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Madden NFL 20 - Gridiron Notes: October Title update

Check out the Gridiron notes on our title update and share your feedback here

Gameplay Stream

So tomorrow is really a big day for me. During the gameplay stream this is what I'm hoping you guys will say...

1. We've developed logical counters for all the routes in the passing tree. No longer will you have to create dumb kludge defenses that are fundamentally unsound (like cross manning). Routes like slant and corner routes will no longer automatically be open if players wait long enough, players will instead have to read every defense individually and make the proper throw to the open receiver which will vary on every play.

2. We've finally decided to lower the abilities of user controlled defensive players. No longer will you be able to cover 50 yards of field sideline to sideline. If you move in one direction on the field your momentum will delay you making a move in the opposite direction. That means that if you go to stop the run when it's a play action pass, you're not going to be able to get back in time to pick off a medium or deep pass. It means that if you go to cover a drag route you can't also cover a post route.

3. To help support diversity in team construction, we've significantly raised the cap points for players with high speed. This means that you can still get a team with high speed at every position, but you're going to have to sacrifice more than you would've in other years. If for example you use Tyreek Hill, Randy Moss, and OBJ on the same team, you will probably have an average QB, an average RB, and a relatively weak offensive line.

4. Playmaker has been removed. It was determined that the playmaker ability did not promote competitive play since there was no counter to it. If a receiver is not open, don't throw the ball to them.

5. Offensive lineman (bigs) will now have a default advantage on running plays against defensive backs substituted for linebackers or defensive lineman and linebackers substituted for defensive lineman. When run blocking a defensive back, this will result in an automatic win for the offensive lineman. The reason for this change was to promote more expected results whenever smaller players are substituted into the linebacker or defensive lineman positions.

6. Aggressive catching has been removed. It was determined that aggressive catching did not promote competitive play since there was no counter to it. If a receiver is not open, don't throw the ball to them.

7. Player stats have been realigned across the entire Madden roster to provide more meaningful strengths and weaknesses for each player on your team. For example, Lamar Jackson was 99 of 170 in passing. This means he doesn't complete many passes in comparison to his peers. Unlike in Madden 19 where he completed just about anything a player tried to throw. Players will notice a huge difference in accuracy this year, the result of which will be more incompletions (even to players that are otherwise open), not to mention when a QB is under pressure.

8. Screen passes have been reworked so that they will be viable. However, defenders can now key on players that may likely receive a screen pass, making the defender react quickly to the route. The downside of keying on a player is that if a screen pass is faked (via the pump fake mechanic) the defender will run up and tackle the player regardless of whatever else is happening on the field (and this will likely take the defender out of position to play another part of the field).

9. A low form of stamina has been added to competitive play. To promote expected football results, we have added the following conditions that will impact offensive stamina: A) Running the same play(s) over and over again. B) Excessively running the hurry up offense. C) Excessively motioning or flipping formations. On defense: A) Being on the field excessively. (as in the other team is dominating time of possession and your players are always on the field trying to defend). B) Having players that are out of position via substitution.

10. We've developed a better way to use play-action passing that is more or less effective based on how well a team is running the football. No longer will defenses be able to crowd the line of scrimmage in 9 man fronts and successfully defend deep routes at the same time against teams that are having material success in the running game. If multiple first downs are obtained by running the football, defenders will generally react to play action and be out of position to defend routes behind them.

11. Defensive backs shading to the outside of a receiver and playing bump an run will now attempt to funnel the receiver to the inside. This may impact both timing and position on the play and allow safety and linebacker help to significantly impact the play.

12. Pass rush has been re-factored with the goal of Madden to be in alignment with the NFL. Currently, the average time a quarterback has to throw the football in the NFL is approximately 2.8 seconds. This would be the median time before a quarterback should expect to be sacked in Madden, assuming the defensive and offensive lines are of a standard quality.

13. Flipping formations or calling new plays as audibles will now require a significant amount of time for players to reset. This is to promote competitive play and remove the abuses involved with moving offensive players around arbitrarily to confuse or mess up the defensive adjustments. Although this type of gamesmanship happens all the time in the NFL, it does not happen at the same speed and convenience and therein lies the abusive nature we're trying to curve.

14. To help foster a less toxic competitive atmosphere, trash talking aka "capping" will no longer be tolerated at any level. Not online, not at events. This is intended to set a clear standard to ensure our diverse audience and community is provided an easy way to avoid unhealthy conflict while playing Madden. Violations of this will result in temp or permanent bans.

Again, really looking forward to what I hope is a long list of fixes to gameplay during tomorrow's stream. If you could address all of these changes Madden 20 would be an incredible game to play.
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