The linebackers form a very important part of the defense line in a football team.

They generally line up spaced out a couple of yards behind the line of scrimmage, ready to make tackles on rushing plays while also contributing to passing defense.

Compared to cornerbacks, linebackers are usually bigger because they are less involved in pursuits and they need the physical presence to consistently make successful tackles.

This is what differentiates the combination of skills that you need to make the best linebacker build from what you need for cornerback builds.

Although there are certain overlapping skills and abilities required for both, this guide focuses on the former.

Before we get into the best linebacker builds for Madden 24, let’s take a look at the skills and abilities available for that position in the game.

Linebacker Skills and Abilities in Madden 24

Here’s a list of all the upgradable skills of a linebacker in the game.

  • Catching – increased catch chance
  • Man Coverage – an increased chance to cause knockouts when in man coverage
  • Zone Coverage – an increased chance to cause knockouts when in zone coverage
  • Tackling – increased chance for successful tackles
  • Hit Power – an increased chance to cause fumbles on tackles
  • Block Shedding – an increased chance to successfully shed blocks
  • Power moves – an increased chance to win on power pass rush moves
  • Finesse Moves – an increased chance to win on finesse pass rush moves
  • Play Recognition – better reaction to play action and RPO plays
  • Pursuit – better reaction to ball carrier skill moves

Here’s a list of abilities that can be equipped by a linebacker in the game.

  • Avalanche XFactor – any hit-stick made while running toward the line of scrimmage will result in a fumble
  • Fearmonger XFactor – apply significant pressure on quarterbacks even while engaged with blockers
  • Reinforcement XFactor – an increased chance of defeating run blocks and disrupting catches via tackles
  • Run Committed – dominantly win run block when they correctly use the Guess Play adjustment to predict a run
  • Destroyer – does not allow broken tackles when hit-sticking ballcarriers
  • Double or Nothing – pass rushers must spend double the pass rush points to perform a move but are guaranteed dominant wins
  • Film Student – the ability to see the offensive hat count via coach cam
  • Finesser – extra pass rush point
  • Honorary Tight End – increased chance of catching passes
  • Hot Pursuit – the ability to not get faked out by ballcarriers
  • Man KO Elite – force more catch tackle knockouts in man-to-man versus routes less than 10 yards from LoS
  • Overpowering – pass rushers will ignore 1 bar of blocker resistance on club pass rush moves
  • Pass Committed – the ability to win pass blocks when they correctly use the Guess Play adjustment to predict a pass
  • Run Ender – faster run shed moves for a better chance at shedding blocks within 5 yards of the goal line
  • Tackle Elite – does not allow broken tackles and causes more fumbles with cut-sticks
  • Zone KO Elite – force more catch knockouts and react quicker in any zone coverage that is less than 10 yards from the LoS.

Avalanche Build

For the Avalanche build, we’re building a player that is very aggressive and always on the front foot when it comes to defense. This player’s strengths center around putting pressure on the attack and forcing fumbles.

For that reason, they need to be a bit more agile and faster than the average linebacker. They will attempt rush moves that target the quarterback directly more frequently, and if these moves don’t result in getting a sack, it can still affect the quality of the quarterback’s play.

Physique

For his physique, we’re going for a 6’1″ tall linebacker that weighs 220 lbs. This will set his base physical ratings at 90 for strength and stamina, and 85 for agility and speed.

As I said, linebackers don’t have to be as fast as cornerbacks. This build is the closest you’ll get to a defenseman in that position that is quick enough on his feet without sacrificing too much of that important physical presence.

Skill Upgrades

The recommended upgrades in the attached picture will get your linebacker to a 99 OVR and they require 81 skill points in total.

The order of priority for fully upgrading these skills should be Block Shedding >> Power Moves >> Pursuit >> Tackle >> Finesse Moves >> Hit Power. You can also invest a small number of skill points at a time into the other categories simultaneously.

Abilities

  • XFactor Slot – Avalanche
  • Bronze Slot – Double or Nothing
  • Silver Slot – Finesser
  • Gold Slot 1 – Hot Pursuit
  • Gold Slot 2 – Overpowering
  • Gold Slot 3 – Run Ender

Fearmonger Build

In case you didn’t get the clue in its name, the Fearmonger build is a physically menacing linebacker for Madden 24 Superstar Mode.

This linebacker intimidates every member of the opponent’s attack with their physical presence alone, and they can put added pressure on the quarterback even without actually getting to him like the Avalanche linebackers.

Physique

For this build, we’re going with a Bruiser that stands 6’5″ tall and weighs 270 lbs. This puts his base physical ratings at 95 for strength and stamina and 80 for agility and speed.

The core skill impacts of this physique are worse Catch, Finesse Moves, and Pursuit stats but better Tackle, Power Moves, and Hit Power.

Catching is always important, so we can boost that to a decent level with skill and ability upgrades. However, you shouldn’t miss the other skill deficiencies too much with this style of play.

Skill Upgrades

The recommended upgrades in the attached picture will get your linebacker to a 99 OVR and they require 79 skill points in total.

The order of priority for fully upgrading these skills should be Tackling >>> Man Coverage >>> Hit Power >>> Block Shedding >>> Catching >>> Power Moves. You can also invest a small number of skill points at a time into the other categories simultaneously.

Abilities

  • XFactor Slot – Fearmonger
  • Bronze Slot – Pass Committed
  • Silver Slot – Honorary Tight End
  • Gold Slot 1 – Man KO Elite
  • Gold Slot 2 – Run Ender
  • Gold Slot 3 – Tackle Elite

Reinforcement Build

The Reinforcement build is for players that want a linebacker who is a bit of an all-rounder. If you’re the type of defenseman that likes to contribute to passing defense nearly as much as rushing plays – a Jack of all trades, so to speak – then this is for you.

This build will be excellent in fewer areas compared to the others, but will also have nearly no weaknesses. The real draw is in the selection of abilities as this will determine which playstyle is best suited to making the most of the build.

Physique

For his physique, we’re going for a 6’3″ linebacker that weighs 207 lbs. This will set his base physical ratings at 90 for strength and stamina, and 85 for agility and speed for a Balanced body type.

This physique is not too dissimilar from that of the Avalanche build especially when you look at the core skill impacts and base physical ratings of the resulting body type.

But as I said, the primary determinant of how the player will perform in-game is in the selection of abilities (and skill upgrades!).

Skill Upgrades

The recommended upgrades in the attached picture will get your linebacker to a 99 OVR and they require 81 skill points in total.

The order of priority for fully upgrading these skills should be Play Recognition >> Zone Coverage >> Block Shedding >> Tackle >> Pursuit >> Catching. Again, you can also invest a small number of skill points at a time into the other categories simultaneously.

Abilities

  • XFactor Slot – Reinforcement
  • Bronze Slot – Run Committed
  • Silver Slot – Tackle Elite
  • Gold Slot 1 – Hot Pursuit
  • Gold Slot 2 – Film Student
  • Gold Slot 3 – Run Ender

If you’re fascinated by how defensive plays work in Madden 24, check out our guide to the best defensive playbooks in the game next.

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