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Madden 24: 10 Best Defensive Playbooks

Don't neglect a solid defense in Madden 24, and choose these 10 best defensive playbooks listed in our guide.

Most Madden 24 players will mostly use the offensive playbooks as their main strategies, but experienced players know how important defense can be in any matchup. Of course, you have fewer formations in defensive playbooks, but this year has some of the most efficient formations in the history of the franchise. Our guide will provide you with the 10 best defensive playbooks in Madden 24, including the most reliable sets and schemes.

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10 Best Defensive Playbooks in Madden 24

Here’s a short list of the 10 best defensive playbooks in Madden 24:

  • 46 Defense
  • Kansas City Chiefs
  • Chicago Bears
  • Seattle Seahawks
  • Baltimore Ravens
  • Buffalo Bills
  • Los Angeles Rams
  • Detroit Lions
  • Carolina Panthers
  • Pittsburgh Steelers

46 Defense

This choice won’t be a surprise for many veteran Madden players, as the 46 Defense playbook is still the best defensive set in the game after all these years and it’s the only alternate playbook to have both the two best defensive formations ever: Nickel 3-3 and Nickel 3-3 Cub. I also wouldn’t shy away from such schemes as Big Nickel Over G and Dollar 3-2, which have some of the smartest zone and blitz formations in Madden 24. There’s no other defensive set that would include so many great plays, so don’t look any further unless you want to pay homage to your favorite teams listed below.

Kansas City Chiefs

Of all the team playbooks in Madden 24, the only one that has a similar amount of great defensive formations would be the Kansas City Chiefs. Of course, you won’t find here anything as good as the Nickel 3-3 Cub, but let me introduce you to a few Chiefs formations that could make your life easier. First, check out Nickel 3-3 and Nickel Over, which mostly focus on the cover zones. Then, follow with 4-3 Even 6-1 and Big Nickel Over G, which have a good amount of blitz formations. Lastly, switch to the Dollar 3-2 plays that are often used by pro players to create more pressure when passing.

Chicago Bears

The Bears are known for their new 4-3 formations, which have been changed from the two-gap 3-4 defense to the new one-gap formations. Here you get four options, all of which are excellent, including 4-3 Even 6-1, 4-3 Over, 4-3 Over Solid, and 4-3 Over Wide. But I wouldn’t ignore their Big Nickel Over G set either, as it has such highly effective schemes like Cover 4 Quarters and Cover 6 Invert. Overall, the Bears playbook is great for pressuring quarterbacks and hurries, although I wouldn’t expect an incredible passing game here.

Seattle Seahawks

In case the 4-3 formations of the Bears seem a bit too extreme for you, then I’d suggest you opt for the more classic 3-4 defensive playbook of the Seattle Seahawks. It’s also one of the few playbooks in Madden 24 that has both Nickel 3-3 and Nickel 3-3 Cub. But those are not the only formations that are worth looking at, as there are also 3-4 Odd and Nickel 2-4 sets that can be just as effective at stopping the opposing team’s aggressive attacks. Sure, you won’t find any Dollar 3-2 formations in the Seahawks playbook, but it’s not a huge loss when you have all that Nickel defense.

Baltimore Ravens

The Ravens also have the Nickel 3-3 Cub formation, although there are no 3-3 schemes. But they use plenty of Cover 4 Quarters, Cover 2, and Cover 6. These schemes allow their quarters to run out of any front and challenge almost any opposing offensive formations. So try out their Nickel 2-4 and Nickel 3-3 Odd for some truly unexpected defensive plays. Of course, there are also Dime and Split formations, as well as Quarter Overloads that are worth looking at.

Buffalo Bills

The Bills run a similar configuration to the Seahawks with their 4-3 formations, including the Nickel 3-3 Cub and Nickel 3-3 Will. These formations are so strong that almost nothing could prevent them from failing their defense, especially in the red zone. The Bills always have an extra defensive back, which allows players to constantly keep their hands on the ground. Of course, you could always switch to a 3-4 formation whenever needed with the Normal Dime.

Los Angeles Rams

Although the Rams had a very strong defensive playbook last year, this time everything has changed. Now they run all three formations: 4-3, 3-4, and 4-4. They also have the Nickel 3-3 Cub and Quarter 1-3-7 sets. This makes the Rams one of the most zone-heavy teams in Madden 24, combining both Cover 4 and Cover 2 schemes into Cover 6. The only other team that plays as much zone coverage this year as the Rams is the Pittsburgh Steelers, although they’re still not as zone-heavy as the Rams.

Detroit Lions

The Lions strongly rely on the 3-4 base defense, with much focus on linebackers. There are your typical Nickel 3-3 Cub and Normal Quarters as well, which indicate a high-quality traditional defense strategy. I’d never choose them last year for any sort of defense. This year their playbook improved, so it’s a good time to give them a chance. You’ll see that simple formations consisting of three down linemen and four stand-up linebackers can really work in your favor.

Carolina Panthers

The Panthers opt for a full-on hybrid approach, just like the Rams do. What makes the hybrid approach really good is the flexibility against the running formations. If you have seven defenders in the box at 4-3 Even 6-1 base, you can always add another one for a 4-4 Split against the five offensive linemen. While a swift switch to a 3-4 Odd base would be more effective against passing formations, when a single linebacker could be much more effective than an entire defensive end. I still wouldn’t recommend the Panthers defensive playbook to beginners, but experienced players will have a blast with this defensive playbook.

Pittsburgh Steelers

The Steelers have both great offensive and defensive playbooks this year. They use the classic 3-4 formation so well that many other teams have jumped on the bandwagon, including the Los Angeles Rams. While 3-4 Cub is the base defense strategy of the Steelers, it may still be a bit too weak when it comes to spread personnel in pass defense. That’s why I highly recommend switching to their Nickel 2-4 formation this season as something to rely on in those cases when 3-4 just doesn’t cut it.

Those are the 10 best defensive playbooks in Madden 24. Stay tuned for more Madden 24 tips and tricks articles right here.

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Serhii Patskan
Serhii is the Writer at GameSkinny. He's been writing for GameSkinny since 2015. Before that, he's been writing for various outlets and playing video games, which eventually turned into a passion. The video games that have contributed the most to his enthusiasm for writing about this industry are Magic: The Gathering, Dark Souls, and The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim.