Big Data Bowl

The annual analytics contest explores statistical innovations in football — how the game is played and coached.

Welcome to the NFL’s Big Data Bowl

The annual sports analytics contest from NFL Football Operations challenges talented members of the analytics community – from college students to professionals – to contribute to the NFL’s continuing evolution in the use of advanced analytics.

As the NFL captures real-time data for every player, on every play, in every situation — anywhere on the field — the Big Data Bowl is the league’s next step in engaging the analytics community.

Contestants use traditional and Next Gen Stats to analyze and rethink trends and player performance, and to innovate the way football is played and coached.

2020-21 Big Data Bowl

What happens after a quarterback takes a snap and drops back to pass? 

As an offensive player moves in various patterns, the entire defense works collectively to prevent successful pass completions and must quickly tackle receivers if they do make the catch.

The 2020-21 Big Data Bowl, powered by Amazon Web Services (AWS), has officially launched and sign-up information can be found on the 2020-21 Big Data Bowl Kaggle page.

The 2020-21 competition’s theme focuses on pass coverage with participants challenged using the NFL’s Next Gen Stats to uncover what makes a successful defense against passing plays. This may include schemes, strategies, penalties, and player-specific analysis. The goal is to identify unique and impactful approaches to measure defensive performance on these plays.

For every passing play during the 2018 regular season, player tracking data is provided to participants with a total of $100,000 in prize money up for grabs. College students are also invited to participate in a college-only portion of the Big Data Bowl, where they’ll compete for student-specific prizes.

For the first time, the 2020-21 Big Data Bowl is introducing a mentorship program to increase diversity within sports analytics by connecting experienced NFL analytics experts with interested beginners to curate a Big Data Bowl submission. 

If you have any questions about the 2020-21 Big Data Bowl, please email