You can still field a dominant "Madden" football team without a killer quarterback, but let's be clear here: If dinner or a bar tab is at stake in a winner-take-all showdown against a buddy, be sure to choose a team with an elite signal-caller.
With that in mind, here are the top 10 quarterbacks in "Madden NFL 13," to be released late next month.
1. Aaron Rodgers, Green Bay Packers: 99 overall
2. Tom Brady, New England Patriots: 98 overall
3. Drew Brees, New Orleans Saints: 98 overall
4. Eli Manning, New York Giants: 97 overall
5. Ben Roethlisberger, Pittsburgh Steelers: 95 overall
6. Peyton Manning, Denver Broncos: 93 overall
7. Philip Rivers, San Diego Chargers: 92 overall
8. Matthew Stafford, Detroit Lions: 91 overall
9. Tony Romo, Dallas Cowboys: 90 overall
10. Michael Vick, Philadelphia Eagles: 89 overall
â¢ Eli Manning might still struggle to get the respect he deserves, but all is well in the world of "Madden." A 97 overall ranking represents a nine-point jump from last year's game.
â¢ Speaking of Eli and disrespect, Gregg Rosenthal is upset his boy Brady is a mere point ahead of the Giants QB who beat him in the Super Bowl ... twice. Take it up with him.
â¢ Philip Rivers dips from fourth to seventh on the heels of his sloppy 20-interception campaign.