Domination. For those of you familiar with the Call of Duty series, nothing gets the blood boiling more than the opening phrase of one of the most popular game modes, "Domination". Yes, I realize I just lost every Over-40 reader of the blog, but I'm okay with that for this article.
There are pretty much three staples to my gamer life. The COD Series, the Tekken series, and of course Madden Football. These are pretty much the only games that I purchase now that I'm a "responsible" adult; I grew up on video games and any one that did knows that it's not just for kids. Although most of the series are "dumbed down" a bit to allow everyone to enjoy them, they still offer enough to buy them year after year.
Madden is the perfect example. Over the years, Madden has maintained a successful formula. Despite not offering much change in their overall approach to the game (something they rightfully take flack over) they have a tried and true approach to football simulation.
When it comes to Madden, and the Cowboys in particular, the theme of this sponsored article has to be talking about the one and only "X Factor", Dez Bryant. For the last two installments of the series, there is no more dominant player on the Cowboys than Bryant. Of course, DeMarcus Ware gets the perfect 99 overall rating from Madden, but I still think that Dez "performs" better on a game to game basis.
Bryant started the season with an 86 overall rating and a 94 catch rating. By the time Week 14 rolled around, Bryant's overall rated had climbed to an 89. With the final regular season updates done, Bryant now sits at a 91 overall.
Bryant is straight up deadly on in routes, drag routes and slants in Madden. Against man coverage, he will almost always have the positioning necessary to catch the ball. He's also adept at running go routes and outjumping defenders. What makes Bryant the most dominant Cowboy player however is that he breaks tackles like a running back.
Madden did a great job of capturing Bryant's refusal to be tackled by just one man. He fights for every yard available on every play.
I'd venture to say, that even though he had many doubters heading into the 2012 campaign, most would agree that Bryant is the Cowboys most dominant force in real life as well. His stat line was incredible this season; 92 catches, almost 1,400 yards and 12 touchdowns. His improvement each year will have to level off at some point, but he's added 400 yards and three touchdowns to his prior year totals each season in the league. That progression will firmly put Bryant in the conversation for best receiver in the NFL before too long, pending his ability to stay healthy.
As most know, Bryant suffered a broken finger during the last third of the season that threatened to take him out as it needed surgery. He risked permanent damage to the digit in order to help keep his team in the playoff hunt. During that stretch, he continued his touchdown dominance as he secured 10 TDs in a seven week stretch from Week 9 to Week 16.
That's a gamer. Literally.
Before he went in for surgery, here was Bryant's tweet:
Well I'm about to play black ops 2 for the last time in a long time lol— Dez Bryant (@DezBryant) January 8, 2013
After surgery, Bryant let all his followers know that he was still in good spirits.
I just wanted to thank everyone for your prayers and thoughts #cowboysnation— Dez Bryant (@DezBryant) January 8, 2013
Looks like everyone is set for more "Domination".