You always know the new NFL season is coming when the new Madden ratings come out for the current version of the popular video game -- and the reactions players have to such ratings. I mean, guys that don't even play the game still have strong feelings about what their rating (on a 100-point scale, which impacts how you perform in the game) might be. For example, Budda Baker:
The highest-rated Cardinal, it should not come as a surprise, is running back David Johnson, who is a 93. The only other Cardinal with a 90+ rating is cornerback Patrick Peterson at 92. It's a little surprising that wide receiver Larry Fitzgerald is only an 89, it's very surprising that, after a 17-sack season, defensive end Chandler Jones is only an 89.
(UPDATE: The Madden guys say Jones is gonna be fixed.)
At quarterback, Madden doesn't see much difference. Sam Bradford is a 79, and Josh Rosen is a 78, so for any virtual Cardinals coach, it doesn't really matter much who starts behind center. (Bradford's 78 injury rating is the lowest on the roster; the next lowest is running back Elijhaa Penny's 80, which is weird because it's not like Penny has an injury history.)
A couple of other notes that caught my eye:
-- Rookie WR Christian Kirk is a 73.
-- Fastest Cardinal? Wide receiver J.J. Nelson at 96. Four Cardinals have 93 speed: Peterson, running back T.J. Logan, cornerback Brandon Williams and undrafted rookie cornerback Tavierre Thomas.
-- Long snapper Aaron Brewer is the lowest rated on the team at 44, but that's because he's officially listed as a tight end. Wide receiver Carlton Agudosi is the lowest-rated "regular" player at 58.
-- The game as German import defensive end Moubarak Djeri as a 61, but a guy who has spent time in the league for a few years, center Josh Allen, a 60. Rough call for Allen.
UPDATE: Budda weighs in again: