Defense can often get overlooked in Madden but elite Madden players know that it is half the battle. You can’t be a truly great at Madden 24 without having a good defense.
Earlier this week, we went over the Top 5 Offensive Playbooks in Madden 24. Today, we are covering the best defensive playbooks in the game.
On defense you have significantly less formation and play options than on the offensive side of the ball. It’s fairly obvious when you look at the Madden 24 playbook database and see just how many more formations are in each offensive playbook than there are in the defensive playbooks.
To give you some concrete numbers there are over 3,000 unique offensive plays in Madden 24 but only about 600 unique defensive plays. That is 5 times more play options on offense than you have on defense!
Because defensive playbooks have been so streamlined, there aren’t a ton of viable ones that’ll allow you to compete at a high level.
Even so, we’ll go over the three that we recommend the most below. Then at the end of the article, we’ll cover the most popular defensive playbooks in the game according to the Madden community!
46 Defensive Playbook
The 46 defensive playbook has just about every sought after formation in Madden 24. It is one of only three playbooks that features both the Nickel 3-3 formation and the Nickel 3-3 Cub formation.
Madden pros love to audible down from the Nickel 3-3 into the Nickel 3-3 Cub. The Nickel 3-3 formation allows you to sub in safeties at the outside linebacker positions.
When you audible from the Nickel 3-3 into the Nickel 3-3 Cub you then have speedy safeties right at the line of scrimmage ready to either come in screaming off the edge or dropping into coverage after showing blitz.
If the Nickel 3-3 formations aren’t for you, there are plenty of other great defensive formations in the 46 playbook including:
Don’t be fooled by the “46 Defense” playbook name. Those formations can be useful but you are mainly in the 46 playbook because of Nickel 3-3, Nickel 3-3 Cub, Big Nickel Over G, and Dollar 3-2.
Those are widely considered 4 of the best defensive formations in the game and they are all found in 1 playbook.
Baltimore Ravens Defensive Playbook
The Baltimore Ravens defensive playbook is very different that the other playbooks on this list. If you want to go off-meta but still get pressure on the quarterback, this might be the right playbook for you.
It lacks some fan favorites like 3-4 Odd, Nickel 3-3, and Dollar 3-2 but it has some unique formations that most players don’t have an answer for.
You can rotate between the Nickel Triple, Nickel 3-3 Odd, and Nickel 3-3 Cub to give different looks to your opponent.
Some of our recommended formations in the Baltimore Ravens defensive playbook include:
We’ve already fully covered the Nickel Triple and Nickel 3-3 Odd formations in our Madden School Unlimited section. The pressure is insanely fast while only sending 4-5 guys at the quarterback.
The blitzes from both formations have really nice coverages behind them as well.
Seattle Seahawks Defensive Playbook
If you prefer more of a traditional 3-4 based defense, the Seattle Seahawks have a really nice under the radar defensive playbook.
The Seahawks defensive playbook along with the 46 and Multiple D playbooks are the only ones in the game that have both the Nickel 3-3 and Nickel 3-3 Cub formation.
This allows you to incorporate the audibling down scheme that we briefly touched on above.
The big downside to the Seahawks defensive playbook is the lack of Dollar 3-2 but the other formations can easily make up for that.
Some of the best formations in the Seattle Seahawks defensive playbook include:
The running game is a credible threat in Madden 24. 3-4 Odd can do a decent job of stopping many of the most popular runs in the game.
Kansas City Chiefs Defensive Playbook (Honorable Mention)
If you don’t have access to the specialty playbooks like the 46 defense, one of your best options is the Kansas City Chiefs defensive playbook.
The Chiefs’ playbook is very similar to the 46 defensive playbook, you are basically just swapping out some 4-3 formations in exchange for the 46 formations.
The one notable exception is the lack of Nickel 3-3 Cub. When using the Chiefs’ playbook, you still have access to a lot of the best defensive formations in the game including:
The Dollar 3-2 and the Big Nickel Over G formations are commonly used by the best Madden players in the world.
The Dollar 3-2 especially can generate quick pressure in passing situations.
If none of the defensive playbooks we listed above are right for you, give the Multiple D playbook a try. It has a good variety of defensive formations so you’ll be sure to find a formation or two that you like.
Most Popular Defensive Playbooks In Madden 24
Now that we’ve shared with you our experts’ favorite defensive playbooks, it’s time to ask the community!
Our Madden 24 playbook database has gathered over 2 million data points from the community. Using this data, we know which playbooks and formations the community is most interested in.
These are the top 5 most popular defensive playbooks in Madden 24:
This mostly matches our recommended playbooks list, just in a slightly different order and with the Madden community replacing the Seahawks defensive playbook with the Raiders.
What defensive playbook are you using in Madden 24? Let us know in the comments!