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Brady, Moss lead AFC East in Madden ratings

Posted by ESPN.com's Tim Graham
AFC South maestro Paul Kuharsky likes to take shots at me because I'm a video game junkie.

But look which blogger was first to breathlessly report that ESPN.com had obtained player ratings for "Madden NFL 10," which will hit the shelves Aug. 14.

If you're twirling your index finger in the air and saying "Whoop dee do," know that these numbers are hotly debated in every NFL locker room. Players compare their Madden ratings and often lord their numbers over inferior teammates.

NFC West foreman Bill Williamson had the chance to inform Oakland Raiders cornerback Nnamdi Asomugha he was rated a 99, tying him for highest in the game.

"That is very cool," Asomugha replied. "I can't believe that. I really respect the people who do the research, and it is a football-based system."

The AFC East was represented in the top-10 rankings of the play-making positions.

Tom Brady is ranked the second-best quarterback with an overall rating of 98, one point behind Peyton Manning. In the individual attributes, Brady scored a 97 in throwing power and awareness.

Brady's top target, Randy Moss, ranked fourth among receivers with a 96. Terrell Owens was 10th, making sure punter Brian Moorman wasn't the Buffalo Bills' top-rated player again.

Moss scored 96 or higher in four of the six individual categories game manufacturer EA Sports provided. He pulled 99s in jumping ability and spectacular catch. Owens scored 95s in route running and catching in traffic.

New York Jets running back Thomas Jones was tied for ninth with a 90. He rated a 92 in carrying and 90 in agility.

No AFC East players rated among the top 10 tight ends or defensive players.