Why not just allow users to sub in a defensive back at linebacker if they choose to? Hasn’t Bill Bellichick been speaking recently about the growing role of the linebacker-safety hybrid in NFL defenses? It would not be “unrealistic” in any sense to let players manually substitute a safety for a linebacker or vice versa in any formation.
On offense, you are currently restricted from audibling from a three wide receiver formation to a four receiver look. This severely inhibits the ability to split a receiving tight end out wide in a no huddle offense.
Limitations like this were put in place due to fans calling it “unrealistic” for a receiver to line up at tight end. I wonder if they’ve ever watched John Taylor’s winning catch from Super Bowl XXIII. The defensive limitations are also a result of some players crying foul when they saw a safety playing linebacker. On both sides of the ball, the restrictions are the only thing that’s unrealistic.
5) Give The Blitz Sharper Teeth
EA has made strides in recent years on this front, but it still lacks when compared to a real life NFL pass rush.
Edge rushers still do not get behind the quarterback in the pocket as quickly as they do on Sundays. In exotic blitz packages, the pass rushers most of the time do not attempt to get a running start at the quarterback like they’re supposed to. An NFL defensive back who’s blitzing off the edge will most times attempt to not show his hand to the quarterback until the last second before the snap. Madden’s DBs need to do this too.
6) Fix Problems With Personnel Packages
Madden’s play call screen allows users to make manual substitutions before each snap. It also features “packages” such as “Linebacker Pass Rush”, that make multiple subs for the user simultaneously. For example, if you’re using a team that plays a 3-4 defense like the Raiders, you use the “LB Pass Rush” package to put Khalil Mack in as your rush defensive end in a four down-lineman look.
If you manually sub in a player without using a package, though, the packages do not sub that player out for the rest of the game. Take the 4-6 defensive formation for instance. It has a package called “Speed” that substitutes two defensive backs in place of your two linebackers, but if you manually substitute a linebacker, a defensive back is no longer subbed in with the speed package for the rest of the game.
This, like the coaching menus, has been a problem since the early 2000s. I concede it’s a bit nit-picky I, but not beyond the scope of improvements that would be useful to Madden’s eSports viability.
Jonathan Delozier writes for The Oberlin News Tribune and The Wellington Enterprise in Northeast Ohio. Follow him on Twitter @jondeloz or @DelozierNews