Madden developer EA Tiburon just announced details regarding what's new for its Connected Franchise Mode (CFM). While there aren't any big splashy sea-change features, a bunch of tweaks are being instituted to tune the game in various areas.

Here's an excerpted list of some of the changes for CFM:

Draft 

  • There's a customizable, drag/drop draft board.
  • The CPU makes decisions based on your draft board if you automate the process, and it adheres to a maximum player position limit and a "cooldown per position."
  • More top-tier and undrafted WR prospects. Decreased mid- to low-tier WRs. The range for maximum-rated top-tier WR prospects has been increased, while the minimum ratings for lower/mid-tier WR prospects has been lowered.
  • Better Awareness for all WR prospects.

Trades 

  • It's harder to trade for rookies as well as players in the first year of their contract.
  • Other positions such as QBs and RBs have extra trade value and will be harder to pry away from their teams.

Free Agency 

  • Players are more choosey about accepting offers, particularly lower offers when there's only one team bidding.

Injuries 

  • There are off-the-ball injuries this year, but also a reduction in the rate and severity of injuries. The frequency of long-term ones are reduced and the short-term ones increased.

QB Retirement 

  • As a concession to cover star Tom Brady, quarterback careers will be longer "when they deserve it." Brady himself will no longer retire after a single season in CFM.

Pre-Season 

  • Roster cuts occur in the last week of pre-season
  • Starters' playtime is now more accurate, with starters playing only one quarter in the first and fourth pre-season games, two quarters in the second game, and three in the third.

XP Progression 

  • Increased XP goals for some positions
  • More XP for a Pro Bowl appearance for offensive linemen, WRs, and DBs.
  • Double training rewards for Superstar and Quick players.
  • Physical ratings cost more (Speed, Strength, acceleration, and agility), with higher costs at higher ratings.
  • Young players get a discount on physical ratings until age 27.
  • A.I. WRs upgrade more efficiently to increase their OVR, while Route Running and Release attributes cost more.
  • Power and Finesse Moves cost more for defenders by approximately 80 percent.
  • Accuracy, Throw on Run, and Play Action for QBs costs more.

Regression 

  • Speed for WRs, CBs, and RBs don't regress below 90 due to age.
  • Regression is added more slowly over time.
  • Older players' Awareness regresses on underperforming teams.

Relocation 

  • Las Vegas and San Diego have been added as options. L.A. is removed.

Commentary 

  • More contextual drama has been added for the Super Bowl, and the fourth-quarter and two-minute drill. Gaudin and Davis also talk about the playoff hunter, weekly award winners, and recap earlier games.

For the full details, head over to the official blog post by clicking on the source link below. You can also take a look at my thoughts on where CFM appears to be heading in this previous installment of The Sports Desk.

[Source: Madden NFL 18]