The Microsoft Engine That Nailed The World Cup Is Predicting Every NFL Game -- Here Are Its Picks For Week 5

Vontaze burfictNorm Hall/Getty ImagesThe Bengals are the betting favourites, but Cortana likes the Patriots.

Week 4 was a dismal week for Microsoft’s Cortana, the Windows phone virtual assistant that’s picking every NFL game this year.

Cortana went 5-8 in its worst week of the year.

It’s now 34-27 on the year.

That’s much worse than Nate Silver’s ELO model, which is now 41-20 after going 10-3 in Week 3. It’s also worse than Vegas favourites, which have a 35-26 win-loss record on the year.

The Cortana model is powered by Bing Predicts, and uses a public sentiment metric (along with traditional advanced statistics) to make its predictions. It picks games straight up, not against the point spread, so that 34-27 record is pretty rough.

Cortana caught fire in the World Cup group stage, correctly picking 15 of the tournament’s last 16 games. Maybe we’ll see a similar comeback in its NFL picks.

Here are Cortana’s picks for Week 5 as of Tuesday afternoon (betting lines in parentheses):

  • Minnesota Vikings vs. Green Bay Packers — Packers win, 70.2% chance (Packers -9)
  • Chicago Bears vs. Carolina Panthers — Panthers win, 56.6% chance (Panthers -2.5)
  • Cleveland Browns vs. Tennessee Titans — Titans win, 53.3% chance (Titans -1.5)
  • St. Louis Rams vs. Philadelphia Eagles — Eagles win, 77.8% chance (Eagles -7)
  • Atlanta Falcons vs. New York Giants — Giants win, 64.4% chance (Giants -4)
  • Tampa Bay Buccaneers vs. New Orleans Saints — Saints win, 80% chance (Saints -10.5)
  • Houston Texans vs. Dallas Cowboys — Cowboys win, 68.8% chance (Cowboys-4)
  • Buffalo Bills vs. Detroit Lions — Lions win, 61.4% chance (Lions -7)
  • Baltimore Ravens vs. Indianapolis Colts — Colts win, 61.4% chance (Colts -3.5)
  • Pittsburgh Steelers vs. Jacksonville Jaguars — Steelers win, 78.9% chance (Steelers -6.5)
  • Arizona Cardinals vs. Denver Broncos — Broncos win, 67.4% chance (Broncos -7)
  • Kansas City Chiefs vs. San Francisco 49ers — 49ers win, 56.6% (49ers -6.5)
  • New York Jets vs. San Diego Chargers — Chargers win, 76.7% chance (Chargers -6.5)
  • Cincinnati Bengals vs. New England Patriots — Patriots win, 62.9% chance (Bengals -1)
  • Seattle Seahawks vs. Washington Redskins — Seahawks win, 64.4% chance (Seahawks -7.5)

Cortana and Vegas only disagree on one game: Bengals vs. Patriots.

Here are Cortana’s results so far this year:

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