Pittsburgh Steelers defender Antonio Brown has missed just three games in the past five years, but superstitious fans may believe he's in trouble in 2018. As a new face of Madden NFL 19 the six-time Pro Bowler will have to fend off the infamous Madden curse.
It's something he does not worry about.
"I do not really buy all the theories that make people up." Brown told SB Nation. "For me it's just a blessing to be on the cover."
The "curse" dates back to two decades. Players earning a seat on the Madden cover are prone to injury or disappointing seasons. Video Game Release
That did not slow Tom Brady down last year. The quarterback thrived in 201
Will Brown be so happy in 2018?
The case for: Brown is doomed
Yes, the Steelers receiver has been on the pitch for 77 of 80 possible regular season games over the past five years, but that does not mean Brown is on the way no bumps and bruises got. A heavy concussion in January 2016 stopped him from playing a playoff and he suffered a torn calf in 2017.
He avoided a serious injury, but he was just 30 and this wear could eventually add up. It probably does not help that Brown missed the training time by sipping most of the Steelers' OTAs.
But not only Brown's health should be scrutinized. What happens when Ben Roethlisberger goes down?
The Pittsburgh quarterback is severely punished each year and rarely plays a full 16-game season. In the last three years, he suffered knee sprain, foot sprain, concussion, shoulder sprain, and meniscal tear.
When Roethlisberger gets injured in 2018 and takes on Landry Jones or one of the two young passers-by – Josh Dobbs or Mason Rudolph – it can cut into Brown's production.
In the five games Brown played without Roethlisberger in 2015 and 2016, the receiver averaged 4.8 receptions and 68.2 yards per game without touchdowns. That's far below the 7.7 receptions and 104 yards he's averaged over the last four years.
If Roethlisberger misses any time, do not expect another 1,500-yard season from Brown.
The case for: Brown is fine
Brown is consistently healthy and in the field he is always difficult to defend and he had at least 100 shots, 1200 yards and eight touchdowns in each of the last five seasons
There is no reason to believe that he will be injured in 2018, as in any other season, or that he is prepared for a bad season.
Even with a recipient who turns 30, nothing is wrong. This may be the time when running backs slow down, but the age of 29 to 31 years has historically been the most productive year in a receiver's career.
Roethlisberger's health was a little trickier, but he did not even miss an exercise because of an injury in 2017. And if he misses a time, Michael Vick will not be in the starting eleven as the time Roethlisberger kicked in 2015.
Brown's production crashed with Vick at quarterback, but he had 124 yards in Landry Jones starting against the Chiefs in 2015 and 106 yards when Jones launched a game against the Patriots in 2016.
An injury to Roethlisberger may cut in some of Brown's numbers, but he will not magically turn into a receiver who can not crack 800 reception yards of the year.
Players are injured in football all the time and nobody is completely sure, but it's a solid bet that Brown will fare well in 2018.
Verdict: Brown's covertness is low  On a scale from untraceable to totally screwed, I would put Brown's spot on Madden NFL 19 with a splash of spilled salt. If you're the guy to throw that salt over your left shoulder, then maybe you got the Madden curse on the big receiver of the Steeler.
But there have not been many victims of the curse lately, so don't worry: Brown will probably be fine.