Everyone knows the importance of a good team in MUT, however, a surprising number of people don’t understand the importance of the right personnel in relation to their scheme.
Most people in Madden base their defense in one of two formations: the 3-4 and the 4-3. Unsurprisingly, the 3-4 has three linemen and four linbackers, and the 4-3 has the opposite. This greatly changes the roles of each player, and as a result each formation requires different personnel for the greatest amount of success.
Now there’s definitely more formations to base your defense out of (I myself base my defense out of the Nickel 3-3-5 formation), but 3-4 and 4-3 are by far the most common, and they’re also the most simple. I really hope that by the end of this article, you will have the tools to improve your team.
In the past, the 4-3 has been a prominent defense in Madden. It boasts two defensive ends, two defensive tackles, two outside linebackers, and one middle linebacker. Generally in the 4-3, we’re going to get most of our pressure on the quarterback with our linemen. This means that our defensive ends in the 4-3 have to be quick, agile, and good tacklers. With two DTs lined up, the defensive tackles are generally a bit faster and more athletic than a 3-4 DT as well. Being that we’re going to mostly get our pressure with the linemen, the linebackers in the 4-3 are usually pretty good in coverage, although tackling still has to be high to stop the run.
What to look for:
4-3 ends, like I’ve said, generally have to be quick and able to get to the quarterback. Most of the time in a 4-3 end we want to see fast speed and high finnesse move. The epitome of a 4-3 end might lie in Position Hero JPP: 92 Speed, 100 Acceleration, 97 Tackle, and 100 Finnesse Move. 3-4 outside linebackers are also usally great 4-3 defensive ends, as illustrated in this article by JGarcia.
4-3 DTs also have to be a bit faster and more athletic than their 3-4 counterparts. Generally look for good speed and good blockshed so they can get to the quarterback quick and efficiently. The prime example here would be UT John Randle with his 85 speed, 98 tackle, and 98 blockshed.
4-3 OLBs are really good at jumping routes; they’re great in coverage and have decent catching as well. A great example would be the recent DeAndre Levy Final Hero. Levy has 93 speed, and 92 Zone coverage, meaning you can’t really throw his way with confidence.
The only non-secondary position that is going to be largely the same in Madden is the MLB. As a result, I won’t really discuss them much, just kinda look around and see who your favorite is.
The 3-4 defense is especially big in Madden 15. With formations like the 3-4 Bear, many top players have chosen the 3-4 as their base defense this year. A specialized 3-4 team posses a big defensive tackles (also called a nose guard), two big DEs that can collapse the pocket, and two outside linebackers that pass rush the quarterback to no end. The 3-4 relies mostly on the second level defenders to get pressure in, and as a result 3-4 OLBs are very similar to (and almost interchangeable with) 4-3 DE. 3-4 DEs need to push the line and stop the run, and are very similar to a 4-3 DE. A 3-4 DT is something of its own kind however. These are big huge guys who the offense isn’t going to move backwards. A good nose tackle can just shut down the run up the middle simply by pushing the offensive linemen back. They usually rea slower, but bigger and stronger as well.
What to look for:
In the 3-4, ends have to be big and tough. Look for high power and high blockshed. Speed isn’t too much of a factor, but more is always good. UT 24 hours Bruce Smith shows off near perfect 3-4 DE attributes with his 100 powermove and 100 blockshed. He can get off his blocks and collapse the pocket quickly..
3-4 OLBs are special. In real life, there’s usually two different types of 3-4 OLBs, just like MLBs (Mike and Will). One, the Jack, just rushes most of the time. The other one (who actually doesn’t really have a name) is a jack of all trades. He can run stop, go into coverage, or rush the QB. However, Madden is not real life; in Madden I like to keep two linebackers of the second kind for a 3-4 scheme. I can then blitz from either side or run coverage from either side without a problem at all. That’s the reason I like guys like UT James Harrison with 92 speed, 100 power move, 96 zone coverage, and 83 zone coverage.
Final Edition Hero Marcell Dareus is one of my favorite 3-4 DTs in this game. He has the tools you need to succeed as a 3-4 DT: great blockshed (98), a big size (6’3″ 331 pounds), and a lot of strength (99). Out of a guy like Dareus, speed doesn’t really matter; we’re not looking to rush the QB with our DT in a 3-4 defense most of the time anyways.
Once again, you can have your way with MLBs. They’re a bit different in real life, but there’s no reason to be pedantic about it in Madden.
I really hope I’ve helped you become a better Madden player. If you have any questions feel free to ask in the comments below. If you’d like me to put together sample lineups for you, just let me know what your budget is and I will do what I can.