New York Giants fans better start praying; their brightest young star may have just been cursed.
This year, Madden NFL’s cover athlete is last year’s rookie phenom wide receiver, Odell Beckham, Jr. He beat the other finalist, New England Patriot’s tight end Rob Gronkowski. Beckham set all sorts of records during the 2013-14 NFL season, even after missing his first four games. He was the cream of the crop for the league in a stacked receiving draft, and he hopes to continue that success during the upcoming season. However, John Madden may have something to say about that.
History and superstition may play a role in Beckham’s success. The “Madden Curse”, even though it has lost some power in recent years, still looms its ugly head from time to time. In 1999, the Madden NFL franchise decided to switch their cover art from the iconic John Madden to a currently hot player. Garrison Hurst, a running back for the San Francisco 49ers, was the first featured athlete on the cover of the Madden franchise. The season he appeared on the cover, Hurst broke his ankle and never was able to regain his form. From then on, several athletes who have appeared on the cover have suffered injuries, setbacks, career-worst seasons, and arrests.
Other notable victims of the curse include Michael Vick (Broke a bone in his ankle and then was arrested for participating in a dog-fighting ring), Donovan McNabb (Sports hernia and torn ACL), Shaun Alexander (Foot injury, missed half the season), Brett Favre (traded, accused of sexual harassment), and Peyton Hillis (Injuries, illness, and eventual release). In general, winning the cover of Madden NFL has foretold nothing but trouble for the cover athlete.
Odell Beckham, Jr. had 91 receptions last season for 1305 yards. Among those receptions, he had twelve touchdowns. He was also elected to the Pro Bowl, even though it was only his first season in the NFL. Clearly, he is on top of his game and is one of the shining stars in the NFL. Is that enough to shake the Madden Curse?
Madden NFL 16 hits shelves on August 25. Will Odell Beckham fall victim to the curse? Or is he so fast that he will outrun it? Let us know in the comments!