Long before you could download roster updates with a snap of a finger, the only way to see the new faces on your favorite team in your favorite video game was by buying that season’s version.
It’s been a while since I’ve bought a game from the Madden franchise, but all the changes the Chicago Bears have undergone in the offseason have me leaning toward marking that purchase when the time comes. And to be completely honest, the Bears having interesting players worth playing has a lot to do with it.
That group of intriguing athletes includes rookie inside linebacker Roquan Smith, who is the highest-rated defensive rookie in Madden NFL ’19. Smith and his 81 overall rating check in among the top five and only two other rookies – Colts guard Quenton Nelson, Giants running back Saquon Barkley – rank ahead of Smith from the outset. Browns quartebrack Baker Mayfield has a matching 81 overall grade.
Madden NFL writer/content strategist Daniel Williams shares his thoughts on the top-5, including his belief that Smith “has the makings of a Pro Bowl talent” which is evident in some high grades across the board for the rookie.
“Smith can be disruptive all over the field with several ratings in the high 80s,” Williams explains. “His 88 Tackle and 87 Hit Power are enough to stop most ball carriers cold, but his numbers make him a natural fit in coverage, too. Smith sports an 89 Speed, 91 Acceleration, 88 Agility, with an 89 Pursuit and 80 in Zone Coverage.”
It’s impossible not to love what Smith brings to the table – even in virtual reality.