EA Sports is continuing their week-long rollout of the top 10 player overall ratings by position in Madden NFL 22 and Wednesday’s soup du jour is tight end.
Finally, a Detroit Lions player has cracked the list, but it’s certainly going to be met with raised eyebrows—and probably some #DetroitVsEverybody responses on social media. T.J. Hockenson, the third-year tight end from Iowa, will be the ninth-ranked tight end with an 85 overall rating when Madden NFL 22 launches next month.
Hockenson had a 77 overall rating in last year’s Madden NFL 21 at launch, so an eight-point bump to his rating is quite a boost after he put together a Pro Bowl season where he caught 67 passes for 723 yards and six touchdowns.
The head-scratching begins when you get past the top four tight ends because there’s not much to quibble over there—outside of Mark Andrews getting snubbed with an 88 overall. Hunter Henry, however, scored an 87 overall rating from the team at EA Sports and has yet to have a season in his five-year career that’s eclipsed Hockenson’s sophomore season. Austin Hooper had back-to-back 70+ reception seasons in 2018 and 2019 with the Atlanta Falcons, but last year he caught just 46 passes for 435 yards and four touchdowns for the Cleveland Browns. Mike Gesicki, a glorified slot tight end who provides next to nothing as an in-line tight end, also ranks ahead of Hockenson with the same overall rating.
To recap, it’s hard not to chalk up these ratings to influences beyond Hockenson’s control. Henry, a perennial breakout player who has yet to actually, you know, break out, got a bag from the New England Patriots so there’s your explanation there. Hooper and Rob Gronkowski are legacy ratings because their play a year ago doesn’t justify being rated ahead of Hockenson. And as far as Gesicki goes, I got nothing.
Outside of Hockenson and center Frank Ragnow, the Detroit Lions aren’t expected to have many highly-rated players in this year’s edition of Madden as the team’s roster undergoes a re-tool this season.
Keep tuned into Pride of Detroit for more ratings reveals and analysis as we get closer and closer to the game’s release on August 17.