2020 Niners Nation Prediction Contest - Rules and Guidelines

A tradition that COVID-19 nor fire and smoke cannot defeat, the Niners Nation (NN) prediction contest is back again (14th year I believe)! For those who have never played, we pick six games each week, including the 49ers game, Sunday Night Football, and Monday Night Football games. You predict the score of the games, and those closest to the final score accrue points for the week and cumulative points throughout the season. At the end of the season we take the Top 16 contestants and run a Top 16 Playoff contest to determine the season individual Champion. For those missing the cut, we'll do a separate Open tournament. Please take the time to read the rules and ask any questions you might have. Good luck to everyone this season.

Prediction Contest Rules & Guidelines

  1. Each week typically 6 NFL games are picked for the prediction contest: the 49ers game, the Sunday Night Football Game, the Monday Night Football Game, one Sunday AM early game, one Sunday PM afternoon game and one additional game. Depending upon whether the 49ers game falls on Sunday or Monday Night or the 49ers have a bye week additional games may be picked ensure the weekly total is 6 games.
  2. If the 49ers game is a Thursday Night Game, we will provide an optional 7th bonus game to predict for the week. You can either predict a score for the Thursday Night 49ers game or predict the score of the bonus game, but you cannot predict both. You can decide to pick the TNF game or the Bonus game and only one of the two games will be scored, along with the other 5 games.
  3. Prediction Scores must be submitted before game kickoff time or they will not be counted. 10AM PST for Sunday early afternoon games, 1:05PM PST/1:25PM PST (dependent on game kickoff time) for Sunday later afternoon games, 5:20PM PST for Sunday Night games and 5:15PM PST for Monday Night games. The time-stamp of your post counts as your prediction entry time. You may change your original prediction but please do so using the reply button to your original comment.
  4. New "Beecharmer 33 - ninersfootball" Rule for 2020: Staggering your scores won't disqualify you, but it adds more work to monitor and update the magic spreadsheet. Entering all your scores together, one time is encouraged.
  5. NN editorial staff will typically begin the Prediction Contest thread starting on Wednesday of each week including the week the 49ers have a bye.
  6. The Prediction Score Format will be required to closely follow as it cuts down on scoring errors, discussed in more detail below.
  7. Scoring Results will typically be posted as a FanPost by Tuesday the following week, and might not show up on the main page, so look for the results in a separate posting in the FanPosts section.
  8. If you believe an error occurred scoring your prediction pleased a post a comment describing the discrepancy in the Scoring Results thread. Any score changes resulting from a scoring error will be posted the following week.
  9. You may not submit the same prediction score more than twice in one week. This rule is specially designed to curtail 24-17, 23-17, 20-17 block prediction scores. We are also leaving this up to our judgment in case anyone wants to submit 24-17 for two scores than 23-17 for another two scores, etc. Predict to the best of your ability and don't try to game the game.
  10. Each week the Scoring Result post will announce the Top winner of the week and the cumulative points Leader.
  11. At the end of the NFL Regular Season we will announce the Top 16 scorers who will move on in a separate post-season contest for individual bragging rights.
  12. The Top 16 cumulative scorers will face-off in playoff contest predicting the NFL Playoffs. The bottom 4 contestants will be eliminated each week until we crown a Prediction Contest Champion at the conclusion of the Super Bowl. Those players not included in the playoff pool are invited to play in a Prediction Redemption Open Tournament pool during the playoff.
  13. Anyone with a account is invited play and can join at any time.
  14. There are no prizes for participating in this contest, just bragging rights and noteworthy mention for any winners.

Example of Prediction Score Format

To make the scoring easier to record and to avoid potential discrepancies with scoring posts, there is a scoring post format that must be followed. If you fail to follow this format, your scores may be disqualified at our discretion. Please review the formatting rules after before posting your results.

The format is "Team A @ Team B: A score - B score." The Visiting Team is always listed first, and the Home team listed second:

Visiting Team @ Home Team: Visiting Team score - Home Team score

Using the Arizona @ San Francisco Week 1 game as an example, if you think San Francisco will win 24-14, the required format is:

Arizona @ San Francisco: 14 - 24

If you think Arizona will win 24-14, the required format is:

Arizona @ San Francisco: 24 - 14

If provided, a bold highlight of the winning team will override a conflicting score format. A bold highlight of the intended winning team is not necessary but helps clarify the winning team in case of an error in the score format, for example:

Arizona @ San Francisco: 24 - 14 would be scored as San Francisco winning 24 - 14 based on the bold highlight of San Francisco as the intended winning team. Likewise, Arizona @ San Francisco: 14 - 24 would be scored as Arizona winning 24 - 14 based on the bold highlight Arizona as the intended winning team.

A bold highlight of the team's individual score is not needed (and could complicate things anyway) and won't be considered in the scoring, for example: Arizona @ San Francisco: 14 - 24 (no need to bold the score)

You can post scoring predictions at any time up until the start of the official game time. You can even change your scoring predictions multiple times if needed. If you make a mistake in the formatting, we'll try to reply to your score reminding you to correct it or clarify. Changes must be made as a reply to your original post. Scores must post by the start of the official game time or will be considered late and not counted in the scoring totals.

In case Scores are posted past the scheduled game start time, we will resolve any disputes using ESPN's game summary. The box score summary will have the actual and official game start time.

Scoring Explained - to qualify for scoring points, you first must predict the correct winner of the game. If the correct game winner is predicted, then your Subscore, based on your predicted score compared to the actual score, will be calculated and compared with other contestant subscores and ranked in ascending order for points as defined below. If you predict the incorrect winner for an individual game, your subscore will not be scored.

Subscore (x) - the subscore involves 4 parts to the scoring calculation:

pPD = Predicted Point Differential
aPD = Actual Point Differential
pPT = Predicted Point Total
aPT = Actual Point Total

  • pPD = Predicted Point Differential - if the predicted score is 30-21, then the pPD = 30 - 21= 9
  • aPD = Actual Point Differential - if the actual score is 24-17, then the aPD = 24 - 17= 7

PD = |pPD - aPD| = |9| - |7| = 9 - 7 = 2

  • pPT = Predicted Point Total - if you predict a score of 30-21, the pPT = 51
  • aPT = Actual Point Total - if the actual game score is 24-17, then the aPT = 41

PT = |pPT - aPT| = |51 - 41| = 10

Subscore (x) = PD + PT = |pPD - aPD| + |pPT - aPT| - You add the PD and PT differences together = 2 + 10 = 12, x = 12

The subscores are ranked in ascending order to determine the awarding of points. Basically, the closer your subscore is to zero, the better chance of getting points.

Perfect Score - for correctly picking the winning team and the exact actual score (subscore = 0), 10 points are awarded followed by 4, 3, 2, 1 and 0. There can be any number of perfect scores, each awarded 10 points. Subscores, including all ties, will be each awarded points (i.e. there are possible multiple contestant points awarded for 10 points, 4 points, 3 points, 2 points and 1 point awarded).

No Perfect Score - if for no perfect score (subscore = 0), 5 points are awarded followed by 4, 3, 2, 1 and 0. Subscores, including all ties, will be each awarded points (i.e. there are possible multiple contestant points awarded for 5 points, 4 points, 3 points, 2 points and 1 point awarded).

Bonus Points (Updated for 2020) - In the past we used to award 2 points for 4 or 5 wins out of 6. Starting last year in 2019 and continuing this year, we will re-allocate bonus points as follows:

4 wins out of 6 games = 1 bonus point awarded and added to your points total.

5 wins out of 6 games = 2 bonus points awarded and added to your points total.

6 wins out of 6 games = 3 bonus points awarded and added to your points total.

Bonus points will be adjusted during the post-season playoffs (except the Wild Card and Divisional Rounds this year) with only 1 point awarded for 4 correct wins and 0 points for 3 or fewer wins.

Maximum Points (the Unicorn) - The maximum theoretical points in a week is 63 points (6 perfect scores = 60 points, plus 6 winners = 3 bonus points, total 63 points). An average week is anywhere from 8 to 10 points. The perfect week score of 63 points will never happen in our lifetime.

Minimum Points (the Whammy) - if you predict 6 games and earn zero points for the week, you qualify for the dubious distinction affectionately known as a "Whammy." This happens more than you would like, so predict carefully and strategically.

This is a FanPost and does not necessarily reflect the views of Niners Nation's writers or editors. It does reflect the views of this particular fan though, which is as important as the views of Niners Nation's writers or editors.