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All Articles: Madden NFL 11
Did you miss The Scientifically Proven Best Video Games of All Time’s Introduction? Catch up on how we decided to sort the games and the rest of the Top 100.
A gambler will tell you that they believe Lady Luck will reward them for respecting a streak, and a professional football player will tell you that he doesn’t believe in the Madden Curse. The former is a wishful thinker, and the latter is a liar.
The sports world is filled with superstitions. As a Little Leaguer growing up, I could show you what a “rally cap” was and explain the importance of never touching the baselines. I understood completely why retired Detroit Tigers manager Jim Leyland refused to change his underwear during a 12-game winning streak in 2011. I’ve even got strong opinions on what you say to a pitcher in the middle of a perfect game. The answer is you don’t say anything, because talking to him at all is bad luck.
For decades, the Sports Illustrated Cover Jinx served as a well-known precursor to the Madden Curse. Those who believe in the Jinx are convinced that any player who appears on the cover of Sports Illustrated will experience some form of terrible luck, even though a handful of high-profile hits have obscured the long list of players who avoided the Jinx over the years. If the sheer number of cover subjects doesn’t dissuade you (more than 3,000 issues have been produced since the magazine’s launch in 1954), the illustrious career of Michael Jordan should. The basketball great has appeared on the cover of Sports Illustrated a record 50 times, and he’s had the kind of career that other athletes dream about… not counting his detour through Minor League Baseball and Space Jam.
But what of the Madden Curse? Although you’ll find a few executives at Electronic Arts who enjoy hyping up the current year’s game with talk of the Curse, most of them like to downplay it. In 2008, the then-President of EA Sports, Peter Moore, said, “I guess when you look back there’s a grain of truth to the Madden Curse.” At the time, he wasn’t wrong. Five of the last six offensive players on the cover succumbed to some horrible calamity. The publishing giant even considered producing a movie based on the Madden Curse in 2010, though that project seems to have fallen off the radar in the years since.
And that’s probably because the Madden Curse is as mythical as a wild turducken. (more…)
For only the second time in the last eight years, the Madden NFL Football Super Bowl Simulation has been proven wrong. This year’s prediction picked the Steelers winning with a final score of 24-20. However, real life intervened, and the Packers emerged as Super Bowl XLV champs in a 31-25 victory.
Aside from the final score, the simulation’s accuracy is almost scary. In the simulation, Ben Roethlisberger threw two touchdowns (one each to Hines Ward and Mike Wallace) while Rashard Mendenhall ran one in. In real life, all of these events also occured. However, it’s the INT column that made all the difference as the simulation predicted Big Ben would throw one pick, but in real life, he threw two. The first of those interceptions was returned for a touchdown, putting the Packers up 14-0 early and ensuring their real life victory.
The other major difference between the simulation and real life is the performance of Aaron Rodgers. The simulation predicted he would toss two interceptions, including one in the final seconds that would have sealed the game for Pittsburgh. Instead, Rodgers was almost perfect on Super Bowl Sunday, throwing for three touchdowns and 304 yards. As you may have guessed, he was named the Super Bowl MVP at the end of the game.
And he’s likely the early favorite to appear on the cover of Madden NFL 12. Packer fans are no doubt preparing some kind of anti-Madden Curse ritual as we speak.
EA Sports and the Madden NFL series have weighed in with their annual Super Bowl pick. In this year’s simulation, the Terrible Towels wiped the floor with the Cheeseheads 24-20 thanks to some last-second defensive heroics.
But the man most responsible for Pittsburgh’s simulated Super Bowl XLV victory was wide receiver Mike Wallace, who took home MVP honors after putting up 111 total yards and scoring a touchdown.
Highlights of the virtual contest between the Steelers and the Packers can be seen above including Ben Roethlisberger’s game-winning TD.
Gamblers take note, EA Sports has correctly picked the winner in six of the last seven Super Bowls.