The Release of the Bears' Madden '23 Ratings Has Been a Special Brand of Chaotic

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The Release of the Bears’ Madden ’23 Ratings Has Been a Special Brand of Chaotic

Chicago Bears

One of my favorite scenes in movie history is in Mean Girls when Regina George sprinkles photocopies of “The Burn Book” throughout the halls of her high school, which leads to absolute pandemonium.

For those who are unfamiliar (or those who want to re-live an iconic moment in movie history), this is the scene I’m discussing. And ESPN’s Mina Kimes captures the spirit of the thing with this .gif share:

It’s hard not to think about this scene as I found myself watching the reaction as the Madden NFL ’23 ratings began making their rounds throughout the internet. And when it comes to the Chicago Bears, their player ratings are a special brand of chaotic.

This is what the projected starters would look like on offense:

  • QB: Justin Fields, 74
  • RB: David Montgomery, 84
  • FB: Khari Blasingame, 72
  • WR: Darnell Mooney, 79
  • WR: Byron Pringle, 75
  • TE: Cole Kmet, 75
  • LT: Teven Jenkins, 72
  • LG: Cody Whitehair, 80
  • C: Sam Mustipher, 65
  • RG: Lucas Patrick, 73
  • RT: Larry Borom, 65

Bears. Your offense. Woof!

Darnell Mooney certainly has speed, with a 93 overall rating in that category to go along with 93 acceleration. Justin Fields has the quickness, too, with 90 speed of his own. Couple that with 92 throwing power and Fields should be the Bears’ most interesting offensive player to use in the game because combining 90+ throwing power with 90+ speed can be unstoppable in Madden at times. Just ask anyone who would use Mike Vick back in the game’s heyday.

But the team starting two offensive linemen with 65 ratings and only one with a rating at or above 80 says so much. And while it’s not anything we didn’t already know, the Madden ratings provide yet another data point explaining the problematic state of the offensive line.

As for the defense, let’s just say it’s not the formidable bunch we’ve become familiar with in recent years:

  • DE Robert Quinn, 83
  • DT: Justin Jones, 73
  • DT: Mario Edwards Jr., 72
  • DE: Trevis Gipson, 75
  • LB: Roquan Smith, 89
  • LB: Nicholas Morrow, 71
  • CB: Jaylon Johnson, 82
  • CB: Tavon Young, 75
  • CB: Kyler Gordon, 71
  • S: Eddie Jackson, 83
  • S: Jaquan Brisker, 73

As is tradition around these parts, the Bears’ defense is where a bulk of the talent is on the roster. It’s as true in Madden as it is in real life. Then again, this shouldn’t come as a surprise. Because as the folks at EA say: If it’s in the game, it’s in the game.

But hey, at least Roquan Smith’s 89 overall rating means he can probably wreck some offensive plans like Brian Urlacher did in earlier editions of the game.

Here’s how the Bears rookie class shakes out after Brisker (73) and Gordon (71):

  • WR Velus Jones Jr., 69
  • P Trenton Gill, 69
  • LT Braxton Jones, 65
  • DE Dominique Robinson, 65
  • RB Trestan Ebner, 65
  • S Elijah Hicks, 64
  • OL Zach Thomas, 64
  • C Doug Kramer, 64
  • OL Ja’Tyre Carter, 63

Velus Jones Jr. and Trenton Gill have nice grades for rookies, relatively speaking. I’d bet on that 73 speed rating being used by any number of fake punt artists. But who’s punting in Madden anyway?

The most egregious grade from Madden isn’t what it gave Fields, Mooney, or any of the skill position players. Instead, it is Cairo Santos being only an overall 77. Santos is the most accurate kicker in Bears history. And last year, missed just four kicks. You can knock off points for deep accuracy, as Santos was 0-2 in kicks from 50+ yards. But Santos was 26-for-28 in kicks inside 50. And that should be worth more than an 81 accuracy.

At the end of the day, Madden ratings (which you can view in their entirety here) are ultimately meaningless. And the ratings release feels like it was done to spark interest in a game whose popularity has been waning over the years. But I don’t think these ratings across the board will get people flocking to store shelves to pick it up this year. But on the other hand, maybe there are enough tweaks elsewhere to make it worth our while. However, I’ll have to take your word for it before I try it out myself.


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Author: Luis Medina

Luis Medina is a Writer at Bleacher Nation, and you can find him on Twitter at@lcm1986.