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Playing Madden NFL for the first time or just need some help? Learn more about how to play the game.

American Football 101 Madden NFL franchise Other how-tos More tips and tricks

New to the Madden NFL franchise? Don’t stress–we’re here to help. Once you understand how to play, you’ll be a pro in no time.

Football terms

  • Down: A play or chance to get the ball further towards the end zone. Each team gets four downs before the other team gets the ball, and resets every time the ball moves 10 or more yards. A down is over when the ball touches the ground (usually due to a tackle) or the ball goes out of bounds.
  • Gridiron: A football field.
  • End zone: The scoring area at each end of the field.
  • Field goal: To get a field goal, the ball must be kicked through the goal posts in the end zone. A field goal is worth three points.
  • PAT: “Point after touchdown.” The attacking team starts on the 15 yard line and tries to kick the ball through the field goal. It’s worth one point.
  • Snap: A backwards throw to the quarterback. This is the beginning of a down.
  • Touchdown: A touchdown is scored when the ball is caught or carried into the end zone. A touchdown is worth six points.
  • Two point conversion: During the PAT, the attacking team can run the ball into the end zone. This is worth two points.

In Madden NFL, you get to play as your favorite teams in the NFL and lead them to victory. You can control each player on the team to get the ball from the 50 yard line to the end zone. If you’re not sure how, don’t sweat it. 

You can learn more about how to complete moves in-game in the Madden NFL beginners tips post and finding the controls for your system here.

Once you’ve mastered how to drive and complete your favorite plays, the next step is to try out different modes.

Game modes

  • Exhibition: Want to just get into playing football? Pick from NFL teams and play a one-off game. You can play against AI or your friends sitting on the couch next to you or online.
  • Face of Franchise: Want to join an NFL team? Face of the Franchise will guide you to Be a Player mode of a Franchise file, and includes added features.
  • Franchise: If you’ve ever wanted to manage your own NFL team, Franchise is the game mode for you. You can scout, draft, and trade for the players you want on your team and play through a whole season. Learn more about Franchise mode here.
  • Madden Ultimate Team (MUT): Build out your dream team, and play against other Madden NFL fans. You can win packs to perfect your team through challenges, games against other fans, and more. You can get more information about MUT here.

For those playing MUT:

Want some more tips and tricks for Madden NFL? You can get that, and talk about your favorite parts of the game on Answers HQ. Check out their training camp to get even more information about how to up your game.

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