Madden 20: Slider settings for a realistic NFL experience (offense, defense, special teams) PS4 & Xbox One

Sometimes EA’s sim can feel too disconnected to the real thing. This is how to fix that.

Toby Durant by Toby Durant

Madden 20 is meant to be a realistic sim of the NFL, but sometimes it just doesn’t feel that way.

Every player has experienced moments that made them cry out “That would never happen!” and throw a controller in frustration.

Maybe it is 3 fumbles by your star running back in the red zone, or the opposing quarterback going 31-33 as he slices you up before turning in an awful performance the next week against the computer.

Whatever it is, Madden seems to enjoy making your life a misery when it should be making it a joy.

To fix that we have found a strong slider setting to create a more realistic version of Madden that creates a bigger gap between good players and bad, while cutting down on some of the most frustrating parts of the game.

How to adjust the sliders

First things first, how do you get to the sliders and move them around?

You need to go across to the cog on the main menu and then select “settings”, from there you need to hit the first tab, again labeled “settings”. That takes you into the options menu where you can adjust player skill, CPU skill, and the penalties using the sliders.

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CPU Skill slider

This is the primary place you want to play around with the sliders.

To avoid the “can’t miss” QB games we have lowered QB accuracy to 42, while pass blocking and WR catching is lowered to 45. This is to make a pass rush a little more effective and make players with low catching less effective. It also means that contested catches are harder for the CPU, stopping those moments where an average player is hauling in balls with a safety draped over him.

Run blocking is dropped to 45 while fumbles are upped to 57. That makes it less likely you will create a fumble, which corrects something Madden has had a problem with.

On defense reaction times are upped to 53 to help the CPU players get in the right positions and reach close passes they should normally get. Interceptions are lowered to 44 to stop some of the more ridiculous defensive plays that can crop up while pass coverage is upped to 56 so you can’t exploit holes in zone coverage as much. Tackling is up to 55 to help prevent some of the more OP ball-carrier moves in Madden 20.

The kicking game is made a little more powerful, with all 3 powers upped to 53, but less accurate, 47, to better replicate the modern NFL kicker. You never see short punts or kicks drop short any more, but they will still miss directionally.

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Player Skill slider

Player Skill sliders are set a little differently to better cover the gap that often appears between what a player can take advantage of and what the CPU can do.

QB accuracy is at 45, while pass blocking is at 52 and catching at 44. This keeps the player’s passing competitive and corrects some of the OP CPU pass rush that can crop up. Run blocking is set to 47 with fumbles at 54.

On defense the reaction time is set to 47, as the player can be far more pre-emptive than the CPU. Interceptions are set to 45, and pass coverage is now 48 which makes the OP coverages players can set and audible through a little less powerful. Tackling is set to 55.

Player field goal power is left at 50 but accuracy is at 43, to throw in a little more difficulty to the last-second kicks that are too easy right now. Punt power is at 49 with accuracy at 47, and kickoff power is at 53 to create a few more touchbacks.

READ MORE: Full controls guide

Penalties slider

The NFL has a horrific penalty problem right now, especially with holding calls, but thankfully we don’t need to be that realistic with these sliders. Offsides, false starts, and defensive holding are all lowered to 45 to cut out the frustrating penalties that really slow the game down. Facemasks happen way too often so the are dropped to 40. Illegal block in the back is upped to 55 to make screens a little less powerful. Roughing the passer and defensive pass interference is left at 50.


Toby Durant