In Madden 23, players will utilize various cover formations to defend certain areas or players on the field. So identifying and understanding the weaknesses of each formation is the best way to shut down any chance your opponent has of putting points on the board. But how do you beat each of these cover defenses? So in this guide, let’s dive into each cover defense and how to beat them.
Cover 1 Defense
Cover 1 is a coverage formation that typically utilizes man-to-man coverage and is usually accompanied by a pretty heavy blitz. Whenever there’s a deep safety in the middle of the field, you know the other team is in a Cover 1 defense.
To beat Cover 1, you must utilize crossing routes, such as mesh, slants, or drive plays. This will allow your receivers to run across the field and force the defenders to keep up, which should have them open right in the middle of the field. The other thing you can do to beat Cover 1 is to utilize the fact that there is only one safety deep in defense, so try to go with a vertical pass route for both of your speediest outside receivers. If they can both get past their cornerbacks, the safety can only stop one of them – throw it to the side he doesn’t end up covering.
Cover 2 Defense
Cover 2 is a zone defense where every defender is responsible for an area of the field, not a specific man. The field is divided into five underneath zones and two deep zones. The two corners and three linebackers play the underneath fifths, and the two safeties play the deep halves.
The key to beating Cover 2 defenses is to keep it short. Hitch routes, spacing routes, and flood route concepts are great when you identify that the defense is in zone coverage. These routes could damage their defense greatly if they do not know how to stop short passes in Madden 23.
Cover 3 Defense
Cover 3 utilizes one deep safety and two outside cornerbacks that play about five yards off the line of scrimmage, similar to Cover 1. You can tell if the other team is in a Cover 3 defense by flipping the play to the other side of the field and seeing which opposing players follow your player’s movements. For example, if you see that the other team’s cornerbacks follow your wide receivers to the other side of the field when you flip the play. This should let you know that they’re in a Cover 1 defense, but if the cornerbacks stay put, they’re in Cover 3.
The best way to attack Cover 3 defenses is to hit your receivers in the seams between the deep cover zones. Much like a baseball outfield, you should have plenty of success if you can hit the ball between two of the three defenders. The best routes to hit the seam are post routes, dig routes and Sean routes, with the receiver going from the outside to the inside, going from one zone to the other. Timing is also a crucial factor when it comes to throwing the ball against Cover 3.
Cover 4 Defense
The Cover 4 defense essentially splits the field into fourths, each of which is covered by a different player. It looks much like a Cover 2, but the cornerbacks will instead be playing further away from the line of scrimmage. The cornerbacks cover the two outside sections, and the safeties cover the two inside sections.
The best way to beat the Cover 4 Defense is with quick passes to the outside that hit receivers in the gap between the line of scrimmage and the deep corners. This means you will need to use hitch routes, stick routes, and curl routes.
Cover 6 Defense
Lastly, there’s the least used of the defensive schemes, Cover 6. This hybrid defense uses Cover 2 on one side of the field and Cover 4 on the other. You can always tell when the other team’s in a Cover 6 formation because the two deep safeties and corners are not equally aligned. One corner will be deep, well off the line of scrimmage, while the other will play closer to the line.
Since this defense isn’t balanced, there are tons of gaps both deep down the field and closer to the line of scrimmage. So, the best way to beat a Cover 6 is by exploiting the various weaknesses with corner routes, smash routes, and flood route concepts.
That’s everything you need to know about how to beat each cover defense in Madden 23. If you’re interested in more Madden 23 content, be sure to visit here. You can find tons of helpful information like how to force turnovers in Madden 23 or how to buy mut 23 coins for Madden 23.