- 1 Best teams to rebuild in Madden 23
- 2 1. Atlanta Falcons (77 OVR)
- 3 2. Carolina Panthers (79 OVR)
- 4 3. Jacksonville Jaguars (77 OVR)
- 5 4. Pittsburgh Steelers (80 OVR)
- 6 5. Seattle Seahawks (76 OVR)
- 7 Worst teams to rebuild in Madden 23
- 8 1. Chicago Bears (78 OVR)
- 9 2. Detroit Lions (78 OVR)
- 10 3. Houston Texans (74 OVR)
- 11 4. New York Giants (75 OVR)
- 12 5. New York Jets (79 OVR)
One of the most played modes in any professional sports game is franchise mode. While some series have more intricate franchise modes than others, the mode is still popular and that includes Madden. Madden 23 once again features franchise mode (including relocation) and for those who want to leave their imprint on a franchise, a rebuild might be exactly what you want.
Below, you’ll find the best – and worst – teams to rebuild with in Madden 23. The criteria for inclusion in either list included salary cap space, presence (or lack thereof) of top talent, upcoming free agents, and quarterbacks, among others. It’s important to note that while “best” may usually indicate the top ranked teams, here, the teams are all ranked in the latter half of Madden 23 based on overall rating. After all, it’s not really a rebuild if you’re starting with Kansas City, either Los Angeles team, or Green Bay, right?
Best teams to rebuild in Madden 23
If you’re after an easier rebuild, these teams will only require a few tweaks and not wholesale changes. Choosing one of these teams should accelerate your rebuild to the point that you should be able to compete for a title during your second season.
1. Atlanta Falcons (77 OVR)
Ratings: 77 OVR, 71 OFF, 73 DEF
Best Players: A.J. Terrell, Jr. (89 OVR), Casey Hayward, Jr. (87 OVR), Kyle Pitts (87 OVR)
Cap space: $13.4 million
Atlanta makes the list because the team has a number of good players – A.J. Terrell, Jr. (89 OVR), Kyle Pitts (87 OVR), Casey Hayward, Jr. (87 OVR), among others – and an obvious position of improvement that can shoot Atlanta from rebuild to contention quickly.
The move in question is to upgrade the quarterback position from Marcus Mariota. You could put together a trade package for Jimmy Garoppolo (a suggestion you’ll see several times in this piece) immediately, or even for one of the Carolina quarterbacks, Sam Darnold or Baker Mayfield to resurrect their careers.
In any case, the team is solid on both sides of the ball and with improvement at quarterback, could contend immediately in the NFC South.
2. Carolina Panthers (79 OVR)
Ratings: 79 OVR, 74 OFF, 77 DEF
Best Players: Christian McCaffrey (96 OVR), DJ Moore (88 OVR), Brian Burns (86 OVR)
Cap space: $31.2 million
Like Atlanta, Carolina is really just a quarterback away in Madden 23 from contending for the top spots in the conference. While Christian McCaffrey (96 OVR) may have injury concerns in real life, those can be mitigated in Madden and he can anchor the offense should you choose to ride with either Darnold or Mayfield for at least the 2022 season.
The Panthers also have plenty of cap space (31.7 million) to make moves, so absorbing a contract or two to improve the team in the immediate is feasible. Moving Mayfield and/or Darnold for Garoppolo or a quarterback like Kirk Cousins should help make this a quicker rebuild. You should also target the offensive line to protect your chosen quarterback.
3. Jacksonville Jaguars (77 OVR)
Ratings: 77 OVR, 73 OFF, 76 DEF
Best Players: Brandon Scherff (87 OVR), Josh Allen (85 OVR), James Robinson (84 OVR)
Cap space: $21.3 million
Jacksonville, a team seemingly in a perpetual rebuild, actually makes for a nice choice in Madden 23. Led by Josh Allen (85 OVR) and Shaquill Griffin (84 OVR) on the defensive side, Jacksonville presents a good, if not solid defense to help keep things close. Brandon Scherff (87 OVR) is great at right guard, but the line will need improvements.
The cap space of 21.3 million should help you improve your team regardless of if your decision on quarterback Trevor Lawrence. Since he’s under a rookie contract, it’s recommended to hold onto him for at least a season to see how he develops and then decide on his future from there. Keeping him will allow you to use that cap space to improve both lines, crucial to any team’s success.
4. Pittsburgh Steelers (80 OVR)
Ratings: 80 OVR, 70 OFF, 87 DEF
Best Players: T.J. Watt (96 OVR), Cameron Heyward (93 OVR), Minkah Fitzpatrick (89 OVR)
Cap space: $21.2 million
Yes, there is one big area of improvement for Pittsburgh; that’s the good thing! Pittsburgh, as has been for literally decades, is a team that should compete regardless of the record. Led by T.J. Watt (96 OVR), Cameron Heyward (93 OVR), and Minkah Fitzpatrick (89 OVR) on defense, you’ll have an elite player at each level of the defense and should dominate on that side of the ball.
As with every team on this list, quarterback is the position in need of improvement. Mitchell Trubisky is QB1, but even a marginal improvement to someone like Mayfield will improve the outlook for your team. Adding Garoppolo would immediately raise the prospects of Pittsburgh from missing the playoffs to competing for a title in Madden 23.
5. Seattle Seahawks (76 OVR)
Ratings: 76 OVR, 70 OFF, 75 DEF
Best Players: Tyler Lockett (90 OVR0, Jamal Adams (90 OVR), DK Metcalf (89 OVR)
Cap space: $27.9 million
Now without Russell Wilson, Seattle arguably has the worst quarterback grouping in the NFL with Geno Smith, Drew Lock, and Jacob Eason. That also represents (probably) the position in need of biggest improvement in the NFL. This means you have your immediate plan of attack in terms of improving your team.
Seattle has a good amount of cap space at 27.9 million to improve at the quarterback position. The quarterback you choose will be aided by having Tyler Lockett (90 OVR) and DK Metcalf (89 OVR) as receiving threats. The defense, as has been under head coach Pete Carroll, is solid with the likes of Jamal Adams (90 OVR) and Quandre Diggs (84 OVR). Add a quarterback and you’ll have Seattle competing for Super Bowls once again.
Worst teams to rebuild in Madden 23
These teams will present the most difficult rebuilds in Madden 23. Only choose these teams if you’re up to the challenge or they’re your favorite team.
1. Chicago Bears (78 OVR)
Ratings: 78 OVR, 69 OFF, 75 DEF
Best Players: Roquan Smith (89 OVR), David Montgomery (84 OVR), Robert Quinn (83 OVR)
Cap space: $27.2 million
Chicago has a stout defense, which has been the forte of the franchise for decades. That’s true in Madden 23 with the likes of Roquan Smith (89 OVR) and Robert Quinn (83 OVR). However, the offensive side of the ball is in need of much improvement.
It’s recommended to keep Justin Fields as he’s entering his second year. The young quarterback showed his potential at times last year, but was hindered by an offense that just wasn’t very good. Your first targets should be offensive line improvements to protect Fields.
From there, add some wideouts to present weapons for Fields to pass. Having 27.2 million in cap space will help alleviate the pressures; why not sign Odell Beckham, Jr. from the free agent pool?
2. Detroit Lions (78 OVR)
Ratings: 78 OVR, 75 OFF, 72 DEF
Best Players: T.J. Hockenson (89 OVR), Frank Ragnow (87 OVR), D’Andre Swift (80 OVR)
Cap space: $15.8 million
Detroit is another team that has had more struggles than successes throughout its history. Unfortunately, Detroit looks to be another bad team in Madden 23 and one of the more difficult rebuilds in the game.
As painful as it was to see Matthew Stafford hoist the Lombardi trophy the season after being traded away, it may just get more painful as Los Angeles seems poised to compete for a repeat. For Detroit, they at least have T.J. Hockenson (89 OVR) and D’Andre Swift (80 OVR) to help on offense, with Frank Ragnow (87 OVR) at center. However, there are only two other players rated 80 OVR or better on the roster, meaning there’s lots of room for improvement.
Moving on from Jared Goff is probably the best bet to improving Detroit, but the available upgrades are marginal barring a blockbuster trade. Detroit also only has a little over 15 million in cap space, so eating a lot of money for a QB will hinder improving the team elsewhere. You may need to stick it out a season and use the draft and free agency to compete during the 2023 season.
3. Houston Texans (74 OVR)
Ratings: 74 OVR, 71 OFF, 70 DEF
Best Players: Laremy Tunsil (88 OVR), Brandin Cooks (87 OVR), Steven Nelson (80 OVR)
Cap space: $17.6 million
Ridding the franchise of Deshaun Watson was the right call morally. On the football side, it will hinder Houston’s progress as Watson was a great quarterback, though he faces a season suspension and will sit at least six games in 2022.
Houston is led by Laremy Tunsil (88 OVR) and Brandin Cooks (87 OVR) on the offensive side, Tunsil ever important on the line. On defense, they’re led by Steven Nelson (80 OVR) and Jerry Hughes, Jr. (79 OVR). However, both sides of the ball could use upgrades. Specifically, quarterback is in dire need of an upgrade and rivals only Seattle for worst situation. A little over 17 million in cap space means you have to be a bit strategic in your additions, but target QB and both sides of the line.
4. New York Giants (75 OVR)
Ratings: 75 OVR, 68 OFF, 74 DEF
Best Players: Saquon Barkley (86 OVR), Leonard Williams (83 OVR), Adoree’ Jackson (82 OVR)
Cap space: $22.1 million
The New York Football Giants have Saquon Barkley (86 OVR), but he’s a free agent at the end of the year. Leonard Williams (83 OVR) and Adoree’ Jackson (82 OVR) are good for the defense, but it’s a drop off from there. The Giants also have many players whose contracts expire after 2022 or 2023.
Of course, the main issue with the Giants is quarterback play as Daniel Jones has struggled. It’s probably better to move on from him than ride out the season with him. They do have just over 22 million in cap space, making a quarterback move easier. The Giants also need more playmakers, so target more receivers and a pass-catching tight end. Still, with the amount of upcoming expiring contracts to the top talent on the team, the Giants will take a strategic plan to compete quickly.
5. New York Jets (79 OVR)
Ratings: 79 OVR, 72 OFF, 79 DEF
Best Players: Quinnen Williams (86 OVR), Carl Lawson (83 OVR), C.J. Mosley (82 OVR)
Cap space: $12.9 million
Like their NFC brethren, the Jets are a New York team that will most likely struggle – again. The Jets are led by Quinnen Williams (86 OVR) and Carl Lawson (83 OVR) on the line, with C.J. Mosley (82 OVR) at middle linebacker, providing three stout defenders. However, the Jets have a lackluster offense and that’s where you should target your improvements.
Laken Tomlinson (81 OVR) is a good offensive lineman, but he needs help. Further, your biggest decision is whether to keep or trade away Zach Wilson. The rookie contract is enticing, making it easier to sign free agents or absorb contracts (especially with only 12.9 million in cap space), but you’ll have to decide if waiting for him to improve is worth the wait. Then, target wideouts, especially those with speed, to help a rather stagnant offense.
Now you know the best and worst teams to rebuild in Madden 23. For those of you looking for a challenge, which team will you turn around and create a dynasty with?
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