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Bengals ratings for Madden NFL 17: Russell Bodine NFL’s 3rd strongest player

Some Bengals got some love, but others deserved better.


The world’s biggest (and only) NFL video game returns for the 2016 season and Madden 17 just released their player ratings on Tuesday. As you should probably expect, the Bengals are looking better than they did last year after coming off of a franchise high 12-4 record with multiple players making the Pro Bowl.

90+ overall

Geno Atkins, DT, 94 overall

A.J. Green, WR, 93 overall

Andrew Whitworth, LT, 93 overall

Tyler Eifert, TE, 90 overall

When looking at a roster in Madden, a 90+ overall rating is a pretty good indicator that a player is elite. You definitely want to try to get that guy on your team if you’re building a roster in franchise mode or Madden Ultimate Team (MUT).

In Madden 16 (the 2015 edition), the Bengals were coming off of a 10-5-1 2014 season with far fewer standout players. As a result, only Whitworth (95 overall) and Green (92 overall) were part of the 90+ overall club.

But, a resurgence from Atkins and a breakout season from Eifert led to each player joining the club. Atkins, in particular, is not only the highest rated player on the Bengals, but the second highest player at defensive tackle behind only Los Angeles’ Aaron Donald (98). It would be cool to see Atkins rated as the best defensive tackle, but it’s hard to argue with Donald’s 11 sacks and 43 tackles from 2015.

Weirdly, Eifert is only rated as the fourth best tight end in the Madden ratings. It makes sense that New England’s Rob Gronkowski (99) is rated the highest of this group (he does grace the cover after all), and I can even see the argument for Carolina’s Greg Olsen (93) being ahead of Eifert. But, I really don’t get why Eifert is ranked behind Tennessee’s Delanie Walker (93). Walker had a career-year last year, putting up 1,088 yards receiving and six touchdowns. But, those touchdowns don’t even come close to Eifert’s total (13).

Am I really supposed to believe that Walker’s awareness (90) is so much better than Eifert’s (85) that it warrants a three-point overall jump for Walker? Over the course of their respective careers, Eifert has caught 69 percent of the passes thrown his way and Walker has only caught 63 percent. Walker is older and, therefore, much more experienced than Eifert. But, I just don’t think that means that should result in a three-point discrepancy between the two players.

Other highly-rated Bengals

Kevin Zeitler, RG, 89 overall

Vontaze Burfict, ROLB, 88 overall

Carlos Dunlap, LE 88 overall

Adam Jones, CB, 88 overall

Andy Dalton, QB, 87 overall

Giovani Bernard, HB, 86 overall

One of the Bengals’ biggest jumps in overall rating this year was Andy Dalton’s. In Madden 16, his 80 overall rating was a result of an up and down 2014 season that was seen, at the time, to be how things went with him. But, a breakout 2015 season before injuring his thumb in Week 14 had him in the MVP discussion. The Madden ratings adjusted accordingly, placing him squarely as the No. 9 best quarterback in the NFL behind Andrew Luck (88) and ahead of Tony Romo (86).

Other notable ratings

Jeremy Hill, HB, 81 overall

Ryan Hewitt, FB, 76 overall

Russell Bodine, C, 97 strength

Worth pointing out is the fact that Giovani Bernard ended up as the Bengals’ top ranked running back, despite clearly being the No. 2 option on the Bengals’ depth chart. But, it might make more sense than it would seem at first glance. Jeremy Hill struggled to produce on the ground last year with a disappointing 3.6 yards per rush. Bernard’s average (4.7) trailed only Tampa Bay’s Doug Martin (4.9) among runners with at least 150 touches on the season.

But, Hill still played a critical role last year by leading the NFL in rushing touchdowns (11). I get that Bernard probably looks like the better option based on last years’ performances. But, Hill’s 78 strength rating and 83 agility rating seem pretty low for a guy who punched the ball in as many times as he did last year.

Speaking of the running game, Ryan Hewitt checking in at 76 overall and as the No. 15 ranked fullback, which seems ridiculous. By most accounts, Hewitt is one of the best fullbacks in the NFL. He can usually be found breaking down a group of defenders to set up a good run when he’s not catching passes for 12.4 yards per catch when the Bengals need to mix things up a bit. A slight down year in 2015 makes it hard to argue that he should be at the top of this list, but No. 15 seems crazy.

Finally, we come to Russell Bodine. It’s no surprise that the embattled center checks in pretty low at 69 overall and as the No. 41 ranked center in the NFL. On the line, he tends to look slow with poor reaction time, which explains his speed rating (65) and agility rating (52). His 78 awareness seems generous, but it’s his 97 strength rating that really pops out as unique. It’s the highest strength rating in the game among centers and the third highest among all players, trailing only Washington’s Stephen Paea and Miami’s Ndamukong Suh (both 98). Due to his short stature and barrel chest, it makes sense why Bodine would receive this kind of rating. But, he certainly doesn’t look particularly strong when he’s getting pushed around like this.

All in all, it looks like the Bengals will be a very fun team to play with in Madden 17. With 10 players boasting ratings of at least 86 overall, the team is clearly a talented one to play with. All in all, there aren’t too many ratings snubs. But, Hill and Eifert will need to prove they deserve better when the season rolls around.