It’s the best time of year! The new Madden is out, and we can stop playing with bootleg rosters and janky schedules. As always, there aren’t a ton of changes this year, so take a look at the 2021 article, the 2022 article, and then we’ll go over a few changes in Packers Madden strategy for the 2023 season.

Offensive Strategy

  • This year’s adjacent playbooks are the Dolphins, 49ers, Rams, Vikings, Bears, Falcons, Browns, Jets, maybe Cardinals, sort of, and maybe Chiefs, since their playbook is always fun and LaFleur said he watched their tape. Why not. 
  • Generally speaking, the offense will need to be run heavy. Not only is it likely that the real world offense will be, Jordan Love sucks in the game right now. Don’t be surprised to finish most first halfs with below 50% completion percentage simply from inaccurate passes. Which brings me to the next point:
  • Don’t be afraid to juice up some of the team’s ratings. Madden is notoriously bad at this. I would increase Aaron Jones speed/acceleration, Christian Watson’s speed (it’s high already but his other attributes are so low that he never separates), and Zach Tom’s strength and related power blocking metrics.  
  • In the past, I wrote about how hard it is to figure out how to use both Dillon and Jones, but then Dillon was just OK last year and is slow in the game. Now, I just use Jones. 
  • As far as strategy goes, I like to use RPOs and motion plays as much as possible – not necessarily because I think I’ll win with them, but because I want to make the game as life-like as possible. Also, look to run a lot of crossing routes, roll-out play action, and plays with Luke Musgrave in the seam.

Defensive Strategy

  • Defense is interesting – if you want it to be life-like. We don’t really know what the team’s tactics will be like this year. Are they sticking to off-coverage and a ton of Cover-6 and Cover-3? Are they going to use more man? Will Jaire follow around the number one WR more? To be honest, I’ll probably simulate the defense until we get a couple weeks into the season and I know more about what the defense will actually look like this season. 
  • When I do play with the defense, I’m using Quay Walker as an edge, running Tampa-2 on third downs fairly often, blitzing from depth, and, depending on my mood,  putting Rasul Douglas at safety. 
  • Madden still annoyingly puts a safety in the box and makes it obvious MOFC when you go to cover-3 or cover-1. There are a few Cover 3 calls that start with two high safeties, but otherwise we just have to suffer. The humanity. 
  • Ratings changes are hard on the defensive side. All of the non-Kenny Clark interior defensive lineman have terrible ratings and probably deserve them. If the team’s defense is top-10 this season, it will be because Devonte Wyatt played like an 85 rating player, Kenny Clark played like a 90+ rating player, the rookies were both at least in the 70s, and TJ Slaton became a top run stuffer. If you want to live out a relatively life-like fantasy season the team crushes expectations and make Lions fans on (fantasy) Twitter switch Lacrosse fandom, go ahead and increase all their ratings. Sure it will be more than will happen in real life, almost certainly, but what fun is it to play with a team full of JAGs on the d0line and Kenny Clark at the lowest rating he’s had in years? 
  • Most of the other players’ ratings are fine, because Jaire Alexander is high and the rest of them were bad or just OK last year.

Mike Price is a lifelong Packers fan currently living in Utah. You can follow him on twitter at @themikeprice.