The Evolution of Gamers In The NFL and Madden Culture

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Gaming fans sample EA Sports Madden NFL 13 game on the second day of the E3 videogame extravaganza in Los Angeles on June 6, 2012 in California, where sequels to blockbuster console titles and play on smartphones or tablets are being showcased with Times Square-like glitz at the annual event. AFP PHOTO/Frederic J. BROWN (Photo credit should read FREDERIC J. BROWN/AFP/GettyImages)

The National Football League is one of the most diverse cultural sports in America. Each team in the league have players who come from various backgrounds, lifestyles, and ethnicities. Over the years the NFL has embraced these skillful players such as Christian Okoye, Anthony Munoz, Junior Seau, and Hines Ward to name a few. However, there is one culture that has been quietly developing over the years that has taken the league by storm, and that is Madden culture, that is correct gamers.

The Evolution of Gamers In The NFL and Madden Culture

The Madden culture has slowly evolved to becoming one of the most popular groups in the National Football League. Players and coaches often rush to the break room of their team’s facilities or their man caves to watch film and play the video game Madden. For many wives and girlfriends, this is a nightmare because this takes time away from desired family time. Also for many working professionals, many view video gaming as a youthful hobby that is not for professional adults. However, for teammates and colleagues in the National Football League, this is a great time for male bonding and bragging rights until the next edition is released. The generation gamers in the professional community have officially arrived.

Madden gamers started in 1988 when Madden Football game was initially released by the legendary football coach John Madden. John Madden desired to produce a video game with EA Sports that will provide consumers with realistic experiences compatible to the actual football game. Since 1988 the game is more realistic today than ever before because of modern technology.

Today players born in 1988 are approaching their veteran years in the National Football League in which many have already retired or on the verge of the end of their careers. The NFL is full of youthful professionals. The average age of NFL players is 25 or less. Meaning, that most of them were born during the evolution and enhancement of Madden technology in the mid ’90s. According to analysis, the youngest NFL teams consist of Bengals, Browns, Cowboys, Rams, Jaguars, Vikings, Texans, Colts, and Seahawks. There is a great chance that 90 percent of the athletes on each team either own or play Madden.

Does this information raise questions on whether the National Football League can embrace the cultural evolution of technology and gaming? Will video gamers be viewed as a youthful hobby or part of a cultural lifestyle that is embraced by the professional community? For many owners and administrators, the very thought of their professionals playing video games may or may not be an issue. However, as the league continues to draft younger players there could be the possible evolution of gaming becoming more mainstream and organizations understanding the influential impact that it could bring. Our society is slowly evolving every year with the addition of various cultures and communities growing all over the world. The question remains whether NFL players should be more open about playing Madden video game and “come out the closet as true gamers.”

Poll: Should NFL Players come out the closet as competitive Madden gamers? Please share your thoughts on the evolution of gamers in the National Football League.

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