Fans claim EA no longer deserves John Madden in response to Madden 23 cover concept

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After news broke that the legendary John Madden had passed, one gamer decided to do EA's job for them by making a Madden 23 cover featuring him.

As gorgeous as the design is, it's quickly been rejected by many fans who insist that EA Sports and Madden 23 no longer deserve to be connected to the legacy of John Madden.

Fan puts John Madden on the cover of Madden 23

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Following the passing of John Madden, it was no surprise that many immediately thought about whether he'll be back on the cover for Madden 23.

After being the face of the game for more than a decade, we haven't seen John Madden on the cover since the Hall of Fame Edition of Madden 07 despite the series continuing to feature his name.

We also looked at the possibility of EA putting John Madden on the cover, but decided it was essentially a bare minimum option and there's much more they can do to honor his legacy.

Reddit user gregor630 didn't feel there was any need to wait and put together an already magnificent looking Madden 23 cover featuring John Madden.

The design would easily work either as a possible special deluxe "John Madden Edition" or as the base standard edition cover for Madden 23.

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There's no doubt that EA will take some steps to honor him, as they've already created an in-game pop-up that went live hours after his passing.

However, not every fan was thrilled by this cover concept, and the target of their anger is definitely EA Sports.

Many insist EA Sports no longer deserves John Madden's name or likeness

While the first few reactions on Reddit were positive, simply users commenting "perfect" or "this is fire," but it didn't take long for the opinions to turn.

Things quickly devolved as some complained that this potential cover would only end up being used for a $99 to $129 deluxe edition filled with Madden Ultimate Team packs.

Madden Ultimate Team has frequently garnered criticism from fans as pulling too much of the focus from EA Sports due to the profit it garners from microtransactions.

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Power creep is a term often used to note when past cards or parts of a game are rendered useless because the next new thing is made more powerful than everything before it.

Madden 23 John Madden Cover 07
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HALL OF FAME: Madden 07 was the last time John Madden graced the cover

EA has made this a science as Ultimate Team cards get stronger and stronger with every passing week, ultimately making the cards received in an expensive special edition far less valuable over time.

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One user went as far as to call this the "Rolling over in his grave" edition, and one of the most upvoted replies on the post stated: "Just angers me that the travesty this game has become, doesn’t deserve this image and his likeness. He deserved better."

Despite the fan reaction to the cover, the reality is that EA Sports has no reason or incentive to separate themselves from the John Madden name or likeness.

The company reportedly paid $150 million in 2005 to use John Madden's name and likeness in perpetuity so long as he'd receive annual royalties.

His estate or family may still continue to get those royalties, but as of now there's nothing that will stop EA from continuing to capitalize on one of the most recognized names in sports and gaming.