According to EA Sports Madden NFL's official Twitter account, Cincinnati Bengals second-year players wide receiver A.J. Green and quarterback Andy Dalton will be candidates for the Madden '13 cover.
#AFCNorth reveal day! @AJGreen_18 and Andy Dalton are in for the @Bengals in the #MyMaddenCoverVote! FILL IN THE... http://t.co/tSgxfU8J
Like last year, there will be players from every team grouped into a bracket, and fans voted on each matchup until finally, the player that will make it on the cover of chosen. Last year it was Browns running back Peyton Hillis, who came off a 1,177-yard season in which he scored 11 touchdowns.
This is cool news because it gives the Bengals a lot of national exposure that they usually don't get and it's a nice pat on the back for Green and Dalton, who both achieved so much in 2011, especially as rookies.
Now that I got that out of the way, I can say that I don't like this at all.
There are about a million curses in professional sports. Boston Red Sox fans believed in the Curse of the Bambino for 86 years until they won the World Series in 2004. There's also the Madden Curse in which every player to grace the cover of EA Sports' most popular video game gets injured or terribly underachieves the following season. Let's take a look back at the Madden Curse through the years.
- Madden '12 (Peyton Hillis): Hillis missed six games due to injuries or illness and became one of the biggest cry babies in the league. He'll likely be a free agent in 2012 and he probably won't cost very much.
- Madden '11 (Drew Brees): Brees played with a torn MCL, threw twice as many interceptions in 2011 than in 2010 and his quarterback rating dropped 20 points. He also was unable to lead the team to a playoff victory in Seattle, where they lost to the 7-9 Seahawks.
- Madden '10 (Larry Fitzgerald and Troy Polamalu): Fitzgerald wasn't affected but Polamalu only played in five games thanks to multiple knee injuries.
- Madden '09 (Brett Favre): Played for the Jets, lost four of the last five games and set a picture of his penis to woman who totally burned him on it. Nice.
- Madden '08 (Vince Young): No affect as young had a solid year and led the Titans to the playoffs for the first time in four years.
- Madden '07 (Shaun Alexander): Fractured his foot and missed six games.
- Madden '06 (Donovan McNabb): Sports hernia in the first game of the season, missed seven games.
- Madden '05 (Ray Lewis): Fractured his wrist, played his first season without a single interception.
- Madden '04 (Michael Vick): Fractured fibula one day after video game release, missed 11 games.
- Madden '03 (Marshall Faulk): Injured his ankle and never ran for 1,000 yards since.
- Madden '02 (Daunte Culpepper): Went 4-7 before he went on IR with a knee injury.
- Madden '01 (Eddie George): No affect, had a great year.
- Madden '00 (Barry Sanders): Retired a week before training camp.
So there's a lot of history and it shows how some people really believe in the Madden Curse. I'm going to say that I actually don't believe a word of it. However, why tempt fate. I'm really happy for Dalton and Green on their success and I think it's cool they have a chance to be on the cover of Madden '13, which would be the first time a Bengals player got the honor. But why tempt fate?
Too much is riding on the 2012 season, in my opinion, so I respectfully hope that neither Green nor Dalton get the honor. I'm sure a lot of Bengals fans feel the same way.