April 22, 2010: EA Sports has confirmed that Drew Brees, quarterback of the Super Bowl XLIV champion New Orleans Saints, will appear on the cover of Madden NFL 11. Brees was selected by consumers via the first "Change the Game" promotion, which was sponsored by Doritos.
People voting online selected Brees over Minnesota Vikings defensive end Jared Allen and Indianapolis Colts wide receiver Reggie Wayne. Madden NFL 11 is scheduled to hit retail Aug. 10.
EA Sports said that its partnership with the Doritos brand is the first in a series of initiatives this year "which allow fans to help shape the future of the franchise."
Marketing support for the voting, which went from Feb. 4-March 15, included a promotion offering the opportunity to win a trip to the 2010 NFL Draft in New York (April 22-24) and limited-edition Nacho Cheese and Cool Ranch Doritos featuring former NFL stars and Madden NFL cover athletes Eddie George, Marshall Faulk and Shaun Alexander.
Cover athletes for Madden NFL 10 were Larry Fitzgerald of the Arizona Cardinals and Troy Polamalu of the Pittsburgh Steelers.
Visitors to the Madden NFL 11 Web site also had the opportunity to vote on three match-ups to determine which teams would be featured in the Madden NFL 11 game demo, selecting the AFC championship game between the Colts and New York Jets over a Super Bowl rematch between the Saints and Colts and a replay of the NFC title game between the Saints and Vikings.
"The Madden NFL franchise holds a special place in popular culture and the cover is a coveted position for players all over the league," Brees, who was named Super Bowl XLIV MVP, said in a statement. "I'm honored to be the first cover athlete chosen by Madden NFL fans and it's a great way to cap off an amazing year for the Saints and the city of New Orleans."
According to Rudy Wilson, vp-marketing for PepsiCo division Frito Lay, "Doritos is always looking for unprecedented opportunities to provide our fans access to the things they are most passionate about, and we are thrilled we were able to partner with EA Sports to give consumers complete control over this highly anticipated gaming moment."
Although sales of Madden NFL 10 were down almost 19% versus Madden NFL 09 in 2008, Madden NFL 10 was the top-selling video game of August. EA Sports sold nearly 1.9 million copies of Madden 10, which included figures for the Xbox 360 version (the month's best-seller with 928,000) and Madden for the PS3 (665,000), according to market research company The NPD Group, Port Washington, N.Y.
NPD also reported that U.S. retail sales of videogames, which includes portable and console hardware, software and accessories, generated revenues of more than $19.6 billion, which was an 8% decline over the $21.4 billion generated in 2008.