INDIANAPOLIS — Our comprehensive look at the Indianapolis Colts' 2018 season continues today, as we dive into the Colts players' EA Sports Madden NFL 19 ratings from the start to the end of the season.
First, here, sorted by end-of-season rating, are the 2018 Colts players in the game, along with their overall point trend from their initial rating to the end of the season, with some notes below:
|Name||Position||Initial Rating||Bye Week Rating||End Of Season Rating||Trend|
|Kenny Moore II||CB||72||75||79||+5|
|Mike Mitchell||S||75 (Week 6)||77||77||+2|
|Dontrelle Inman||WR||74 (Week 7)||74||75||+1|
|Mo Alie-Cox||TE||67 (Week 7)||69||71||+4|
|Evan Boehm||G||71 (Week 6)||71||70||-1|
|Carroll Phillips||DE||70 (Week 5)||70||70||0|
|Jihad Ward||DT||68 (Week 2)||69||69||+1|
|Daurice Fountain||WR||68 (Week 15)||N/A||68||0|
|Ahmad Thomas||LB||66 (Week 16)||N/A||66||0|
|Rolan Milligan||S||62 (Week 17)||N/A||62||0|
|James Wright||WR||62 (Week 15)||N/A||62||0|
|Jonathan Williams||RB||61 (Week 2)||N/A||61||0|
Movers and Shakers
The Colts had 11 players improve their overall rating at least five points throughout the season:
- G Mark Glowinski: +15
- LB Darius Leonard: +11
- LB Anthony Walker: +9
- C Ryan Kelly: +8
- S George Odum: +8
- CB Pierre Desir: +7
- S Malik Hooker: +6
- T/G Braden Smith: +6
- WR Zach Pascal: +6
- RB Marlon Mack: +5
- CB Kenny Moore II: +5
— Glowinski's 15-point increase from the launch of the game to the end of the season could very well be tied for the biggest jump among all players in the NFL. The others? 2018 NFL Most Valuable Player Patrick Mahomes (79 overall to 94) and sensational Denver Broncos rookie running back Phillip Lindsay (69 overall to 84).
— Leonard's rise in Madden ratings throughout the season is no surprise, considering it took a while for those outside of Indianapolis to realize how special this kid really is. But by the end of the season, Leonard had been named the NFL's Defensive Rookie of the Year and First-Team All-Pro, despite the fact he was not selected to play in the Pro Bowl. Madden was also on board, giving Leonard its own "Defensive Rookie of the Year" award for the 2018 season, as written by Daniel Williams:
"Arguably turning in the most effective rookie performance of the season, Darius Leonard helped revitalize the Indianapolis Colts just as much as Andrew Luck’s return. Leonard led the NFL in tackles with 163, recorded seven sacks, caught two interceptions, and forced four fumbles. His playoff performance was also stellar, racking up 27 tackles in just two games. The man is just a tackle machine. Leonard quickly climbed the ratings column, and Indy now has a talented defense which should make even more strides next season."
While the game has gotten much, much more realistic over the years — and having the ability to update throughout a season makes that even easier — Madden ratings still aren't an exact science.
Here were a few odd Colts player ratings-related scenarios we found throughout the season:
• Safety Matthias Farley was placed on injured reserve with a wrist injury, ending his season, on Oct. 12, but somehow his overall rating went down one point, from 78 to 77, after Week 17?
• Rigoberto Sanchez was solid all season, leading the AFC in net punting at 44.5 yards per punt, which also ranked third in the NFL. Despite this, Sanchez's rating dropped one point overall, from 77 to 76, throughout the season. But what's more curious? That drop occurred in Week 9 — when the Colts were on their bye week.
• Backup quarterback Jacoby Brissett had a mini-roller coaster ratings-wise in 2018, but for no particular reason. Remember Week 3, when he came on to attempt that Hail Mary pass at the end of the game against the Philadelphia Eagles? Well, that pass fell incomplete, and apparently he looked real bad doing it, because his overall rating dropped one point, from 76 to 75. Then, for some reason, Brissett's rating went back to a 76 during Week 16, despite the fact he didn't play in that game against the New York Giants. But don't worry, because it went back down to a 75 in Week 17 against the Tennessee Titans, again despite the fact he didn't even play in the game.
• Guard Matt Slauson literally played through a broken back Week 5 against the New England Patriots, and he was awarded by seeing his overall rating go up two points, from 75 to 77. He was placed on IR, and three weeks later, for some reason, his rating dropped back down to a 75 after the bye week.
• J'Marcus Webb earned the start at right tackle in the season opener against the Cincinnati Bengals, and played quite well, as his overall rating increased from 66 to 67. But he suffered a season-ending hamstring injury at the end of that Week 1 game, and was placed on IR. Despite that, Webb's awareness rating dropped one point, from 74 to 73, heading into the Colts' Wild Card Round game against the Houston Texans. Uhh ... why?
• These two are the most puzzling, however. We'll start with safety Corey Moore, who started out as a 78 overall, and then dropped to a 77 — OK, fair enough. But he was dinged six whole points for his performance back in Week 11, one in which, according to Pro Football Focus, he didn't allow any receptions or miss any tackles. Then, linebacker Najee Goode dropped four points overall from 69 to 65 back in Week 15, although curiously enough, his awareness level that week increased three points, his play recognition went up three points and nothing else changed — good or bad.
• And here's my plea every time I write about Madden ratings: please make long snapper a real position. Making all the long snappers tight ends, of course, means that they're going to have terrible overall ratings, which is why the Colts' Luke Rhodes finds himself with a 36 overall. I'm not saying long snappers should be graded on the same scale, but at least bump them into the 60s or 70s overall.