Lowest-Rated Player In Madden 09 Gets First Start

The last player selected in the NFL Draft is known as Mr. Irrelevant. The distinction includes all sorts of perks not usually reserved for a guy passed over more than 250 times by all 32 teams. In addition to being honored with the prestigious Lowsman Trophy, this year’s Mr. I, David Vobora, got to kick it at the Playboy Mansion. Not too shabby for someone fighting for an NFL roster spot.

John Madden Football

No idea what fringe benefits come along with being the lowest rated player in Madden 09, but Bills rookie offensive tackle Demetrius Bell, holder of that honor, will get a chance to start today’s preseason finale against the Lions. And it’s all because his embarrassingly low Madden ratings motivated him to greatness. Or maybe it was because everybody else was injured. Definitely one or the other, though.

Bell will get his chance because the Bills are depleted at tackle. Starter Jason Peters has refused to report to the team over a contract dispute, while interim starter Langston Walker is expected to be held out as a precaution after hurting his left arm in a 20-7 win at Indianapolis last weekend. And then there’s reserve Matt Murphy, who’s out indefinitely with a partially torn left rotator cuff.

Hey, whatever gets you on the field, and Bell sounds like he’s appreciative of the opportunity: “It’s a big deal for me … It’s a lot of pressure, but I’m ready for it.”

So how low is his rating? Via to the LOCKPORT UNION-SUN & JOURNAL:

…Bell was given an overall rating of 53. Every other player in the game has a rating of 60 or better. …

Informed of his low rating, Bell had an optimistic reaction.

“That’s good, because I have to work my way up,” he said. “I don’t want them to think I’m good, then I end up being a bust. I think it gives me a chance to show people how good I can be.”

His sunny disposition should be worth a 60 rating, if you ask me.

Fun Demetrius Bell fact: He’s the estranged son of Karl Malone, which, in retrospect, doesn’t sound all that fun.