Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes can add yet another prestigious accolade to his long-growing list of accomplishments. On top of being an MVP, All-Pro and Super Bowl champ, Mahomes is now a perfect player in “Madden NFL 21.”
The 24-year-old Mahomes was unveiled as one of the few 99-rated players in this year’s version of “Madden” on Monday. He’s the only quarterback to receive that honor, making him the top-rated quarterback in the game.
While that ranking shouldn’t come as a surprise, the players behind Mahomes raised a few eyebrows.
Just two QBs over a 95. Rodgers outside the 90s club.— ESPN (@espn) July 13, 2020
Here are the top 10 Madden QB ratings. Thoughts? 🤔 pic.twitter.com/EkAeCYawiz
The biggest complaint — at least, according to Twitter — revolves around Houston Texans quarterback Deshaun Watson. With an 86 rating, Watson ranks eighth at quarterback. He sits just below Atlanta Falcons quarterback Matt Ryan, and just above the Dallas Cowboys’ Dak Prescott and the Philadelphia Eagles’ Carson Wentz.
Should Watson be rated higher? By some measures, you could make the case. Both Ryan and Watson tied with 26 touchdown passes in 2019. Ryan threw for 4,466 yards, giving him an edge over Watson’s 3,852, but Ryan also added two more interceptions than Watson. The edge in rushing isn’t even a contest, as Watson is a threat on the ground and Ryan is a statue in the pocket. Watson has made the Pro Bowl in each of the past two seasons. Ryan hasn’t made the Pro Bowl since 2016.
The “Madden” games take more than stats into account when evaluating players, but there’s an argument Watson at least deserves to be higher than Ryan.
Whether Watson belongs higher than that depends on how you feel about the veterans ahead of Ryan. Green Bay Packers QB Aaron Rodgers comes in at six with an 89 rating, new Tampa Bay Buccaneers QB Tom Brady ranks fifth at 90 and New Orleans Saints QB Drew Brees sits fourth at 93. Should Watson be higher than all of them, or do those veterans still have enough to keep Watson behind?
The 24-year-old Watson seemed displeased about the rating, sending the “Madden” Twitter account a face palm emoji and a crying emoji. Watson joked with teammate Laremy Tunsil about the rating, sending Tunsil a crying emoji as well.
While you can argue with where players were ranked, the players on the top-10 list don’t look that bad. If then-Carolina Panthers QB Cam Newton and Pittsburgh Steelers QB Ben Roethlisberger were healthy last year, they likely would have threatened for this list.
Some fans might take issue with Arizona Cardinals quarterback Kyler Murray falling short, but he could easily vault into that group with a great sophomore season. Joe Burrow — who is rated a 76 — could also jump into that group if he impresses as a rookie in Cincinnati.
“Madden NFL 21” is set to release Aug. 25.
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