Via their official page, EA Sports has released details on new mechanics coming to Madden 18. The new features focus heavily on the on field interaction between the defensive backs and wide receivers.

New Mechanics

This year, Madden NFL 18 will feature a whole new meta-game. Although tailored for MUT Squads, the new additions will be playable across all play modes. The meta-game surrounds the battle between DBs and WRs.

Highlight Coverage 

The new Highlight Coverage indicator informs user-controlled players about their assignments as well as pings optimal routes to help players maximize their leverage on the field. In addition, the tool is instrumental in teaching players how to read pass coverage. If you’re a pro, you can toggle this feature ON/OFF in the Visual Settings menu.

Press Mechanics

In Madden 18, the RS (right thumbstick) adds new functionality to controlled defenders in range to press receivers. Players can press the RS to the right or left to funnel receivers. This works for man and zone coverage.

Man coverage also features two additional presses. Players can be aggressive and go for a jam straight down the middle of the receiver or lock up on your receiver and follow him up the field. The interactions will be contextual based on the coverage called from the Playbook menu; you’ll see chucks in zone coverage and presses in man coverage.

Contextual Auto-Chucks

Coming to this year’s game for defensive coverage is auto-interactions. Often times when a receiver and defender run into each, you’ll see contextually appropriate two-player animations. These interactions take into account the assignments of both players as well as their Awareness ratings.

WR Release Mechanics

Defense will not be the only side benefiting from the new mechanics. On offense, for every defender press, receivers will have a counter mechanic. There are four counters available.

  • Just-Go release – give your player a sprinter’s start with susceptibility to jamming
  • Conservative Change-up release – a directional modified release, good for countering the press
  • Aggressive Footfire release – another directional modified release, good for countering the press
  • Standard release – simply steering off the ball with LS (left thumbstick) and good for countering coverage

Madden 18

As a receiver, if you guess wrong, you still have ways to make up for it. The new RS dependant Cut-out-of-Press mechanic will allow you to leverage your way out and into your route. However, success is based on various factors like player ratings.

Receivers now have Route-Running and Cut-Move mechanics to own the field. Using RB/R1 locks your receiver’s direction. While in this lock down, use RS in any of the eight directions to make a cut. These cuts can be stacked to fake out defenders and break ankles.

Lastly, wide receivers get an upgraded Call-for-Ball mechanic. Now, when users use this function, a visual indicator is sent to their QB in MUT Squads. This is action is also accompanied by an animation on the field.


Madden NFL 18 will be available for PlayStation 4 and Xbox One August 25. Be sure to pre-order here for early access.

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Kevin Finley
Kevin Finley currently lives in North Hollywood, California where he juggles becoming a pro wrestler and game writer. He has a Bachelor’s Degree in Game Art and specializes in narrative design. Although an avid player of Role-playing games Kevin regularly mixes it up in first person shooters and sports titles. Kevin is no stranger to sports, cooking, debating and when all else is unavailable a good book.