Home Steelers Offseason Offseason Betting: Madden eSports Guide For Steelers Fans

Offseason Betting: Madden eSports Guide For Steelers Fans

by Alec Howell

For NFL and Steelers fans, the offseason can be a dull time. This is especially true if you find yourself missing the hype and adrenaline of the NFL season. In a previous post, we went in-depth on the Steelers’ offseason roster, which included some early roster moves. We discussed cuts like backup quarterback Mitch Trubisky, offensive tackle Chuks Okorafor, and punter Pressley Harvin due to inconsistent and poor performance during the season. We also highlighted how the Steelers were one of 11 teams over the $242 million salary cap for 2024, creating the need for some more roster moves to comply.

Since the 2024 NFL season is still scheduled to start in September, teams are gearing up to make the right moves to potentially go up against reigning Super Bowl champion Kansas City. While keeping up with early roster moves, trades, and free agency can be fun, it’s certainly not the same as staying tuned to games in the regular season.

Fortunately, for NFL fans, a few alternatives are available to enjoy the offseason, including Madden NFL, the football simulator video game with a thriving esports scene. If you think video games are too vastly different from the real deal, you’d be surprised how much the real-life league and the esports scene have in common. Below, we’ll take a closer look at the Madden NFL’s esports scene and how NFL fans can participate in the community:

As mentioned above, the Madden NFL community has its own competitive league in the form of a burgeoning esports scene. Since becoming the only officially licensed NFL video game series in 2004, the game quickly rose to fame, selling over 130 million copies as of 2018. Since 1995, the video game has had its own tournament-style competition called the Madden Bowl, played on the most current edition of Madden NFL. Players compete using whichever team they prefer, and winners receive a Madden Bowl trophy and recognition in the upcoming Madden video game.

Since 2004, developer EA Sports also started simulating the Super Bowl, hosted on the latest Madden game, and announced the result. While less competitive for players, the game simulations proved to be a fun way to experience the real Super Bowl, as the simulations from EA have correctly predicted 11 of the last 20 Super Bowl winners, at times down to the correct score.

Back to competitive play, EA Sports also hosts the Madden NFL Championship Series (MCS) annually — an open circuit of competitions that crowns the best Madden player each year. For this year’s MCS action, for example, the finale took place in the House of Blues in Las Vegas, Nevada, in February. Gamer Henry Leverette won his run and boosted his career earnings by a whopping $250,000 thanks to the event’s grand prize. His latest winnings also crowned him the first MCS competitor to reach $1 million in total career earnings.

The competition also saw record-breaking viewership, logging a 130% increase in peak viewers compared to 2023’s Ultimate Madden Bowl. American Esports Commissioner for Electronic Arts, Andrew Echanique, credited this latest round of MCS as one showing immense growth and a viable avenue for the next generation of football fans to experience and celebrate their love of the sport.

Madden NFL — esports betting

Aside from competition at the highest level, another element that Madden NFL shares with the real-life league is its culture of esports betting. Today, the global esports betting market is expected to reach a revenue of $2.5 billion by the end of the year, with a projected market volume of $3.3 billion by 2028. This rapid growth in esports betting is attributed to the growing popularity of competitive esports games, as well as more mainstream platforms integrating esports into their offerings.

If you’ve tried placing bets on your favorite teams in the real-life NFL, you’ll be glad to know that its esports counterpart is not too different. One of the best esports betting tips recommends taking the time to do your research on your favored teams and players. This will allow you to make the best bets with the highest odds of winning. The only essential difference lies in betting odds, as real-life sports betting tends to be solely outcome- and team-focused. In contrast, Madden’s esports betting may focus more on the competing gamer’s performance and final scoreline.

Another aspect of esports betting that can help is player ratings. This is especially important for sports simulator esports titles like NFL, FIFA, and NBA. Developer EA Sports designates specific in-game NFL player ratings depending on their real-life counterpart’s performance. This rating goes from 0 to 100, and players are based on their position and other player statistics. Madden developers also watch real-life NFL games closely and speak with coaches, scouts, analysts, and former players to offer the most accurate and reasonable player rating.

As such, if you’re looking for a new hobby or want to take your NFL fandom to greater heights during the offseason, you may want to look into the Madden NFL esports scene. Suppose you’re not a fan of video games. In that case, you can always participate in the community by watching and attending live esports tournaments or even placing bets on favored players if you’re feeling lucky. Either way, your NFL know-how can be useful even in video games.

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