Having quality options at the cornerback position is vital in the modern NFL.
With the explosion in passing that has happened over the years the need for a superstar corner to match up against a superstar receiver has only grown.
They need to be quick, agile and tough. Often, cornerbacks start school life as star receivers themselves, but undersized or not the best catchers, they transition to defense and take a chip on the shoulder with them.
Madden 20 is here, and with it a chance to take your team to the Super Bowl in franchise mode. Who are the corners you want when the ball is in the air at the biggest moments?
Jalen Ramsey, Jacksonville Jaguars (96 OVR)
Best Stats: Press (98), Man Cover (97), Awareness (97), Zone Cover (96), Jump (94), Acceleration (93), Speed (92), Play Recognition (92), Agility (90)
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Outspoken and elite, Jalen Ramsey is widely recognized as the best CB in the league but he knows it. You would expect it from a 5th overall pick. In 3 seasons, Ramsey has been to 2 Pro Bowls and made 9 Interceptions. Although, more impressive that the stats, are his ability to shut down some of the leagues best WRs to minimal yardage.
He does this with elite core coverage stats; press (98), man cover (97) and zone cover (96). No one else has this level of ability in Madden. Complimenting these skills, Ramsey is a physical freak. His acceleration (93), speed (92) and agility (90) are all top end stats.
Adding the intangibles of awareness (97) and play recognition (92) the 6’1″ corner can be virtually unplayable.
Stephon Gilmore, New England Patriots (94 OVR)
Best Stats: Man Cover (96), Press (95), Awareness (95), Agility (94), Acceleration (94), Play Recognition (93), Speed (91), Zone Cover (90), Jump (90)
There’s no doubt that practicing with one of the greatest QB’s of all time has helped Stephon Gilmore reach the top of the game. A 10th overall pick in 2012, Gilmore has been consistently good for most of his 7 seasons but struggled with injuries. A change of scenery led to one of his best year’s last season, along with a Super Bowl win with the Patriots.
He is another man cover (96) focused CB, with high press (95) and agility (94). He will track his man stride for stride with acceleration (94) and speed (92). His zone cover (90) is a bit of a drop off but still a high stat.
Another player with solid intangibles, awareness (95) and play recognition (93) means Gilmore won’t be faked out easily with trick plays or play action.
Richard Sherman, San Francisco 49ers (93 OVR)
Best Stats: Awareness (99), Jump (98), Zone Cover (97), Play Recognition (97), Press (96), Agility (95), Acceleration (89), Man Cover (89), Speed (88)
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Another big character, Richard Sherman has been at the highest level for 8 seasons. Sherman is one of few people to grow up in Compton, but achieve a place at the prestigious Stanford University. He has never stopped fighting to be better in life and despite only being drafted in the 5th round he has dominated the NFL.
As you’d expect from an older elite player, Sherman’s awareness (99) is maxed out with play recognition (97) not far behind. The zone cover (97) skills he honed in Seattle is the highest in the league. Elite press (96) and jump (98) mean he can play against the biggest and best.
Age is catching up with Sherman, and from a franchise perspective he is a short-term option. Speed (88) and acceleration (89) are in decline, and this affects his man cover (89).
Patrick Peterson, Arizona Cardinals (92 OVR)
Best Stats: Jump (95), Agility (95), Man Cover (94), Press (94), Acceleration (92), Speed (92), Zone Cover (91), Play Recognition (91), Awareness (88)
Another 5th overall pick, but this time from 2011, Patrick Peterson is an 8-year veteran with an incredible 8x Pro Bowl selections. That’s right, every year. Peterson has 23 career interceptions and 76 passes deflected for the Cardinals. A lot of teams just avoid his side of the field.
He has very good speed (92), acceleration (92) and agility (95). These alongside his man cover (94) and press (94) are what makes him a shut down corner. There isn’t much drop off to zone cover (91).
Interestingly, it is awareness (88) and play recognition (91) that drops Peterson down. This has a disproportionate effect the overall rating – I think Peterson is a better player than the rating suggests and you might get a bit of a steal with him.
Byron Jones, Dallas Cowboys (91 OVR)
Best Stats: Jump (98), Agility (96), Zone Cover (94), Acceleration (94), Press (93), Speed (92), Awareness (91), Play Recognition (90), Man Cover (87)
A great athlete, Byron Jones started his career 4 seasons ago as a cornerback, only to switch to safety, and then back again. He only has 2 career interceptions, but thanks to a very good year in 2018 he was elected for his first Pro Bowl.
Jones, along with Sherman, leads the list with jump (98) and at 6’1″ he will battle big receivers. His zone cover (94) is among the highest and his agility (96), acceleration (94), press (93) and speed (92) means he can keep up with just about anyone.
Admittedly, his man cover (87) is what is stopping him being elite, so be considerate of what kind of defense you like to play. Awareness (91) and play recognition (90) are decent as you would expect.
READ MORE: 7 best DTs in Franchise Mode
Chris Harris Jr, Denver Broncos (90 OVR)
Best Stats: Agility (96), Play Recognition (95), Man Cover (93), Awareness (92), Jump (90), Speed (90), Acceleration (89), Zone Cover (88), Press (87)
Despite going undrafted in 2011, Chris Harris Jr has been to 4 Pro Bowls and won a Super Bowl in his 8 seasons in the league. In the annual top 100 NFL players list, they left Harris Jr out this season and Bronco’s fans were not happy about this.
As an older player, it’s not surprising to see slightly below elite speed (90) and acceleration (89). Harris Jr’s zone cover (88) and press (87) is also below what’s expected of an elite corner.
That said, man cover (93), play recognition (95) and agility (96) means that Harris can match stride for stride with the best WRs. At 5’10”, he’s a little undersized – but jump (90) will make up for it.
Kyle Fuller, Chicago Bears (89 OVR)
Best Stats: Zone Cover (95), Awareness (95), Speed (92), Acceleration (92), Jump (91), Agility (90), Man Cover (85), Press (84), Play Recognition (84)
A key part of a great Bears defense, they took Kyle Fuller at 14th Overall in 2014. Fuller had a monster year in 2018, with 7 interceptions and was selected to his first Pro Bowl. Fuller is now seen as a top 10 players at the position – which is reflected in Madden.
There’s no denying there’s a slight drop off from the elite players in the list here. Man cover (85) is average, likewise press (84) and play recognition (84) mean that Fuller isn’t the guy you want 1-on-1 on every play with an elite WR.
That said, in a zone defense, Fuller comes alive. Zone cover (95), speed (92) and acceleration (92) are all top end stats for the position and Fuller can be a very solid player for a decent chunk of your years in a franchise league.
|Chris Harris Jr||DEN||90||30||90||93||88||87|
|Casey Hayward Jr||LAC||89||29||89||92||90||90|
|Darius Slay Jr||DET||89||28||93||87||93||86|
|Desmond King II||LAC||87||24||88||88||92||81|
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