Madden 12 has officially been released.  For those of you who are new to the madden franchise, I want to go over something that will help you in madden nfl 12 as well as all future madden games.  Reading the defensive coverage before the play allows you to audible to a play that you know will beat the current defense.  Today, we will be breaking down how you can tell if your opponent is in a man to man defense, a cover 2 zone defense, or a cover 3 zone defense  (These 3 types of defenses account for 90% of the plays in madden).  Make sure to watch the video above and read the step by step breakdown below.

The first defense we are going to go over is man to man defense.  This means that each defender is responsible for covering 1 receiver.  Any extra defenders are usually blitzing or in a deep zone.Madden 12 man defense

To see if the defense is in man to man coverage, all you have to do is motion a receiver from one side of the field to the other.  If the defender follows him all the way to the other side, it is man coverage.  If the defender follows him for a few steps then lets him go, you know it is zone defense.  Against man coverage, we like to call routes such as slants and drags to get open.

The next defense we will go over is the cover 2 defense.  The cover 2 defense means that there are 2 safeties covering deep (dark blue zones) with the rest of the defenders in shallower zones.

madden 12 cover 2 defense

Once we motion our receiver over and notice that the corner who is defending him doesnt follow him, we know it is zone defense.  To determine that it is a cover 2, we look at the 2 safeties in the red circles.  They haven’t moved at all which means that the defense is likely in a cover 2.  Against a cover 2, we like to throw streak routes up the middle of the field for huge yardage.

The last defense we are going to breakdown is the cover 3.  A cover 3 defense means that there are 3 players defending deep (dark blue zones) and everyone else in coverage underneath.

madden nfl 12 cover 3 defense

Again, you will want to motion your receiver from 1 side of the field to the other.  Once you determine that it is zone defense, you will want to determine if it is a cover 3 or cover 2.  To spot a cover 3 defense, you look at the safeties.  Recall that when your opponent is in a cover 2 , the safeties stay right where they are.  In a cover 3, 1 safety comes up closer to the line of scrimmage while the other shifts into the middle of the field. We have them pointed out in the red circles above.  Against a cover 3, we like to do extnded out routes (out route + smart route) for easy 10-15 yard gains.

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Make sure to comment with any questions that you have.  Hope you all enjoy Madden 12!