20 Aug 2021 11:47 PM +00:00

Madden 22 Defensive Coverage Controls & Tips: Protect The Flats

A key to having a successful record in Madden 22 isn't all about the offense, you'll need to have a strong defense too.

Players have found ways to exploit certain areas of the field making it tough for defenses to properly defend them. The great news though is we're here to help.

Read on so you can find out how to protect the flats, use the hit stick in Madden 22, and use shade coverages.


Madden 22 Defensive Controls Guide & Tips

To avoid getting beat deep, or your opponent picking up easy first downs on you, you'll need to master the three main zones on Madden 22.

The key here is going to be picking up on what you're opponent's tendencies are and adjusting to them. If you're able to adjust and read his offense better, you'll be able to use these coverages to help you win.

The Colts Darius Leonard makes a tackle in Madden 22
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DOMINATE: Surrender nothing with a strong defense with Madden 22

Let's take a closer look at these zones and coverages how you can use them in Madden 22.

Three Zones to familiarize yourself with


Hard Flat

This is an area that every Madden 22 player needs to master, using the hard flat is especially important when you're trying to cover a short yardage play. Say your opponent loves throwing short outside routes, this is the perfect zone to use to stop it.

You can select a zone with hard flat coverage in most Cover 2 defenses.

Soft Squats

A soft squat is essentially the opposite of hard flat coverage, you'd use this for opponents that usually go for deeper routes. The soft squat could become especially useful against opponents that run a lot of corner routes.

This is another Cover 2 concept that has the cornerbacks playing deeper in the zone.

Cloud Flat


A mix between the two, the cloud flat can be used to protect you in medium yardage situations. The only problem is that you could still surrender a pass to the flat or a pass over the top because you aren't committed to defending either.

Don't worry, there's a way you can counteract the negatives behind this strategy.

How and when to use Shade Coverage

Shade coverage is great because you can use it to protect a certain part of the field against a 1 on 1 scenario.

This is a great trick to know when trying to protect a portion of the field, the great part is you can essentially defend the entire field with just a flick.

Bengals defensive back intercepts the ball in Madden 22
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SNAG AN INT: Protect yourself by making adjustments to coverage in Madden 22

Here's exactly how you can use Shade Coverage:

  • Press Y/Triangle to bring up defensive adjustments once the opposing team breaks the huddle.
  • Flick your RS toward whichever direction you want to cover (right, left, up, down).

Flicking right guards the outside routes, left guards against inside routes, flick up plays top-most coverage, and down protects the underneath.

Man to Man Coverage in Madden 22

Zone defenses are great because they help cover the entire field but occasionally you're going to want man to man coverage on a single receiver.

This could be because the receiver has found sweet spots within the zone to sit. Or, the running back comes out of the backfield and finds himself open frequently.

Instead of switching the entire defense into man to man, here's how you can assign one player to play man to man on the receiver in Madden 22.

  • On defense before the snap press Y/Triangle to bring up your defensive adjustments
  • Then press Y/Triangle again to bring up your quick adjustments
  • Press the button that correlates with the defender you wish to man up
  • Press up on the right stick to select man coverage
  • Press the button that correlates with the offensive player you wish to man the defender too

How to use the Hit Stick in Madden 22

So, the opponent received the pass downfield but you have a safety rapidly approaching him and you need to force a fumble.

Perfect time for the hit stick to come into play right? Just be careful because a good juke by the runner can leave you looking very silly.

Dallas Cowboy forces a fumble in Madden 22
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FORCED FUMBLE: Using the hit stick can help force a fumble in Madden 22

Here's how to use the hit stick in Madden 22:

  • Line yourself up on a direct line with the runner.
  • Flick the Right Stick down or up to perform a hit stick on the ball carrier.

Swat a pass in Madden 22

An interception isn't the only option available to you in Madden 22 and swatting the ball is useful when not in the position to intercept.

This is how you can break up a pass by swatting the ball:

  • Press B or Circle to switch to the defender the ball is being thrown near.
  • Press the X or Square button to swat the pass down.
Trevon Diggs of the Dallas Cowboys runs one back for a touchdown in Madden 22
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PICK 6: Take one back to the house in Madden 22

Occasionally, this could even resort to the ball being swatted to a defender nearby, making an interception easier.


How to Strip the ball in Madden 22

This is much like the Hit Stick motion in Madden 22, it can result in a fumble but could also result in a broken tackle.

You'll need to get near the ball carrier to do this and make sure you don't press the button too early.

Here's how to strip the ball:

  • When close enough to the ball carrier, press the RB/R1 button to begin the strip animation.

As we said, be careful to press this at the right time to avoid giving up a big run.