Odell Beckham Jr. will be on the cover of Madden 16

This is what happens when you make the catch of the year in the NFL that gets played over and over again on ESPN.

New York Giants rookie Odell Beckham Jr. will be on the cover of Madden 16, making him the youngest athlete ever to receive the honor. Hopefully it doesn’t jinx him . . . just ask Peyton Hillis!

Odell Beckham - Madden Cover


Quinn Pitcock’s Struggle to Tackle His Video Game Addiction

I’ve never really thought I had a problem with video games. Well, I still can’t beat Mike Tyson in “Punch-Out,” and the only reason I’ve ever gotten past that driving level in “Mafia” is by cheating, but what I mean is that I’ve never felt like I’ve ever had trouble balancing games with the rest of my life. While gaming is one of my great passions, I’ve been fortunate enough to find other passions in life that made it impossible to think about spending all of my waking time with just one of them.

However, I do realize that video game addiction is a problem that exists. For former NFL defensive lineman Quinn Pitcock, it’s a very real problem that may keep him out of the league.

Pitcock refers to himself as an introvert who can spend 18 hours a day playing “Call of Duty.” He says that, “The only way I could get my endorphins was by playing video games.” Realizing the depths of his addiction, he has gone to such dramatic lengths as physically breaking his games to try to make up for not being able to stop playing via his own will. Yet for all of his efforts, he has so far been unable to break his crippling addiction.

More than just register as a gross personal flaw, though, this is a problem that may permanently affect Pitcock’s career. That’s because he retired from football in 2008, after a somewhat impressive rookie season with the Indianapolis Colts, and has made two different unsuccessful attempts at a comeback since. Pitcock says he immediately regretted his decision to retire originally, but instead of refocusing his efforts to get back into the game, he instead sank deeper into his drug of choice. While he does play for the Orlando Predators of the Arena Football League (and the Indianapolis Colts helped him find a psychologist to help with his addiction), he now has recently revealed that he has a legitimate worry that NFL teams will not trust him to be successful in his recovery efforts.

“They’re more comfortable with a drug addiction,” Pitcock says. “It’s unfortunate. It definitely hinders my chances.”

While that may sound like a ludicrous statement to some, the fact is that video game addiction is a mental addiction, which is considered much more problematic to break than a physical one. Let’s not forget the plight of one of the most talented football players of all time, Ricky Williams, whose addiction to marijuana was so severe that he once stated that his desire to smoke marijuana was greater than his desire to play football. Marijuana, like video games, is not a drug that is considered to be supremely addictive or inherently dangerous. Yet to the right mindset, both can be just as dangerous as any other substance.

I almost wrote this piece as a humorous article. The NFL player who’d rather play “Madden”…something like that. But the truth is that it’s hard not to feel sympathetic to Quinn Pitcock. Like I said, I’ve been lucky enough to find other passions that have kept my life from revolving around video games entirely, but that doesn’t mean there weren’t brief flirtations with having it become a problem.

To make it to the NFL, it takes an almost inhuman mix of skill and dedication. It’s obvious that on some level Quinn Pitcock still has both. However, as Voltaire said, “It is difficult to free fools from the chains they revere.” Hopefully, Pitcock will be able to able to find the right balance in his life for all of his passions, and live without those chains.


Let the Super Bowl pre-enactments begin


Football has never been my game. Not in real life, not in video games. I’m just not good at assessing the risk involved in each play, the progression of the game, the fact that the Hail Mary is both fun and stupid, and not just fun. All through college, though, I endured a rivalry between two of my closest friends in whatever Madden game was the most recent.

It got intense. There was yelling, swearing, controllers were broken, consoles powered off mid-game, shouting matches across bathroom stalls, but the game count usually ended up pretty close. And every year about this time, each friend would pick their Super Bowl favorite and stage the game, complete with an array of beer, snacks, and of course, more yelling. As little interest as I have in football, it was always a good time (it was also easy to talk everyone into some Halo once the game was done).

It’s strange, but I’ve missed that these past several years. I’m still in touch with my friends, which means I know things I have no business knowing about the sport. I know my friend Brian, a Browns fanatic, might weep like a child if the Steelers win. I’ve heard the Packers are favored over the Steelers (although checking the lines at the BetUS Sportsbook shows the Steelers +110, whatever that means).

For all that, though, I wish I could sit down, drink some beer, and watch my friends hash things out on Madden. I probably won’t watch the Super Bowl this year, not even for the commercials, but I’d be willing to watch two people play a video game of the same game, because for me, it’s a much more personal rivalry.


Madden 2011 will be deeper than ever before

Madden NFL 11.

For a while there it looked like the Madden franchise might be dying. Each new version of the game felt stagnant with few new features to make anyone but the dearly devoted come back for more. In the past two years, though, EA has managed to revive the series, giving new life through better features and more in depth gameplay. Madden NFL 11 is set to follow that trend and will likely become the deepest sports experience in a game to date.

Though the game won’t launch until August, you can keep up on the latest developments at IGN. Here’s what they’re saying about the game.

Madden NFL 11 redefines the way you experience the game of football. It’s simpler: From 350 plays down to 1, the all-new GameFlow system puts you in the helmet of an NFL quarterback to execute an authentic, situational game plan, one play at a time. It’s quicker: 60 minute game times reduced to as little as 30 minutes; spend more time on the field and less in the playbook. full games, half the time. It’s deeper: Madden NFL 11 is feature-rich including all-new 3-on-3 Online Team Play, improved animations, more intuitive controls, and Madden NFL Ultimate Team … all to the play-by-play of the most exciting voice in sports, Gus Johnson.

Yeah, I’d say it’s gonna be pretty damn good.


Modern Warfare 2 tops the 2009 US sales list

Modern Warfare 2.NPD put out the sales numbers for 2009 with few surprises. The Xbox 360 version of Modern Warfare 2 was the biggest by far, which should be a real shock. What might actually interest you is that Nintendo has nearly every other title in the top 10. Halo 3: ODST made it in at number six, and the PS3 version of MW2 is buried near the bottom.

Other than those few titles, it’s all Nintendo, and these are just the US numbers. Sony can’t be too happy about the fact that there isn’t an exclusive PS3 title on the list.

    1. Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 (360)
    2. Wii Fit (Wii)
    3. Wii Sports Resort (Wii)
    4. Mario Kart Wii (Wii)
    5. Wii Play (Wii)
    6. Halo 3: ODST (360)
    7. Pokemon Platinum (DS)
    8. Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 (PS3)
    9. Madden NFL 10 (360)
    10. New Super Mario Bros. Wii (Wii)

Source: Industry Gamers


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