SBD/Issue 152/Sponsorships, Advertising & Marketing

Drew Brees Picked As Cover Athlete For EA Sports' "Madden 11"

Brees Chosen As Cover
Athlete For "Madden `11"

EA Sports has selected Saints QB Drew Brees to be the cover athlete for its "Madden NFL 11," the forthcoming installment of its perennially popular NFL simulation videogame, industry sources said. For this year's cover, EA Sports for the first time conducted a fan vote for the cover athlete, offering Brees as a choice along with Colts WR Reggie Wayne and Vikings DE Jared Allen. Brees, however, is believed to have easily won the vote, not at all surprising given the Saints' Super Bowl win in February and Brees' lofty status playing the sport's glamour position. Brees will be officially announced tomorrow night shortly before the start of the NFL Draft, and then make a series of media appearances. Brees has been on record saying he is not afraid of the much-discussed "Madden Jinx," an injury bug that has afflicted many prior cover athletes for the game, most recently Steelers S Troy Polamalu last year (Eric Fisher, SportsBusiness Journal).

LET ME AT 'EM: Brees said earlier in the week about the "Madden" cover jinx, "Just like records are made to be broken, curses are made to be broken too. If the fans have spoken, if I am indeed their vote, then I'll do my best to break that trend" (New Orleans TIMES-PICAYUNE, 4/20). FanHouse.com’s Jay Mariotti said Brees has “taken on Hurricane Katrina and unemployment and the demoralized city of New Orleans and the history of the New Orleans Saints, and look at what he has done there. He has made everybody happy, so what is a stupid little curse for Drew Brees." But ESPN.com's J.A. Adande said, "This curse is more powerful and certainly more proven than all of those things" ("Around The Horn," ESPN, 4/20).

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