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John Madden does not believe in the Madden cover curse

Whether you believe in curses or not, you have to admit it is strangely coincidental how so many athletes who have appeared on the cover of EA Sports’ “Madden” video game have gotten injured over the years. After an off year in 2011, Peyton Hillis had no choice but to become a believer. Drew Brees may not have missed any actual time, but there were rumors that he played through a couple of significant knee injuries the year he was on the cover of the game.

Unsurprisingly, John Madden himself does not believe in the curse. And if it does exist, he says he is confident Calvin Johnson can put an end to it this season.

“I was on the cover for several years, and I never once even pulled a hamstring,” Madden said while laughing according to the Detroit Free Press. “It’s a violent sport. Injuries are going to happen.

“If there was such a thing (as a curse), you couldn’t ask for a better man to prove that wrong than who we’ve got this year. He might be as close to indestructible as we’ve ever had on the cover. Maybe I shouldn’t say that…that might…I’m not going to talk about that any more.”

Fortunately for Madden, Nate Burleson already said something similar about Megatron a few months back. If you believe in curses and you’re a Johnson fan, you probably aren’t feeling great about him being on the cover of the video game and Burleson and Madden both challenging the curse gods. If Megatron can put together a healthy season given all the things people have said about his presence on the cover, I think it’s safe to say the curse doesn’t exist.

H/T Pro Football Talk

Madden NFL 13 will reportedly feature Tebowing

The concept of Tebowing may have fizzled out quickly over the past several months, but those who were sitting around waiting for it to come back are in luck. If there is any platform with the power to rescue what was once the most popular fad in sports, it’s the Madden NFL video game series. According to Madden NFL creative director Michael Young, Madden 13 will honor Tim Tebow with his signature move.

“Tebowing is in for #madden13,” Young wrote on his Twitter account Friday.

As of last month, Tebow’s lawyers were battling with the website Tebowing.com over trademark issues. My guess is the creators of Madden have permission to use it or will refrain from calling it “Tebowing” in the game, but you never know. Since the EA Sports people always seem to take authenticity very seriously, they have no choice. Tebow is obviously going to be featured in the game and you can’t show a full game of Tebow without him dropping to a knee on the sidelines before a game or in a prayer circle after it. Real is real.

H/T NFL.com
Photo credit: Christopher Hanewinckel-US PRESSWIRE

Calvin Johnson beats Cam Newton for Madden ’13 cover

Calvin Johnson is getting the recognition and notoriety a player of his caliber deserves, but maybe it’s not the kind he should want.

The Lions receiver won the voting to appear on the Madden ’13 video game cover. He topped Panthers quarterback Cam Newton with 52% of the 651,790 votes cast in the finals.

The voting was done as a 32-player tournament where each NFL team had one representative. Johnson beat Dwayne Bowe 92%-8% in the first round, Arian Foster 73%-27% in the second round, Rob Gronkowski 63%-37% in the third round, Aaron Rodgers 67%-33% in the semifinals, and Newton 52%-48% in the finals.

The announcement was made on ESPN’s “SportsNation” show on Wednesday afternoon, where both finalists said they didn’t believe in the infamous “Madden Curse.” Last year’s cover winner, Peyton Hillis, also said he didn’t believe in the curse, but that was before he had an abysmal season for the Browns, which changed his mind.

Last week, Lions receiver Nate Burleson said he was going to vote for Calvin because he thinks his teammate can break the curse. Lions fans better hope that is the case. Given the history of the cover curse, I would be worried.

Photo Credit: Jerry Lai-US PRESSWIRE

Nate Burleson believes in the Madden Curse, thinks Calvin Johnson can break it

If Calvin Johnson winds up winning the Madden cover vote and suffers an injury next season, Lions fans may blame more than just the Madden jinx. Those who are particularly superstitious could take aim at Nate Burleson. Burleson, who claims to be a big Madden fan, admitted to Mlive.com that he believes in the Madden cover curse. Despite that, he says he is still going to vote for his fellow receiver.

“Yeah, I’m going to vote for him,” Burleson said before adding that he believes enough players have suffered injuries to legitimize the curse. “I’d love to see my guy on the cover of Madden. I’m a big Madden fan. … If any guy can break the curse it’s Calvin. This dude is a monster. He’s strong enough to break tackles, so he can break a curse.”

Johnson is one of four finalists and is currently matched up against Aaron Rodgers in the semifinals. As for being enough of a beast to break the curse, Peyton Hillis looked like just that coming off his monster season in 2010. Injuries then derailed his 2011 season and Hillis became a believer.

So if you’re one of those people who is superstitious enough to wear the same socks and underwear every Sunday of the NFL season, you can now thank EA Sports and Burleson if Megatron misses any time in 2012. Falling victim to a jinx is one thing, but Burleson’s decision to add a jinx on top of a jinx could spell trouble for Detroit. Or maybe his jinx will jinx the jinx and all will be well. No one really knows how these things work.

Photo credit: Jason O. Watson-US PRESSWIRE

Rob Gronkowski spikes and shatters a Megatron toy (Video)

At this point I’m starting to think EA Sports should just end the Madden cover vote and hand the award to Rob Gronkowski. Whether he is the most deserving or not, it’s become pretty clear that nobody in the NFL wants to be on the cover of Madden ’13 worse than Gronk. In fact, it’s beginning to look like the Patriots tight end has never wanted anything this badly in his life.

Last month we showed you Gronk and his brothers acting like meatheads as a part of Rob’s Madden cover campaign. Gronk has managed to reach the final eight in the voting, where he is now taking on Calvin Johnson. Megatron is one of the most popular players in the NFL, so this could be Gronk’s toughest test yet. Considering he spiked and shattered a Megatron toy he was “playing against” in Madden, I’m guessing Gronk understands the urgency of the situation.

But the best part of all has to be the decorations in Gronk’s lair. Fathead of himself on the wall? Check. Framed No. 87 jersey over in the corner? Check. Completely blank walls aside from those two things? Check.

Video: Rob Gronkowski, brothers campaign for Rob to be on Madden ’13 cover

Rob Gronkowski is a finalist to be on the cover of Madden ’13 this summer. After the season he had, that should surprise no one. Gronk Nation was infectious this past season to say the least. Whether it’s spiking a puck at a minor league hockey game or dancing on a torn up ankle after a Super Bowl loss, Gronk goes hard no matter what he does. He was already the perfect candidate for the cover of one of the best sports games in the world, but this video should put him right over the top. Teammate Wes Welker is a finalist as well, but does he stand a chance with the masterpiece the Gronk brothers put together to campaign for Rob?

“Hard workers at all times. Lets go bro! Doing curls! Busted ankle! Cast on it! It don’t stop me! … Just getting jacked at all times, going crazy. Even check out my brothers!”

How do you compete with that? You don’t. You just don’t. Madden curse? What Madden curse?

Thanks to Barstool Sports for the video

Charity auction allowing winning bidder to be character IN Madden football game

For the price of $10,000, one lucky person may win an auction to become an actual character in the next edition of the Madden NFL video game.

Charity Buzz is currently running an auction that ends Thursday at 4pm EST. The winning bidder will be able to create a character that will be included in the Madden NFL 13 video game.

The winner will be able to choose the character’s name, height, weight, age, skin tone, hair color/length, accessories (visors/wristbands) and college. They will also be able to specify what type of attributes the player will have.

The bidding began at $1,500 but did not meet its reserve price of $9,999.00, so it went back on the auction block. Someone bid $10,000 last Wednesday morning and is the current leader. The proceeds will benefit ACLU of Southern California.

In case you’re unsure how big of a deal having a Madden character is, allow me to explain. Some NFL players use the video game to scout opponents. Others bet mortgage payments on the game. One even threatened to boycott the game because his ratings were too low. Yeah, this is a big deal.

Let’s just hope the winning bidder doesn’t suffer from the infamous Madden Curse.