All sports games rate players, but few are watched like Madden's, which need a ratings czar and whose judgments can inspire petulant boycott vows from the league's superstars. EA Sports revealed the game's biggest overall gainers and losers today.
IGN got the data from EA Sports' Donny Moore, the guru in charge of the numbers. The biggest swings in overall rating were reserved for those going up. Seattle quarterback Charlie Whitehurst saw the biggest gain, going from 56 to 71 largely because he was a rookie backup with no expectation of taking any meaningful snaps last year, and this year may be the midseason starter. A 71 isn't John Unitas territory, but it's not completely unplayable like 56 is, either.
As for the losers, they saw smaller margins of difference than gainers. The biggest declines were by Jacksonville safety Reggie Nelson and Giants tight end Travis Beckum, who lost 6 points off their overall ratings each, based on a lack of playing time at the end of last year and coaches' comments about them this year. If Jets linebacker Vernon Gholston wasn't a certified draft bust by now, his third year, falling to a 65 overall should do it. The more damning numbers are his 30 tackles and zero sacks, career.
Another of note is Colts all-pro free safety Bob Sanders (pictured above), who fell four points overall based on substantial injury time (just eight games played in the past two seasons). He's still an 89 overall, third best at his position. Even with the four points added back he'd still be third best.
More details through the link at IGN.
Madden NFL 11 Player Ratings: Top 10 Movers & Losers [IGN]