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MADDEN 2004 - ROOKIE SCOUTING FAQ
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Platform: Playstation 2
Version: 1.1
Written: 27 September 2003
Author: Rangitamoe
Email: rookiefaq@optusnet.com.au


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TABLE OF CONTENTS
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1. Introduction
2. Legal Stuff
3. Revisions
4. What's In This FAQ
5. Pre-Scouting
6. The Scouting Screen
7. Player Ratings And What They Mean
8. Ratings Table
9. Ratings Importance
10. Credits
11. Comments & Suggestions



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1. INTRODUCTION
***************

One of the greatest improvements in the ever-continuing Madden series
of football games has to be the introduction of rookie
scouting. In previous years, in order to pick the best player for
your team all you had to do is preview the draft first, or wait until
the draft itself and merely grab the player with the best stats
overall. This isn't how it works in the real NFL and it should be the
same in a video game. Well now it is. What I hope to do in this FAQ
is to breakdown all the data that is given to you when you are rookie
scouting, and try to transform it into meaningful stats that will
assist coaches to draft the best possible players for their team.

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2. LEGAL STUFF
**************

I don't have too much of a problem with my FAQ being used on other
sites, so long as you email me for permission, and give me due credit
on the site on which it is placed.

Anyone who does NOT ask my permission and blatantly rips off my FAQ
will find him or her facing serious legal action.

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3. REVISIONS
************

1.0 First writing of this guide for Madden 2004
1.1	Added Ratings Importance. Made a few 2004 related adjustments

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4.WHAT'S IN THIS FAQ
********************

This FAQ contains a rundown of all the data you find in the rookie
scouting screen, what each term means, and a guide to tell you the
approximate stat value of that data. I will also endeavour to give
you ideas on exactly which players to scout BEFORE you hit the
combine.

For those gamers already familiar with the scouting process, and are
simply looking for a conversion from say 40 time to Speed rating,
scroll down to section  and start reading. For those less familiar or
new to Madden 2004 then read on.

 I should point out that this FAQ assumes that the reader already has
a knowledge of navigation and the game controls for playing Madden
2004. If you require any further information on those aspects either
consult the user manual, or one of the other comprehensive FAQs
listed on GameFAQs


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5. PRE-SCOUTING
***************

Before you even consider looking at the scouting screen, it's a good
idea to go through your roster thoroughly at end of season. Things to
look for are player progression, age, contract remaining and overall
ability at each position. I tend to do this on a position-by-position
basis, and writing down those players who I think may be better off
releasing or trading to other teams. I generally look at each player
in this order:

Progression - A player who loses ratings based on last year can be a
hindrance rather than help. I tend to overlook players who drop 1 or
2 points overall, as I put it down to either injury or having a bad
year. Anything more than that deserves a thorough investigation. Is
the player too old? Were they injured all season? It could be any
number of factors.

Age - On a personal level, unless my depth is extremely weak at that
position or the player concerned has a high overall rating, I tend to
release or trade any player over the age of 32, sometimes 30. Players
who pass 30 generally start to decline in their stats overall and end
up becoming a shell of their former self. Its often better to draft a
rookie of lesser ability and let them improve rather than watch a
former star pale into insignificance.

Contract - By this point you should have determined a rough list of
who you are likely to get rid of. Releasing players while still under
contract though adds penalties to your salary cap (unless you turn
the cap penalties off, but what fun is that?). What do you do? Well,
if the player you wish to dump has no years remaining on his
contract, then simply do not resign them. That way it doesn't cost
you a cent. If they are still under contract then trade them to
another team. Players rated overall in their 70's can still be useful
additions to other teams who are low at that position. If the players
you are trading are of pretty poor quality, then clump 3 together and
trade them that way. I usually try to trade for draft picks rather
than other players. That way you save money for the cap room needed
to sign the rookies.

Now you have your complete list of players that you no longer need.
Keeping that in mind, re-assess your positional requirements and make
another list of what positions need filling and prioritise
accordingly. This list will form the basis of your scouting. All set?
Let's go shopping!

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6. THE SCOUTING SCREEN
**********************

This is where all the action is going to take place. The scouting
screen initially has only very basic information about players. Name,
Height, Weight, College, Position etc. It also has the projected
round in which the player is likely to be taken. Now then, grab your
prioritised list and see what position(s) you need urgently and go to
that position. You'll see a list of all rookies eligible for the
draft. But which one to pick?

All that you are given to work on initially is a little snippet of
useful information on what I call that players "primary abilities".
That is, the abilities generally considered to be the most important
for that position. It's not the be all and end all of course, there
are many other factors to consider, but these abilities are those
which will be considered most frequently in a game situation. These
usually take a rating form like Amazing, Great etc. (these ratings
will be explained in more detail later in the FAQ).

The key now is to find the right person for your team. For that to
happen you need to consider your style of play, you're surrounding
personnel and weaknesses you found from the year before. Having a top
notch receiver is useless unless the QB has the accuracy to get it to
him, for example. Pinpoint the precise type of player you are after
at the position.

Also keep in mind your draft position. That Marshall Faulk type HB
you have your eye on won't be there if you are picking at 31. Be
realistic with your choice of projected round when looking at
rookies. Keep in mind though, that there is an opportunity to trade BEFORE
and DURING the draft itself. It may be possible to trade up for better picks.

Armed with all this information, it's now time to determine how many people
you wish to scout at each position. You only have 15 people you can scout
per round, so you need to make sure you use these effectively. My personal
preference is to pick 5 positions where I need to upgrade and select 3 from
each to scout. Obviously this is dependant on whether you have more or less
positions you need to scout for, and how important to the grand scheme of
your team it is. I also like to mix the projected rounds to try and have some
early, some in the middle and some late. It's all up to you.

Now its time to hit the crux of the FAQ, the ratings.

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7. PLAYER RATINGS AND WHAT THEY MEAN
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Once you pick your batch of up to 15 rookies to scout, its time to go to
combine.
This is where you get a whole lot more information, and where you can filter
through and find the players you really want. All players regardless of position
have 6 basic drills that have times or numbers measured to them. Here is a list
of them, and what stat they equate to:

40 time = Speed
Shuttle = Acceleration
Cone = Agility
Bench reps = Strength
Vertical = Jump
Interview = Awareness

On top of these, there are a few position specific abilities that rank from
highest to lowest as such (Interview also follows this scale):

Amazing, Great, Good, Above Average, Average, Below Average, Bad, Terrible

These abilities (and translations where necessary)
Throwing Arm = Throwing Power
Pass Accuracy = Throwing Accuracy
Run Power = Break Tackle
Hands = For HB/B this is the Carry stat, for WR/TE/CB/FS/SS's the Catch Stat
Run Block
Pass Block
Kick Returns
Tackle
Kick Power
Kick Accuracy

**** IMPORTANT NOTE ****
Before I go into detail in each stat, I should point out that the translated
ratings are NOT 100% accurate. They simply give you a guide as to what range
of ratings the drills are likely to give you. As you complete scouting players
for the full 3 rounds, you are given more and more information about the player.
This information may affect the ratings that will be shown later in the FAQ.
For example, if a player has below average speed, but the scout says that they
have improved their speed, then the 40 time won't be a true reflection of the
players speed. Conversely, if a player with fantastic bench press stats has
information saying he's not as strong as first thought, then his strength
rating will be lower than usual. There is always room for statistical variance.
Please keep this in mind when referencing these tables.


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8.RATINGS TABLES
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40 TIME
Ability: Speed

TIME RANGE				RATING RANGE
4.24 - 4.35				90-99
4.36 - 4.52				80-89
4.53 - 4.67				70-79
4.68 - 4.81				60-69
4.82 - 4.96				50-59
4.97 - 5.10				40-49

SHUTTLE DRILL
Ability: Acceleration

TIME RANGE				RATING RANGE
3.75 - 3.92				90-99
3.93 - 4.09				80-89
4.10 - 4.25				70-79
4.26 - 4.44				60-69
4.45 - 4.64				50-59
4.65 - 4.82				40-49
4.83 - 5.05				30-39

CONE DRILL
Ability: Agility

TIME RANGE				RATING RANGE
6.60 - 6.82				90-99
6.83 - 7.05				80-89
7.06 - 7.28				70-79
7.29 - 7.51				60-69
7.52 - 7.75				50-59
7.76 - 7.97				40-49
7.98 - 8.20				30-39

BENCH REPS
Ability: Strength

BENCH REPS			RATING RANGE
38 - 44				90-99
30 - 37				80-89
24 - 29				70-79
18 - 23				60-69
12 - 17				50-59
6  - 11				40-49

VERTTICAL
Ability: Jump

HEIGHT RANGE			RATING RANGE
42 - 39				90-99
36 - 38				80-89
33 - 35				70-79
30 - 32				60-69
27 - 29				50-59
24 - 26				40-49
21 - 23				30-39

MISCELLANEOUS STATS
Ability: Various

Here is the tough one. Because there is no finite measure for Amazing, Great
etc.
it is extremely difficult to put a stat range to it. What I have done is given
the
highest and lowest value I have seen for the stat, the average of all results
for that stat, and what I call a "common range" which is essentially me
eliminating
a some high & low values to get a range
where the bulk of the values lie. The scouting notes are even more important for
these stats.

RATING		LOW		HIGH		AVE		COMMON
Amazing		81		96		88		85-95
Great			70		89		80		75-85
Good			60		89		73		68-79
Above Average	50		79		70		64-77
Average		42		81		61		54-68
Below Average	42		90		55		46-57
Bad			25		58		43		40-50
Terrible		0		27		14		10-20

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9. RATINGS IMPORTANCE
***********************

Now that we have all this ratings information, it's time we put it all to good
use. What we need to know is exactly what ratings will produce the best player
given the position he plays in. Its no use having a DT with a 4.1 40 time, when
what we really need is an awesome tackler. Fortunately, I have done most of the
research for you, so check the table below to find out which are the key
ratings for each player by position. I have split them into primary and
secondary where necessary, so to distinguish which attributes really stand out.

POSITION			PRIMARY			SECONDARY
********			*******			*********
QB				THP,THA			AWR
HB				BTK,SPD,AGI			CTH,CAR
FB				RBK,CTH			AWR
WR				CTH				SPD,AWR,AGI,ACC
TE				CTH,RBK			SPD,STR
T				PBK				STR,AWR,RBK
G				RBK				STR,AWR,PBK
C				RBK				STR,AWR,PBK
DE				TAK				SPD,STR,ACC
DT				STR,TAK			AWR,ACC
OLB				TAK				SPD,AWR
MLB				TAK,AWR			STR
CB				SPD,AWR			CTH,ACC
FS				AWR				SPD,CTH
SS				AWR				SPD,CTH,TAK
K/P				KAC,KPW


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10. CREDITS
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Thanks to GameFAQs for finding a place for hardcore games to congregate and
share
information

Finally, to EA Sports and Tiberon for producing by far and away the best series
of football games on the market.

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11. COMMENTS & SUGGESTIONS
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I hope this you have found this FAQ informative and useful. If you have any
suggestions or comments that might make this a better FAQ please drop me a
line at rookiefaq@optusnet.com.au

I will have no tolerance for flamers or those who just want to say
"This FAQ sucks". CONSTRUCTIVE criticism is welcomed.

Good Luck and Happy Gaming.

(c) 2003 rangitamoe