Joe Ovies

Newton tempts 'Madden Curse'

Posted May 28, 2014

Carolina Panthers quarterback Cam Newton (1) celebrates the Panthers TD. St. Louis Rams visiting the Carolina Panthers on Sunday October 20, 2013. Rams first play from scrimmage was intercepted and returned for a TD and the Panthers never looked back with a hime victory of 30-15. Photo by CHRIS BAIRD

The upcoming edition of Madden NFL by EA Sports appears to be on the Carolina Panthers bandwagon following a breakout season for quarterback Cam Newton and linebacker Luke Kuechly.

In April, EA Sports released a trailer highlighting the updated graphical capabilities of the Playstation 4 and XBox One featuring Kuechly.

Newton is in the final four of fan voting and is matched up against quarterback Andrew Luck in the bracket. If he advances, Newton will fight for votes against either San Francisco quarterback Colin Kaepernick or Seattle cornerback Richard Sherman. 

Newton was in the running for Madden NFL '13 cover, but lost out to Detroit wide receiver Calvin Johnson. The Panthers quarterback even challenged Johnson to a game, on the system of his choosing, for the right to be on the cover. Newton describes himself as a "Madden investor" and has been into the game since childhood. So much so that Newton has become a fixture at the annual Madden Bowl party.

The desire to be on the cover and overall love for Madden makes it clear Newton doesn't believe in the "Madden Curse."

Several players who have graced boxes of the video game have suffered injury or drastic reductions in productivity that same season. For a quick primer on the Madden jinx, please consult this handy dandy infographic on game cover stars and their subsequent issues.

The urban legend has grown to the point where it was believed San Diego runningback LaDainian Tomlinson begged off the cover to avoid the bad mojo associated, which resulted in Vince Young getting the cover in Madden '08. The real reason? Tomlinson and EA Sports couldn't agree on an endorsement fee. 

All of this jinx stuff is rather ridiculous and easily debunked. For starters, it can't be much of a curse when certain players ended up being immune. Why is it that Atlanta quarterback Michael Vick broke his leg the day after Madden '04 was released, yet Calvin Johnson and Eddie George were spared catastrophe? How did Arizona wide receiver Larry Fitzgerald avoid the "Madden Curse," while Pittsburgh safety Troy Polamalu suffered an MCL sprain? It doesn't add up.

It's better to look at the box of Madden as the zeitgeist of NFL popular culture. Some of them are going to the Hall of Fame, like Drew Brees and Ray Lewis. Others like Peyton Hillis and Dante Culpepper blew up for a season, never to be heard from again. Regardless, they're all football players who were on that pinnacle for a particular season. 

Credit to EA Sports for elevating the game into an honor of distinction. As franchise has continued a push toward realism, it has also become needlessly complicated and little boring. Sales of the 25th anniversary edition of Madden NFL were down nearly 40% from the previous installment. 

However, Madden is still enough of a "thing" for high profile players to covet a spot on the game box.



1 Comment

Please with your WRAL.com account to comment on this story. You also will need a Facebook account to comment.

Oldest First
View all
  • sckinton60 May 29, 2014

    This is a SCAM!

  • NFL: Atlanta at Miami

    Tomorrow at 8:00 pm on WRAL-TV

  • Premier League Soccer

    Saturday at 12:30 pm on WRAL-TV

  • NFL: Arizona at Houston

    Sunday at 4:00 am on FOX50

  • NFL: San Diego at Minnesota

    Sunday at 1:00 pm on FOX50

  • NFL: Cincinnati at Jacksonville

    Sunday at 8:00 pm on WRAL-TV

  • ACC Blitz

    Saturday, Sep. 3 at 12:00 pm on WRAL-TV

  • Golf Special: Road to the Ryder Cup

    Sunday, Sep. 4 at 2:30 pm on WRAL-TV

  • Golf: Deutsche Bank Championship

    Sunday, Sep. 4 at 3:00 pm on WRAL-TV

  • NFL: Panthers vs. New England

    Friday at 7:30 pm on 99.9 The Fan

  • MLBL Kansas City at Boston

    Saturday at 7:30 pm on 99.9 The Fan

NFL Preseason
Thursday, Aug. 25
Atlanta 5:00 PT6:00 MT7:00 CT8:00 ET0:00 GMT8:00 北京时间5:00 MST7:00 EST7:00 CT4:00 UAE (+1)20:00 ET23:00
Miami 
 
Dallas 7:00 PT8:00 MT9:00 CT10:00 ET2:00 GMT10:00 北京时间7:00 MST9:00 EST9:00 CT6:00 UAE (+1)22:00 ET1:00
Seattle 
Friday, Aug. 26
New England 4:30 PT5:30 MT6:30 CT7:30 ET23:30 GMT7:30 北京时间4:30 MST6:30 EST6:30 CT3:30 UAE (+1)19:30 ET22:30
Carolina 
 
Buffalo 4:30 PT5:30 MT6:30 CT7:30 ET23:30 GMT7:30 北京时间4:30 MST6:30 EST6:30 CT3:30 UAE (+1)19:30 ET22:30
Washington 
 
Pittsburgh 5:00 PT6:00 MT7:00 CT8:00 ET0:00 GMT8:00 北京时间5:00 MST7:00 EST7:00 CT4:00 UAE (+1)20:00 ET23:00
New Orleans 
 
Cleveland 5:00 PT6:00 MT7:00 CT8:00 ET0:00 GMT8:00 北京时间5:00 MST7:00 EST7:00 CT4:00 UAE (+1)20:00 ET23:00
Tampa Bay 
 
Green Bay 7:00 PT8:00 MT9:00 CT10:00 ET2:00 GMT10:00 北京时间7:00 MST9:00 EST9:00 CT6:00 UAE (+1)22:00 ET1:00
San Francisco 
Saturday, Aug. 27
Kansas City 10:00 PT11:00 MT12:00 CT1:00 ET17:00 GMT1:00 北京时间10:00 MST12:00 EST12:00 CT21:00 UAE13:00 ET16:00
Chicago 
 
Detroit 4:00 PT5:00 MT6:00 CT7:00 ET23:00 GMT7:00 北京时间4:00 MST6:00 EST6:00 CT3:00 UAE (+1)19:00 ET22:00
Baltimore 
 
Philadelphia 4:00 PT5:00 MT6:00 CT7:00 ET23:00 GMT7:00 北京时间4:00 MST6:00 EST6:00 CT3:00 UAE (+1)19:00 ET22:00
Indianapolis 
 
NY Giants 4:30 PT5:30 MT6:30 CT7:30 ET23:30 GMT7:30 北京时间4:30 MST6:30 EST6:30 CT3:30 UAE (+1)19:30 ET22:30
NY Jets 
 
Tennessee 5:00 PT6:00 MT7:00 CT8:00 ET0:00 GMT8:00 北京时间5:00 MST7:00 EST7:00 CT4:00 UAE (+1)20:00 ET23:00
Oakland 
 
Los Angeles 6:00 PT7:00 MT8:00 CT9:00 ET1:00 GMT9:00 北京时间6:00 MST8:00 EST8:00 CT5:00 UAE (+1)21:00 ET0:00
Denver 
Sunday, Aug. 28
San Diego 10:00 PT11:00 MT12:00 CT1:00 ET17:00 GMT1:00 北京时间10:00 MST12:00 EST12:00 CT21:00 UAE13:00 ET16:00
Minnesota 
 
Arizona 1:25 PT2:25 MT3:25 CT4:25 ET20:25 GMT4:25 北京时间1:25 MST3:25 EST3:25 CT0:25 UAE (+1)16:25 ET19:25
Houston 
 
Cincinnati 5:00 PT6:00 MT7:00 CT8:00 ET0:00 GMT8:00 北京时间5:00 MST7:00 EST7:00 CT4:00 UAE (+1)20:00 ET23:00
Jacksonville 
 
MLB Scoreboard
Interleague
Houston5Final
Pittsburgh4
 
Baltimore5Top
6th
Washington2
 
Texas5Bot
6th
Cincinnati3
 
Kansas City0Bot
7th
Miami3
 
Philadelphia3Bot
3rd
Chi White Sox0
American League
Cleveland1Final
Oakland5
 
NY Yankees5Final
Seattle0
 
LA Angels6Bot
6th
Toronto0
 
Boston3Bot
6th
Tampa Bay2
 
Detroit1Top
3rd
Minnesota1
National League
Colorado1Final
Milwaukee7
 
Chi Cubs6Final
San Diego3
 
NY Mets1Bot
3rd
St. Louis1
 
Atlanta 6:40 PT7:40 MT8:40 CT9:40 ET21:40 ET1:40 GMT9:40 6:40 MST8:40 EST9:10 VEN5:40 UAE (+1)8:40 CT
Preview
Arizona 
 
San Francisco 7:10 PT8:10 MT9:10 CT10:10 ET22:10 ET2:10 GMT10:10 7:10 MST9:10 EST9:40 VEN6:10 UAE (+1)9:10 CT
Preview
LA Dodgers 
 
ATP Scoreboard
Wednesday, Aug. 24
Winston-Salem Open (ATP)
Third Round
J. Millman5 6 6   
B. Fratangelo7 0 3   
D. Schwartzma4 0    
Y. Lu6 6    
(1) R. Gasquet6 6    
S. Robert1 3    
(3) P. Cuevas3 61    
(16) P. Carreno Bu6 77    
(12) A. Kuznetsov5     
J. Vesely5     
(4) S. Johnson4 67    
(15) F. Verdasco6 79    
(2) R. Bautista A4 6 3   
(14) M. Baghdatis6 3 0   
(6) S. Querrey 
(9) V. Troicki 
 
WTA Scoreboard
Wednesday, Aug. 24
Connecticut Open (WTA)
Second Round
S. Rogers61 4    
J. Larsson77 6    
(2) R. Vinci6 6    
A. Konjuh2 2    
C. Garcia63 5    
K. Flipkens77 7    
(6) P. Kvitova6 6    
E. Bouchard3 2