Daunte Culpepper, QB, Minnesota Vikings
Most fans were expecting a huge season from Minnesota Vikings star quarterback Daunte Culpepper after he made the Madden 2002 cover, but that couldn’t have been further from the truth.
Instead of reaching the 33-touchdown plateau that he had in 2000, the veteran amassed only 14 touchdown passes in 16 games, throwing 13 interceptions and fumbling 16 times.
Add in the seven fumbles lost, and this was a major statistical drop-off for Culpepper brought on by the Madden curse.
Marshall Faulk, RB, St. Louis Rams
Marshall Faulk is one of the greatest running backs in NFL history, but after appearing on the cover of Madden 2003, the legend was never the same again.
The St. Louis Rams and Indianapolis Colts star only managed to start 10 games that season while dealing with a nagging ankle injury and amassing just 953 yards on the ground. Factor in the 537 receiving yards from the former 1,000-yard receiver, and he was a shell of the player that had been the focus of the Greatest Show on Turf.
For a running back with seven 1,000-yard-rushing seasons, only Father Time and the Madden curse could hold Faulk back.
Shaun Alexander, RB, Seattle Seahawks
When Seattle Seahawks running back Shaun Alexander set the NFL single-season record (2005) for rushing and receiving touchdowns (28) and earned the honor to be featured on Madden 07, there was nothing that could stop him from replicating those numbers and disproving the curse.
Instead of following up his amazing season with an even better campaign, Alexander fractured his foot and totaled just 896 yards and seven touchdowns in 10 games.
Alexander was supposed to be the player that bucked the trend, but the curse proved once again that it doesn't discriminate.
Other Stars Who Suffered a Drop in Production: Drew Brees, Brett Favre, Ray Lewis, Dorsey Levens