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Madden NFL 12: Best Position Switches

Think your speedy third-string quarterback in Madden 12 would make a better wide receiver? Have an inkling that your gifted wideout could hack it at tight end? Ever wonder if your slow-footed corner would be better suited as a strong safety?

Most of the time you’d be wrong, but in certain cases position switches in Madden could turn an average schmo into an All-Star Joe. Here are a few players in Madden who benefit the most from lining up at different positions on the virtual gridiron. 

Hines Ward, Pittsburgh
WR rating: 80
TE rating: 96

Ward has always been a ferocious blocker, but it’s shocking how much better he is at moving the pole than many of the players lining up at tight end in Madden.

His impact block rating of 85 is better than almost every tight end; his catch in traffic rating of 91 also makes him a valuable target at his new position.
Plus, matched up against linebackers and strong safeties, Ward can get open — something he struggles to do against corners with his tortoise-like speed and agility ratings. Moving him to tight end also provides more flexibility in formations, allowing you to shift Ward into the fullback position.

Brian Orakpo, Washington, Clay Matthews, Green Bay, Mario Williams, Houston; etc.
OLB rating: 90-94
DE rating: 99

Moving any elite pass-rushing outside linebacker to defensive end results in a 99 rating. This is especially useful if you prefer to fun a 4-3 defense.

Ronde Barber, Tampa Bay
CB rating: 83
SS rating: 94

As I mentioned in a previous article, Barber is simply better at the safety positions.

His zone coverage skills are top-notch, but when Barber is put in a one-on-one situation he is picked apart. Just slide him over to free safety or strong safety and watch him shine.

Don Muhlbach, Detroit
TE rating: 42
LG/C/RG rating: 67

Muhlbach is Detroit's longsnapper, but you might as well get a little more use out of him since he is eating up a roster spot.

As a tight end he is about as useless as a rotary phone. Make him an interior offensive lineman and you'll have an adequate backup at those positions. Plus, he can still longsnap for you — and we all know how valuable that is in Madden.

Al Woods, Pittsburgh
LE rating: 54
DT rating: 67

Again, this is all about scheme.

In the 3-4, Woods is a defensive end. But with his enormous size and healthy strength ratings, he makes a better defensive tackle, especially in a 4-3 attack.

Josh Cribbs, Cleveland
WR rating: 80
QB rating: 62

Why should the people who use Denver have all the fun? 

Cleveland’s offense is pedestrian at best with Colt McCoy running the show.
Cribbs, who was a quarterback at Kent State, gives you somewhat of a chance to run around and make plays. His passing ratings are pretty terrible — 67 short pass accuracy, 51 medium pass accuracy and a cringeworthy 42 deep pass rating — but the Browns don’t have any receivers worth throwing throwing the ball to, anyway. 

Give it a whirl. You’re using the Browns. What do you have to lose?

Tim Tebow, Denver
QB rating:
 77
HB rating: 82

Most think Tebow is a glorified running back anyway. In Madden, though, he is an adequate passer.

However, he’s a much better runner with ratings like 86 trucking and 97 ball carrier vision. A move to halfback actually gives him a slight boost.

Run the wildcat with him. Run him in the Power-I and turn him into a poor man's Peyton Hillis. Heck, run a halfback-option pass a few times a game. 

Who are some of the most successful position changes you have made in Madden?


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Member Comments
# 1 StL_RamZ @ 12/15/11 12:34 PM
Reggie bush to WR not sure the rating change...I haven't played madden in months lol
 
# 2 TheDelta @ 12/15/11 12:40 PM
Wow the Tebow suggestion is terrible... as you've said yourself, his passing skills are adequate, he has the all-important clutch trait and you seriously recommend moving him to HB where he's nothing but a decent power back? Giving up a player with a pretty unique skillset to make him a mediocre player at the position where there's the most supply in the game doesn't really sound like a smart move to me.

There are literally dozens of HBs in the game as good or better as Tebow would be, yet there are only a handful of mobile QBs with really good running skills that can actually throw the ball well enough.

If I really want to run the wildcat, I can easily use the sub packages to get him in there, so that's no reason at all to change his position and lose him as a QB.
 
# 3 StL_RamZ @ 12/15/11 12:52 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by StL_RamZ
Reggie bush to WR not sure the rating change...I haven't played madden in months lol
80 to a 87
 
# 4 bigball12 @ 12/15/11 12:55 PM
How do you get Josh Cribbs to QB? Wildcat only right?
 
# 5 sydrogerdavid @ 12/15/11 01:06 PM
I'd rather keep Heath Miller and Weslye Sunders as my TEs and have Hines as my slot reciever. Then I have Antonio Brown as my #2 and Mike Wallace as my #1. Thank you Steelers for giving me such awesome receivers!
 
# 6 bigdaddykraven @ 12/15/11 01:11 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by bigball12
How do you get Josh Cribbs to QB? Wildcat only right?
Edit his position to QB...

Of course this doesn't work online.
 
# 7 ajimithing @ 12/15/11 01:50 PM
I was using the Bills in an offline franchise a couple years ago and had my top 2 RBs go down with injuries. I moved T.O. to RB and I believe he got a OVR boost. Also, most of the older corners get an OVR boost when you move them to FS.
 
# 8 Obnoxious @ 12/15/11 03:19 PM
I don't edit his position or anything but I use Darren Sproles as my slot receiver in Singleback formation subs.
 
# 9 Obnoxious @ 12/15/11 03:20 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by ajimithing
I was using the Bills in an offline franchise a couple years ago and had my top 2 RBs go down with injuries. I moved T.O. to RB and I believe he got a OVR boost. Also, most of the older corners get an OVR boost when you move them to FS.
I moved CB Jabari Greer to FS after his speed dropped to 86.
 
# 10 newefan @ 12/15/11 03:33 PM
anybody thats been playing madden since the ps2 days should know the olbs most of them at least are better at de
 
# 11 TheDelta @ 12/15/11 04:50 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by newefan
anybody thats been playing madden since the ps2 days should know the olbs most of them at least are better at de
The thing is that Madden after all these years still doesn't make a difference between 4-3 and 3-4 defenses, so all players are rated by the same standards, meaning an OLB gets high OVR from high pass rush AND high pass coverage skills, and DEs get measured by run stop AND pass rush skills. So most 3-4 OLBs are good pass rushers, but not good at coverage, so moving them to DE simply takes their cover skills out of the equation, making them look better.

In the end, it's putting lipstick on a pig, it doesn't really matter since the OVR of players doesn't matter. If you run a 4-3, I don't care how great a pass rusher Aldon Smith is, his 50ish cover skills make him pretty unusable to me as a LB even if his pass rush skills give him a good OVR rating. At the same time, there are many 4-3 DTs in the game that are great run stoppers with a bit of speed, so they're perfectly suited to be DEs in a 3-4 but the game won't give them a good rating because they aren't great pass rushers, which again doesn't actually matter ingame since you'll get your pass rush from your OLBs if you run a 3-4.

So the lesson is, don't just jump on a player because of a high OVR, you need to actually look at his skills to judge how good he will be on the field. At the same time, a player doesn't magically get better just because you move him to another position. Moving Reggie Bush to WR may give his OVR a boost, but again, lipstick on a pig, he's still the same player with the same skills. There's no need to edit his position, as a HB, you can just put him on your WR depth chart or formation sub him if you want him to line up wide. Actually, if you play franchise, it's better to use him in a position where his OVR is lower, because it will allow his skills to progress further.
 
# 12 seanyboy116 @ 12/16/11 02:56 AM
Kirk Morrison MLB to SS... Goes Up Huge
 
# 13 pistolpete @ 12/16/11 11:16 AM
I found a much better replacement for CJ Spiller at the runningback position, and tonight I am tempted to move him to WR, to see if he gets much of a boost. I'm in year 2, and his current OVR is an 82. He's a 95 speed with 99 agility and 99 acceleration.
 
# 14 bigbob @ 12/16/11 02:50 PM
Don't forget moving Antoine Winfield to SS. I believe he makes the jump to a 96 overall (which would be his position IF our corners could stay healthy).
 
# 15 TheDelta @ 12/16/11 07:17 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by bigbob
Don't forget moving Antoine Winfield to SS. I believe he makes the jump to a 96 overall (which would be his position IF our corners could stay healthy).
This so much. As you can read in my franchise, I've had way, way more success defensively since I moved Winfield to SS and let the players play CB that actually have the speed to do so.
 
# 16 bigbob @ 12/16/11 08:02 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by TheDelta
This so much. As you can read in my franchise, I've had way, way more success defensively since I moved Winfield to SS and let the players play CB that actually have the speed to do so.
It's something the team has actually been trying to do since we lost Darren Sharper, Cedric Griffin as well, but injuries at the cornerback position hasn't allowed them to make the switch yet. He's also very good at safety tackling and coverage wise. Unfortunately for us, speed > actual skill in Madden so he's not the greatest corner in-game.
 
# 17 TheDelta @ 12/16/11 08:21 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by bigbob
Unfortunately for us, speed > actual skill in Madden so he's not the greatest corner in-game.
"Not the greatest" doesn't quite cut it. I've given up over 400 yards passing to Shaun Hill and almost 300 yards receiving in one game to Nate Burleson with Winfield and Griffin starting at CB, neither of them is even close to being a decent starting CB in the game. It's pretty simply you can't ask a CB in this game to cover a WR that's more than 1 or 2 points faster than him, doing so is a recipe for disaster. And since there aren't many WRs with speed significantly below 90, CBs with 85 speed are pretty useless in the game. But Winfield's a true beast at safety, he has huge tackle and hit power for a CB, so he's a good run stopper and his coverage and catch skills really help him jump those underneath and flat routes, but asking him to cover deep... not a good idea.
 
# 18 Trojan Man @ 12/16/11 08:34 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by seanyboy116
Kirk Morrison MLB to SS... Goes Up Huge
That's an interesting one. At 238 he'd be pretty damn big, but that's how big Roy Williams was, Taylor Mays is that big, as is Adrian Wilson -- and Joey Browner in his heavier days was probably in the 230s.

Still, that's a pretty big dude for SS. Does he have the speed and range to be anything other than the rolled down S in a cover 3? I wonder what kind of ground he could cover in a two deep scheme, or if he could handle a TE or a HB.
 
# 19 mm boost @ 12/16/11 08:51 PM
I know this is random and he isn't very popular, but Igor Olshanksy from D-End to D-Tackle takes him from B potential to A potential. When he was still on Dallas, I moved him to D-Tackle and he went to A potential with an OVR boost, and then I traded him to the Colts for a couple draft picks. He is built like a wall, so its a great fit and was something I thought Dallas shoulda done with him in the first place (along with moving Ratliff to D-End).
 
# 20 draes34 @ 12/16/11 10:33 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by TheDelta
The thing is that Madden after all these years still doesn't make a difference between 4-3 and 3-4 defenses, so all players are rated by the same standards, meaning an OLB gets high OVR from high pass rush AND high pass coverage skills, and DEs get measured by run stop AND pass rush skills. So most 3-4 OLBs are good pass rushers, but not good at coverage, so moving them to DE simply takes their cover skills out of the equation, making them look better.

In the end, it's putting lipstick on a pig, it doesn't really matter since the OVR of players doesn't matter. If you run a 4-3, I don't care how great a pass rusher Aldon Smith is, his 50ish cover skills make him pretty unusable to me as a LB even if his pass rush skills give him a good OVR rating. At the same time, there are many 4-3 DTs in the game that are great run stoppers with a bit of speed, so they're perfectly suited to be DEs in a 3-4 but the game won't give them a good rating because they aren't great pass rushers, which again doesn't actually matter ingame since you'll get your pass rush from your OLBs if you run a 3-4.

So the lesson is, don't just jump on a player because of a high OVR, you need to actually look at his skills to judge how good he will be on the field. At the same time, a player doesn't magically get better just because you move him to another position. Moving Reggie Bush to WR may give his OVR a boost, but again, lipstick on a pig, he's still the same player with the same skills. There's no need to edit his position, as a HB, you can just put him on your WR depth chart or formation sub him if you want him to line up wide. Actually, if you play franchise, it's better to use him in a position where his OVR is lower, because it will allow his skills to progress further.
This has been common knowledge for quite some time. I wish Madden would have specified ratings for defensive players based on the scheme you run. Players should have an overall rating based on what is required of their position, which increases or decreases in a 3-4 or 4-3. If a player is one-dimensional, he shouldn't have a high 90's rating.

For example:
No matter how good a guy like Dwight Freeney is as a pass rusher, he can't play DE in a 3-4. He would be switched to OLB. But if you do that in the game it severely drops his overall.
So, let's say his DE overall SHOULD be about 86-89. In a 4-3 his rating would go up 5-10 points, but in a 3-4 it would drop 5-10 points.

It annoys me how they cut corners, by lowering the TACKLE and AWARENESS ratings of D-linemen and increasing them for Linebackers. Because if (like mentioned above) those OLB's rated 90-94 were playing DE, the Madden gods give them all 99 ratings. They'd be somewhere between 92 and 97. There shouldn't be such a discrepancy when switching positions that basically do the same thing (most of the time).

There should be an option for more seasoned gamers to group players more generally (Linemen, Linebackers, and Defensive Backs) and you can mix and match them to your liking.
 

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