The Madden NFL game series has a long history of featuring players on the covers. In the past, NFL stars like Ray Lewis, Donovan McNabb, Vince Young, Brett Favre and Larry Fitzgerald. This year, Madden fans can choose from 64 different players, but five truly stand out from the pack and deserve a spot on the cover.
Justin Tuck - New York Giants
It's rare for defensive players to appear on the Madden NFL covers, but if anyone deserves a spot, it's New York Giants Defensive End Justin Tuck. Eli Manning may have earned the two Super Bowl MVP trophies, but Tuck deserves this cover. He has been an instrumental part of the New York Giants defense, forced a safety on Tom Brady in the Super Bowl and helped end the New England Patriots final drive of the game.
If not Tuck, then the whole defensive line should be featured together. This includes Jason Pierre-Paul, Osi Umenyiora and Chris Canty.
Cam Newton - Carolina Panthers
Quarterbacks have been a Madden cover favorite and the red-hot rookie Cam Newton could easily be one of the front runners. He had a stellar rookie year, brings excitement to the game and set several rookie quarterback records including the single-season record for rushing touchdowns.
His success will likely continue in 2012 and his star should rise with an appearance on the cover.
Tim Tebow - Denver Broncos
Out of all the quarterback discussions in the 2011 season, no one got more attention than Tim Tebow. Tebowmania has spread throughout the country and he could win with landslide numbers if they all step up to vote.
If Tebow is selected for the cover, the only question that remains is if the quarterback will pose running, throwing or in the knelt down "Tebow" trademark.
Arian Foster - Houston Texans
Foster dealt with some nagging hamstring injuries during the 2011 season, but he still helped lead the Texans to their first playoff run in franchise history. Foster has been a breakout running back fro the past couple of years and no Texans player has ever appeared on the Madden cover.
Jimmy Graham - New Orleans Saints
2011 was the year of the tight end and the Madden franchise should recognize this with the inclusion of Saints player Jimmy Graham. Rob Gronkowski got a lot of attention on the New England Patriots, but he had Aaron Hernandez by his side. Graham did it alone in New Orleans and helped Drew Brees reach his regular season passing yards record.
Who do you think should appear on the Madden 2013 cover?
Alan Donahue is a lifelong NFL fan. He has written hundreds of sports articles and played every version of the Madden franchise.
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