Friday, August 25, 2017

Madden 18 Scouting and Draft Guide is Here!!!

Hi all - I'm happy to announce that the Madden 18 Scouting and Draft Guide is here! You have all let me know the past two years how helpful it is, and this year I went all out...over 13,900 data points recorded in spreadsheets and analyzed in Minitab to bring you the best analysis. (How did I get it done so fast? Well, I bought the GOAT edition and downloaded it August 21 at midnight, and have been playing almost nonstop since then.)

I've used it in five drafts so far and it is legit:  using this system the average overall ability for people I draft is a ridiculous 76.  By comparison, in the most recent draft I did, only 5 of the computer teams even had a single player above 76, and it is my average.

This guide is the best ever, and I decided to make a cleaner look to it, too, so it would be easier to use.  Enjoy! As always, it is for free.  Tell others about it and spread the Madden love (but of course, keep it private from the friends in your league so you have the advantage!).

Please use it - just please credit it back to me and send people my way to get their versions. Thanks!


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Personal note:  last year, some of you asked how you could thank me. I don't do this for money,
I do it for fun. But this year I decided to add a Thank You Gift Button to the right linked to
PayPal, so those who are interested can choose from the "Buy me a beer" and "Buy me a soda" option. Every time you get some unbelievable stud after round 4, come and buy me a beer and
we'll call it even. ;-)

A few who know me personally are aware of the difficult family situation we're in this year: my
father in law has terminal cancer and my mother in law has advancing dementia. Financially
I have taken on the burden of paying for most of their mortgage, insurance, etc. during this time.
So to those who wish to help with that, I expanded the Thank You button to include a few more
serious options.


Please feel no pressure or obligation. This is a free guide. But for those wanting to say thanks
for all the work...that's an easy way to do it...I'm confident if you saw this guide in a store you'd be willing to plop down a lot more than this for it. But I tend to be a bit libertarian, so I'm just gonna give it away for free and hope you guys are generous. Give whatever you think is appropriate...
including nothing!

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Overview

Below I will list an image of every single page of the 23-page Scouting Guide that I made for you all this year. However if you want to download it completely to print, for free, click on the link.

Enjoy!

(Note: edited typo on C and RG pages.)




























55 comments:

  1. This is incredible. You are a legend! You'll be getting a donation from me.

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    Replies
    1. Thank you so much! Note that I had a copy/paste error on pages 10 and 11 (C and RG). Those have been corrected, so if you downloaded it before, do it fresh now.

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  2. Awesome as always! Have a beer on me! Will let you know how my drafts go down the line!

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  3. I would love to donate but I'm a broke 19 year old with a child. I would like to know though why this year QB only requires a B+ instead of an A-

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  4. I just donated 4.99. Have a nice night :)

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  5. Thanks again Michael, you continue to improve on this stuff every yr! Donation coming again soon.

    Is the news almost pointless if you follow the guide like it has been in the past? It seems like studs and solids rarely have bad news feeds if at all.

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    1. Update after my first draft:
      Followed your program and took note of the news although it didnt affect my draft. Players with good news were anywhere from 77 to 68 OVR, most had either quick or superstar traits. Only one good news player ended up on my board. Bad news players from my board (which I drafted 2), were 79 and 80 OVR with normal traits.
      So its safe to ignore news completely.

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    2. Yeah the News is pointless. I tracked it for five years, and found zero correlation between most of the news stories and overall skill.

      I did find one or two types of stories which (can't say for sure due to small sample size) might be predictive. BUT...in every case, the Scouting Guide above ALSO highlighted those players, so there was really no value at all.

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  6. As a Madden fan and a trainee in Green Belt for Lean Six Sigma, I highly approve of this!! As I am only in the Define phase of my project, I like to see what I can do in the Analyze phase. Thanks so much for your hard work and dedication. Here's to happy scouting and drafting!

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  7. Should we pay attention to the draft news? In Madden 17 it seemed to be a better indication of development traits than it is in Madden 18.

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    1. Nope - completely irrelevant. I heard people say that about M17, so I tracked it for several years drafting and there is zero correlation between news stories and development traits.

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  8. Question on the CB page, Under high risk high reward text, it says remove the B, even though the guidelines show both C+ Thanks

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    1. nvm, read the fine print, its right! xD sorry!

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    2. :-) Yes that was what I was just about to say

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  9. I'm a bit confused on the format. Looking at LOLB for example. Is the letter on the right the minimum grade the player can have? I found a LOLB who is a B pwr Moves, and a B- pursuit. Then his final score is C+ hit power. To me he appears to meet the requirements, but he is a 2nd round guy, who the game says is actually a 7th. I don't understand.

    ReplyDelete
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    1. Nope you've interpreted it correctly. The B in power moves succeeds on the first test (left number); the B- pursuit succeeds in the second test. If the game is projecting him in the 7th round then you have a steal on your hands. Grab him in the 6th so you don't lose him and you'll be thrilled. I stole an OLB in the 6th last night actually, he was I think a 77 overall.

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  11. You say scout QB first but how many qb's per week? All of them, just one, or what? Please be specific and thanks for the clarification!

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    1. I scout everyone who is projected in the first seven rounds. Unless I'm totally stocked at a position in which case I skip it entirely.

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  12. Can we still use the excel spreadsheet from madden 17 or is there an updated version?

    Again thanks for all you have done

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    1. I second this question. Thanks for all you've done!

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    2. No I will have to update and post a new one.

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    3. when will the excel spreadsheet be ready?

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    4. No clue. :-) Sorry guys this has to come after my day job that pays the bills. I will get to it at some point

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  13. Thanks man! sent a 4.99 donation your way! have enjoyed your guides the last 3 years! :)

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  14. Ok for LG I SCOUTED A GUY WITH B IMPACT BLOCKING B FOR RUN BLOCK AND A C+ FOR PASS BLOCK. IS HE GOOD ENOUGH TO GO ON MY BOARD SINCE HE GOT ONE B IN RUN BLOCKING OR DOES HE NEED A B IN PASS BLOCK TOO?

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    Replies
    1. He is good enough to go on the board. However notice he also needs a 33 in bench so check after combine to be sure you don't have to remove him.

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  15. Why the different stats for LOLB and ROLB? In game I haven't noticed the OVR rating change swapping from one side to the other.

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    1. Check out Appendix B and you will see that they are indeed calculated differently by the game

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  16. First of all, awesome work!

    Now my problem: Spending points on FS or SS only gives values for Coverage, Tackle and Hit Power, but not for Pursuit. On which of these do I have to watch.

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    1. These are two very rare positions. Don't be surprised to go 4-5 drafts without getting one. In both cases a B- is needed for pursuit. But if you've revealed three scores and all are B- or better then he is presumed to pass and should be added to the board. Otherwise ignore

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    2. Also as an FYI, I usually grab ANY FS or SS who pass, even if I have players at that position. I can either make them CBs or trade them or let the more expensive older people go. But they are rare, so value them.

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  17. Are your Outside Linebackers based off 3-4 or 4-3 scheme? Or just neutral? I Have a Prototype ROLB thats pretty good (Still in season scouting), but I run 3-4, so I'd use him as MLB..

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    1. Neutral. It is based on how the game validates the OVR but then feel free post draft to adjust roster and move them to more advantageous positions

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  18. Thank you for this man. I've been trying to turn the Jets around (something I'm sure many madden lovers are doing this year). My drafts have been fairly decent as I understand football, but with this I think I can get the Jets to the Superbowl in a year or two (without putting the difficulty down LOL). Just one quick question before I put everything into use. If I am drafting, no matter the position, and that player passes the qualifications of a stud but ends up with a lower draft round than projected or god forbid undrafted projection I should still be able to get a STUD or SOLID player?

    ReplyDelete
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    1. That's a question I'm curious about as well

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    2. Yes, if they pass as a stud or solid, you can ignore their projections. REMEMBER though that you MUST go back after the combine for some positions to validate that they remain studs and solids. Often times a person will do fine on the skills, but then fail the combine because their physical gifts just aren't NFL quality.

      Use that knowledge, though. If someone is projected as a 7th round talent but you know they're a solid, grab them in the 5th and you'll be happy.

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  19. Tried your method for the first time last night. I can attest to your work. I was already through most of a season before I found your guide so things didn't work out exactly right (plus I had the worst college players to choose from). But I chose 4 players, traded away picks since everyone seemed to be a DUD. But I followed your guide and grabbed a 77 LG and a 77 CB (both were given 2 rounds lower talent than what their projection was). They were both given the Quick development trait. The other two players I choose were significantly lower, but I had no real good picks to choose from and wanted to test the voracity of your claims (of course they work but you have to do your own testing right?) I do have a bit of a problem though, most of the time when I scout a QB I get stuck seeing Throw on Run over basically any accuracy unless that QB is slated to go in the 1 or 2 rounds. Is that just something that happens sometime or is there a way to judge their accuracy based on the top 3 traits?

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    1. Glad to hear you like it! And yes it's totally fine to check...even I do it sometimes :-) But it keeps working. I'm using the Jets and am in year 18. I never play any games, only simulation (so of course, there are probably a lot of games that I could win, but don't because it's simulated). Even so, I have just won our 6th Super Bowl in 18 years and have won 10 AFC championships. That's a pretty historic run based purely on simulation.


      Regarding QB: I would be cautious if you aren't seeing at least one Accuracy score in the top 3. I've been able to get 1 stud fairly cheap (late 1st or after) every 2-3 years by relying on the accuracy. Remember that Throw on Run tells you nothing (2% of overall score). Technically I say on here "Innocent until proven a dud"...so if you have all Bs or higher, then in theory you could still be a B in the accuracies and therefore he should be on your list. But I'd be nervous if, say, all I had revealed was Throw on Run, Throwing Power, and Playaction. I'd like to see at least one of the Accuracies as a B or higher.

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  20. Did one draft where I was able to scout everything except D-Line and TE. 11/12 "studs" hit. 2 QB, 2 HB, 2 WR, 3 RT, 1 CB, and 1 SS. Missed on a LOLB who ended up being a 70. Also missed 9 78+. 2 WR, 1 LT, 1 LG, 2 RG, 1 LOLB, 1 MLB, and 1 ROLB.

    Seems pretty consistent with your results except for linebackers. I'll run a few more drafts but it looks like you're quite a bit off there. Maybe a recent patch changed criteria?

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    Replies
    1. Huh that's odd on the OLB, I haven't had a dud drafted yet in 18 drafts. It's possible that you just got insanely unlucky. But I know for a fact that in 2017 they released a patch that definitely did change things.

      I will see if I can't take another look at the OLBs and see what I can find. LOLB has a "looser" criteria than ROLB, so I may need to change that, or possibly add a Combine stat.

      11/12 ain't bad though. ;-)

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  21. Sorry to hear about your family! Haven't had my first draft yet, but felt the 4.99 was well worth your effort and cause. God bless!

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    1. Thanks so much! Enjoy...it's always interesting to hear the early feedback of the "Beta testing" but it seems like results are very good, such as the 92% rate of the prior comment.

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    3. Results working very well so far! My first draft was ok, but didn't get to scout all the players fully or know the nuances of setting up a draft board. Now that I've ran a few drafts, set a little more stringent criteria in a few areas and learned to set my draft board better it's worked out really well. Once you learn to identify potential studs based on the first grade you can fully scout your class (sans fb, k, p - but they are typically UD anyway). Also, once you learn to set your board you can get a stud in every round. Landed a superstar TE (76 overall) in the 7th round last night. The other pick I was considering was a RB would ended up being a 77, but not a superstar.

      By the way, I haven't tracked the rumble in the controller, but 90% of the time those players are ones that I add to the board anyway. Typically if it doesn't rumble they are a red diamond or a lower value than projected. In addition, the C rating is the hardest to decide whether or not to move forward with. I usually don't add any players with a grade below a C+ to my board, but have a few studs slip through. My lowest grade is a 72 in most drafts and hit on almost every pick.

      Overall fantastic baseline! Saved me hours of trial and error! Still need to perfect draft board though.

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  22. I tend to not fully scout a player if the first stat isn't at least a B-. That seems to save me some scouting points. Just found this site, really appreciate it. Beer coming your way!

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  23. I'm a bit confused. Have a HB with b+ bc vision and b carrying. Havent got the combine results yet but let's assume it's better than 4.62 40 time. That's only 2/3 of your criteria to add to the draft board. Ignore this player? With that being said he's a green gem but doesn't fit all criteria. Have had that with other positions too. What do you suggest doing in that situation? As you say follow exactly what you say for it to work.

    Hope that makes sense about what I'm asking. Thanks for this guide btw and wish your family the best.

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    1. Correct. Ignore this player. He fails because he doesn't have a B+ in Carrying. Whether he shows green diamond isn't relevant; those do not accurately predict final overall ability.

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  24. You changed my entire scouting strategy last year. Was able to carry a lot of it to this year. Thank you for this

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  25. Does the combine grade mean anything?

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    1. Not except as noted in the guide. So for example it's valuable for TE and MLB, but not at all for QB. Just follow each page as written and you'll be fine.

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  26. Should we take any of the tips you gave in your Madden 17 scouting guide into consideration?

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    1. All tips from past guides are included here, if they are still applicable.

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