While playbook variety is hugely subjective, some playbooks truly fit your preferences more than the others. The most useful playbooks in Madden 21 on offense is essentially about what type of attack you intend to run. A couple of standard playbooks we love come from the NFC West in the Seahawks and 49ers playbooks.
In the case of the Seahawks, the shotgun-heavy playbook works really well on line where players tend to emphasize the blitz more than most teams do in true to life. The space and selection of formations within the Seahawks’ shotgun set offers a large number of different looks, so even when you’re being released in, for example, Shotgun Wing Tight Slots, your opponent will not know if you should be going to attack the middle of the field, play the flats, or run a draw.
The 49ers playbook is fantastic too, though for different reasons. Like in true to life, the Kyle Shanahan scheme is run-heavy with zone blocking efforts on many plays from the linemen. If you’re the sort (like me!) who prefers to drain the clock and play ball control, sometimes possessing the football for full quarters at a time, the 49ers playbook is an excellent choice.
As for community-created playbooks, many of them are pass-heavy, but so too is the actual NFL, therefore it mirrors true to life in that way. Below are the names of the most downloaded community-created playbooks in Madden 21 as of early September 2020:
While many of these favor the air game, NCAASPREAD provides a range of RPOs (run-pass options) for teams using a shifty QB/HB combination. The FLEXIBLE playbook is fantastic because, as its name suggests, it’s quite balanced and offers probably the most versatility of any top-rated community playbook. Like the Seahawks, HOLYGRAIL offers a massive range of shotgun looks, with 17 different formations underneath the shotgun tree.
Defense is really a whole different beast in Madden, and in my two and a half decades of experience playing the overall game, most players actually do not have a great grasp on playing that side of the ball. For that reason, finding the most useful playbooks in Madden 21 for defense could be monumental in aiding your team,as a good basic knowledge of defense could be enhanced with a wider variance of plays. For standard playbooks, I favor the 49ers and the Patriots.
I just like the 49ers here, like on offense, because it’s once more an offering designed to benefit from mismatches even if you don’t have the very best players. From a base 4-3, the Niners like to attack the QB early and often, and online in Madden, that’s vital, just because a QB with a relaxed pocket is really a danger to the scoreboard.
Just as Shanahan can seemingly turn any RB into a star on offense, his defensive scheme enables some confusing and rarer formations to disrupt offenses, including the 46 and 5-2 formations which are excellent contrary to the run.
As for the Patriots, Belichick may not be in the overall game but his legacy as a mastermind lives on through the defensive prowess of “NE Coach.” The Patriots defensive playbook offers one of the most expansive scheme libraries in the game, offering multiple 3-4 and 4-3 formations, two different goal line defenses, and plenty of pass defense schemes like Nickel, Dime, Quarter, and event Prevent using its own library of plays.
No standard playbook offers this sort of versatility, and it is sensible when you consider the Patriots’ proud history of real-life successes on defense.
Among user-generated playbooks, listed here are the most downloaded in September:
As is frequently the case online, HEATSEEKER is a playbook for the blitz-happy Madden players. If getting to the QB can be your primary objective, no playbook has been downloaded more. DEFENSIVEBIBLE may be the msot versatile of the bunch, most closely mirroring a real NFL playbook using its many looks.
HYBRIDSMOKE, like FLEXIBLE on offense, offers plays for many situations, whether you favor zone or man, with plenty of blitzes for the proper moments. Future, meanwhile, provides the most Nickel looks I’ve ever noticed in a playbook with six different schemes using the extra defensiveback. For those games when your opponent has all but abandoned the run, Future is a superb options.