Originally posted on This Given Sunday  |  Last updated 11/6/11

When I was a child, I heard stories about Bigfoot, Dracula and aliens, and other myths and curses. It's hard to be scared by a scary story, though, when you know it isn't real. However, there is one curse in life that is VERY REAL: the Madden Curse.

There is simply no escaping the Madden curse. As you'll see in the list below, every player to have graced its cover has been struck down in one form or another. EA Sports tried to objective this year and held a vote to see which player would make the cover of Madden. The people voted and, in a surprise, Hillis’s monster breakout season earned him the cover honors this year. But with those honors came the Curse.

Some chose to ignore this and said the Madden curse is fake and naively drafted him in their fantasy football leagues. Those nonbelievers look pretty silly now.

Before I fill you in on how the Madden curse has hit Hillis hard and in the hammy, I’ll educate those of you who aren’t aware of the Madden curse and what it’s all about.

2001: Eddie George – From that point forward he never gained more then 3.3 yards per carry for the rest of his career.

2002: Daunte Culpepper – Threw 23 interceptions and led his team to a 5-11 record.

2003: Marshall Faulk – Never rushed for over 1000 yards from that point forward and suffered injuries that plagued him for the rest of his career. The Rams drafted Steven Jackson to replace him in 2004.

2004: Michael Vick - Broke his fibula in a preseason game as his team went on to a 5-11 record. Indicted of federal crimes three years later.

2005: Ray Lewis – First season without an interception and suffered recurring injuries that nly allowed him to play 6 games.

2006: Donavan McNabb – Went only 5-5 as a starter and then tore his ACL. Backup QB Jeff Garcia led the Eagles to a 5-1 finish and the NFC East crown. It was the beginning of the end for McNabb in Philly.

2007: Shaun Alexander – Missed 6 games and broke a streak of 5 seasons with double-digit touchdowns.

2008: Vince Young – Missed several games with a knee injury.

2009: Brett Farve – Threw a league-leading 22 interceptions.

2010: Larry Fitzgerald & Troy Polamalu – Fitzgerald's quarterback abruptly retired and Polamalu missed 4.5 games.

2011: Drew Brees – Threw 22 interceptions.

2012: Peyton Hillis

When Hillis was picked to be on the cover he was excited, but unlike those of us who know the curse's wrath, he probably didn’t realize what was coming ahead.

So far 2011 has been no walk in the park for Hillis. He is averaging only 3.5 yards per carry, and has a mere two touchdowns scored in four games. Recently he re-aggravated a hamstring injury which is supposed to cost him 2 games after already missing one earlier in the season.

Hillis has also had issues with his image as there was a report that Hillis missed the game vs the Dolphins because his agent told him to because he is in a contract year. This led to rumblings that Hillis was soft and that he should have played the game. His character took another hit as he apparently missed a charity appearance for what most considered a pretty weak excuse.

Hillis is in a contract year which has caused distractions to the Browns, who have reportedly now said they are willing to let him walk at seasons end. Not exactly the follow-up year Hillis wanted.

Forget about vampires, werewolves and zombies, it would appear the Madden curse is very much alive!


Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Report: Chargers rookie Joey Bosa to hold out of camp

Doc Rivers blames ‘bloggers’ for Blake Griffin trade rumors

Jason Peters: Eagles practiced too much under Chip Kelly

Report: Giants’ Victor Cruz cleared to practice

PETA sends Warren Sapp vegan lobster following shark bite


Report: Josh McCown has looked better at times than RG3

Mike Trout does David Ortiz impersonation

Suspended Steelers WR Martavis Bryant set to help coach HS football

Tickets for ‘Monday Night Football’ game in Mexico sell out

Kevin Durant says he never told Russell Westbrook he was staying in OKC

God Shammgod hired by Mavericks as player development assistant

Five NFL teams set to underachieve in 2016

WATCH: Belichick gets annoyed by Jimmy Garoppolo question

Ronda Rousey denies being pregnant despite rumor

Eight most overpaid offensive players in NFL

Giants acquire All-Star Eduardo Nunez from the Twins

Vikings QB injured trying to kick open door

Josh Gordon thankful for support from Browns

Report: Seahawks DE Chris Clemons retiring

Denard Robinson blames falling asleep at stoplight for pond crash

Everything that's already gone wrong at the Rio Olympics

Hue Jackson: Browns will give Josh Gordon a fresh start

Diamondbacks nearing Daniel Hudson trade

NFL News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Everything that's already gone wrong at the Rio Olympics

Amar'e Stoudemire's presence (and absence) changed the NBA

We asked Team USA: What other Olympic sport would you play?

Why Gary Bettman's CTE denial is cause for concern for NHL

WATCH: Inside the Nike SNKRS BOX in SF for Golden Air Celebration

WATCH: Five other uniforms Chris Sale should cut up

QUIZ: Name every Olympic event in which the USA has never won a gold medal

Five U.S. Olympians favored to win multiple gold medals

WATCH: What teams should join the Big 12?

One Gotta Go: Do NBA players really love NBA2K?

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Follow Yardbarker