NY Jets: 4 players who should have a lower Madden rating this year
By Justin Fried
These four NY Jets players should be rated lower in Madden 21 than they were in the previous game.
Yesterday we released an article discussing a few NY Jets players who were criminally underrated by the Madden video game series last year and should see substantial boosts to their ratings this year.
It’s only fair that we do the opposite today.
With the release of the official Madden 21 trailer last Tuesday, excitement is beginning to build once again. Despite the game’s limitations, it’s hard not to get excited for the release of each year’s Madden even if we’re typically disappointed.
There’s plenty of fair criticisms for the Madden series. Aside from the subpar gameplay and limited improvements each year, one aspect of the game that people often take umbrage with is their annual player ratings.
Oftentimes, fans will get upset that their favorite players are disrespected by the game and given a lower rating than they should have had. As previously mentioned, we took a look at some of those players yesterday.
But it’s only right that we take a look at the other side of the spectrum as well. Which Jets players should be given a lower rating in Madden 21 than they had in Madden 20?
Let’s find out.
Next: 4. Matthias Farley
4. Matthias Farley, S, NY Jets
A back-of-the-roster player, Matthias Farley will be competing for a roster spot as one of the team’s backup safeties this summer. But he’s far from guaranteed a spot on the team.
Farley was picked up off waivers just prior to the start of the season and would play in 13 games with the Jets in 2019 playing essentially only on special teams. In fact, he’d see just four defensive snaps all year.
And yet, Madden gave him a pretty solid 73 overall rating despite him being nothing more than a dependable special-teamer for the past two years. While a 73 overall may not seem like anything special, consider those rated around him.
Blessuan Austin is a 73 overall. Folorunso Fatukasi is a 72 overall. Even players like Alex Lewis, Tarell Basham, and Neville Hewitt who saw significantly more playing time in 2019 are rated lower.
Madden has scaled back their ratings in recent years meaning that a 73 overall is considered to be a low-end starter or high-end backup. It’s safe to say that the 27-year-old Farley occupies a less important role on the Jets roster.
Perhaps this was primarily based on his adequate one year as a starter with the Indianapolis Colts in 2017. Either way, expect Farley to be given a lower overall rating by the time Madden 21 is released.
Next: 3. Brian Winters
3. Brian Winters, OG, NY Jets
Fair play to Brian Winters, he’s been forced to play through a variety of injuries over the past few seasons and along the way has managed to become the longest-tenured member of the Jets roster.
Entering his eighth NFL season in 2020, Winters will be competing for the starting right guard job in the preseason. But at the moment, he isn’t considered to be the favorite. That title goes to Greg Van Roten who the Jets signed in the offseason essentially to replace Winters.
That’s because the once-promising guard has taken a few steps back in recent years and is no more than a below-average starter at this stage. But for some reason, Madden doesn’t see him that way.
Winters finished the year with a 79 overall rating as per Madden’s final roster update — a rating that indicates that he’s a solid starting-caliber player. Only Jets fans haven’t seen that version of Winters in quite some time.
In fact, Winters is tied for the ninth highest rating on the team well ahead of the likes of Chris Herndon, Sam Darnold, and Jordan Jenkins. That’s despite the fact that Winters hasn’t received a Pro Football Focus grade north of 64.0 since 2016.
He’s a below-average player at this point, and expect his rating to indicate that in this year’s Madden.
Next: 2. Avery Williamson
2. Avery Williamson, LB, NY Jets
Avery Williamson is a very good player and someone the Jets dearly missed last season. The former Tennessee Titans linebacker missed all of last year with a torn ACL suffered in the third preseason game.
His injury would be a sign of things to come at the linebacker position and the Jets will undoubtedly welcome him back with open arms this season — provided he isn’t a surprise cap causality this summer.
He’s an above-average starter at a position that’s value is often understated. But Madden would have you believe he’s one of the best players on the entire team.
Williamson received an excellent 85 overall rating from Madden in their final roster update. Only two players on the Jets were given a higher rating — Jamal Adams and Le’Veon Bell.
That’s right, even his position-mate C.J. Mosley didn’t receive a higher rating as both were given the same 85 overall grade. Mosley is the highest-paid linebacker in the NFL and made a Pro Bowl in four of his first five seasons.
Williamson is a quality player, but he’s by no means the star difference-maker that Mosley is.
Mosley has received a PFF grade below 70.0 just once in his six-year career. Meanwhile, Williamson has only topped a 70.0 overall grade twice in his five NFL seasons.
Williamson is good, but he’s not that good and Madden will likely drop him down a few overall points this year as a result.
Next: 1. Le'Veon Bell
1. Le’Veon Bell, RB, NY Jets
This is one that is definitely going to be disputed.
It’s safe to say that Le’Veon Bell’s first year with the Jets didn’t exactly go according to plan. The two-time All-Pro finished with career-lows in pretty much every statistic en route to what was likely the most difficult season of his football career.
Of course, context is crucial here. Bell was saddled with running behind a bottom-two offensive line and was forced to play under a coaching staff that quite frankly didn’t know how to use him.
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Bell was put in the absolute worst-case scenario and unfortunately, his numbers reflected that. Bell’s measly 3.2 yards per carry were lower than any other qualified running back and far and away the lowest of his career.
It’s hard to say how much of it was actually Bell’s fault since he was set up to fail from the very beginning. But even so, it’s hard to justify a high rating for a player who put up those numbers last season.
Bell was given a very high 88 overall rating in Madden’s final roster update which placed him just behind Adams as the second-best player on the Jets. Only a handful of running backs were given higher ratings and his 88 overall grade was one behind the likes of Saquon Barkley and Alvin Kamara.
Even despite his horrendous situation, Bell appeared to have lost a step or two last season. That’s not to say he wouldn’t have been much better on a different team, but you can’t grade using hypotheticals.
Bell was statistically the worst starting running back in the NFL last season and for that reason, you can’t justify giving him an 88 overall rating in Madden 21, even if it wasn’t all his fault.