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#pounditFriday, May 7, 2021

Video Games

Tom Brady on cover of Madden 18, not afraid of curses

Tom Brady

For the second consecutive year, a member of the New England Patriots will grace the cover of the latest installment of the “Madden” video game series. This year, EA Sports has labeled the game “The G.O.A.T. Edition.”

So naturally, Tom Brady is the cover boy.

We know what you’re thinking, Patriots fans: What about the curse? Some say the Madden curse is a very real thing. Others argue it is totally overblown. Rob Gronkowski appeared on the cover of Madden 17, and he ended up playing in just eight games due to a back injury. Although, Gronk has suffered numerous significant injuries throughout his career.

Brady acknowledges that there is some concern about the infamous curse, but he is hoping to buck the trend.

Plenty of athletes have survived being on the Madden cover. One of the most notable was Calvin Johnson with Madden 13, and he appeared in all 16 games that season (which was actually the 2012 season). John Madden himself weighed in on the jinx a few years back, and you can probably guess what he had to say about it.

Brady will turn 40 this summer. He’s obviously a freak athlete who is unlike any player in NFL history before him. Hopefully he can elude the curse.

Madden Bowl winner stripped of $3,000 in prize money due to inappropriate tweets

Madden 17

The recent winner of the Madden Bowl was stripped of $3,000 in prize money due to his inappropriate tweets.

EA Sports announced on Wednesday that they had stripped Madden Bowl winner Chris “Dubby” McFarland of $3,000 of his $75,000 prize money for winning the tournament, as well as 100 Madden NFL Championship Series points, because of his tweets.

Here is the announcement they posted about the news:

Here’s the specific language about why he was fined:

“During and directly after the competition, Chris posted multiple message on a personal social media account that referenced inappropriate content. These posts violated our Code of Conduct and don’t represent the values of our organization. We immediately met with Chris to warn him that his posts were inappropriate and could not continue. Unfortunately, additional offensive messages were posted in subsequent days —Chris has since removed them.”

McFarland is now a public figure after winning and EA expects him to act as such. He recognized his wrongdoing and even spoke to that on his Twitter account, acknowledging that he would be somewhat censoring himself from here on out.

As Kotaku points out, McFarland has a history of inappropriate tweets.

Snacks Harrison has hilarious comment about his playoff experience

Damon Harrison

Snacks Harrison is getting ready for his first career playoff game when his New York Giants visit the Green Bay Packers on Sunday, but he doesn’t see it that way.

The Giants defensive tackle had a hilarious answer when talking about this being his first postseason experience. Snacks thinks his play on “Madden” counts.

Too bad ol’ Damon didn’t share his username so fans could find out just how good he is at the game.

‘Madden’ developers hilariously respond to Dez Bryant criticism of rating


It’s “Madden” season, which means certain NFL players aren’t happy with their ratings. Cowboys receiver Dez Bryant is one of them.

Bryant received a 90 rating in “Madden ’17,” and he thinks that’s far too low.

“I play Madden, I [expletive] love Madden,” Bryant said, via Will Brinson of CBS Sports. “They would do me like that? Oh my God. That is an insult, like why would you do that to me? How much I love y’all. Like what? Not John Madden, because I love him. It’s the developers.”

Said developers were more than happy to troll Bryant right back.

Bryant clarified that he wasn’t actually mad, but the fact that his quote got so much attention shows how big he is.

Hey, it’s hard to tell sometimes. Players take their Madden ratings seriously. If Bryant wants to use his as motivation, more power to him.

Arizona Cardinals LB Deone Bucannon blasts Madden over rating

Deone Bucannon

Arizona Cardinals linebacker Deone Bucannon had 112 tackles, three sacks, three forced fumbles and an interception last season. Those kinds of numbers earned him some respect around the league, but apparently the makers of Madden 17 are a little slow to catch on.

Bucannon has an overall rating of just 78 in the game. That’s not sitting well with him. He blasted the game’s Twitter account over his low rating:

“SMFH” is an acronym for shaking my bleeping head.

The highest-rated player on the Cardinals is DB Tyrann Mathieu, who has a 96. The Honey Badger thinks Madden hasn’t done their homework on Bucannon:

Maybe the tweet will get Madden’s attention and help the video game give him some respect when they do their reevaluation. At least he’s attacking his disappointment with his rating more directly than this Broncos QB.

Jose Bautista bat flip will be available as NHL 17 celebration (Video)

Jose Bautista bat flip

Jose Bautista’s bat flip heard around the world will be available as a goal celebration in EA Sports’s NHL 17.

Video from an early build of the game shows that the developers have actually captured the iconic moment from the 2015 playoffs quite well.

Not bad. We’re guessing this will be popular in Toronto. That said, it’ll be hard to score a goal that prompted a situation as dramatic as the actual bat flip.

On another note, will NHL 17 be including this as a new fight animation?

Paxton Lynch on his Madden rating: ‘My mother would be ashamed of me’

Paxton Lynch

EA Sports released a video on Wednesday showing the reactions of NFL rookies to their player ratings in the new Madden 17 video game. Let’s just say the video was very funny and quite well done.

The best reactions probably came from Denver Broncos draft pick Paxton Lynch, who was disappointed he received a 79 in speed instead of something in the 80s like he thought he deserved. The Memphis product even was shown saying “my mother would be ashamed of me” about his ratings.

Here’s the amusing video:

Though taken 26th overall by the Broncos, the early word out of Denver is that Lynch is unlikely to compete for the starting job. Instead, he seems to be behind both Mark Sanchez and Trevor Siemian, which runs contrary to what John Elway said back in May.

Unfortunately it may be a while before Lynch gets to prove the Madden programmers wrong for lowballing him.

H/T The Denver Post

NBA 2K developers are struggling to replicate Stephen Curry in video game


Stephen Curry has an ability to do things on a basketball court that no others can. It poses a problem for defenses, obviously, but it also makes for a dilemma for video game developers.

One of the developers behind the NBA 2K series openly admitted to Forbes that the development team simply do not know how to accurately mimic Curry virtually.

“To be completely honest, we are still looking for ways to better translate his game into NBA 2K,” said Mike Wang, the NBA 2K gameplay director. “He’s a ‘rule breaker’ when it comes to jump shooting – he becomes a problem in the video game world where we’ve been trying to train our gamers that certain types of shots should be rewarded versus others.”

The developers don’t want to reward things like taking three pointers off the dribble and throwing up unrealistic long-range shots. Unfortunately, those are two things that Curry does successfully, and the developers aren’t sure how to maintain gameplay balance while still letting Steph be Steph.

“Taking 3s off the dribble are also definitely discouraged in NBA 2K,” Wang said. “Especially after over-dribbling beforehand.”

Don’t worry, though – the developers are trying very hard to make Curry play like Curry.

“We’re going to have to invest even more time in future iterations to really let Steph be Steph in future versions of NBA 2K,” Wang said.

If Mark Jackson was wrong about Curry hurting the game, well, he may be right about Curry hurting the video games. And 2K are still doing a better job than EA, who struggled to replicate, well, anyone.

Kirk Herbstreit: Ed O’Bannon took NCAA Football video game away from us


Kirk Herbstreit is a big fan of the EA Sports NCAA Football video game that has not released a new edition since 2013, and he blames former UCLA basketball player Ed O’Bannon for taking the fun away.

O’Bannon was at the forefront of a lawsuit filed several years ago that the NCAA lost and is in the process of appealing. He believes the NCAA should have to pay athletes for profiting off their likeness in video games and across other platforms. In an interview with Alex Martin Smith of SEC Country, Herbstreit basically accused O’Bannon of being a fun sponge.

“I can’t believe Ed O’Bannon took that game away from us,” Herbstreit said.

Herbstreit is compensated by EA Sports as one of the “NCAA Football” commentators, but he said he has loved the game since long before he was a part of it. He insists collegiate athletes agree.

“You know what they’d love for their compensation to be? Just give ‘em a free game,” Herbstreit said. “That’s the compensation that they would take.

“I’ve never met one player in college football that’s like: ‘They can’t use my name and likeness! I need to be paid!’ They’re just thrilled to be on the game. They love being on the game. It’s like the biggest highlight of their life, is to be on the game.”

While he is at the center of the lawsuit, O’Bannon is hardly alone. If you saw Jay Bilas’ Twitter rant exposing the NCAA for profiting off players’ names a couple years back, you know he would agree about the NCAA Football video game. Despite that, Herbstreit has no problem singling out O’Bannon.

“Ed O’Bannon ruined that for all of us,” he said. “And hopefully we can get that fixed.”

O’Bannon spoke to Larry Brown Sports several years ago about his belief that collegiate athletes should be paid. You can watch that interview here.

H/T Dr. Saturday

Madden 16 has a very NSFW glitch


The Madden video game series has been around for more than 25 years now, but every installment comes with its own set of fantastic glitches. The latest, Madden NFL 16, may actually have the most inappropriate glitch of all time.

There’s not really much we can say about this one aside from that it could be considered not suitable for work.

You’re welcome? I’m sorry? Again, I don’t know what to say.

We still think the biggest glitch in Madden NFL 15 was the funniest one ever, but the one you see above is definitely on the list of the Top 5 most notable.

H/T Bro Bible