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Saquon Barkley rated 8 points below Christian McCaffrey in Madden 21

EA Sports gave the Giants star a questionable rating in latest version of Madden video game

Philadelphia Eagles v New York Giants Photo by Steven Ryan/Getty Images

New York Giants running back Saquon Barkley’s Madden rating was released Monday night, and it drew the ire of many football fans. Barkley received only an 89 overall rating, placing him as the seventh-highest rated back in the Madden video game.

The overall rating in Madden is a calculated average of individual skill ratings based on the position a player is listed at. For that reason, Barkley’s 89 rating would imply he was given low individual ratings in various categories. Additionally, Barkley is oddly placed behind backs Dalvin Cook and Aaron Jones. Both Jones and Cook surpassed the 90 overall threshold.

These ratings do not factor in production from the previous season. The ratings are strictly based on talent and skills. That begs the question are Jones and Cook overall more skilled than Barkley? His performances in his first two years and Barkley’s ability to take over games would say otherwise.

Last season for Madden 20, Barkley ranked as the fifth-best running back with a 91 overall rating. The sudden drop off might be because of the ankle injury he suffered early on in 2019. Health aside, Barkley is still considered to be a top back in the league. Teammate Darius Slayton acknowledged ESPN’s polling of NFL scouts, executives, coaches, and players rated Barkley as the best in the NFL.


After Madden ratings for a handful of players were leaked early last night, Barkley was given a noticeable bump in his overall this afternoon. The official 91 overall rating for Barkley was released during Madden’s rating release special on ESPN.

Barkley’s rating is the only number that is higher from the original top ten list of running backs. His new 91 overall now places him as the fifth best running back in the game, instead of the originally speculated seventh spot.

A full list of Barkley’s ratings were discussed on the program, revealing some oddly low metrics for his catching, ball carrier vision, and strength. The rating associated with ball carrier vision relates to a runner’s ability to read the field in front of him. Hall of Fame running back Barry Sanders chimed in on that issue.

Madden’s ratings are fluid and change throughout the season based on individual performances. By the end of the year, Barkley could be well over that 91 overall mark.