Now that we are about six weeks into the NFL Regular Season there are many surprises in the league as far as performance and records go. There are already many teams vying for the #1 pick in the 2014 NFL Draft while others are suddenly looking like they think they can make a surprise playoff run. Here is a list of some teams you might want to consider using in Connected Franchise Mode with some ideas of how to build them to success.
Obviously Bad Teams
The Jaguars are among the worst teams in the NFL and we knew this before the season started. Given the fact that their Quarterback situation is almost laughable. When running this team it might be wise to create a new owner as well (unless you want to be the Wario look-a-like Shahid ‘Shao’ Khan. Also, taking it upon yourself to look into trading Maurice Jones-Drew for a potential draft pick might be something to consider if throwing away the season is on your possibility list. Another action to consider for a fun storyline would be signing Tim Tebow and trying to save the franchise in Jacksonville. Otherwise, moving the team to Los Angeles might be the absolute best idea… even if EA doesn’t do much to make it worthwhile to move a team other than strictly in being in a new city.
Tampa Bay is in desperate need for an overhaul in how their team is run. If that means you go through a season with Greg Schiano leading the way with his faux-military take no prisoners style or possibly just creating yourself as an intelligent player’s coach – the choice is yours. With the departure of Josh Freeman there is a possible storyline to go with in using rookie QB, Mike Glennon and having him lead the Bucs to success. Otherwise, you might want to start looking into the potential for getting someone in the draft or free agency. You will have a decent base of skill players to use with Vincent Jackson and Mike Williams at WR on top of having the ‘muscle hamster’ Doug Martin at HB. Tampa Bay isn’t a terrible team, but they could use some serious help and changes – starting at the top.
Surprisingly Bad Teams
This team has been a perennial contender for the last decade and they are starting to show their age… not to mention some serious holes in personnel. When they lost their starting Center in Pouncey it looked bad. Now that the season has started and they have no real answer at HB, WR, OL, LB or DB it is looking like they might need more work than anyone ever thought. Maybe it is because they play in what used to be a two-team division and they are simply falling behind the other teams. Either way it goes, the Steelers are a team that could potentially use a huge front office change and maybe a new face for the franchise if Big Ben proves to be declining as much as he seems to be. Do yourself a favor and revamp the O-Line before you do anything. Try to sign a true #1 WR and hope that the defense can pick it up. The potential for a fun rebuild is there in using the Steelers – and suddenly it isn’t so surprising.
The Giants are in trouble. This is a team that just a few years ago won two Super Bowls. Now they are looking similar to the Steelers in almost every way. The Giants have started to look like an aging team and Eli Manning is starting to look like the player he was early in his career throwing INTs like they are going out of style. This compounded by the fact that they are a team without a true HB threat. Bringing back Brandon Jacobs was surprising after he had been released by the team rather recently. Their defense was once one of the most feared in the league and now it has more holes than a block of swiss cheese. Taking over ownership of this team could be a lot of fun if you want to get rid of Manning and start fresh. Although, that could be a long road ahead.
Surprisingly Decent Teams
Cleveland is a team that looked like they were destined to go 0-16 after two weeks and suddenly they are tied for first place in the AFC North. While they are a team on the rise, they are also a team without a true answer at QB or HB. While Josh Gordon seems to be a legitimate threat to be a Top-10 WR in the league and Jordan Cameron is one of the better TEs this season the Browns need some serious help in offensive skill positions. On defense, the Browns are among the best in the NFL and this is largely due to the aggressive approach they have taken under Defensive Coordinator, Ray Horton. You might want to look into getting some help for Joe Haden on the other side of the field at #2 CB. Otherwise, this is a team that simply needs a couple pieces before they become a true contender.
Kansas City is starting to look like a serious contender with new coach, Andy Reid. If you were to take this team to a 5-0 record in your first season in Madden it suddenly isn’t too far-fetched. However, this doesn’t mean that they are a perfect team that doesn’t need any help. They have some good pieces to play with in Jamaal Charles, Dwayne Bowe and even Alex Smith at QB. This goes with a defense that is rather dangerous and can hold their own against virtually any team in the league. It could be fun to take over the Chiefs and make some moves to make this a team to compete with the Broncos for the AFC West.