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Cleveland Browns rookie Myles Garrett, O.J. Howard top rookie ratings for 'Madden NFL 18'

By The Sports Xchange
Cleveland Browns rookie Myles Garrett, O.J. Howard top rookie ratings for 'Madden NFL 18'
Tight end O.J. Howard #88 of the Alabama Crimson Tide celebrates after scoring a 68-yard touchdown in the third quarter against the Clemson Tigers in the 2017 College Football Playoff National Championship in Tampa, Florida on January 9, 2017. File photo by Kevin Dietsch/UPI | License Photo

One month before Madden NFL 18 is available, EA Sports finalized player rankings for the latest version of the top-selling sports title in the video game market.

Franchise mode players view rankings reveal day as a milestone on the way to the unofficial holiday that game release date has become.

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Rookie rankings are of particular interest and Cleveland Browns pass rusher Myles Garrett, the No. 1 overall pick in the 2017 draft, is the top-rated first-year player in Madden with a grade of 83. Garrett has a strength score of 96 and a 90 for acceleration.

No. 2 on the list of rookies?

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Tampa Bay Buccaneers tight end O.J. Howard. While this is a bit of a surprise, Howard's athletic prowess and fit in the offense captained by Jameis Winston could bear immediate fruit. Howard, at 6-foot-6, is a matchup nightmare with the potential to run away from box defenders and dwarf defensive backs. He matches Garrett with an acceleration score of 90 and 87 for speed.

Rookie running backs are ever-popular and on the heels of Dallas Cowboys' star Ezekiel Elliott leading the NFL in rushing, Leonard Fournette (Jaguars) and Christian McCaffrey (Panthers) are going to get a lot of attention.

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Fournette falls way short on catch rating, but a whopping 92 truck rating and 90 for speed and acceleration help define his value.

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Jamal Adams, a heat-seeking missile at free safety, is fourth following Fournette -- 81 overall ranking -- with a 91 speed score, 90 acceleration and 86 agility. Need more reason to use the woebegone Jets this year? Adams has a 90 hit power rating, among the best in the entire game.

McCaffrey, the fifth-ranked rook in Madden 18, checks in at 81 overall with an insane 96 for agility and 93 "juke," meaning he'll be a hard one to hit when paired with the 91 speed rating. A huge plus for McCaffrey: his hands. His catch rating of 75 is seventh among all NFL running backs.

One other rookie worth noting for the speed-hungry gamers of the universe: Bengals wide receiver John Ross was given a 98 speed score, making him the fastest player in Madden NFL 18.

RELATED Cleveland Browns' Myles Garrett (foot) expected to be ready for training camp

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