There are two popular games you’ll hear friends talking about on Super Bowl Sunday.
One, of course, is the Super Bowl 57 matchup between the Eagles and Chiefs. The second one is Super Bowl squares. That leads to one of the most-popular questions of Super Bowl week.
“How do you play Super Bowl squares?”
We’ll teach you step by step to give you the best chance to win..
Super Bowl squares is an easy-to-play office pool and party game. It’s a game of chance and each player draws two “numbers” and it can make the Super Bowl experience more rewarding whether or not your team is playing in the big game.
Sporting News has a guide for all those questions, including rules, tips and a printable squares grid.
How do Super Bowl squares work?
Here is a step-by-step guide for the game with setup, rules and how to play in five easy steps.
- Print a 10×10 grid or set one up virtually using one of the many free sites out there.
- Be sure to include an extra blank row (horizontal) and column (vertical) for drawing numbers.
- Get your party guests, co-workers and any other players to select squares by signing their initials within the grid. Each square is worth one entry.
- The board is set when all 100 squares are filled. It is important to fill out the entire board before numbers are drawn.
- Draw numbers 0-9 at random for both teams.
- Winners are traditionally determined by the second digits of the score at the end of each quarter. For example, if the Chiefs have a 17-10 halftime lead, the player whose initials occupy the square with a “7 for the Chiefs and a “0” for the Eagles is the winner.
Most Super Bowl squares are played on a 10×10 grid with a “home” team row on top and the “visitor” column on the side. So in this year’s matchup, the Eagles would be across the top and the Chiefs would be down the side.
A grid starts with 100 “squares.” You can make the grid on a poster board or download a grid online, and it helps to have those squares labeled from 1-100.
The next step is filling out the board. That needs to be done before you randomly draw the numbers for each team.
How to pick Super Bowl squares
Invite friends, family, co-workers and party guests to play in the game. Have them pick a square and sign their name or put their initials on it.
How should you pick a square? It could be a family birthday, a jersey number or a sentimental number. The truth is it doesn’t matter. The numbers for the Eagles and Chiefs will be drawn at random once all the boxes in the 100-square grid are filled.
If you select multiple squares in the same row or column, then that decreases the number combinations you will have because you will only have one number for one of the two teams.
The board is filled when all 100 squares have been assigned. You cannot draw numbers unless all of the squares are full.
Alternate gameplay: You can also use “winning score” and “losing score” instead of the team names for a more complex pool, but for the sake of simplicity we will stick with “Eagles” and “Chiefs.”
What are the best numbers for Super Bowl squares?
Most Super Bowl squares pools give a prize at the end of the first quarter, second quarter, third quarter and the final score.
There have been a total of 224 winning number combinations in Super Bowl history (which is a limited sample size), but here’s how those combinations have hit by quarter. The home team is on the horizontal access and the road team is on the vertical axis.
For reference, in the game between the Bengals and Rams last season the winning combos were 3-7, 0-3, 0-6 and 0-3. So the person who had “0” for the Bengals and “3” for the Rams won the second quarter and final score last year.
In the history of the Super Bowl, the four best combinations have been 0-0 (19 times), 0-3 (13 times), 0-7 (11 times) and 7-0 (10 times) and 3-7 (10 times)
How to draw numbers for squares
You should designate a person to hold a drawing to randomly place numbers 0-9 across the Eagles row and the Chiefs column. Use Post-It notes, an online number generator or a deck of cards. Have fun with the drawing.
ALTERNATE GAMEPLAY: You could also do a 25-square grid where each home and road team gets two numbers instead of one. In that case, each player would have two numbers for each team. This is a good way to make the game fun at smaller gatherings.
Once the board is full, each player has two numbers.
Your numbers should align with your square from both the vertical and horizontal position. So, let’s say your numbers are “7” for the Eagles and “0” for the Chiefs.
How do you win Super Bowl squares?
Most standard Super Bowl squares pools pay a winner after the first quarter, second quarter, third quarter and final score. How is that determined? Go back to those numbers of “7” and “0.”
That player would win if the Eagles lead 7-0 after the first quarter or Chiefs lead 10-7 after the second quarter. The magic “number” is always the last number in the score. Obviously, 7, 3 and 0 are among the most-popular numbers, even if it doesn’t always work out.
Printable Super Bowl squares grid
Need a printable grid for your Super Bowl squares? Now you know the rules, here is a PDF version for Super Bowl 57.
You can download your Super Bowl squares grid by clicking here.