Madden NFL 20 Guide: How To Break Tackles for More Yards After Contact

In flag football, speed and agility reign supreme, but in the bruising pro game of the NFL, breaking tackles can bust open an average gain into a long touchdown. Here's how to break tackles in Madden 20.

Whether they're playing in Franchise mode or against others online, Madden 20 signal-callers are playing to win. And to win, they need to know the fundamentals of the game, such as how to break tackles. 

In order to come out on top, there's a lot you need to know how to do, which is why we've got plenty of Madden NFL guides waiting to school you, such as:

In today's lesson, we'll be going over how to break tackles in Madden 20. Mastering the move once specialized by Marshawn Lynch in the emerald city can be the difference between a six-yard pick-up and a sideline dash to the endzone. 

The Most Effective Ways to Break a Tackle

Simply put, there are two main ways to break tackles in Madden NFL 20, and depending on the player you're using and the defenders in your way, you'll want to employ one or the other.

Stiff Arm

The first way to break tackles is to use a stiff arm move:

  • Xbox One: Press "A"
  • PS4: Press "X"

Be mindful of the timing, though, as just like juking and spinning, if you stick that arm out too soon, the defender will almost always break through it to wrap you up. 

What you want to do is get the defender lateral to you as best you can, and then stiff-arm him at the last possible second. If you're having trouble nailing the timing, try practicing in the Skills Trainer, which is found under the Exhibition header in the main menu.

Truck Stick

The other most effective way to break a tackle is to just run someone over with the truck stick. This was added way back in 2006 and unlike many other Madden features, this one has stood the test of time and remains to this day a popular feature of the series.

To truck someone (in other words, charge right through them), you'll again want to make sure you time it just right, only this time get them directly in front of you.

At the last moment before they come in for the tackle, flick the right joystick up. As with all Madden moves, there's a bit of luck involved, or really some instantaneous weighing of probabilities going on in every moment of every game. However, provided you get good odds, you'll likely be serving linebacker or cornerback pancakes on the play.

Stats to Focus On For Effective Shedding

Every single playable athlete in Madden NFL 20 is rated on dozens of different criteria, everything from speed and agility to confidence and personality. But they won't all help you shed defenders and keep on pushing downfield. The major stats you'll want to look for in players are:

  • Strength (STR)
  • Break Tackle (BTK)
  • Trucking (TRK)
  • Stiff Arm (SFA)


This should be self-explanatory. The stronger someone is, the more likely they are to fall forward or not fall at all and push defenders away like the paparazzi.

Break Tackle

This ability is naturally the most telling stat for this exercise, but it's not the only one that matters. 


This is the term used for when a ball carrier bowls over a defender and leaves them like roadkill on Route 66. 

Stiff Arm 

This is exactly that. The higher the stat, the, uh, stiffer the arm.

Best Players to Use to Break Tackles

Now that you know how to break tackles and how vital player stats can be in ending with a successfully broken tackle, it's time to scour the roster to pick out the best players for the job.

But don't worry, we've done that for you. Here are some of our favorite players to break tackles in Madden NFL 20.

Saquon Barkley, RB, New York Giants

In every stat category, Barkley is the pound-for-pound favorite because he mixes force with finesse in a way no one else really does at his position. The only problem is you have to play as the lowly Giants to use him.

Strength: 81

Break Tackle: 97

Trucking: 83

Stiff Arm: 85

Derrick Henry, RB, Tennessee Titans

An underappreciated bruiser, Henry came alive in a big way down the stretch last year and had the Titans in contention in December. That run he went on where he had multiple 200-yard games certainly shows up in his Madden 20 statline.

Strength: 85

Break Tackle: 84

Trucking: 87

Stiff Arm: 92

Todd Gurley III, RB, Los Angeles Rams

Despite his shaky last quarter of the 2018 season, Gurley comes into Madden 20 as the top-ranked halfback on launch day. Time will tell if that rating needs to be drastically adjusted recent efforts say yes but for now, he remains a force to be feared.

Strength: 75

Break Tackle: 96

Trucking: 84

Stiff Arm: 91

Chris Carson, RB, Seattle Seahawks

Gone are the days of Marshawn Lynch's "Beastquake" highlights, but Carson is out to make a name for himself with his similarly punishing running style. Maybe Skittles will reach out for an endorsement deal.

Strength: 82

Break Tackle: 92

Trucking: 87

Stiff Arm: 90

Le'Veon Bell, RB, New York Jets

It's going to take some getting used to seeing Bell in a new jersey, but he's likely well-rested after sitting out all of last season in a protracted contract dispute with his departed Steelers. The Madden Ratings Adjustors clearly expect him to take off like his new team's nickname.

Strength: 77

Break Tackle: 91

Trucking: 90

Stiff Arm: 94

Julio Jones, WR, Atlanta Falcons

It seems like every year a new wideout becomes everyone's favorite, but let's not forget one of the most consistently dominant forces of the 21st century. Jones is a freakish athlete with a halfback-like ability to break tackles. 

Strength: 78

Break Tackle: 89

Trucking: 77

Stiff Arm: 87

There are other great options too, like the Cowboys' chain-mover Ezekiel Elliot and Kareem Hunt, the problematic halfback now on the apparently forgiving Browns.

Remember that you can search by particular stat categories in-game by highlighting the stat you want to filter by and clicking the left face button. That's "X" on Xbox and "Square" on PS4.

Now get back in the game and flatten some cornerbacks. And for more tips and tricks, be sure to check the guides at the top of this article or head over to our Madden 20 guides page for a complete run-down. 


Mark is a dad, husband, bicyclist, animal rights activist, and a gamer, of course. You can find him on all platforms covering co-op, indies, horror, battle royale, or whatever else he's obsessing over right now. In addition to GameSkinny, he's been published on GameSpot, IGN, GamesRadar, EGM, Escapist, Official Xbox Magazine, and a bunch of other great outlets.

Published Aug. 28th 2020

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