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New England Patriots' Tom Brady takes risk mocking 'Madden' curse

By Alex Butler

May 12 (UPI) -- NFL ironman Tom Brady is putting his health on the line, denying the infamous Madden curse in a commercial Friday for the video game.

Brady was named the cover athlete at 10 a.m. Friday for Madden NFL 18. He'll be the second consecutive New England Patriots player fronting the Electronic Arts game. Tight end Rob Gronkowski earned the nod for Madden NFL 17.

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In a new advertisement video for the game, the Super Bowl LI MVP denies that there is a curse associated with being on the Madden cover. There is plenty of evidence to the contrary.

"I want to let you know that I'm going to be on the cover of Madden NFL 18," Brady said. "Now I've heard there are some of you out there who might be worried about something called the 'Madden Curse.' There is no such thing as curses. It's a total myth."

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"I feel like you're not really getting it..."

Brady goes on to shatter a mirror with a hammer and walk under a ladder.

"See, all good," he says. "No curse. All good."

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"They wouldn't let me break the full-length mirror... All good," Brady wrote in a caption for the Facebook video.

The five-time Super Bowl champ is entering his 18th NFL season. Brady, 39, has missed just 15 games due to injury since being named the Patriots' full-time starter in 2001. Those 15 games all came in 2008.

But the Madden curse has merit. Not only did Gronkowski miss eight games last season due to injury, but scores of other cover stars have been dinged up or had terrible seasons after receiving the accolade.

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After appearing on the Madden NFL 2004 cover, Michael Vick suffered a broken leg in the 2003 preseason. Donovan McNabb missed seven games in 2005, Shaun Alexander missed six games in 2006, Peyton Hillis missed six in 2011, Daunte Culpper sat out for five games in 2001, and those are just the worst injuries. The Madden curse has also meant bad play for some stars, including Vince Young. In 2007, after appearing on the Madden NFL 2008 cover, Young threw just nine touchdowns against 17 interceptions for the Tennessee Titans.

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Brady does have his own history going for him and should have another productive season as the Patriots have added a slew of offensive weapons this offseason. That is, as long as he doesn't eat glass, like he pretended to in April with magician David Blaine.

Josh Rabenovets, EA's senior director of global product marketing, said the curse doesn't impact the company's relationship with NFL athletes.

"Every year, press and players like to converse about the Madden curse and we support them in that discussion," Rabenovets said. "It does not impact our relationship with NFL players whatsoever."

Madden NFL 18 hits stores on Aug. 25 worldwide.

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