Whether you want to be the best in your friend group or start competing in Madden tournaments there are many simple ways you can improve your game.
It can be anything from paying attention to what your opponent does and making a halftime adjustment or as simple as noticing that your opponent is only running one play the whole game and stopping it. Along with focus there are other things that can be done to take your game to the next level.
Here are 10 ways you can get better at Madden 21 today!
1. Know YOUR game
This is the first step in taking your game to the next level. If you are a good passer, pass. If you are a good runner, run.
It might seem self explanatory, but it is a very important first step that every player must take in order to start winning games.
Does this mean you can’t be balanced? No. Does this mean you can’t change once you make the decision? Of course not. But an identity is very important.
2. Create a game plan
Now that you know what you do well, find a playbook that caters to your game. Even if you just have one play that you LOVE, start with using that playbook and build a gameplan around it.
Simplicity is key! ”I fear not the man who has practiced 10,000 kicks once, but I fear the man who has practiced one kick 10,000 times” – Bruce Lee.
Once you have one play that you do very well, that is when you can start thinking about a mini-scheme. This is when you master 3-5 plays from one formation and use them all to keep your opponent off guard.
You don’t need 100 plays in order to be good at Madden. A solid 3-5 plays from one formation is a good start to winning more games.
3. Take notes
To take your game to the next level, you have to treat it as more than just a game. Taking notes is a great way for you to start developing your game. Having notes on things you had success with can be a great way for you to figure out the things you excel at as well as give you a base for a potential new scheme.
Notes are really effective for improving on defense. Find out what play stops popular offenses and keep it in your notes. Next thing you know you will have something to stop all of the common offenses and you will be able to win a lot more games.
Most people have one formation/play that they can do well and don’t have a backup plan. If you know how to stop the common offenses such as Bunch, Strong Close, and Trips you will make a lot of people quit after the first couple of drives.
4. Players matter
This might be self explanatory, but it is very important to take this seriously.
The best player might not always be the right player for you. It is important to look at key attributes such as speed but also important to look for scheme specific attributes such as man/zone coverage or pass/run block.
This is why tip #1 was so important. If you know YOUR game you will be able to pick the right players for your team.
It is important to look for these things when choosing a team in modes such as Draft Champions or Fantasy Draft in franchise mode because it could be the difference in having a star player or having a player you don’t use.
If you have the choice between Joe Montana and Barry Sanders and you pass every play, why would you pick Barry Sanders?
5. Abilities matter
Although this is similar to tip #4, abilities are a whole other ball game. Superstar abilities are what make YOUR team.
If you are using a pocket passer, it is 100% necessary to have a player with Gunslinger or Pass Lead Elite/Set Feet Lead. If you like to use man coverage when playing defense, having cornerbacks with One Step Ahead is very important.
If you want to give your players access to extra routes, abilities like hot toute master, WR/Slot/TE apprentice, and backfield master are really beneficial. These abilities allow you to put your Coaching cap on and create route combinations that will drive your opponent crazy.
6. Play all Four Quarters and WIN THE GAME!
This might be the most important tip of them all. Your mindset is so key when playing Madden. Do you believe you will come back from a 10 point 4th Quarter deficit? Do you start making mistakes when you are up by 14 because you think you have the game won?
Play every play like it is the most important play of the game. And if you do find yourself up with only a few minutes left in the game dial in and do what is needed to win the game.
An easy way to prevent blowing a 4th quarter lead is switching your ball carrier settings to conservative. Although fumbles are not so common, don’t allow your opponent to get a hit stick fumble when you are trying to chew the clock. Also make sure you have the “Chew Clock” setting on so that you can take up as much time as possible in between plays.
Most importantly, TAKE A KNEE. If you are winning the game and you have the ball with 2 minutes or less and your opponent has 0 timeouts, take a knee. Nothing worse than losing a game and saying “I could’ve won if I just kneeled the ball”. Do it, and move on to the next game.
7. Take breaks
Just like anything in life, taking necessary breaks is essential for peak performance. Doing something for a long time with no breaks, can lead to a burn out. This mental exhaustion will not only make you irritated but it will lead to you making mistakes that you don’t typically make.
You can follow a general rule of: Play For 90 minutes, break for 15 minutes. This can help you get through something such as Weekend League without losing any games you should’ve won.
It is also important to take a break for as long as you need following a tough loss. Don’t play until the game is off of your mind. If that game is towards the end of the night you can make an exception to this rule because I recommend ending everyday with a win. This will make you come back confidently and carry the momentum through the next day.
If you want to get better at anything you must take time. I am not saying you need to follow the 10,000 hour rule to start winning games, but consistency is key. A good way to stay consistent with Madden is to find out the game mode that you enjoy the most.
If you enjoy Ultimate Team, Weekend League is a great way to be consistent. Weekend league is a ranked mode where you have 25 games to play from 4:30 PM on Thursday – 10 AM Monday every week. SO if you are busy throughout the week you can make up for it by playing your 25 Weekend League Games.
If you enjoy playing franchise mode you can find an online league that advances at the pace that works well for you. If you can play daily, find a league that advances every 24 hours. This will give you something to look forward to every day as well as keep you consistent with your madden playing.
You know what they say; A game a day keeps the L’s away.
9. Don’t just play it, Watch it!
There are so many outlets that you have available if you want to improve at Madden. There are thousands of Madden players streaming and making youtube videos that you can casually watch.
If you want to take it more seriously, we have endless articles and videos that you can use to improve your game. We make it very easy by separating our tips between Offense, Defense, and game mode oriented tips.
If you want to take it up a notch, try Madden School Unlimited. This is where you get access to everything we release for a whole year. This includes: eBooks, Guides, and our new Film Room that can take your game to the next level.
10. Have Fun
The reason why we all started playing Madden was to have fun, so why stop that when you want to play more competitively. You should look forward to playing every time you turn the game on! If you are getting bored of a game mode, find ways to switch it up.
If you like to play Ultimate Team but you are tired of using the same team, hit the reset button and build a new team. I recommend building a theme team in which you use all players from your favorite team! This is a great way to bring back the fun to Ultimate Team.
If you play franchise mode you can try doing a franchise rebuild from a historically bad team. There’s nothing better than bringing a franchise its first Lombardi Trophy.
You can also try switching up the game mode you play to light a spark. Whether you want to play with the NFL’s best stars and legends you can try Superstar KO, or you want to test out your skills on The Yard.
Do whatever you have to do to keep the fun in the game. Because like Deion Sanders once said “You feel good, you play good.”