How do Super Bowl squares work? Rules explained

One of the most popular ways to have some fun on the side while watching the final game of the NFL season is with Super Bowl squares. With the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Kansas City Chiefs set to kick off Super Bowl 55 on Sunday, let’s have a quick refresher on how Super Bowl squares works and get you and your guests involved in the fun.

How do Super Bowl squares work?

There are so many ways to bet on the game, from your favorite sites to prop contests. Super Bowl squares are one of the most fun and easiest ways to interact with people. Not only do you get to watch the play on the field, but there is not a vested rooting interest in an outcome even if your team didn’t make it and you only showed up for the food and drinks.

Super Bowl squares are played on a 10 by 10 grid. It looks similar to a bingo card in a way. One team is assigned the rows, the other the columns. Then, each column and row is randomly assigned a number between zero and nine. To participate, all people have to do is select a square based on what they believe the score at a specific time of the game will be (typically at the end of each quarter).

For example, let’s say at the end of the first quarter, the Chiefs are winning 14 to 7 over the Buccaneers. Whoever picked the square that corresponds with the intersection of the four for the Chiefs and the seven for the Buccaneers wins that round. If there is no claim on the square, the prize rolls over. It’s that simple.

Prizes can be adjusted based on the quarter, half, or the end of the game as payout points. Typically, the end of the game score has the largest payday.

Each square can cost the same, or the ones with better odds can cost a bit more. That is up to you.

What does history tell us, and what can we learn for Super Bowl squares this year?

Once you have learned how to play Super Bowl squares, it might seem as if winning is an entirely random outcome. In fact, it’s quite the contrary. The art of “scorigami” is a beautiful science. As an example, a game has ended with a score of 73-0 (Chicago over Washington in 1940). However, there’s never been a 25 to 18 game in the history of the NFL. 

Over the last several years, the numbers zero and seven give you the best odds of winning. Think about all the possible combinations of those two alone. 0-0, 7-0, 7-7, 10-7, 10-10, 17-10, 17-17, etc. 

In the first quarter, the number you want is zero. Of the previous 54 Super Bowls, zero has been the first-quarter score in one of the two teams’ results in 48.1% of the games. Things tend to spread out more as the Super Bowl goes along, and the drives add up. Throwing in the rare safety will flip the board on its head.

Traditionally, the best number to have is seven. Next are four, one, and zero. In contrast, try to stay away from two and five as historically they have a low probability. 

Now that you know how to play Super Bowl squares, let’s get you and everyone else involved in the fun. Print it off, and have your guests pick the squares they want. Now, sit back and enjoy Super Bowl 55 with some fun on the side. However, maybe you should forget to tell them about the percentages. We can keep that between us.

Super Bowl score by quarter

First-quarter: Tampa Bay Buccaneers 7-3 Kansas City Chiefs

Halftime: Tampa Bay Buccaneers 21-6 Kansas City Chiefs

Third-quarter: Tampa Bay Buccaneers 31-9 Kansas City Chiefs

Fulltime: Tampa Bay Buccaneers 31-9 Kansas City Chiefs

Tommy Garrett is a Fantasy Analyst for Pro Football Network and is a member of the Fantasy Sports Writers Association (FSWA). You can read all of Tommy’s work here and give him a follow on Twitter: @TommyGarrettPFN.

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