Rob Gronkowski Named Madden Cover Athlete; Can the TE Avoid the “Madden Curse?”
Rob Gronkowski adds another achievement to his growing resume. On Thursday, Gronkowski was named cover athlete for Madden 2017. For the first time in five years , the fans didn’t vote on the Madden cover athlete. Rob Gronkowski was a finalist last year for the cover, but lost out to Odell Beckham Jr.
This will mark the first time a tight end has ever graced a Madden cover. Gronkowski played in 15 games last season, catching 72 passes for 1,176 yards and 11 touchdowns.
Is the Madden Curse Real?
Now that Gronkowski is on the front of the video game, he’ll have to try to avoid the “Madden Curse.” Over the years, several players chosen to be on the cover of the popular video game have gone on to get injured or under-perform the following season. Several players believe the Madden Curse is real.
Garrison Hearst was the first victim of the Madden cover curse in 1999. Hearst fell to injuries shortly after appearing on the 1999 cover of Madden. Mike Vick fractured his fibula after appearing on Madden NFL 2004. Vince Young injured his quad midway into the 2007 season after appearing on that year’s Madden cover. They all either got hurt and couldn’t play for a significant amount of time or had poor seasons marred by uncharacteristic mistakes.
Some cover athletes have escaped the Madden curse. Odell Beckham, Richard Sherman and Calvin Johnson had a good season after being named to the Madden cover.
New England Patriots’ fans collectively hold their breath every time Gronk pulls in a Brady laser and turns up-field. They know his knees always take a beating and so does the rest of the league. Safeties and cornerbacks league-wide dive at his knees, partly because there isn’t any other way to haul him down once he gets going. But they also relish the sanctioned opportunity to knock him out of the game and potentially out of the season. If Gronk gets hurt this season, expect Patriots’ fans to sound off at EA Sports via social media.
The Gronk Madden NFL ’17 hits the game store shelves on August 23, 2016. New features include a renewed focus on Franchise mode and several major new gameplay features on offense, defense and special teams.
(Rob Gronkowski Named Madden Cover Athlete)