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Mile High Morning: A first glimpse of Russell Wilson and the Broncos' secondary in Madden NFL 23


The Lead

On Monday morning, EA Sports provided its first extensive look at the upcoming Madden NFL 23 in the official gameplay trailer, and Broncos fans are able to get some brief glimpses of several of the team's star players, including Russell Wilson.

Wilson's appearance is a brief clip as the phrase "skill-based passing" animates across the screen — a fitting combination for the nine-time Pro Bowler. This new feature of the game allows players to have greater control over ball placement to take advantage of receivers' positioning against defensive backs.

Denver's secondary also shows up during the trailer, with Pat Surtain II and Kareem Jackson highlighted in particular. Surtain breaks up a pass against Chiefs tight end Travis Kelce in the end zone, and then Jackson denies a deep throw against the Chargers. Both plays showcase new collision features, like mid-air hits to break up passes.

For more info on the game's new features, check out the full trailer below.

Below the Fold

Outside of how Russell Wilson adjusts to life as a Bronco, the most important part of the offense's transition during the offseason may be how it moves to a zone-blocking scheme. For those not aware of the ins and outs of this concept, The Athletic’s Nick Kosmider has provided a good overview of how it works and the Broncos’ progress installing it so far.

"If you were to pluck one word from Hackett's description that simultaneously best describes both the challenge and benefit of incorporating a true outside-zone scheme, 'trust' would be the optimal choice," Kosmider wrote. "In an outside-zone scheme, linemen are charged with shooting off the ball in the direction of the sideline to reach blocking targets in their 'zones' along the way. If a lineman is getting double-team help from an 'uncovered' teammate, he must trust that the teammate will be there in time so that the lineman can then move to the second level. The coaching staff has to trust that the lineman can get to the second level quickly enough to tag the linebacker. A running back must be trusted to read the unblocked defender and cut accordingly."

The Unclassifieds

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