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The arrival of Labor Day can only mean one thing: football is back! Yes, we've talked about global football on this site before since it returns sooner, but this time we mean American football in all its glory.
College football has been as wild as ever right out of the gate, with three top 10 teams falling in the first week and another one in a tough game as this post was being written. The 2016 NFL season is right around the corner too, kicking off Thursday night with a championship rematch.
The question is whether you're ready for the season. And we mean really ready. We'd suggest that that you aren't unless you're rolling with the right apps. We've got five free suggestions to ensure you're as prepared for football in every aspect as you could possibly be.
Even though you're probably well on your way to building a top notch squad for the new season in Madden NFL Mobile, let's say you could beef it up by adding Rob Gronkowski, Antonio Brown, Von Miller, and Todd Gurley to your roster. That's something I imagine would interest you.
It's not hypothetical either, but something you can actually do thanks to the Madden Season Blitz events going on right now in Madden NFL Mobile. It will require some effort on your part over the next two weeks, but if you act now and play often, you could snag elite versions of one or more of these stars before the real NFL season kicks off.
Instead of simply telling you about it, we'll actually tell you how to do it too.
Saying that defense is not a priority in Madden NFL Mobile is a bit of an understatement. In asynchronous head-to-head play, you don't take control of your defenders at all, as the AI manages them while your opponent plays offense. When it's your turn, you play offense only.
Yet assembling a top defense is still part of your team-building duty, and for the new NFL season, Madden has made some intriguing changes to the way you give instructions to your defense by totally revamping the Gameplan system.
How does it work now? Read on and we'll explain.
One of the best ideas that EA ever had for its mobile games was to stop putting out different versions of its sports titles on an annual basis and just stick with a single title per sport that receives annual updates. Madden NFL Mobile has definitely been better off for it, and has kept this writer playing longer than ever would have been possible under the old system as a result.
While the actual NFL season is still several weeks away, Madden season is upon us now. The first thing you'll notice is that the game has a new cover athlete (though that term doesn't actually make much sense for a mobile game, really). Odell Beckham Jr. is out. Rob Gronkowski is in. Gronk on.
The hard work of building up a top team also starts all over again -- or nearly all over, as we'll discuss -- with teams being reset for all users. This happened in 2015, and EA has been very upfront about it throughout, so there should be a minimum of gnashing of teeth from gamers. Your team from last year remains in your own personal hall of fame, and can be dusted off for certain Legacy Live Events.
Rest assured, though, that Madden NFL Mobile is bringing more to the party that just updated rosters. Here's what you can expect as you get back to football.
No matter how good you are at football management games, no one is ever going to let you take the reins at Manchester United or Chelsea. It's simply not in the cards for us mere mortals.
The next best thing, other than screaming at your television and participating in all the #WengerMustGo hashtags, is to take a stab at being a skipper in the virtual realm. On mobile, the latest option is Championship Manager 17 from Square Enix.
While it's not quite as packed with features as similar sims on the PC, it's as close to a full management experience as possible in the sense that you must juggle a roster on a budget, keep an eye out for transfers that will strengthen your team, take control of strategic decisions during matches, and handle player morale and negotiations, all while trying to win glory and avoid being sacked.
If this sounds like your cup of tea, we've got some good news. We can help you take your first steps toward becoming the next Sir Alex (as if) with our Championship Manager 17 guide for beginners. Read on for the equivalent of that scene in The Matrix, except instead of Keanu Reeves saying, "I know kung fu," it'll be you saying, "I know football."
The action in Brazil is underway, with athletes from more than 200 nations competing to bring glory and gold home with them. In the U.S., the networks of NBCUniversal are providing extensive coverage of all kinds of sports through August 21, while other countries have similar arrangements when it comes to their television networks.
Still, we're not always around TV screens, even in this day and age. If only there were some mobile apps to help track everything going on in South America this month ... Oh wait, there are!
It stands to reason that if a game is going to bill itself as the "Official UEFA EURO 2016 mobile phone game" that it should have some kind of event that incorporates the football tournament that is about to cause hysteria among European sports fans over the next month.
PES Club Manager has that designation, and it is all decked out for Euro 2016 right now. Players who log in now through next Friday have a chance to take on teams from the tournament and win a footballer from that country every time they defeat one of the participating nations.