Madden NFL 16 Tips: Top 5 Defensive Back Moves

Control: LT (Xbox) or L2 (PS)

Learn to user-control a linebacker on defense by choosing a player in a yellow (hook) zone in Cover 3. Now you can stand near the TE, who is a favorite target for many new players, and take that option away. Even if you make a mistake, you won’t hurt your team by giving up a big play in this role!

Strafing is one of the most important skills to learn on the defensive side of the ball. It squares your player up to the line, and although you can’t move at full speed, it often puts you into the best position to make plays.

Control: Hold LB (Xbox) or L1 (PS) after the snap

If an opposing WR is beating your CB, try calling man coverage and switching to the CB. If you hold defensive assist at the snap, you should mirror his route and can get yourself into better position to make a big play.

Defensive assist is optimal for any situation when you are unsure of where you are supposed to be as a defender. Simply hold it down and the game will direct you towards the action or your assignment. It is especially useful during tackling because it helps you with the proper pursuit angles and timing.

Control: Hold X (Xbox) or Square (PS) after the ball is thrown

Going for a swat will increase the range in which your defender can make a play versus going for a catch.

If your defender is at a size disadvantage, sometimes going for the swat can allow him to jump higher and make up ground against a big WR! While you won’t get many interceptions with this method, you should see a higher number of plays getting broken up. This is a great option if you have another defender in the area, as he may be able to “tip drill” and intercept a broken-up pass that is popped into the air.

Control: Hold A (Xbox) or X (PS) after the ball is thrown

If your opponent caught the pass, you can still deliver a solid hit to knock the ball loose. Don’t give up on a play until the whistle is blown.

If the WR has beaten you with a great move or arrived to the catch point earlier, try to play the body to force a drop. This is the best option when you are boxed out of a play but still in the area of the catch. If you arrive at the correct time, you can hopefully knock the ball out (unless the WR has a great Catch in Traffic rating, which would increase his ability to hang onto the ball).

Control: Hold Y (Xbox) or Triangle (PS) after the ball is thrown

Make sure that Ball Hawk is turned on in the Settings menu. This allows you to hold the Catch button and have your defender attack the ball at the highest point.

Playing the ball can get you a big-time reward by going for the interception. Be sure to look before the snap and scout for any potential mismatches, like a tall WR against a shorter CB. If you arrive early to the ball, go for the catch! Depending on the down and distance, it can be safer to go for the swat, but nothing can turn the tide of a game like an interception. Expect to see lots of breakups that can also result in tipped balls for interceptions by a teammate

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