The “Madden Curse” is one of gaming’s greatest modern myths. The idea that being on the cover of a specific video game — Madden NFL Football — can cause the athlete in question to have some horrible sports fate befall them the following season is genuinely bogus. This myth usually involves said athlete succumbing to injury, but sometimes also touches on poor follow-up stats or even retirement. We know this to be all in the eye of the beholder, however. It’s been well-known that the NFL is the hardest-hitting sports league on the planet, and the chances of a player completing a season WITHOUT an injury are more difficult to achieve than winning the Powerball. Heck, it’s almost impossible to have two incredible statistical seasons in a row. But the “Curse” lives on somehow, no doubt pushed on by media outlets who don’t know enough about sports that sensationalist SEO headlines supersede level-headedness.
But I digress.
Mostly because this year’s Madden cover athlete, Calvin Johnson, is actually having a year that’s almost better than the last. Johnson, who plays for the 4-7 Detroit Lions and may not be going to the playoffs this year, has managed to put out insane numbers. This year he is on pace to break the single-season receiving yardage record of 1848 set by the 49ers’ Jerry Rice in 1995. CJ sits at 1257 and needs to maintain his 115 receiving yards/game pace to do so. His teammate QB Matt Stafford is also on pace to break 5000 passing yards for the second year in a row, something that has NEVER happened in the NFL. Johnson, who is affectionately known as Megatron around the NFL, may not have as many touchdowns this year as he had prior but his season has still been absolutely phenomenal.
There are 5 games left in the season, Johnson and Stafford can become the first teammates in history to break these records, and the so-called curse can finally be put to rest.
Unless, of course, you think that by me mentioning it I’ve placed some massive jinx on the whole thing.
We’ll see in December.