Madden NFL 20: All Superstar X-Factor Abilities and How to Use Them

Madden NFL 20's major new addition is Superstar X-Factors, here are all of them.

Madden NFL 20 is here, and this year's game is putting its new Superstar X-Factor system front and center. While dozens of players across all teams have been deemed superstars of the league, a mere 50 players have been granted the title of X-Factor and given their own special abilities.

If you're curious how your favorite team fared in the evaluation, or if you're looking to see which players to draft in your Madden fantasy league, we've got you covered. 

Here's a complete breakdown of every team's standout players, including their Superstar abilities and the 20 rare X-Factor abilities.

What Are X-Factor Abilities?

Brand new to the Madden franchise, X-Factor abilities are the super rare skills only given to 50 players with the launch day rosters of Madden NFL 20. 

There are 20 different skills, so some players share their skills with others, and not every team has players that boast X-Factors.

Which Teams Don't Have Any X-Factor Superstars?

For six sad franchises, their rosters open the season with a combined 0 X-Factor Superstars among them. Those six teams are the Bills, Cardinals, Dolphins, Lions, Redskins, and Titans.

While every team has multiple designated superstars, each with their own passive bonus skills, only these six lack any of the 50 X-Factor players.

What Are the 20 X-Factor Abilities?

Each Superstar X-Factor skill can be activated after certain parameters are met and a player gets in the "zone."

They can also be wiped out if certain plays by the opposition occur too. For example, a QB can gain extra passing distance with a 30+ yard throw, but if he takes a sack, the skill resets and will need to be re-earned.

Here are the 20 abilities, how to unlock them, how to keep them active, and which players have them.

Quarterback X-Factors

  • Bazooka
    • Earned by: Completing a pass of 30+ yards in air
    • Effect: Maximum throwing distance increases by 15 yards
    • Kept by: Avoiding sacks
    • Players: Patrick Mahomes
  • Blitz Radar
    • Earned by: Scamble for 10+ yards
    • Effect: All blitzing linebackers and defensive backs are highlighted after the snap
    • Kept By: Avoiding sacks
    • Players: Russell Wilson
  • Fearless
    • Earned by: Make consecutive passes for 5+ yards in the air
    • Effect: Throwing accuracy unaffected by defensive pressure
    • Kept by: Avoiding sacks
    • Players: Drew Brees, Philip Rivers
  • Freight Train
    • Earned by: Rush for 10+ yards
    • Effect: Increases chances of breaking the next tackle
    • Kept by: Don't get tackled for a loss
    • Players: Cam Newton
  • Gambler
    • Earned by: Make consecutive passes for 5+ yards in air
    • Effect: Cannot be intercepted by AI defenders
    • Kept by: Don't throw repeated incompletions
    • Players: Aaron Rodgers 
  • Hi-Lo Deadeye
    • Earned by: Make consecutive passes for 5+ yards in air
    • Effect: All high and low passes are thrown with perfect accuracy
    • Kept by: Don't take sacks
    • Players: None at launch
  • Pro Reads
    • Earned by: Make consecutive passes for 5+ yards in air 
    • Effect: When in pocket, first open receiver is highlighted
    • Kept by: Don't take sacks
    • Players: Tom Brady, Andrew Luck, Ben Roethlisberger
  • Run & Gun
    • Earned by: Make consecutive passes for 5+ yards in air 
    • Effect: Cannot be intercepted by AI defenders while throwing on the run
    • Kept by: Don't take sacks
    • Players: None at launch

Running Back X-Factors

  • First One Free
    • Earned by: Rush for 10+ yards
    • Effect: Increases fakeout rate on next juke, spin, or hurdle 
    • Kept by: Don't get tackled for loss
    • Players: Saquon Barkley, Le'Veon Bell, Ezekiel Elliott, Melvin Gordon, Todd Gurley
  • Satellite
    • Earned by: Make 10+ yard receptions
    • Effect: Increases success rate on possession and RAC catches against single coverage
    • Kept by: Avoid forced incompletions
    • Players: Alvin Kamara, Christian McCaffery
  • Wrecking Ball
    • Earned by: Currently unknown
    • Effect: Increases success rate on the next three trucks or stiff arms 
    • Kept by: Currently unknown
    • Players: None at launch

Wide Receiver and Tight End X-Factors

  • Double Me
    • Earned by: Make 20+ yard catches 
    • Effect: Increased success rate on aggressive catches against single coverage 
    • Kept by: Avoid forced incompletions
    • Players: Mike Evans, A.J. Green, DeAndre Hopkins, Julio Jones, Travis Kelce, Adam Thielen, Michael Thomas
  • RAC 'Em Up
    • Earned by: Make 20+ yard catches 
    • Effect: Increased success rate on RAC catches against single coverage 
    • Kept by: Avoid forced incompletions
    • Players: Odell Beckham Jr. Antonio Brown, George Kittle, JuJu Smith-Schuster
  • Max Security
    • Earned by: Catch consecutive targets 
    • Effect: Increases success rate and decreases knockout change on possession catches 
    • Kept by: Avoid forced incompletions
    • Players: Zach Ertz

Defensive X-Factors

  • Fearmonger
    • Earned by: Sack the QB
    • Effect: Can apply significant pressure on quarterbacks even while engaged with blockers 
    • Kept by: Don't allow yards
    • Players: Fletcher Cox, Aaron Donald, Von Miller, J.J. Watt
  • Reinforcement
    • Earned by: Force incompletions or TFLs 
    • Effect: Increased chance of defeating run blocks, tackling runners, and disrupting catches 
    • Kept by: Don't allow yards
    • Players: Derwin James, Harrison Smith
  • Run Stuffer
    • Earned by: Make tackles for loss
    • Effect: Increased win rate and block shed speed against one-on-one run blocks
    • Kept by: Don't allow yards
    • Players: None at launch
  • Shutdown
    • Earned by: Force incompletions
    • Effect: Coverage is tighter and interceptions are more frequent on contested catches 
    • Kept by: Don't allow yards
    • Players: Stephon Gilmore, Chris Harris Jr., Byron Jones, Luke Kuechly, Jalen Ramsey, Richard Sherman, Bobby Wagner
  • Unstoppable Force
    • Earned by: Sack the QB 
    • Effect: Increases win rate and block shed speed against one-on-one pass blocks 
    • Kept by: Don't allow yards
    • Players: Geno Atkins, Joey Bosa, Calais Campbell, Myles Garrett, Cameron Jordan, DeMarcus Lawrence, Khalil Mack
  • Zone Hawk
    • Earned by: Force incompletions 
    • Effect: Increases the rate of catch knockouts and interceptions while in zone 
    • Kept by: Don't allow yards
    • Players: Eddie Jackson, Earl Thomas III

Why Do Some X-Factors Have No Players Using Them?

Though there are 20 X-Factors in the game, they're not all in use at launch. That's because these X-Factors carry over to Madden Ultimate Team and Franchise mode.

In MUT, you can assign X-Factors to some players depending on the cards you have, while in Franchise, newly drafted players will introduce new X-Factor potential to the league with every offseason. 

Need more guidance for Madden NFL 20? We've got you covered with our other Madden NFL 20 guides.

Contributor

Mark is the former Editorial Manager at TrueAchievements, now freelancing his way across the internet to write about the games he loves. He especially enjoys the latest and greatest horror, co-op, and battle royale games when he's not biking throughout Portland or enjoying a day with his family.

Published Sep. 27th 2019

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