We're just days away from taking the field with Madden NFL 16, EA Sports' latest addition to its popular football franchise. This year promises to be the best yet, with a number of key features and tweaks that will bring both avid and casual football fans into the mix.
The game features a number of teams to choose from, and there's no question that a lot of fans will go for home-team favorites, if only to drive them to Super Bowl victory. However, if you're just getting started in the game, or want to grasp that feeling of superiority over your opponent, it never hurts to have a balanced team to get the job done. Here are five teams that will get you down the field in no time – or give you the defensive stop you need for an easy conversion.
With their Super Bowl win a while back, the Seahawks have proven to be ideal contenders in the NFL, and there seems to be very little stopping them from getting to a familiar spot this time around. With quarterback Russell Wilson leading the charge and a line-up that includes Richard Sherman, Marshawn Lynch and Kam Chancellor, along with a strong coaching staff that isn't afraid to make the big plays, they'll certainly turn a few heads when it comes to racking up the score. Plus, dare we forget about "the 12th man" with that raucous home audience…
New England Patriots
Deflate-gate aside, the Patriots continue to have an overall game that shines over most of the competition, as they've proven with various Super Bowl victories. Once he comes back, Tom Brady is likely to be just as determined as ever in the quarterback position, backed up by Ron Gronkowski (or, as we call him, "Gronk"), Julian Edelman, LeGarrette Blount and Devin McCourty. With the coaching power of Bill Belichick still at the helm, this team isn't likely to fade away anytime soon. Sorry, Patriots haters.
The Broncos have had their share of off-days in the past, especially with a lackluster Super Bowl performance against the Seahawks a while back. But Peyton Manning is still driving this bus down the field, and there's very little to stop him once he gets going. He's one of the most able quarterbacks in the game, and he's got a strong line-up behind him, including Demaryius Thomas, Aqib Talib and Emmanuel Sanders among others. This team will have no problem scoring big points in the long run.
Green Bay Packers
For years, the Packers stood out as a formidable team in the NFL, with Brett Favre leading the charge and eventually guiding it to greatness. Now, though, it's still in good hands, thanks to the tutelage of Aaron Rodgers and a squad that includes Clay Matthews, Julius Peppers and Randall Cobb, as well as a very strong defense. This year looks to be an even bigger one for the Packers, especially if Rodgers stays on point. He looks like he's firing lock-on missiles when he's in the zone.
Finally, we have the Colts, and even though they aren't being led by Peyton Manning anymore, they have a more-than-able quarterback in Andrew Luck, along with talented players like Andre Johnson, Dwayne Allen, Coby Fleener and Frank Gore. Their coaching staff is on the money when it comes to key play calling, and this team usually has no problem catching up (or even surpassing) opponents in the final seconds of a game. Look for the Colts to be a real mover-and-shaker this year.
Bonus: Dallas Cowboys
Considering their ranking is right alongside the Colts in terms of numbers (86 compared to their 87), we figured we'd give Jerry Jones' boys a mention, because they're still a well-playing squad, despite the fact they may not be "America's team" anymore. (They were replaced by the Broncos, it seems.) Tony Romo continues to be a devoted quarterback, while players like Dez Bryant, Jason Witten and Sean Lee back him up with all the strength they can muster.
Give these teams a try, and you'll see what a difference they make on the field.