The NFL preseason kicked off last week, and now Madden 19 finally hits the shelves. EA Sports’ flagship franchise returns for another year, with improved player physics, an even better Madden Ultimate Team experience, and the ability to craft your own legacy in Franchise Mode.
The 32 NFL teams have all undergone a transformation from the end of last season, with free agency and the draft breathing new life into some teams while others saw a drain on their talent. Which teams are the best in Madden 19?
1. Philadelphia Eagles
91 overall, 97 offense, 89 defense
Best Players: Fletcher Cox (OVR 94), Malcolm Jenkins (OVR 94), Brandon Graham (OVR 93)
The Eagles finally won their first Super Bowl last season, defeating the New England Patriots 41-33 in a wild shootout. They were the class of the NFL all year, going 13-3 in the regular season, with an NFL-best +162 point differential.
Even losing the quarterback Carson Wentz in December couldn’t slow the Eagles down. Backup Nick Foles came in and performed brilliantly in an innovative, multi-faceted offense that dominated almost every defense it came up against.
In Madden 19 the Eagles have a massive 91 overall rating, with nine players rated 90 or above. They are deep at nearly every position and have some of the best offensive and defensive linemen in the NFL. That foundation allowed for enormous success on both sides of the ball.
2. New England Patriots
85 overall, 89 offense, 87 defense
Best Players: Tom Brady (OVR 99), Rob Gronkowski (OVR 99), Devin McCourty (OVR 92)
The evil empire of the NFL, the Patriots remain one of the most highly rated teams in Madden, despite losing that epic Super Bowl last season.
Bill Belichick and Tom Brady led the Patriots to another #1 seed in the AFC and another conference championship in 2017. They went 13-3, and matched the Eagles +162 point differential as Brady picked up his third league MVP award.
The Patriots are the only team on Madden 19 with two 99 overall rated players in Brady and tight end Rob Gronkowski, giving them a practically unstoppable combination in the passing game.
3. Pittsburgh Steelers
84 overall, 89 offense, 81 defense
Best Players: Antonio Brown (OVR 99), Le’Veon Bell (OVR 96), David DeCastro (OVR 95)
The Steelers are one of the most potent offensive teams in the NFL, with two-time Super Bowl winner Ben Roethlisberger at quarterback, superstars Antonio Brown and Le’Veon Bell at wide receiver and running back, and a very good offensive line. That offense helped them to a 13-3 record last season and a first-round bye in the playoffs.
They fell to the defensive might of the Jacksonville Jaguars in the playoffs though, and it’s been seven years since the most decorated franchise in the NFL won the AFC. With a 3-5 record in the playoffs since they last appeared in the Super Bowl, the Steelers franchise is in need of some success.
4. Atlanta Falcons
84 overall, 87 offense, 85 defense
Best Players: Julio Jones (OVR 98), Desmond Trufant (OVR 93), Devonta Freeman (OVR 91)
The Falcons rebounded well from their harrowing Super Bowl LI defeat to New England. They finished their 2017 season at 10-6, third in a viciously tough NFC South but enough to secure a wildcard spot. The loss of offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan saw a big step back offensively, as Matt Ryan, 2016’s MVP, came back down to earth. Still, the Falcons offense was a potent unit, with Julio Jones racking up 1,444 yards and the tandem of Devonta Freeman and Tevin Coleman causing problems on the ground.
The Falcons beat the Rams in the first round of the playoffs, and were just two yards away from eliminating the Philadelphia Eagles. It wasn’t to be though. The Falcons are still in search of their first Super Bowl, but in Madden 19 they are one of the best teams.
5. Los Angeles Rams
84 overall, 85 offense, 87 defense
Best Players: Aaron Donald (OVR 99), Ndamukong Suh (OVR 94), Todd Gurley II (OVR 92)
The Rams are young, fast, and full of potential. 2017 saw the first year of the Sean McVay era, and it was electric. Second-year quarterback Jared Goff made one of the biggest sophomore turnarounds ever under McVay’s guidance, while running back Todd Gurley also returned to prominence. The Rams offense led the NFL in scoring with 478 points, but they couldn’t get a playoff win in their new city.
The Rams loaded up their roster in the offseason, trading for All-Pro cornerbacks Aqib Talib and Marcus Peters, while also adding wide receiver Brandin Cooks and defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh. They have one of the most fearsome players in the league in Aaron Donald as well.
6. Minnesota Vikings
83 overall, 79 offense, 91 defense
Best Players: Harrison Smith (OVR 97), Everson Griffen (OVR 92), Xavier Rhodes (OVR 92)
The Minnesota Vikings looked like serious contenders in 2017, as they went 13-3 and won the NFC North at a canter. They had the #1 defense last season in both points allowed (252) and yards allowed (4,415), while their offense became an unexpectedly efficient machine. Quarterback Case Keenum delivered the season of his life, while receivers Stefon Diggs and Adam Thielen announced themselves to the league with some devastating performances.
In the offseason the Vikings spent big on free agent quarterback Kirk Cousins, giving their receivers and even better passer to work with. Second-year running back Dalvin Cook will also return this season after his rookie campaign was cut short due to a knee injury. Defensively, the Vikings are a strong team in Madden 19, with youth, speed, and talent at every level of the defense. They are the complete package, but lack winning experience.
7. Dallas Cowboys
83 overall, 87 offense, 83 defense
Best Players: Sean Lee (OVR 96), Zack Martin (OVR 96), Tyron Smith (OVR 95)
America’s Team had a disappointing 2017. After the rookie backfield of QB Dak Prescott and RB Ezekiel Elliott dominated for them in 2016, the Cowboys could manage just a 9-7 record and missed out on the playoffs in 2017.
Elliott was inconsistent, and injuries stuck their mammoth offensive line as Tyron Smith missed time with disastrous consequences. The 2017 Cowboys lacked explosiveness at receiver, and defensively they were very thin. DeMarcus Lawrence had a breakout year at defensive end with 14.5 sacks, while Sean Lee was his usual amazing self, but it wasn’t enough to keep the whole unit ticking.
In Madden 19 the Cowboys are without Jason Witten after the tight end retired and Dez Bryant as they cut him in the offseason. That leaves a lot of production for new signings like Allen Hurns to fill. Dallas has not won a Super Bowl since 1994, can you get them back to the top of the NFL?
8. New Orleans Saints
83 overall, 85 offense, 85 defense
Best Players: Cameron Jordan (OVR 95), Drew Brees (OVR 91), Michael Thomas (OVR 91)
The 2017 Saints were propelled by a remarkable rookie class to the top of the NFC South last season. They finished the year with an 11-5 record and one of the best offenses in the league, before falling to the Minneapolis Miracle in the playoffs as Stefon Diggs caught an improbable game-winning touchdown on the last play.
The Saints have huge potential in 2018, with Alvin Kamara, Ryan Ramczyk, Marcus Williams, and Marshon Lattimore entering their second season as sure-fire starters and key pieces. They added uber-athlete Marcus Davenport in the draft and receiver Cameron Meredith in free agency. Future Hall of Fame quarterback Drew Brees returns at the helm of this potential juggernaut. Can you bring another parade to Bourbon Street?
9. Jacksonville Jaguars
83 overall, 81 offense, 91 defense
Best Players: Jalen Ramsey (OVR 97), AJ Bouye (OVR 94), Calais Campbell (OVR 92)
The Jaguars broke out in 2017. After years of misery and poor football, the 2017 Jacksonville Jaguars were a defensive monster that tormented quarterbacks on every snap. With one of the deepest pass rushes in the NFL, the Jaguars had two games in which they recorded 10 sacks, including a Week 1 destruction of Tom Savage and the Houston Texans. Led by Calais Campbell and Yannick Ngakoue, the defensive line caused chaos all year.
When they didn’t get to the quarterback in time though, passes were thrown into incredibly tight coverage. Cornerback Jalen Ramsey became the clear successor to Darrelle Revis as the best one-on-one corner in the league, while AJ Bouye improved on his break out 2016 performances.
Offensively the Jaguars were fueled by rookie running back Leonard Fournette, while quarterback Blake Bortles sprinkled in some quality games and some downright awful ones over the course of the year.
Over the offseason the Jaguars added guard Andrew Norwell in free agency and another defensive line beast in Taven Bryan in the draft. The Jaguars fell just short in the AFC championship game against New England last season.
10. Oakland Raiders
83 overall, 87 offense, 83 defense
Best Players: Khalil Mack (OVR 98), Rodney Hudson (OVR 95), Kelechi Osemele (OVR 90)
After a remarkable 12-4 record in 2016, the Raiders slumped to a disappointing 6-10 in 2017, which ended up costing head coach Jack Del Rio his job. Quarterback Derek Carr struggled in his return from a broken leg, and then suffered a back injury which kept him out of one game and hampered him in the rest. Running back Marshawn Lynch wasn’t the savior everyone had hoped, while Amari Cooper and Michael Crabtree could do little with the service Carr provided them.
Defensively the incredible talent of Khalil Mack was an isolated force. With little help, offenses could focus on him and he was limited to just 10.5 sacks, while the secondary was a disappointment.
In the offseason the Raiders shored up their offensive line and pass protection with offensive tackle Kolton Miller, and added some veteran pieces on defense like Tahir Whitehead and Leon Hall to hopefully improve the unit.
The Raiders have a lot of young and exciting talent, especially on offense, and are scheduled to move to Las Vegas for the start of the 2020 season.
11. Tennessee Titans
82 offense, 85 offense, 85 defense
Best Players: Delanie Walker (OVR 93), Jurrell Casey (OVR 89), Kevin Byard (OVR 88)
The Titans made the playoffs despite a 9-7 record last season thanks to a weak AFC. However, there were good stretches of the season for Tennessee. They won four in a row in October & November, as well as beating their divisional rival Jacksonville in both games but they were just too inconsistent, losing to the likes of Miami and Arizona.
A remarkable performance in the wildcard round by quarterback Marcus Mariota gave the Titans a 22-21 win before they were steamrolled by the Patriots in the divisional round.
The performances and back office politics resulted in a change of head coach, with Mike Vrabel taking over the reins. The Titans were very active in the offseason, adding running back Dion Lewis and cornerback Malcolm Butler, then drafting two big front seven players in Rashaan Evans and Harold Landry. Tennessee haven’t won a Super Bowl before, coming up a yard short in Super Bowl XXXIV. Can you get them their first?
12. Green Bay Packers
82 overall, 83 offense, 85 defense
Best Players: Aaron Rodgers (OVR 99), David Bakhtiari (OVR 97), Mike Daniels (OVR 91)
The Packers 2017 season was derailed by a fractured collarbone to quarterback Aaron Rodgers. Without their star the Packers went 3-5, leaving them with an all-or-nothing game against the Carolina Panthers in Week 15. Rodgers returned, but they came up short and were eliminated from playoff contention.
With Rodgers, the Packers are a deadly offense, but without him the holes in the team started to show. A lack of talent in the running game together with issues on defense meant they couldn’t keep their heads above water when he went down.
The Packers addressed some of those holes in the draft, adding cornerbacks Jaire Alexander in the first round and Josh Jackson in the second round.
The Packers are the most storied franchise in the history of football, can you add to their legacy?
13. Washington Redskins
82 overall, 87 offense, 83 defense
Best Players: Trent Williams (OVR 94), Jordan Reed (OVR 94), Brandon Scherff (OVR 90)
The Redskins fell short of their targets last season, finishing the year 7-9, but they were a tough opponent for many teams that made the playoffs. They beat the Rams in Week 2, and in November lost two nail-biters to Minnesota and New Orleans in back-to-back weeks.
The inadequate results led to the Redskins solidifying their stance on quarterback Kirk Cousins and allowing him to hit the open market. To fill their need, they packaged Kendall Fuller and some draft picks to Kansas City for Alex Smith, who was then handed a juicy contract extension.
In the draft Washington added defensive tackle Daron Payne to help fix some of their problems against the run, adding him to Jonathan Allen and new-comer Pernell McPhee.
14. Seattle Seahawks
81 overall, 77 offense, 87 defense
Best Players: Bobby Wagner (OVR 97), Earl Thomas (OVR 94), Russell Wilson (OVR 92)
The Seahawks era of domination came to an end in 2017. They failed to make the playoffs for the first time since 2011 and since the Legion of Boom and Russell Wilson joined forces. They finished the year with a 9-7 record and a shocking four losses at the previously impenetrable fortress of CenturyLink Field.
Injuries to Kam Chancellor, Richard Sherman, and even Earl Thomas robbed the secondary of its stars, while Cliff Avril only played four games. The defense was left to Bobby Wagner and KJ Wright to try and salvage, while a vastly under-staffed offensive line left Russell Wilson running for his life far too often and put the whole offense on the back foot.
15. Kansas City Chiefs
81 overall, 83 offense, 81 defense
Best Players: Eric Berry (OVR 96), Travis Kelce (OVR 95), Justin Houston (OVR 90)
The Chiefs were the most dominant team around in September 2017. They crushed the Patriots in the season opener, and then beat the Eagles in Week 2. They were 5-0 before losing to the Steelers and then sliding back into the pack. The Chiefs would go on a 1-6 skid before fixing their issues and finishing with a 10-6 record and the AFC West title. They were poor in their playoff game and fell 22-21 at home to the Tennessee Titans to end their year.
In the offseason they traded starting quarterback Alex Smith to make way for 2017 first-round pick Patrick Mahomes II. They also traded Marcus Peters away as the corner had become something of a problematic personality. Their top pick, Breeland Speaks, was in the second round as they had used their top pick to trade for Mahomes the previous year.
The Chiefs last tasted glory in 1970. Can you bring another banner to Arrowhead Stadium?
16. Los Angeles Chargers
80 overall, 83 offense, 83 defense
Best Players: Keenan Allen (OVR 92), Casey Hayward Jr (OVR 91), Melvin Ingram III (OVR 90)
The Chargers first year in Los Angeles was not a happy one. They started their season 0-4, including three incredibly narrow losses before finally getting their first win in New York. Their first home win didn’t come until late October, when they beat Denver 21-0.
That poor start didn’t kill their playoff hopes though, as Kansas City’s mid-season collapse opened the door for them. It wasn’t to be though, a four-win stretch was ended by the Chiefs in mid-December, and so were their hopes.
There is plenty of young talent on the Chargers right now, and a veteran quarterback at the helm who can still be brilliant.
17. Carolina Panthers
80 overall, 81 offense, 83 defense
Best Players: Luke Kuechly (OVR 99), Greg Olsen (OVR 92), Kawann Short (OVR 89)
2017 was not the stellar season Carolina were hoping for. After their 2015 Super Bowl bid fell short at the final hurdle and the ‘hangover’ of 2016 had cleared, there was a lot of optimism about the team. The regular season served them well, with big wins over the Patriots and Falcons they were 7-3 going into their mid-November bye week. A second loss to New Orleans in December all-but ended their hopes of the divisional crown, but an 11-5 record was enough for a wildcard spot and another crack at the Saints. It didn’t go as planned however, and a 31-26 loss ended their season.
Carolina’s offseason was spent trying to add depth to the offense. They brought in Torrey Smith and Jarius Wright at receiver to help open up the passing game, and their first-round pick was spent on Maryland receiver DJ Moore.
18. San Francisco 49ers
80 overall, 83 offense, 81 defense
Best Players: Joe Staley (OVR 90), Richard Sherman (OVR 90), Reuben Foster (OVR 90)
The 49ers spent 2017 rebuilding the team. Playing young players and shedding veterans as the looked for talent that would fit Kyle Shanahan’s system and philosophy. They were going nowhere in the standings with first Brian Hoyer and then CJ Beathard under center, but a mid-season trade for Patriots backup quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo turned things on its head. They started Garoppolo in Week 13 against the Bears and won 15-14, they would then win the rest of their games in convincing fashion, including wins over the playoff-bound Jaguars and Rams.
In the offseason they locked up Jimmy Garoppolo to a long-term contract and began adding talent. Players like Richard Sherman were brought in during free agency. They spent big on Jerick McKinnon at running back and Weston Richburg at center. Their first round pick also went on the offensive line as they drafted Notre Dame tackle Mike McGlinchey.
19. Baltimore Ravens
80 overall, 77 offense, 85 defense
Best Players: Marshal Yanda (OVR 92), Jimmy Smith (OVR 89), Brandon Williams (OVR 89)
2017 was a horrible year for the Baltimore Ravens. A 9-7 record meant they missed the playoffs for the fourth season in a row. The offense was among the worst units in the league in terms of entertainment value as Joe Flacco threw for just 3,141 yards, and star right guard Marshal Yanda played just two games due to injury.
The defense was still among the toughest to play against in the NFL, with Terrell Suggs picking up 11 sacks and Eric Weddle grabbing six interceptions, but their inconsistent performances could never get the momentum they needed. A 40-0 win over Miami one week was followed by a 23-20 loss to Tennessee the next.
Their offseason was spent rather quietly. Useful pieces like Willie Snead IV and Michael Crabtree were added in free agency to try and spark the passing game. But then the draft came around, and after initially trading out of the first round twice, they moved into the #32 pick to take quarterback Lamar Jackson.
20. Denver Broncos
79 overall, 77 offense, 85 defense
Best Players: Von Miller (OVR 99), Demaryius Thomas (OVR 88), Chris Harris Jr (OVR 88)
The Broncos post-Manning slide continued in 2017. Trevor Siemian started the season well enough at quarterback, and the team went 3-1 to start the season including a big win over the Dallas Cowboys, but by mid-October the wheels were starting to fall off. They went on an eight-game losing streak that included a huge 35-9 loss in Miami before finally picking up a win against the floundering Jets.
Vance Joseph was fortunate to keep his job after the season after his chopping and changing of quarterbacks. In the offseason the Broncos added Case Keenum, hoping to get a repeat of his performances for Minnesota.
In the draft Denver surprised some and took pass rusher Bradley Chubb fifth overall, hoping no doubt to recreate their Super Bowl winning pass rush.
21. Detroit Lions
79 overall, 83 offense, 81 defense
Best Players: Darius Slay (OVR 91), Golden Tate III (OVR 89), Glover Quin (OVR 87)
After making the playoffs in 2016, the Detroit Lions came into 2017 with hopes of competing for the NFC North title and pushing deep into the postseason. Two convincing wins to open the season against Arizona and the Giants were followed by a Week 4 win over the Vikings that seemed to have them well positioned for the rest of the year. Then the tough schedule started to bite. They lost narrowly to Carolina before being steamrolled by the Saints. A post-bye week loss to Pittsburgh dragged the Lions the wrong side of .500. They got back on the horse against a weakened Packers team before beating Clevland and Chicago, but a loss to Minnesota derailed them again and they eventually missed the playoffs with a 9-7 record.
The result was a change at head coach, with Matt Patricia coming over from the Patriots to try and get the franchise back on track. They added LeGarrette Blount to spark their running game, that trend continued in the draft as they selected the massive Frank Ragnow in the first round.
Detroit has not won a playoff game since the 1991 season, can you change their fortunes?
22. Houston Texans
79 overall, 75 offense, 89 defense
Best Players: JJ Watt (OVR 98), DeAndre Hopkins (OVR 94), Tyrann Mathieu (OVR 93)
The Houston Texans 2017 season was obliterated by injuries. Not only did they lose JJ Watt after just five games, but Whitney Mercilus, CJ Fiedorowicz, and soon Deshaun Watson all ended up on IR. With so many important and brilliant players sidelined it’s no surprise that the wheels fell off in the second half. The Texans lost nine of their last 10 games and finished with a 4-12 record.
With their first and second round picks in the hands of the Cleveland Browns, Houston had to turn to free agency to try and improve their roster. They added versatile defensive back Tyrann Mathieu and slot corner Aaron Colvin.
23. Tampa Bay Buccaneers
77 overall, 79 offense, 81 defense
Best Players: Lavonte David (OVR 95), Gerald McCoy (OVR 91), Mike Evans (OVR 89)
The Buccaneers were cursed to be the worst team in the toughest division in 2017. The NFC South sent three teams to the playoffs, and they all beat up on the Bucs. Tampa’s lone division win came in Week 17 when the Saints were already thinking of the playoffs. They also had tough games against Minnesota and New England, that combination handed them seven of their 11 losses, leaving the teams down cast and defeated before the season had even really begun.
Quarterback Jameis Winston was again inconsistent, and the running game in support of him non-existent. Mike Evans was a bright spot at wide receiver, and without any pass rush on defense the Bucs couldn’t lean on that side of the ball either. There was a lot of talent on the 2017 Buccaneers, but it wasn’t always distributed in the right ways.
24. Cleveland Browns
77 overall, 81 offense, 79 defense
Best Players: Joel Bitonio (OVR 89), Kevin Zeitler (OVR 89), Myles Garrett (OVR 88)
2017 was yet another tough year for the Cleveland Browns. After going 1-15 in 2016 they managed to be even worse and finished the year 0-16.
Poor quarterback play, bad defense, and injuries to key players like Joe Thomas and Myles Garrett made Cleveland easily the worst team in the NFL last season. Somehow head coach Hue Jackson kept his job, but there was change in the front office, which led to new quarterback options for 2018. Tyrod Taylor was bought in to be a veteran influence, and they used their first overall selection on Oklahoma quarterback Baker Mayfield. With extra picks from various trades the Browns also added cornerback Denzel Ward fourth overall, while spending free agency adding offensive weapons like Jarvis Landry and Carlos Hyde.
25. Cincinnati Bengals
77 overall, 77 offense, 83 defense
Best Players: AJ Green (OVR 93), Geno Atkins (OVR 92), Tyler Eifert (OVR 89)
The Cincinnati Bengals were one of the least interesting and least relevant teams of 2017. They weren’t good, they weren’t comically awful, they were just average and dull. They finished the year 7-9, They scored over 28 points just three times, they allowed over 28 points just three times.
Andy Dalton was competent at quarterback, but not exciting. He threw for 3,320 yards, 25 touchdowns, and 12 interceptions. Rookie running back Joe Mixon was poor, and even AJ Green and Geno Atkins became missable on a Sunday.
This offseason the Bengals did little to spark interest. They drafted Ohio State center Billy Price, and stayed very quiet in free agency.
26. Chicago Bears
76 overall, 77 offense, 81 defense
Best Players: Adrian Amos (OVR 89), Allen Robinson (OVR 87), Akiem Hicks (OVR 86)
2017 was the last season of the John Fox era. The Bears were very much rebuilding, and kept rookie Mitchell Trubisky on the bench for the first quarter of the year until Mike Glennon’s play became unbearable. There was reason to watch the Bears in 2017 though. Jordan Howard and Tarik Cohen combined to form a dangerous ground game, with Howard having five 100+ yard games over the course of the season. Defensively the Bears had some talent. Akiem Hicks was a monster on the defensive line, and Leonard Floyd continued to flash his skills.
The Bears finished the year 5-11 and hired Kansas City offensive coordinator Matt Nagy as their new head coach. In the offseason they added Allen Robinson and Taylor Gabriel to give Trubisky some weapons, and then drafted Roquan Smith in the first round to add speed to the middle of their defense.
Can you restore the Monsters of the Midway and win the Bears their elusive second Super Bowl?
27. Miami Dolphins
76 overall, 81 offense, 77 defense
Best Players: Reshad Jones (OVR 91), Cameron Wake (OVR 89), Josh Sitton (OVR 88)
The Dolphins had a torrid 2017. They lost quarterback Ryan Tannehill to a season-ending knee injury in training camp and had to resort to bringing Jay Cutler out of retirement, which went as poorly as expected. They picked up a fortunate win over the Chargers in Week 1, but poor losses to the Jets and then a shutout in London against the Saints signaled just how little fight the 2017 Dolphins had in them. They got a surprising win against Atlanta in Week 6 and their usual win at home against the Patriots in Week 14, but that was as special as the season got for Adam Gase’s team and they finished the year 6-10.
The Dolphins then shed talent in the offseason. They lost Jarvis Landry to free agency and cut Ndamukong Suh due to his enormous contract. They added veteran Frank Gore, Robert Quinn, and Danny Amendola on relatively cheap deals and then made a smart pick with their first round choice, taking Alabama safety Minkah Fitzpatrick.
28. Arizona Cardinals
75 overall, 77 offense, 79 defense
Best Players: David Johnson (OVR 93), Patrick Peterson (OVR 92), Larry Fitzgerald (OVR 89)
The Cardinals 2017 season got off to a disastrous start when star running back David Johnson was lost for the season due to a broken wrist in the opening game. The injury bug once again bit quarterback Carson Palmer after just seven games, and with him went their hopes for a productive season. The Cardinals still put up a fight though.
They beat Jacksonville and Tennessee at home in the second half of the season, and finished the year winning their final two games to go 8-8. Their defense was their biggest asset in 2017, with Chandler Jones racking up 17 sacks while Antoine Bethea picked off five passes and Patrick Peterson was his usual brilliant self.
In the offseason Carson Palmer called time on his career, so the Cardinals added Sam Bradford in free agency. They were then happy to see QB Josh Rosen fall to them on draft day, so they scooped up the UCLA man. They also added offensive lineman Justin Pugh and safety Tre Boston in free agency.
29. Buffalo Bills
75 overall, 75 offense, 81 defense
Best Players: Micah Hyde (OVR 92), LeSean McCoy (OVR 90), Jordan Poyer (OVR 89)
Buffalo’s 2017 started well enough, with five wins in their first seven games, which had people dreaming of the playoffs, but by November the season came off the rails. They were beaten by the poor New York Jets, and then trampled by the New Orleans Saints. The following week head coach Sean McDermott decided to change quarterback against the Chargers, only for Nathan Peterman to throw five interceptions in a horrific performance.
McDermott changed back to Tyrod Taylor, and they were able to salvage the season. The Bills would go 4-2 in the final stretch to finish 9-7 and squeak into the playoffs, they were unable to even dent the Jaguars defense in the wildcard game though and lost 10-3.
In the offseason the Bills moved on from Taylor at quarterback and used their draft capital to move up and take Wyoming’s Josh Allen. They also added Corey Coleman via trade.
30. Indianapolis Colts
75 overall, 81 offense, 75 defense
Best Players: TY Hilton (OVR 89), Jabaal Sheard (OVR 89), Andrew Luck (OVR 87)
Indianapolis’ season was really over before it started when Andrew Luck found he was unable to play after offseason shoulder surgery. The result was having to trade for Jacoby Brissett, who threw for just 3,098 yards, 13 touchdowns and seven interceptions.
With the passing game effectively wiped out, the running game and defense could not handle the load and the Colts slumped to a 4-12 record which saw the end of the Chuck Pagano era.
In the offseason there was some embarrassment when the Colts announced Josh McDaniels as their new head coach, only for the Patriots man to back out at the last moment. Indianapolis eventually hired Frank Reich from the Philadelphia Eagles.
The Colts very wisely spent their first round pick this year on the monstrous guard Quenton Nelson, but were relatively quiet in free agency.
31. New York Giants
74 overall, 77 offense, 77 defense
Best Players: Odell Beckham Jr (OVR 95), Damon Harrison Sr (OVR 95), Landon Collins (OVR 88)
The Giants 2017 season never got off the ground. They lost their first five games before finally getting off the mark in Denver. Star wide receiver Odell Beckham played just four games before suffering a season-ending ankle injury. His absence made a poor offense unbearable. Eli Manning was unceremoniously benched for a game before coming back into the lineup, a move that made Ben McAdoo the most hated man in New York.
McAdoo was fired before the season was even over and New York would end the season with a horrible 3-13 record. They would eventually replace McAdoo with Minnesota Vikings offensive coordinator Pat Shurmur. In the offseason the Giants lost offensive linemen Justin Pugh and Weston Richburg to free agency, but spent big on left tackle Nate Solder to try and patch some holes. They spent their second overall pick on Penn State running back Saquon Barkley to try and finally build a running game for Manning.
32. New York Jets
74 overall, 71 offense, 81 defense
Best Players: Jamal Adams (OVR 85), Leonard Williams (OVR 84), Robby Anderson (OVR 84)
Finally, we come to the Jets. Their 2017 season was spent waiting for 2018, but they were more competitive than many assumed they would be. The Jets beat both Jacksonville and Kansas City over the course of the year, and even gave the Patriots a scare early in the year. They finished the season 5-11 after getting 13 strong games out of Josh McCown and seeing excellent play from their rookie safeties Jamal Adams and Marcus Maye.
In the offseason the Jets focused their attention on the draft, and were undoubtedly happy to come away with USC quarterback Sam Darnold at third overall. They added veteran running back Isaiah Crowell and wide receiver Terrelle Pryor in free agency, as well as center Spencer Long and cornerback Trumaine Johnson.
The Jets have fallen to the bottom of Madden 19, can you lift them up?
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