NFL, NFLPA extends exclusive deal with Madden franchise through 2025
The NFL and NFLPA agreed to extend EA Sports’ tentpole American football video-game Madden series as the league’s exclusive game franchise, per Ben Fischer of Sports Business Journal.
— Sports Business Journal (@sbjsbd) May 28, 2020
The agreement between the NFL and players’ association will extend the exclusive EA Sports property, Madden through 2025, with an option for 2026 as well.
Madden has been the top football video game for fans to play as their favorite teams and players since the 1990’s, along with EA Sports’ other tentpole series for soccer, FIFA. The game derives its name from former Hall of Fame Oakland Raiders head coach John Madden, who also lent his voice for gameplay broadcast-simulation voice over and commentary. Madden, 84, stopped recording his voice for the video game franchise in 2008, however.
The series has been the go-to football video game for the better part of two-plus decades, for both console and PC gamers.
EA Sports also used to release NCAA Football yearly as a supplement to the Madden series for fans to play with Division I college football teams and players; however, since the release of NCAA Football 14 in July 2013, legal disputes with the amateur league using the image and likeness of college players prevented EA Sports from producing the video game.
That could possibly change in the near future, though, with the NCAA relinquishing some stringencies about name, image and likeness for its amateur student-athletes in recent weeks.
Nevertheless, in the immediate future, fans will get a chance to see who gets “the Madden curse” for the next five years.