Another update to the NFL Draft promo launched in Madden 19 Ultimate Team on April 5, providing an update to a Super Bowl-winning quarterback.
A handful of other “late-round picks” also received 98 overall items, but it’s fair to say that none of them will have any sort of fanfare for the casual MUT player.
It’s almost sacrilegious for Tom Brady to “not” be included in any sort of Draft promo, as the famous sixth-round pick in the 2000 NFL Draft has been a customary early April upgrade in Madden Ultimate Team for multiple iterations of the game.
However, this card may as well be bulletin board material for EA when best deciding how to incorporate the Power-Up system next year. Simply put - there’s absolutely no reason for people to upgrade from the Patriots QB’s 95 overall NFL Playoff card, and perhaps worse for a company incredibly interested in the lucrative aspects of their “free to play” mode, there’s no reason for players to invest into any of the Brady’s previous three iterations.
Here’s what we mean - the 99 overall version of Brady already has 98 or 99 overall stats in five separate crucial ratings for a quarterback. Almost all of those ratings could already be achieved through a variety of Power-Up methods, meaning the NFL Draft upgraded released April 5 is essentially nothing more than all-too expensive card art change for users who already invested in the Super Bowl-winning quarterback.
What’s the point?
It’s a better alternative than the limited time 99 overall left outside linebacker, Chuck Bednarik, which was released April 4 with such underwhelming and disappointing stats that he immediately became one of the most downvoted cards of Madden 19 despite being in the MUTHEAD system for less than 24 hours.
However, there has to be a different alternative between “pointless upgrade that doesn’t boost anything in a theme team” and “useless item that is only good for theme teams” with the latter essentially being the main issue with every defensive Legend released in the past two months.
Perhaps Brady is just a special case. After all, the 40-year-old quarterback was never fast, even early in his career, so EA has to do something to offset the lack of speed at a position that is currently dominated by Flash-esque options in the meta.
Or maybe Brady will receive the bulk of the criticism Friday because he’s slotted into a group of other 98 overall players that are either not sexy or not good or, in the case of Reshad Jones, (sorry Dolphins fans) both.
Rick Wagner becomes the highest overall right tackle in Madden Ultimate Team, and certainly has the ratings to boot, with 94 Strength and a litany of other 99 stats in important blocking categories.
Still, an offensive lineman won’t draw the headlines; a statement that could be echoed for defensive lineman like Grady Jarrett.
At least in the case of the Falcons defensive tackle, Jarrett will finally get a Power-Up, an option that has been neglected despite receiving a 95 overall LTD card as part of the New Year’s College Edition.
This might be the only time a Reshad Jones card could be considered “fast”, but of the 98+ cards released on April 5, the safety is technically the fastest. The vocal minority of Dolphins theme team users seem to be genuinely excited for Jones, and 92 Speed could theoretically get boosted high enough where a deficiency in man coverage (89 overall) won’t matter.
As a strictly in-the-box safety, Jones is perhaps one of the better ones in all of Madden 19, capable of getting the pivotal red chemistry “Secure Tackler” and blessed with the lethal combo of 98 Hit Power and 78 Blockshed.
But in order to match some of the multi-position versatility that his colleagues have, Jones would essentially “need” to be in a theme team, which is one of the most frustrating aspects of Madden Ultimate Team in its current state.