At the time of publishing this, it’s not even June, but believe it or not, that means it’s almost Madden season already. That’s because the annual Madden beta tends to kick off in June. Though EA hasn’t revealed a Madden 24 beta start date just yet, it stands to reason that we’ll be hearing about it soon. Along with that news, we’ll also surely get a cover reveal. The Madden cover athlete is an annual point of good-natured debate and speculation. Who deserves it? Who will get it? Ask 20 football fans and you’re liable to get 15 or more different answers.

Like we did last year–when we correctly guessed it, may we add–we’re looking at the possible Madden 24 cover stars and saying why each NFL superstar deserves the honor. Be sure to leave your best guesses too–especially if you think we completely missed someone.

Jalen Hurts, Eagles QB

Now this one would be sort of funny. If EA put Aaron Rodgers on the cover, it would perhaps be motivated by a callback. Madden historians will recall Madden 2009’s cover featured the Packers’ Brett Favre. However, Favre was traded to the Jets later that summer, and EA remade the cover to reflect Favre’s new team. Similarly, Packers QB Rodgers was recently traded to the Jets, giving football fans, and maybe Madden players, a bit of deja vu.

We’re past the point where EA would need to “fix” the cover, but I could see the publisher releasing a Jets-Rodgers cover for launch and then either having a reversible cover or a downloadable version later which calls back to Rodgers’ illustrious Packers career.

Ahmad “Sauce” Gardner, Jets CB

There wasn’t a better rookie last year than the Jets’ cornerback Ahmad Gardner, better known as “Sauce.” EA doesn’t do a ton of defensive players on the Madden cover, but it’s done them when it’s either made gameplay sense–like when Ray Lewis was on the cover of Madden 2005 because Tiburon introduced the Hit Stick–or just when the defender is that good–like Madden 15 when Richard Sherman landed on it during the peak Legion of Boom era in Seattle.

So a defender is unlikely, but among them, Sauce is perhaps most likely, as he’s got the youth vote, the likely skyrocketing overall Madden rating, and he plays in the big New York market, even if he happens to be on the franchise that’s traditionally seen as lesser than the stadium-mate Giants. Full disclosure: I previously thought about giving Micah Parsons my lone defender spot on this list, but I think Sauce’s trajectory is still at a point where EA can latch on to its figurative rocket ship before it’s exited the atmosphere, where as Parsons is already a certified star.

Stick around for more Madden NFL 24 chatter as we approach the official reveal, which should occur sometime in June ahead of a presumed August launch on PC, Xbox, and PlayStation.

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