As I’ve heard virtual Phil Simms say a million times now, this game is not always about the quarterback. Sometimes the running backs are the stars of the show, especially in Madden NFL 25 . This year’s advertising tagline is “Run Free,” highlighting new special moves that ballcarriers can use to escape tacklers. They are so satisfying to pull off. I know lots of our readers will get Madden 25 in their Christmas stockings, so I’m here to tell you how to make like cover boy Adrian Peterson.
Runners this year have over 30 moves they can unleash on would be tacklers. Backs with at least a 90 rating in key categories can use the precision modifier. It makes special moves more powerful than normal. The precision modifier is L2 on your PlayStation, LT on a system in the Xbox family. Precision moves are how the best of the best exert their will on the game. It’s a risk-reward system, as your player will have to slow down to attempt the special move. But successfully pulling them off yields a greater chance of avoiding tackles and generates special animations.
Keeping Them At Arm’s Length
A good stiff arm can remove a defender from the play in Madden NFL 25. The move is mapped to the X button. Tapping it throws a quick stiff arm that should throw the tackler’s balance off. It’s best for short yardage situations in which you really need to delay the defense, not defeat it. Holding it down makes the runner attempt to wall him off. This is best used along the sideline A strong back such as Marshawn “Beast Mode” Lynch can put opponents on their butts en route to the endzone.
Many touchdowns in Madden NFL 25 began as the result of a well-timed spin move. They can leave the last defender grabbing at and gasping for air. The timing is critical because if the defender hits you mid spin you’re not going anywhere.
Fire Off The Tactical Juke
Football and basketball have more in common than we realize. One of the best ways to lose a tackler is to go the complete opposite direction of what he’s planning, if only for a half-second. The right analog stick has several juke combos you can do with it, among them the backwards juke. It can slow down your runner just enough for the defense to lose track of you. Yes, this is essentially the same trick Goose used in “Top Gun.” Hit the brakes, he’ll fly right by. There are a lot of combos available through the analog stick and the game’s Skills Trainer allows you to experiment with these and others to get the timing right. It’s really critical here because if the defender tackles you in the middle of one of these moves, there is an extremely high possibility of a fumble.
Never Stand On The Tracks When a Train’s Coming Through
This is a baseball movie quote, but it’s applicable here. A player attempting to make the tackle is often lowering his shoulder getting ready to lay you out. As the great comedian George Wallace once pointed on, the old saying “Never kick a man while he’s down” doesn’t make sense. Your foot is that much closer to his head! A power back can hit just as hard as a linebacker by using the truck stick. When the tackler lowers his body, you need to get lower by pushing up on the right analog stick. This will help that guy finish his trip to the ground and send your runner to the first down marker, maybe farther.
Play of the Week
Defenders in Madden NFL 25 often end up underfoot, and the hurdle button ensures their fall won’t impede your progress. It’s the riskiest play in the game, as you are completely defenseless while airborne. But if you pull it off successfully, just go ahead and upload the highlight reel play so we can all check it out.
Here’s a little football math. Sometimes you need just three or four inches for the first down. If your runner is not Darren Sproles or Danny Woodhead, he is significantly taller than that. Hitting the square/X button will let the ballcarrier dive for the first-down marker. With the precision modifier, they will not only dive but reach the ball out with their arm. At the goal line, they’ll get behind a teammate and leap over the line. Sometimes you have to lay down to stand tall in victory.
Remember the Skills Trainer mode that lets you practice these and all the other important moves in the game. They take a little work to learn, but the results are well worth the effort.