2010 Football: Madden or Fantasy Leagues?

Matthew BelmanContributor ISeptember 22, 2010

The NFL has become America’s most popular sport for a wide array of reasons. Most Americans feel a distinct connection with the NFL and its players, and games like Madden NFL football and fantasy football only increase this connection. 


Madden NFL Football and fantasy football are both, in many ways, tied at the hip. Some fantasy football owners, for example, care more about playing with their fantasy players on Madden than they do about how their players actually perform in real life. While this sounds absurd to some, Madden allows a gamer to distinctively control exactly what they want a player to do. Fantasy football, on the other hand, gives someone limited control over who they have on their respective team, but no control as to how that player will do. 


Some players are better in Madden than they are in fantasy, and some players are the exact opposite. Ray Rice, for instance, is ‘only’ rated as a 90 overall in Madden 2010. While 90 is a solid rating, it doesn’t come close to Chris Johnson’s rating of 99, Adrian Peterson’s rating of 98 or even Steven Jackson’s rating of 95. In fantasy football, however, Rice is a consensus top-four fantasy player in almost every league and his Madden rating seems a little bit low in comparison.


Many people that play fantasy football are attracted to Madden because they both center on the NFL and its players. Both Madden and fantasy football games and leagues give gamers the ability to control their favorite NFL players, a control in which they otherwise obviously would not have. 


It's safe to say that on Sunday’s when NFL games are being played that fantasy football takes precedence over Madden. On the other six days of the week, however, Madden gives people the ability to step out of their normal lives and into the world of the NFL, and in a very real sense, a whole different realm of fantasy football. The rise in popularity of Madden has helped fantasy football, and there is no question the rise in popularity of fantasy football has helped Madden. It's one of those beautiful football unions that almost all football fans have grown to love and appreciate, helping to keep the excitement of the game alive all year long.