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Madden 21: Complete Controls Guide for PS4 & Xbox One - Offense, Defense, Pass Rush, Ball Carrier Skill Stick, The Yard, Franchise Mode & more

Madden 21 controls are slightly different this year, so you'll want to be prepared before you hop into a game.

Whether you're new or a pro, the new buttons and systems will change how you approach Madden.

The biggest difference comes with new pass-rushing mechanics which offer new play to beating out the OL, and a memory system for blockers to match it.

With that said, let's jump right in!

Offense Controls

Here's what you need to know when you have the ball.

Madden 21 Passing Controls

madden 21 controls passing
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Xbox One Controls
PS4 Controls
Low Pass
Hold LT whilst passing
Hold L2 whilst passing
High Pass
Hold LB whilst passing
Hold L1 whilst passing
Bullet Pass
Hold pass button
Hold pass button
Touch Pass
Press & release timing of pass button
Press & release timing of pass button
Lob Pass
Tap pass button
Tap pass button
Scramble
LS + RT
LS + R2
Pump Fake
Double tap pass button
Double tap pass button
Throw Away
Press in RS
Press in RS
Throw - #1
A
X
Throw - #2
B
O
Throw - #3
X
Throw - #4
Y
Throw - #5
RB
R1

Passing is pretty much unchanged from previous versions but learning how to introduce different types of passing into your game is massive.

READ MORE: First impressions of Madden 21 trial gameplay

Try to avoid doing a bullet pass for every play. With picks being a bigger part of Madden 21, utilize the low and high passes too.

Madden 21 Ball Carrier Controls

madden 21 controls ball carrier
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Xbox One Controls
PS4 Controls
Stiff Arm
A
X
Dive
X
Spin
B or rotate RS
O or rotate RS
Hurdle
Y
Jump Hurdle
Y + LS
▲+LS
Pitch
LB
L1
Sprint
RT
R2
Protect Ball
RB
R1
Truck
RS Up
RS Up
Dead Leg
RS Down
RS Down
Juke Left
RS Left
RS Left
Juke Right
RS Right
RS Right

The ball carrier buttons have been moved around slightly so the previous precision modifier is now a taunting button.

The Dead Leg is a new style of juking that is aimed at stopping in your tracks and letting defenders go flying past you.

Madden 21 Ball In Air Offensive Controls

Activity
Xbox One Controls
PS4 Controls
Possession Catch
A
X
Switch Player
B
O
Run After Catch
X
Aggressive Catch
Y
Defensive Assist
LB
L1
Strafe
LT
L2
Sprint
RT
R2

Nothing much has changed here but the importance of getting it right has.

READ MORE: Which are the best players in Madden 21?

If you get it wrong you will get picked or make simple drops more often in this years game.

Madden 21 Blocking Controls

madden 21 controls blocking
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Xbox One Controls
PS4 Controls
Player Movement
LS
LS
Switch Player
B
O
Aggressive Impact Block
RS Up
RS Up
Aggressive Cut Block
RS Down
RS Down

It's rare you would be controlling a blocker outside of The Yard mode, but just in case!

Madden 21 Preplay Offense Controls

madden 21 controls preplay offense 1
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Xbox One Controls
PS4 Controls
Motion Player
LS Left or Right (Hold)
LS Left or Right (Hold)
Player Lock
Double Press LS
Double Press LS
Pass Protection
LB
L1
Show Play Art
LT
L2
Fake Snap
RB
R1
X-Factor Vision
RT
R2
Hot Route
Y
Audible
X
Switch Player
B
O
Snap Ball
A
X
Pre-Play Menu
Press RS
Press RS
Timeout
Menu Button
Touchpad
Gameplay Camera Zoom In
D-pad down
D-pad down
Gameplay Camera Zoom Out
D-pad up
D-pad up

Not much is different with the pre-snap controls but setting up your player is key to success in Madden.

READ MORE: Whats in Madden 21's patch 1.03?

So if you don't know these off by heart, practice.

Madden 21 Player Locked Receiver Controls

madden 21 controls player locked receiver
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Xbox One Controls
PS4 Controls
Individual Play Art
LT
L2
Just-Go Release
RT
R2
Player Lock
Double press RS
Double press RS
Route Running
LS
LS
Change up (on LOS)
Flick RS
Flick RS
Foot Fire (on LOS)
Hold RS
Hold RS
Conservative Change-up release
A
X
Cut Out of Press (on LOS)
Flick RS
Flick RS

Again, these are most useful when playing as a WR in The Yard or face of the franchise, but worth knowing.

Defensive Controls

Madden 21 Defensive Pursuit Controls

madden 21 controls defensive pursuit 1
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Xbox One Controls
PS4 Controls
Strafe
LT
L2
Sprint
RT
R2
Defensive Assist
LB
L1
Strip Ball
RB
R1
Breakdown Tackle
A
X
Aggressive / Dive Tackle
X
Switch Player
B
O
Hit Stick
RS Up
RS Up
Cut Stick
RS Down
RS Down
Blow-Up Block
RS Flick
RS Flick

When defending its best to use conservative tackling so you don't miss and leave a wide-open score.

READ MORE: How to contain a mobile QB in Madden 21

But if you are feeling brave, and controlling Bobby Wagner, the hit stick can be deadly.

Madden 21 Ball In Air Defensive Controls

madden 21 controls ball in air defense 1
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Activity
Xbox One Controls
PS4 Controls
Sprint
RT
R2
Strafe
LT
L2
Defensive Assist
LB
L1
Ball Hawk
Y
Swat
X
Switch Player
B
O
Play Receiver
A
X

Despite the changes to the speed of control, usering is still the best way to go on defense.

It's hard but the difference when you crack it is huge.

Madden 21 Defensive Engaged Controls (incl. Pass Rush)

madden 21 controls defense engaged
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Xbox One Controls
PS4 Controls
Reach Tackle
LS Left or Right + X
LS Left or Right + ■
Swat
Y
Bull Rush
RS Down
RS Down
Switch Player
B
O
Club/Swim Move
RS Left or Right
RS Left or Right
Rip Move
RS Up
RS Up
Speed Move
RT
R2
Contain
LT
L2

Playing the defensive line has completely changed for Madden 21.

Along with these button additions there is a whole new points system you will see on the screen, with OL having their equivalent.

READ MORE: Everything you need to know about Madden 21 coverage abilities

OL will learn from your moves, so do the same move too much and it won't be effective anymore.

Switch up users on the DL, and switch up moves.

Madden 21 Defensive Coverage Controls

Activity
Xbox One Controls
PS4 Controls
Press/Chuck Receiver
A + LS
X + LS
Switch Player
B
O
Player Movement
LS
LS
Strafe
LT
L2
Defensive Assist
LB
L1

This is mainly for those that want to play as a CB, whether this is in The Yard or a regular mode.

We would advise usering the MLB or SS.

Madden 21 Preplay Defensive Controls

madden 21 controls preplay defense
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Activity
Xbox One Controls
PS4 Controls
Linebacker Audible
Right D-pad
Right D-pad
Defensive Line Audible
Left D-pad
Left D-pad
Defensive Keys
LB
L1
Show Play Art
LT
L2
Fake Snap
RB
R1
X-Factor Vision
RT
R2
Coverage Audible
Y
Audible
X
Switch Player
B
O
Defensive Hot Route
A
X
Pre-Play Menu
Press RS
Press RS
Timeout
Menu Button
Touchpad
Gameplay Camera Zoom In
D-pad down
D-pad down
Gameplay Camera Zoom Out
D-pad up
D-pad up
Show / Weak Side Gap Assignment
RT + A + B
R2 + X + O
Pump Up Crowd
RS Up
RS Up

Now you know all the buttons for Madden 21 it's time to practice, practice, practice!

READ MORE: Everything you need to know about Madden 21 MUT

For more articles like this, take a look at our Madden page.