Madden 23: Our 2022 NFL season sim and Super Bowl LVII prediction

TAMPA, FLORIDA - FEBRUARY 07: Tom Brady #12 of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers yells as he takes the field against the Kansas City Chiefs in Super Bowl LV at Raymond James Stadium on February 07, 2021 in Tampa, Florida. (Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images)
TAMPA, FLORIDA - FEBRUARY 07: Tom Brady #12 of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers yells as he takes the field against the Kansas City Chiefs in Super Bowl LV at Raymond James Stadium on February 07, 2021 in Tampa, Florida. (Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images) /
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With preseason finally wrapped up, the start of the 2022 NFL season is almost upon us. The season officially kicks off this Thursday, September 8, with a matchup between the Buffalo Bills and reigning champions Los Angeles Rams.

But before the season officially gets underway, we turn to EA’s Madden NFL video game for a preview of what’s to come. We conducted a full simulation of the upcoming season in Madden 23.

It should be noted that the simulation was conducted prior to Madden’s Week 1 update, which is typically more reflective of the finalized 53-man rosters. Because this update usually doesn’t arrive until hours before the season kickoff, we used the preseason 75-man rosters.

While we had pre-existing injuries on, the simulation was conducted with injuries turned off as to prevent any sort of randomness. Consider this a sim of the 2022 NFL season if every team were to be perfectly healthy. You’re welcome, Christian McCaffery.

So if everything were to play out perfectly for each team, here’s how the 2022 NFL season will shape out, according to Madden 23.

Madden NFL 23: Our 2022 NFL season simulation
Josh Allen #17 of the Buffalo Bills (Photo by Timothy T Ludwig/Getty Images) /

AFC East

The Buffalo Bills remain the favorites to win the AFC East, but the Miami Dolphins could pose a threat now with the addition of Tyreek Hill on offense. And how will Mac Jones fair in his second season as a starter?

Buffalo Bills (9-8)

This is a bit of a head-scratcher. The 2022 Super Bowl favorites finish with a lackluster 9-8 record. It’s still enough to take first place in the middling AFC East, though.

Quarterback Josh Allen has another impressive season with 5,118 passing yards and 35 touchdowns; however, he does throw 18 interceptions. Devin Singletary handles most of the rushing with 248 attempts for 870 yards and a whopping 15 touchdowns. On the receiving side of things, it’s another stellar season for Stefon Diggs who crosses the century mark for receptions (101). His 1,448 receiving yards are the fourth most in the league.  Third-year receiver Gabriel Davis, who steps into a starting role for the first time, catches 75 receptions for 1,103 yards and six touchdowns.

As a team, the Bills have the fifth-best offense in the league with 29.7 points per game. But they also finish near the bottom of the league in defensive points allowed (461 total). That could explain the record.

Miami Dolphins (9-8)

Dolphins quarterback Tua Tagovailoa makes an incredible leap in his third year, throwing for 4,585 yards and 36 touchdowns to just 10 interceptions. Unfortunately, it is the same overall results for the Dolphins who finish 9-8 and miss the playoffs once again.

Jaylen Waddle and Tyreek Hill live up to the hype of a dynamic receiving duo. Waddle records 94 receptions for 1,129 yards and 10 touchdowns, while Hill catches 82 passes for 1,316 yards and 12 touchdowns.

The Dolphins are 8th in points allowed (424). A solid offense and a top-ten defense would normally result in a playoff appearance but a bit of unfortunate luck has the Dolphins out of the postseason.

New England Patriots (5-12)

Mac Jones makes considerable improvement in his sophomore season, throwing for 4,828 yards and 33 touchdowns to just 13 interceptions. Nelson Agholor and Hunter Hunry both cross the century mark with 1,072 and 1,047 receiving yards, respectively.

On the defensive side of the ball, the Patriots allow 505 points for the second-worst defense in the league. A lack of defensive pressure, just 29 sacks, allows teams to pass all over them.

New York Jets (3-14)

Although Zach Wilson will likely miss some time to start the season, his injury wasn’t reflected in our simulation. In his second season, Wilson throws for 25 touchdowns and 10 interceptions. It’s an improvement over his rookie year, but still not enough to get the Jets into the playoffs.

As predicted, Breece Hall takes over starting running back duties, carrying the ball 292 times for 1,177 yards and 9 touchdowns. Michael Carter rushes for just 294 yards but also crosses the endzone seven times.

Elija Moore leads the team in receptions (84), yards (1,195) and touchdowns (8). Meanwhile, rookie Garrett Wilson has an impressive debut season with 69 catches, 799 yards and six touchdowns.