11:43 AM - December 26, 2014 by MMChrisS
A while back, I did some research on whether QB accuracy attributes made a noticeable difference in the ways quarterback's threw the ball. Over time, the affects were pretty noticeable. Bad QBs had a harder time hitting their targets consistently, and good QBs never had too much trouble. On the surface, it doesn't change the game in a way that it should, but across a decent sample size the difference (statistically) is certainly there.
Unfortunately, not every attribute has been given the same kind of attention. Blocking attributes are easily outweighed by the sliders that represent them. Shifting the pass blocking or run blocking slider up or down has a much greater impact on a player's performance than increasing or decreasing their attributes. The same can be said about virtually all facets of the kicking game.
So the real question is this: which attributes are the most important, and work as they should?
Speed: If nothing else, EA has always represented speed as being an absolute game-changer. Having any player with high speed can be enough to change a game, even if they don't have the other kind of attributes normally needed to field a position.
Release: This is a surprisingly underrated attribute. How quick a wide-receiver can break off of press coverage almost entirely depends on how well this attribute matches up with their opponent. Especially in the red zone, where press coverage is a near must, the release attribute can have a huge impact on the game.
Catching: Again, this has a lot to do with the slider that represents it. That said, the higher a player's catch rating, the more likely they are to make some pretty cool grabs. This also has a definitive impact on your quarterback, as poor pocket passers can be bailed out of some bad throws with awesome catches.
For instance, Jeremy Maclin has the ability to go down and grab a throw towards the dirt, but Josh Huff may struggle to even make a play on it.
Awareness: There's no way to put a finger on exactly what the awareness attribute does, but it has a definite affect on the game. After minimizing this attribute for an entire game for every player on the Patriots, I noticed them reacting like zombies off of blocks and zone coverages. The rating almost certainly doesn't work in a realistic way, but it's importance towards fielding a competitive game is certainly evident.
What are the most attributes to you in Madden NFL 15?