Madden Cover Finalists Narrowed To Nine

It’s probably considered to be sacrilegious in some circles, but we really don’t care about the cover of the Madden game.  Sure, it might sell a few extra copies each year, given the increasing number of consumers who realize that the product itself doesn’t change all that much from year to year.
And we also don’t believe in the Madden jinx, a ridiculous stigma that hasn’t been fully borne out by reality.
But the identity of the cover athlete is newsworthy, because some people apparently have way too much time on their hands.
For the first time, EA has issued a list of finalists.  Per SportsBusiness Daily, there are nine:   Steelers S Troy Polamalu, Colts QB Peyton Manning, Cardinals WR Larry Fitzgerald, Chiefs QB Matt Cassel, Cowboys LB DeMarcus Ware, Steelers QB Ben Roethlisberger, Giants RB Brandon Jacobs, Vikings RB Adrian Peterson, and Ravens S Ed Reed.
The “winner” will be announced on April 24.
The gimmick seems a bit hokey to us, and we wonder whether the nine players are being paid simply to be listed as finalists — or whether this falls under the purview of the NFLPA’s group licensing rules.
It’s also possible that all nine of them will be on the cover.  If each of them would then suffer a serious injury or suddenly develop an acute case of suck, maybe we’d take the whole Madden curse thing more seriously.
It has been long believed that certain superstar-level players (like Peyton Manning) have wanted too much money to serve as the cover athlete, and to engage in the requisite appearances and promotional activities.  Indeed, few true franchise quarterbacks ever have appeared on the cover of the game.

61 responses to “Madden Cover Finalists Narrowed To Nine

  1. few franchise quarterbacks? ‘Pep was the MVP in the year before he was on the cover, with Minnesota significantly invested in him. and to say Michael Vick wasn’t a franchise quarterback is just wrong, anyone else remember how Blank would wheel him around in that injury year?

    That way in 5 years people will look at the cover and be like..Why did they just put a generic player on the cover? who is that guy? is he a real football player? whatever happened to him?
    That would be like giving Third Eye Blind their own guitar hero game.

  3. The Madden Curse is REAL! This could have serious implications on my fantasy keeper league.

  4. Choose any of the following:
    Steelers S Troy Polamalu, Colts QB Peyton Manning, Steelers QB Ben Roethlisberger, Giants RB Brandon Jacobs
    go madden curse

  5. Peyton was cover boy for NFL Fever for the Xbox. So he wouldn’t have been able to be on the cover of Madden during those years

  6. “Indeed, few franchise quarterbacks ever have appeared on the cover of the game.”
    Mcnabb has been on the cover and so has Vince… ah, nevermind you said franchise QB’s, right?
    Yea, Mcnabb is the only one I can think of…

  7. Cassel? Really? I’m a Pats fan and that’s a joke right?
    Fitz imo. No WR has ever been on the cover.
    And WTH are you talking about few QBs have been on the cover. They started putting players on in 2000.
    5 QBs
    4 RBs
    1 LB

  8. “… have wanted too much to serve as the cover athlete.” What does that even mean?

  9. “But the identity of the cover athlete is newsworthy, because some people apparently have way too much time on their hands.”
    Like you Florio for actually taking the time to post this

  10. please for the love of god don’t be demarcus ware. thats the last thing the boys need is a jinx …

  11. “And we also don’t believe in the Madden jinx, a ridiculous stigma that hasn’t been fully borne out by reality.”
    You made my soda come out my nose, you magnificent bastard!
    That’s gold Jerry. GOLD!!!

  12. Wow… Florio’s pissed… Que problema, mijo?
    My top two-
    1. Ben Roethlesberger
    2. Larry Fitzgerald
    Ben first, simply because he actually won the Super Bowl. But I’m buying it at midnight on August 14th so it really doesn’t matter. Already reserved it and paid the whole thing off two months ago… I know, I’m pathetic

  13. How about Farve in Jets Jersey, and then they can re-release the game a week later with Farve in a Vikings jersey. No no what am i thinking – thats a stupid idea, they would never do that.

  14. alamedaman,
    Daunte Culpepper was never MVP. Get your facts straight before you pretend to be an expert.

  15. My vote is for Big Jen!!! C’mon Jen…….Better yet Polamalu and Jen!!
    Nevermind…I do appreciate Polamalu’s skills….make it just Jen!

  16. Why is Matt Cassel being considered…….If hes being considered how come Drew Brees isnt.

  17. … given the increasing number of consumers who realize that the product itself doesn’t change all that much from year to year.
    Someone clearly doesn’t appreciate the value of formation specific audibles!
    Super Bowl winners never go on the cover, but the losers often make the cut, expect to see Fitz named cover athlete on the 24th

  18. Year to year, the game usually doesn’t change that much because much like a team GM, the lead designer works on creating the game to his specifications. They usually get a few attempts, but the last few years, it’s been a bit of a rotating door. Last year’s edition was mostly just a minor upgrade over the 08 version – but I had to purchase it since Favre was on the cover.
    I really don’t know if you keep up with the game at all, but if the Madden team delivers what they promise throughout their blog, a lot of the nagging issues with the game should be fixed this year. ( ) That link will take you back to the very first post – the whole collection of blog posts proves to get me pretty excited about this years attempt at a true NFL experience. This year’s lead designer is a first timer in that role – and he really seems to have a good idea of what needs to get done.

  19. Florio please do some research before you post such things.
    Daunte Culpepper at the time was easily considered a franchise quarterback
    Donovan McNab was on the cover
    Brett Favre
    Vince Young got it the year after he was ROY so it seemed like he was to be a franchise quarterback
    Mike VIik definately was one as most reporters referred to him as a franchise QB
    So HALF of the covers have been of QBs.

  20. That’s the pot calling the kettle black. If there was a game called “To Much Time on Your Hands” a few years back you would have been a finalist and probably would have won the spot on the cover. Unfortunately that game never came out so instead you wrote a crappy book and started and NFL Blog. The only way I would have enough free time to do all that is if I was homeless.
    By the way are you and Jon Stewart related? I could swear you too are the same person. If its something you don’t agree with or enjoy its dumb and wrong. You both also think your hilarious but your not.
    Like hmm I dunno didn’t your report the other day that edgerrin James babies mom died of leukemia and how you would pray for them, but then you make jokes that maybe McDaniels should fake having Lupus instead of migraines? I don’t see how that’s funny. Someone dies of a serious disease then the next day you say another guy should fake one?
    I dunno I guess my rambling point is you take such a hard line with what you think is right and wrong or is important or not, but then you go and say things sometimes that either are totally wrong in a moral way or things no one is interested in hearing from you about. Don’t get me wrong I love this site but you open your self up to these type of comments with what you say and do when you comment on things that have nothing to do with football and when you make your little jokes.

  21. I’d say that Fitzgerald should win this one easily…..but he’s my keeper in fantasy this year, so I don’t need any curses.

  22. I’m hoping it’s someone that doesn’t need a haircut or has multiple pigtails.

  23. fitz was on an NCAA game already though so i think that sorta downgrades his chances.. cassel, are you joking? its between jacobs, ware, AP, and troy P in my opinion.

  24. John Madden retired, should be John on there, ralph is right.. Its also madden X 010 whatever they are going to call it. Only problem is based on the Madden curse if they put Madden on the cover he would probably end up broadcasting again. They should put tony kornheiser..

  25. If Fitz made the cover would that make him the first player to be on both the NCAA and Madden cover?

  26. hmm, lets see, which team is opening a new billion dollar plus stadium this year, is thee most watchd team in the NFL and evey network wants their games in primetime, I’ll put my money on Demarcus Ware as being on the cover of the new Madden football game

  27. The cover has been primarily offense, mainly quaterback, so how about to start the new decade we choose a defensive player to revolutionize it a bit.. As much as I like AP and BJacobs, Peterson is good but in my opinion there are other more proven players, more seasoned veterans, who deserve a chance, more of a right to be on the cover. Like you said manning is money hungry. I would Say pick ed reed, but that is my team, so god for bid there is a curse, would not want him for that reason… So pick Big Ben or Troy Polamalu.

  28. Florio,
    It is truly disappointing that you discount the value of the Madden video game. The Madden video game along with fantasy football have catapulted the NFL to the multi-billion dollar industry it is today.

  29. What? No Chargers…..they were robbed. Jethro Rivers should be on the cover. *snicker-snicker*

  30. Madden should do like Sports Illustrated & put out regional covers so that there is no more “curse”… then I can have my Cutler cover.

  31. For the record, this is not gonna be the same Madden we’ve seen duplicated over the years, with a few bells and whistles thrown in as usual. Check out and see for yourself. FINALLY, the guys making the game are actually listening to the people that pay their salaries (the consumers). As a veteran of Madden games, I can honestly say that I’m genuinely excited to see how all the improvements all add up. Normally, I wouldn’t defend the makers of Madden because I too have grown tired of the same ol game, plus a few minor improvements, but this time it looks real good Madden fans. And THE MADDEN CURSE IS REAL! Just watch, whoever comes out on it will either suffer an injury, or have a horrible year. Lastly, I believe that EA announcing 9 finalists for this years game is just a gimmick to get people focused on the game.

  32. Are you freaking serious about Matt Cassell???!?! What, did Sage Rosenfels decline and open up a spot???

  33. A Chargers fan saying they got robbed?!?! Say it ain’t so!!!! When will these babies quit whining?
    As for the fact that Matt Cassell is a finalist and Drew Brees isn’t….I can’t stand Brees but I do agree with that. He’s been a scary good QB and Cassell couldn’t carry his jock strap.

  34. Why not put, you know, John Madden on the cover. It would be a great tribute to his illustrious career.

  35. Yeah, a Madden montage would be just right.
    Oh, and of course they’re doing the 5+ players so they don’t have to negotiate with an individual thing.

  36. How awesome would it be to see Brandon Jacobs on the cover!!! I would eliminate the QB’s considering that we just had one. But my top 5 are
    1. Larry Fitzgerald
    2. Adrian Peterson
    3. Ed Reed
    4. Brandon Jacobs
    5. Troy Polamalu

  37. Did I get two 5’s because others agree with my stance on Big Ben, or because they agree I’m pathetic?

  38. “It’s also possible that all nine of them will be on the cover. If each of them would then suffer a serious injury or suddenly develop an acute case of suck, maybe we’d take the whole Madden curse thing more seriously.”
    Well, that seems unlikely. Three misfortunes, that’s possible. Seven misfortunates, there’s an outside chance. But nine misfortunes? I’d like to see that!
    Troy Polamalu – dropped from consideration after he refused to shave off his sideburns
    Peyton Manning – suffering from sever case of gigantism after ingesting too much nerve tonic
    Matt Cassel – due to visit from hypnotist, he now thinks he’s Tom Brady
    DeMarcus Ware – disappeared into Dallas’ Mystery Spot
    Ben Roethlisberger – knocked unconscious by local par patron Brandon Jacobs- arrested after local police determine he is responsible for all unsolved crimes in New York
    Adrian Peterson – busy assisting fire victims save their possesions
    Ed Reed – suffering from radiation poisoning due to working in Baltimore nuclear power plant
    Leaving only Larry Fitzgerald for the Madden cover.

  39. {Quote}marshawn lynch should be on there,..GO BILLS!!!!
    Have u ever looked at Marshawn Lynch? Ugliest dude in leauge. A closeup of him would kill sales.
    Cant wait to get Madden ’10!! Graphics look unbelievable.

  40. sheer geniuse wally! I love that episode and your knowledge of that show was put to good use. One thing though, I would have put Big Ben as the one putting out fires as he was in the ESPN commercial saving people from fires. Either way excellent work.
    I spelled it wrong on purpose, its irony

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