between the San Francisco 49ers and Baltimore Ravens. The bottom-right quadrant is for Super Bowls when the average Elo rating was high but because of one spectacular team, like when the undefeated 2007 Patriots played (and lost to) the New York Giants.

It’s the games in the top-right quadrant that had both things going for them, as this one does: great teams but also a reasonably even matchup.

But here’s the catch: Those great-seeming matchups didn’t translate into great Super Bowls.”

FWIW, the average Super Bowl EI is 3.47. For all games in 2010 (see post below) it was 4.03.

The image below has been modified from the fivethirtyeight post above to include color coding based on the excitement index. Hopefully the EI will get a boost from the trickery up the sleeve of Belichick’s hoodie.

super bowl 2014 excitement index ELO