There is a new update available now for Madden 21 gamers. Along with the franchise mode improvements we went over yesterday, this update focuses on addressing zone coverage as well as a few exploits.

We’ll start first with the changes made to zone coverage that will be made to Madden 21 on the XBOX Series X/S and the PlayStation 5. Here’s what is changing:

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Tuning to Deep Zone defender logic to focus more on deep threats in their zone and less on shorter routes approaching their zones

Tuning to Deep Zone logic in Cover 1 to react quicker to Deep Over, Post, and any other deep crossing routes.

Updated the facing direction of Deep Zone players so they’ll face the ball rather than just the line of scrimmage, which will help Deep Zone defenders turn in the appropriate direction when covering deep routes.

Tuning to fakeout logic on Inside Release Post Routes (S-Posts). There was significant separation resulting from this release and cut when close to the line of scrimmage. This change prevents defenders getting faked out during this early segment of the route.

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Added Gen 5-specific Change of Direction animations to locomotion which will improve a defender’s ability to transition from strafe to run quicker and smoother to help defenders get into position to play the ball quicker.

Tuning to improve ‘turn and run’ to better anticipate vertical speed threats

Tuning to allow faster top-end strafe speed for defenders in Deep Zone

Extended the distance that a Deep Third can look inside when anticipating Deep Crossing routes coming from the opposite side of the field.

Fixed an issue causing outside Deep Third defenders to leverage the No. 1 (Outside) Receiver too long even when the receiver was no longer a deep threat.

DEV NOTE: We’ve made significant tuning changes to zone coverage, specifically deep zones to better balance the deep passing game and increase anticipation of deep zone defenders. One thing to be aware of is that these changes only apply to defenders in zone coverage and will NOT impact ‘Match’ zone players after they have transitioned to man coverage on applicable match coverage plays.

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EA will continue to monitor stats and feedback on both man and zone coverage towards future tuning updates and thank you to the Madden Community for the feedback on zone coverage.

The glitches related to kickoffs including the fair catch tactic and the kickoff playclock bug are now fixed on next gen systems as well.

Current generation systems (along with next gen systems) now have a new “SpongeBob Yard Location” as well as mouthpieces becoming available to all newly created franchises.

EA notes that they are working to get mouthpieces into already existing leagues moving forward.

We should note that for most of today (January 7th) franchise mode has been gated and undergoing maintenance. No word yet on when it will be resolved.

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