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KC Chiefs: Madden 18 ratings show Chiefs strengths and weaknesses

Kansas City Chiefs wide receiver Albert Wilson. (Photo by Otto Greule Jr/Getty Images)
Kansas City Chiefs wide receiver Albert Wilson. (Photo by Otto Greule Jr/Getty Images) /
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Madden 18 has dropped and KC Chiefs fans who plan to use the team in their game play would be advised to play to the team’s strengths.

As the real Kansas City Chiefs prepare for the upcoming NFL regular season, Madden 18 players are similarly getting ready for a year of online competitions and bouts for bragging rights with friends. Gamers using the Chiefs should accentuate the roster’s positives while eliminating the negatives as much as possible.

Only the Atlanta Falcons (91 overall rating), Dallas Cowboys (89), Green Bay Packers (88), New England Patriots (93) and Pittsburgh Steelers (88) have higher overall ratings as a team than the Kansas City Chiefs’ 87 in this year’s incarnation of Madden. That doesn’t mean, however, that gamers should go into a game against a player using a team with inferior ratings with no preparation. Crafting a game plan to the strengths of the team’s roster is crucial to victory.

On offense

Travis Madness

The Chiefs’ highest rated player on the offensive side of the ball is tight end Travis Kelce, starting the season at 94 overall, which is second best among all tight ends. While opponents will be aware of that and expect gamers using the Chiefs to make Kelce the focal point of the offense, Kelce is good enough to overcome that defensive emphasis.

Kelce’s strongest ratings are in Awareness (93, sixth-best among all tight ends), Stiff Arm (82, seventh-best among all tight ends), Route Running (85, seventh-best) and Catch in Traffic (87, seventh-best). When gamers are in positions in which opponents are most likely to run a zone defense, that’s when Kelce can be at his best finding the holes and making tough catches even in small windows.

The ability to feed Kelce the ball in those situations depends on quarterback play. Alex Smith’s strengths as far as his individual skill ratings are in Stamina (94), Short Throw Accuracy (92), Throw Power (86), Awareness (84) and Throw on the Run (84).

This compliments Kelce in the aforementioned scenarios of facing zone defenses, as Smith excels at fitting the ball into those small windows in zones as long as they are within ten yards of the line of scrimmage. If the opportunity isn’t there immediately, players can use Smith’s feet to give Kelce some additional time to get open or take advantage of the open field that the opponent is conceding to devote additional coverage to Kelce as well.

Overall, gamers playing with the Kansas City Chiefs are best advised to run an offense that focuses on the short-to-medium passing game.

If gamers can establish the threat of Kelce, that’s when the playbook can open up from there. Tyreek Hill is the highest-rated Chiefs wide receiver by a solid margin, thanks largely to his 97 Speed, 94 Agility, 96 Acceleration and 94 Juke ratings.

When opponents start devoting additional resources to stop Kelce from dominating, that’s the time to take advantage of the situation and let Hill burn the defense with wide receiver bubbles or screens. An occasional deep shot isn’t a bad idea, but that’s not playing to Smith’s strengths.

Overall, gamers playing with the Kansas City Chiefs are best advised to run an offense that focuses on the short-to-medium passing game. It not only plays to the strength of the skill position players, but the offensive line as well, which isn’t rated to do the sustained blocking that a deeper passing game requires.

On defense

Controlled Chaos

Eric Berry equals Kelce’s overall rating at 94, but he is just one part of the talented squad that the Chiefs boast in this year’s Madden. Justin Houston begins the season at 93 overall (third-best among all left outside linebackers). Marcus Peters opens at 88 overall, Ron Parker at 85, Chris Jones at 84, Derrick Johnson at 83 and Tamba Hali at 82 (all of those rankings can be found on the link above).

More from Kansas City Chiefs

With all that talent, the object is to be unpredictable. Great Madden players will pick up on tendencies quickly, and the way to avoid that is to avoid running the same plays in similar down and distance situations. The KC Chiefs’ depth of talent makes that possible.

Of all the aforementioned defensive players, the lowest Awareness rating is 86 and the same can be said of Play Recognition. That means that they are very adept at adapting to what the offense is trying to do and reacting appropriately regardless of assignments at the beginning of the play.

Gamers should feel free to use a wide array of blitzes and zone coverages to keep opponents guessing. The Chiefs’ defense isn’t as highly rated when it comes to man coverage or simply beating offensive linemen to the quarterback or ball carrier, so the scheme is the thing.

With this knowledge in tow, gamers playing with the Chiefs should be set for success against friends or in online games over the next year.