Madden 17 comes out August 23rd and many fans, such as myself have already pre-ordered it. And just like every other year there are players that are overrated and underrated, and that includes Buccaneers.
Madden 17 is really the only football game out there so it can’t really be compared to anything else. Their rating system has always been fairly accurate. The Buccaneers are ranked 83 on offense, 81 on defense and 79 overall which is higher than teams like the Colts and Jets but lower than the Titans and Chargers.
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Team overalls are slightly confusing because you can have high offense and defense rankings but still have a lower overall. It doesn’t really make sense, but I’m not a game design engineer just a fan of the game. “Madden” has always been relatively fair to rate players but being a Bucs’ fan I always feel that they are slighted a little bit because they aren’t the Packers or Patriots. I’m going to tell you a few Bucs that should be rated a little higher.
1- Lavonte David OLB: 86 Overall
Outside linebackers that aren’t specifically pass rushers aren’t ranked as high. Players like Von Miller are fairy ranked as top players but they don’t do as much as Lavonte does. Lavonte hasn’t blitzed as much as he had since Greg Schiano was the coach but with new defensive coordinator Mike Smith, David may have a larger role in the defense and display the skills he is capable of. With 85 speed, 88 tackling, and 85 speed he’s a tackling machine. 81 zone coverage is also in the top ten for linebackers. Lavonte can definitely prove to the game developers and fans of the NFL he’s a top talent at the linebacker position.
2- Jameis Winston QB: 82 Overall
Jameis Winston is in his second season in the NFL but his leadership skills make him feel like an experienced veteran. With a 95 throw power he has a top ten arm in the game. 88, 85, and 81 accuracy on short, medium, and deep passes seems fairly accurate based off of his performance last season. Maybe if Mike Evans can boost his 83 catching, by not dropping passes, Winston’s accuracy should go up.
His awareness is definitely low at 78 but he will show that his knowledge of the game is much higher than the game developers believe. Him having sneaky speed at 78 helps too. Winston isn’t too much lower than I expected him to be but he can definitely be higher and if he wins early Madden designers will be put on notice.
3- Kwon Alexander MLB: 76 Overall
Kwon Alexander is another Bucs’ linebacker that is underrated by Madden developers. Missing the last four games definitely didn’t help. If Kwon finished the season on the same pace he would have finished the season with 124 tackles, good enough for ninth in the NFL. He would be behind Lavonte with 147, and just ahead of newly acquired linebacker Daryl Smith, with 121.
At only 78 in tackling, his ranking is the lowest for a linebacker in the top ten. With 87 speed and pursuit respectively his chasing ability is extremely high for a middle linebacker which is a fun position to play. He did miss a lot of tackles last season but with his first season under his belt he can develop better angles and make the Bucs’ linebackers some of the best in the league.
4- Mike Glennon QB: 71 Overall
For a player that didn’t play a snap last season, Mike Glennon is an underrated player. For a guy with 29 touchdowns, only 19 interceptions, and a 83.7 quarterback rating a 71 overall is pretty low. To prove this is low I’ll name a few players ranked ahead of him: Case Keenum, Jimmy Garoppolo, AJ McCarron, Geno Smith, and Brandon Weeden. With 93 throw power and 77 deep throw accuracy he should be a much higher overall. A free agent this yea,r he can look for Brock Osweiler money for basically better stats and more in-game experience.
5- Noah Spence DE: 71 Overall
Noah Spence is a rookie in the NFL but if his college tape shows anything he won’t be a 71 for long. Joey Bosa is a 79 overall and he was behind him when he was at Ohio State. If Spence stayed at Ohio State he probably would have a higher ranking but the incident with drugs definitely hindered his overall rating.
He was one of the best pure pass rushers coming out of the draft. With only 73 power moves and 80 finesse moves he’s a little low for a guy with his college numbers. I know he’s a rookie and hasn’t played an NFL snap but if you’ve seen him play before he should be a little higher. The position he plays performance is crucial, so when he performs, which he should, his numbers will increase as well.
As I said before, Madden isn’t perfect, but it’s good that they update almost on a daily basis. You can see the entire Bucs’ roster here. The numbers will never be what everyone wants to be, just watch the rookies guess their rankings. It’s football season and I’m just ready to play and watch some football.