As the 2021 NFL season inches closer, and the uncertainty that comes with it, we’re at the point where any news is good news.
Players holding private workouts away from the team’s facility and participating in press conferences over Zoom have become the focus of headlines this offseason, and with training camp now on the horizon EA Sports has sent social media into a tailspin with the complete release of player ratings for the upcoming, annual installment of their Madden franchise.
With key free agents like Tom Brady and Rob Gronkowski, the 2019 emergence of potential superstars like Chris Godwin and Shaq Barrett and arguably the most talented roster assembled in Tampa Bay since their Super Bowl-winning team in ’02, the release of the Bucs’ virtual ratings has been a cause for celebration – and anguish in some cases – among fans.
Bucs QB Tom Brady – Photo by: Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Gronkowski, despite not playing in 2019, tops all Bucs with a 95 overall rating, followed by Mike Evans who will start the year at a 92 overall.
The remaining Bucs to start the year as a part the “90s club” should be unsurprising to many Tampa Bay fans, with Lavonte David and Brady both receiving an initial rating of 90.
But some of the biggest surprises around the league include Chris Godwin, whose initial rating of 88 kept him out of the league’s top-10 rated wide receivers, and Shaq Barrett, who was also left out of the top-10 rated pass rushers with an 85 overall despite leading the NFL with 19.5 sacks in 2019.
Here are some other notable points for Tampa Bay’s initial launch ratings:
Gronkowski is the third-highest ranked tight end behind George Kittle (98) and Travis Kelce (97).
Brady is the fifth-highest ranked quarterback behind Patrick Mahomes (99), Russell Wilson (97), reigning MVP Lamar Jackson (94) and Drew Brees (93).
Evans is seventh-highest ranked wide receiver in the game upon release, tied with Stefon Diggs, while divisional rivals Michael Thomas (99) and Julio Jones (97) took the No. 1 and No. 3 spots, respectively.
T.J. Logan and Ronald Jones were both given a Speed rating of 93, ranking only below Raheem Mostert and Matt Breida for the game’s fastest running backs.
Jones’ Juke Move rating of 91 also puts him among the top-10 running backs in that category.
Godwin’s Catch rating of 97 put him at the third-highest mark for wide receivers, only trailing the game’s two top-ranked receivers, Thomas and Arizona’s DeAndre Hopkins.
Head to the next page for the Tampa Bay’s complete player ratings and then leave a comment below to let us know what you would have done differently.