How Madden 22 makes better use of NFL Next Gen Stats

  • EA first demonstrated Madden NFL 22 at a press conference this week, and one of its most interesting aspects will be its deeper integration with the league’s Next Gen Stats to improve the AI  of long-running simulation games.

    Next Gen Stats, an NFL organization that works with Zebra Technologies and Wilson Sporting Goods, uses radio frequency identification (RFID) tags on players' shoulder pads and balls. Cameras and other technologies installed around the site can not only obtain familiar YAC statistics. The Data Next Gen website states that it "records player data, such as position, speed, MUT 22 Coins. It accelerates at a rate of 10 times per second and draws a graph of individual movements within the finger."

    Madden NFL studio EA Tiburon integrated Next-Gen Stats into the game for the first time last year, which coincided with the release of PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X/S. Creative director Connor Dougan discussed what this means for Madden and why Tiburon added Next-Gen Statistics.

    "From a gameplay perspective, we have the opportunity to do some really cool things, and we want to go back to our roots, you know the real simulated football," Dugan said in a video call. "So we have all the data for every game in the past six years, and there are a lot of cool use cases. So our first use case... we move to the 5th generation [PS5/Xbox X/S], we have all these extras Power, animation and memory. What can we do to make our movement more realistic? Therefore, we adopted our real NFL player sports to drive our potential player sports engine."

    Dougan said that AI has used Next Gen statistics to improve Madden sims’ route speed and acceleration, so “we think our next evolution is on AI, so they have all these interesting and cool statistics [Next Gen Stats] track. How good are quarterbacks under pressure? What is their average throwing time? How good are they grabbing pockets? There are actually hundreds of different statistics, we hope to Buy Madden 22 Coins to help us AI provides information and drives our AI to make them smarter and more real."