It may be hard to believe, but at one point the Falcons were so dominant on the digital gridiron that those playing EA Sports' Madden enacted a rule that prevented anyone from even thinking of playing with the team.
Of course, this was all down to the fact that EA Sports improved QB scrambling at a time where Falcons quarterback Michael Vick was just starting to tear up the league. Anyone who played as Vick or against someone who used the "human cheat code" can attest to the fact that #7 was quite literally undefendable.
Speed to burn, jukes like a running back and bullet passes that ensured totally domination. In a recent piece for the Players Tribune, Vick touched on his immortal digital representation, admitting that while people loved playing as him, he could never quite figure out what all the fuss was about.
"And of course … we gotta talk about Madden.
People will still come up to me all the time and want to talk about it. They’ll tell me about the 95 speed rating … the 95 agility … the 97 arm strength … by now I know it all by heart. People love — man, love — to tell me their “Vick in Madden” stories. About how they ran for 500 yards in one game. Or about how they broke the touchdown record in a season, 10 times over. They’ll tell me that I was like a blur of a blur. That I was a human cheat code.
I was so dominant that apparently kids created a rule, like almost a nationwide thing, known as “the Vick Rule.” I think it varied from place to place, but it was basically: If you were playing against your friend, you could pick any team you wanted … except for the Falcons. Because if you picked the Falcons, then you got Vick. And if you got Vick … then it was game over.
To be honest, and I’m glad I can finally admit this, I never really understood what they were talking about. Don’t get me wrong — I tried. Once in a while, when no one was around, I’d turn on the PlayStation and throw on Madden. And I’d pick the Falcons. And I’d try to see what all the fuss was about. But the truth is … I was never very good at playing as myself.
Actually, you know what? I was pretty bad.
The only person on the entire planet who wasn’t unstoppable while playing as Michael Vick — was me. Michael Vick."
It's times like these that you wish a player's career came by just a few years later so that we may have witnessed prime Michael Vick losing as Michael Vick in Madden to one of his teammates in the Madden Bowl.
Now we just need Randy Moss to address his NFL 2K counterpart. To check out Vick's full love letter to Atlanta, visit the Players Tribune.
(H/T: Players Tribune)