Rob Gronkowski appeared on Sports Center Thursday night to talk about being named as the cover boy for Madden 17. Patriots fans everywhere reacted strongly to the news - but not all in a positive fashion.
While some were excited that one of their heroes was recognized for his greatness, at least as many were worried about the ramifications of the so-called Madden Curse.
Whether or not the curse is legitimate is probably a matter of perspective, but the fact is that recent cover boys have enjoyed strong seasons after making an appearance. In fact, each of the last four have been completely unaffected by being on the cover.
The greatest example came in 2012 when Detroit's Calvin Johnson was on the cover of Madden 12. He then went out and set the NFL record for receiving yards in a season with 1,964. Seattle corner Richard Sherman remained an All-Pro in 2014 and wideout Odell Beckham Jr. had 13 touchdowns last year after appearing on the cover.
Players like Adrian Peterson, Eddie George, Ray Lewis, Drew Brees and Larry Fitzgerald all continued to thrive despite being featured on Madden covers as well.
But it hasn't been all roses. The most famous, or infamous, example came in 1999 when Barry Sanders abruptly retired from football just as training camp was set to open. Falcons quarterback Michael Vick broke his leg in 2003 after appearing on the cover of Madden 04. Seattle running back Shaun Alexander was unable to follow up his MVP season after hitting the cover and rushed for just 896 yards in 2006, almost 1,000 fewer than he racked up the season before.
Team PFW doesn't believe in curses so this week we're stepping aside from weighing in and instead we're opening up the polls to see how the fans feel.
Now it's your turn to cast a vote in this week's Samsonite Make Your Case poll question.