He’s the secret, and he’s appeared on its sidelines, but never has John Madden been playable in EA Sports’ 35-year-old Madden NFL series, until now. John Madden, a two-way lineman drafted by the Philadelphia Eagles in 1958, is on the market to all Madden Ultimate Team players in Madden NFL 23 starting today.
Madden, an all-conference selection at offensive tackle for the Cal Poly Mustangs in 1957, played each offensive and defensive position in college. In MUT, players will get two cards for him only for logging in: a 91-rated defensive tackle, and a 99-rated offensive tackle. The DT Madden might be upgraded to a 99 overall by completing a set of challenges. The OT Madden could also be used in any respect five offensive line positions (guards, tackles, or center).
In MUT he’ll wear whatever uniform your team wears; here he’s shown with the Eagles with the number he wore in training camp. In 1959, Madden tore ligaments in his knee, ending his playing profession prematurely. During his rehabilitation, he watched film with the Pro Football Hall of Fame quarterback Norm Van Brocklin, from which he developed the concepts and schemes he would use as a coach over the following 18 years.
Madden has appeared in his namesake video game quite a few times, as a commentator, a tutorial advisor (in Madden NFL 09), and most recently in MUT as a head coach. That is his first playable appearance, although offensive linemen are all AI-controlled.
Enshrined in Canton in 2006, John Madden retired from coaching in 1978 because the winningest (by percentage) head coach in NFL history, a record that also stands, and led the Oakland Raiders to a Super Bowl championship in 1977. After he left coaching, he joined Pat Summerall within the CBS booth to form the NFL’s best and longest-lasting broadcasting partnership. Madden died Dec. 28, 2021 at his home in Pleasanton, California.