Madden NFL 22 Player Ratings: Rams' Aaron Donald in 99 Club for 5th Straight Year

Tim Daniels@@TimDanielsBRFeatured Columnist IVJuly 27, 2021

SEATTLE, WASHINGTON - JANUARY 09: Aaron Donald #99 of the Los Angeles Rams looks on the NFC Wild Card Playoff game against the Seattle Seahawks at Lumen Field on January 09, 2021 in Seattle, Washington. (Photo by Abbie Parr/Getty Images)
Abbie Parr/Getty Images

Los Angeles Rams defensive tackle Aaron Donald was named to the Madden 99 Club for the fifth consecutive year as part of the video game's ratings reveal week on Tuesday.

Madden NFL 22 @EAMaddenNFL

Not 1, not 2, not 3, not 4, but 5️⃣ for <a href="https://twitter.com/AaronDonald97?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@AaronDonald97</a>!!<br><br>Welcome to the <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/99Club?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#99Club</a> | <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/Madden22?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#Madden22</a> <a href="https://t.co/VQhNxeUQmb">pic.twitter.com/VQhNxeUQmb</a>

Donald's overall rating is built on a group of terrific secondary ratings, including 99 strength, 99 awareness and eye-popping 82 speed for a 6'1", 280-pound lineman.

Los Angeles Rams @RamsNFL

Count β€˜em. <br><br>5x <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/99Club?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#99Club</a> for <a href="https://twitter.com/AaronDonald97?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@AaronDonald97</a>. <a href="https://t.co/oSwFxwAZ6W">pic.twitter.com/oSwFxwAZ6W</a>

The 30-year-old superstar's place in the 99 Club wasn't in much doubt. He's been the NFL's best defensive player for the better part of a decade since the Rams selected him with the 13th overall pick in the 2014 draft.

Donald tallied 45 total tackles, 13.5 sacks and four forced fumbles in 2020. His 85.5 sacks since he entered the league are six more than the No. 2 player on the list, the Arizona Cardinals' Chandler Jones (79.5).

The Pittsburgh native been named the NFL Defensive Player of the Year in 2017, 2018 and 2020 and has earned six straight first-team All-Pro selections on top of numerous other accolades.

From a video-game perspective, it's hard to imagine a better model for dominance. His combination of size, unmatched power and first-step quickness makes him a nightmare matchup in the virtual world much the way he is in the real world.

While Donald has likely led countless Madden players to Super Bowl titles, that's the one achievement he hasn't been able to obtain for his otherwise tremendous resume.

In February, the Pitt product said raising the Lombardi Trophy is his main goal after winning his latest Defensive Player of the Year honor.

"I know I still got a lot of work to do, a lot of room for improvement. The ultimate goal is to be holding that trophy up," Donald said. "That's what we're chasing, that's what I'm chasing, that's what I want to accomplish. And I until I accomplish that, I ain't going to be satisfied."

The Rams bolstered their roster in the offseason, highlighted by the addition of quarterback Matthew Stafford, and should be a top-tier contender in the NFC.

L.A. will kick off the regular season Sept. 12 when they host the Chicago Bears in the first Sunday Night Football contest of the year.

Madden NFL 22 will be released Aug. 20 on PC, PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X/S and Xbox One.


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