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Madden NFL 17 News Post



Quick, name the best undrafted free agent you've ever signed in Madden who turned out to be a superstar with a greater than 90ovr rating.

While most all undrafted players who sign contracts will never amount to more than a transient practice squad member, sometimes franchises hit pay-dirt on undrafted free agents.

Take these names: John Randle, Kurt Warner, Warren Moon, Wes Welker, Tony Romo.

This year's undrafted free agent class includes names like Trevone Boykin, Jack Allen, Devon Cajuste, Darius Latham, Jeremy Cash, and Brian Poole.

Somewhere, one of these undrafted players (or another not listed) will make a big impact on the league. And yet, it feels as if this crucial aspect of roster building just has never really been represented well in Madden NFL.

I can remember a couple of times I found some real value in this period -- but it feels like its never been represented as well as it could in the Madden NFL series.

As a former GM puts it, "The John Randle time" is a crucial time for franchises to choose paths which may alter a team's course for years:

Quote:
"We’re talking about players like quarterbacks Trevone Boykin and Jake Coker in Seattle and Arizona, respectively; linebacker Jeremy Cash in Carolina and Gronk's little brother, fullback Glenn Gronkowski, in Buffalo.

Each NFL team has filled out its roster by signing approximately 25 of these undrafted free agents to minimum-salary deals with modest signing bonuses, mostly in the $5,000-to-$10,000 range. These players are true underdogs who must compete with veterans in minicamps and OTAs as they prepare for training camp and battles for roster spots."


So what about you? Do you have any stories of picking up undrafted free agents who turned out to be superstars? What do you think Madden could do to represent 'John Randle Time' better for franchises?


Game: Madden NFL 17Reader Score: 8/10 - Vote Now
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Member Comments
# 1 DeuceDouglas @ 05/18/16 12:42 PM
Quote:
Each NFL team has filled out its roster by signing approximately 25 of these undrafted free agents to minimum-salary deals with modest signing bonuses, mostly in the $5,000-to-$10,000 range. These players are true underdogs who must compete with veterans in minicamps and OTAs as they prepare for training camp and battles for roster spots.
This is where the "But Not As Much in Madden" comes from, specifically the bold. And really it should be "But Not At All in Madden." A Madden draft class is only around 295 players, take away the 224 picks made and that leaves you with 71 guys. 71! That's a little over two per team versus 25. That paired with the fact that there is no minicamps/OTA's properly represented in the game to even get a clue on any of those players and it's not even a factor in Madden. Rosters being limited to 75 guys as well as improperly implemented cut days also hinders any chances of those players being a factor.

I can't remember which Madden it was (I think 12) that had the hidden rookie ratings throughout preseason but that was one of my favorite experiences. I remember one year I had drafted a corner in the 5th or 6th round and didn't know much about him but I also had another one that was an UDFA and it was basically a battle between which would make the bottom of my roster and CB depth chart but the UDFA had two pick sixes in back-to-back games and that ended up being the sole reason I kept him on. After the fact I checked ratings and found out the guy I kept was actually significantly worse ratings wise than the guy I drafted but he didn't do anything in preseason and essentially got beat out.

I really hope that they've attacked the personnel side of things this year in franchise because that's IMO what keeps the game feeling fresh and exciting for an extended period of time. Gameplay obviously matters but in terms of longevity it's going to be franchise that keeps me coming back and wanting to play.
 
# 2 scottyo60 @ 05/18/16 12:53 PM
I gotta think the late round picks and UDFAs in all sports games are lacking. Like in 2K the second round is worthless. You're never going to get that potential or already developed contributor. In madden I've seen a few instances where Undrafted rookies have on ratings but it's usually a fullback or kicker.

I don't expect lots of gems coming out of later rounds o UDFAs but there should be a couple here and there to contribute
 
# 3 berad88 @ 05/18/16 12:55 PM
Guys not playing up to their expected potential is not represented well either and that is way more important to me than some undrafted guy in madden becoming a superstar. It is just way to easy to form a great team in Madden's franchise mode. Currently it is way to easy to resign your star players and keep them under the salary cap. Also, a lot of times younger players that have good ability but not a high awareness still often play like superstars. Ratings need stretched, there needs to be more players that just don't play great and never will, and awareness needs to have a bigger impact or be altered. Then after that lets throw in some undrafted guys that end up becoming great.
 
# 4 wingfoot008 @ 05/18/16 01:10 PM
NCAA football might have been the best at this. I think in its final year (RIP) they would have guys 3 stars players surprise you and be rated better than 4 or 5 star recruits once more homework and recruiting was done on the player.

Something along these lines can be done in Madden too. It would have to be fairly random and not happen very often, but since it does happen in the NFL it should happen in Madden. "If It's In The Game..." right?
 
# 5 kongemeier @ 05/18/16 01:16 PM
Another thing NFL Head Coach had that Madden doesn't (yet)!

I had several players coming in as undrafted players who ended up being regular starters and even super stars in my fictional NFL.

It's my biggest wish for Madden that they get closer to the franchise experience we had with NFL Head Coach.
 
# 6 MajorSupreme @ 05/18/16 01:54 PM
The closest thing I've had to a real good UDFA was the back up QB I signed for Jimmy Garoppolo named Jackson Clay out of Missouri. He capped at like a 68 ovr, about confidence modified and won like 5 games for me when Garoppolo was hurt and I didn't want to play with Tom Savage. Superstar? No way, but he go the job done.
 
# 7 ginix @ 05/18/16 02:15 PM
Closest thing I had would've been my #4 receiver in Madden 15, Amos Crosby.

Good to play as a slot receiver when Cruz was injured and was a Pro Bowl punt returner.
 
# 8 Celebrated @ 05/18/16 02:33 PM
I will tell you what I think Madden needs to do: they need to implement a hidden personality trait for every individual player in Madden that impacts ratings, and never have this trait scoutable, revealed, etc. It can be "this player drops the ball in clutch situations" or "in the 4th QTR this quarterback's deep ball accuracy rises to 95." Something written in the code of the game itself. This will give more of a sense of individuality to each player, and us as players won't know what these traits are but we'll be able to see it on the field. This will, in effect, cause players to under or over perform on their ratings. What do you guys think?
 
# 9 Ampking101 @ 05/18/16 02:37 PM
I think the only player that ever became a true starter for me was in Madden 25 on Xbox 360 he was a safety that had low awareness and low play recognition but had high catching (like 80) and mid to low 70's for coverage and tackling skills. Once I pumped up his awareness and his play recognition he became like a 78 overall and had an okay career (I have no idea how he fell into the UDFA pool but it was a multiple user league so that might have played a big part).

I think the biggest problems are two big details, like mentioned earlier, there just aren't enough players that come out undrafted. Heck a lot of the young players that have been free agents for a year will disappear the next year so half the time there isn't even a very large free agent pool as a whole. I know this used to be tied to memory issues but with current generation systems, it shouldn't be as big of an issue anymore.

Secondly I think it is mostly due to the way ratings have been programed and that they are also locked ratings that never really significantly change for better or worse, except through user interaction with Xp. So if I get an undrafted free agent who is a 65 overall and doesn't have the skills to play that position (the case with most UDFA's), he is never going to be beneficial enough to waste a roster spot for...and I know all of this for a fact before I even sign him. Now add to the fact that the only way he will ever get any better is if I start him, user him enough to have a good season, and then put all my weekly points into getting him Xp to excell him or he will stagnate into oblivion. It is the same reason that even if I draft a superstar player, I have to start him right away because otherwise he will never progress and therefore becomes a waste. In the system Madden has, having players learn under a veteran, no matter how good, literally has zero merit.

So with both of those things directly tied to undrafted free agents, it just doesn't allow any room for these players to improve or surprise you, they will almost always (99% of the time) be bottom of the roster fodder to be replaced in the next draft.
 
# 10 fugazi @ 05/18/16 03:04 PM
I agree with Celebrated...wanted something "similar: to this for a while.
 
# 11 mrprice33 @ 05/18/16 03:17 PM
I definitely think the draft pool should be larger, but I'm not sure the UDFA criticism is a fair one. Considering there are so few UDFAs in the pool, it'd make sense that very few would be superstars. If 2/200 in the real NFL become all pros, then in terms of ratio we're looking at like 1 every 2.5 years in Madden.

Increasing the draft pool is a must


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 
# 12 Big FN Deal @ 05/18/16 03:21 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by MMChrisS

........As a former GM puts it, "The John Randle time" is a crucial time for franchises to choose paths which may alter a team's course for years:

So what about you? Do you have any stories of picking up undrafted free agents who turned out to be superstars? What do you think Madden could do to represent 'John Randle Time' better for franchises?
I will continue to harp on the need or at least benefit of not displaying accurate numeric ratings and this question is another example of why. Imo, team/staff/system specific text descriptions, like Deuce Douglas recently posted a real life screenshot of in another thread, as well as traits/DPP for skill sets and actual data for measurables, would be best. The point being, the video game TMI of virtual players, has to be somehow removed or greatly diminished, before there can be "Randle time".

John Randle or any other undrafted gem or gem period were always capable of what they achieved in real life, they just needed to be given the opportunity and environment to potentially manifest it. In Madden currently, unlike in real life, all of Randles underlying capability would be known/accessible from the get go, so not only would it be unlikely he would even go undrafted but if he somehow did, his production wouldn't be at all unexpected.
 
# 13 Celebrated @ 05/18/16 04:16 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Big FN Deal
I will continue to harp on the need or at least benefit of not displaying accurate numeric ratings and this question is another example of why. Imo, team/staff/system specific text descriptions, like Deuce Douglas recently posted a real life screenshot of in another thread, as well as traits/DPP for skill sets and actual data for measurables, would be best. The point being, the video game TMI of virtual players, has to be somehow removed or greatly diminished, before there can be "Randle time".

John Randle or any other undrafted gem or gem period were always capable of what they achieved in real life, they just needed to be given the opportunity and environment to potentially manifest it. In Madden currently, unlike in real life, all of Randles underlying capability would be known/accessible from the get go, so not only would it be unlikely he would even go undrafted but if he somehow did, his production wouldn't be at all unexpected.
So... you're proposing no ratings? At least nothing visible that us as players can see? Like, the ratings would be there (they HAVE to be, because that's what drives gameplay) but hidden from us. So if we have a quarterback that sucks, only way we'd find that out is if we play him and discover for ourselves that he sucks?

I think I kinda like that.
 
# 14 msdm27 @ 05/18/16 04:25 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by DeuceDouglas
This is where the "But Not As Much in Madden" comes from, specifically the bold. And really it should be "But Not At All in Madden." A Madden draft class is only around 295 players, take away the 224 picks made and that leaves you with 71 guys. 71! That's a little over two per team versus 25. That paired with the fact that there is no minicamps/OTA's properly represented in the game to even get a clue on any of those players and it's not even a factor in Madden. Rosters being limited to 75 guys as well as improperly implemented cut days also hinders any chances of those players being a factor.

I can't remember which Madden it was (I think 12) that had the hidden rookie ratings throughout preseason but that was one of my favorite experiences. I remember one year I had drafted a corner in the 5th or 6th round and didn't know much about him but I also had another one that was an UDFA and it was basically a battle between which would make the bottom of my roster and CB depth chart but the UDFA had two pick sixes in back-to-back games and that ended up being the sole reason I kept him on. After the fact I checked ratings and found out the guy I kept was actually significantly worse ratings wise than the guy I drafted but he didn't do anything in preseason and essentially got beat out.

I really hope that they've attacked the personnel side of things this year in franchise because that's IMO what keeps the game feeling fresh and exciting for an extended period of time. Gameplay obviously matters but in terms of longevity it's going to be franchise that keeps me coming back and wanting to play.
Yes Deuce, it was M12
The only issue with that feature was that most scrubs were too scrubby in their physical attributes and that took much of the challenge away from the feature. I remember most of the generated UFA skill players had speed/acc in the 50's or 60's making it too easy for the user to recognize their lower overall.

If they managed to bring this feature back with UFA's that had competitive physical traits and unknown "football attributes" then it would really bring some awesome camp battles and give some importance to the pre-season along the way.
 
# 15 sir psycho @ 05/18/16 04:32 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Celebrated
So... you're proposing no ratings? At least nothing visible that us as players can see? Like, the ratings would be there (they HAVE to be, because that's what drives gameplay) but hidden from us. So if we have a quarterback that sucks, only way we'd find that out is if we play him and discover for ourselves that he sucks?

I think I kinda like that.
It would be a great idea. The bolded is just like real life. Sometimes it takes a team years of starting a QB they took in the first round before realizing that they aren't good enough. In Madden, when you draft that QB, you can instantly see that he isn't good enough and can just draft another one.

Hiding ratings would make building and managing a team so much more realistic.
 
# 16 Hassan Darkside @ 05/18/16 04:40 PM
Man, I'd be happy if newly drafted players weren't in the FA pool. CPU teams treat rookies and young players like everyone else, if they have a low rating according to the scheme fit, they get cut.
 
# 17 Mauer4MVP @ 05/18/16 04:47 PM
I agree with the no ratings or at least give letter grades and base it off your teams' scouting.
 
# 18 grushcow @ 05/18/16 04:52 PM
Madden has need a player rater for a while. For example what they have in FIFA. Some means to measure how well a player is performing across a season. Without that the franchise mode is stale. You're not touching your OL because you have no means of measuring them, all you have to work with is their overall rating.
 
# 19 Godgers12 @ 05/18/16 05:18 PM
Madden needs an UDFA signing period after the draft. Since draft size is only about 280, my suggestion would be to have the UDFA pool be separate from the draft pool, so each team can sign 10+ guys. Also the pool it self would vary for each team. In the weeks leading up to the draft your scouts will discover certain players and give non ratings based feedback on them. Certain players will be the same for everyone, but you might get "Unique" players that your scouts discovered based on the skill of said scout.

Now most of these players will suck as is the case in real life, but it would be possible to find that 80 ovr CB, or HB. Also, just because you place a bid, doesn't mean they will sign, there are 31 other teams. I'd also like to see ATH players added to the draft and UDFA. For instance a 65 OVR WR with blazing speed may be an 80 OVR at CB ex. Sam Shields, or a 60 OVR QB may be a 75 at WR or HB.

I'd absolutely love a system like this, and wouldn't be all that hard to implement.
 
# 20 Ampking101 @ 05/18/16 06:08 PM
Another thing I would also like to add to the discussion about hiding true ratings of players is that it makes preseason matter again.

I don't even bother playing preseason games because I can just look at ratings and traits and immediately know the players I want to keep and the ones I will never use.

With this type of a system implemented you would now have a reason to play preseason because the way to judge players would be to....play with them. What a novel idea. I know I'm being facetious but I'm tired of being able to tell if a player will be good just by looking at their ratings.

This would also make franchise much more interactive because instead of ratings, now you have to look at production to gauge a players ability, now if you have a player you took in the 1st round but he had very little production but you have a free agent who put up a ton of production, you might think about starting that player instead. It would also make trading more interesting, now instead of looking at their ratings, you are looking at what they have been able to do, what if they are a bad player who that particular player was able to make look good because of the scheme he ran.

It does so much more to remove ratings that we can see and that can make us biased. Increase the amount of UDFA's each year and make some of them true stars but the only way to ever find out is through actually playing with them and even adding in the ability to have like prodays, or tryouts held before drafting or signing players especially with a large pool of UDFA's to try and gauge their ability would be amazing. It would definitely make me want to play preseason again to see what these guys can do and it only adds more value to the game.
 

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