The death of John Madden has NFL fans remembering everything about his legacy.
That includes the Madden series of NFL video games that has been around for decades.
One thing in particular fans are recalling is all the cover art from the games over the years.
The cover of Madden 12 specifically has the NFL world reacting in a hilarious way on social media.
Browns fans voting Peyton Hillis to a cover remains objectively hilarious https://t.co/URTJjUnMoS
— Ben Axelrod (@BenAxelrod) December 29, 2021
That was the year when the cover art was put up to a fan vote, only for Cleveland Browns running back Peyton Hillis to win the honor.
At the time it seemed like a good move as Hillis ran for over 1,000 yards and looked like a legitimate star.
As we know now, his star faded in record time.
A lot of Hall of Famers here … and Peyton Hillis. https://t.co/SS4gjydPwH
— Jason Lloyd (@ByJasonLloyd) December 29, 2021
The Most Random Madden Cover Of All
There is something odd about looking through the covers, seeing so many stars, and then happening upon Hillis’ face in a Browns uniform.
They really put Peyton Hillis on the cover for having 1100/10 TDs once..that’s like putting Damien Harris on the cover of Madden22. https://t.co/rvIunMamuy
— JB. (@TriggaCityNole) December 29, 2021
— Strauss (@Deez_Steez) December 29, 2021
Peyton Hillis getting a Madden cover was such a dark time for our country
— Vincenzo (@HeHateV) December 29, 2021
Hillis went up against Michael Vick in the final of the fan vote for the right to be on the cover.
So ultimately, the best man may have won in what was a weird process overall.
Being reminded of the fact that Peyton Hillis was once on the cover of Madden is just the laugh I needed today. Browns fans never fail to entertain me.
— Chelsea (@chatswith_chels) December 29, 2021
Peyton Hillis was the original Boaty McBoatface. https://t.co/7lUywzMiYH
— Ben Domenech (@bdomenech) December 29, 2021
Peyton Hillis made it on a Madden cover before Tom Brady did. What a world https://t.co/crmYtWITtW
— Ryan G (@Ryan_Gen23) December 29, 2021
Hillis is a poster athlete for the “Madden curse” after he rushed for just under 600 yards in 2011.
The dominance he showed in 2010 to get him on the cover was nowhere to be seen and the Browns cut him loose following the year.
Putting Calvin Johnson on the cover the following year put some respect back onto the Madden name.
Imagine being Peyton Hillis and going on to Twitter dot com to see your name trending for the first time maybe ever and then finding out it’s because everyone was reminded you were a madden cover athlete and laughing at it
— dan. (@danomomentum) December 29, 2021
Leaving a decision up to the fans can always result in some surprises.
For Hillis, his brief stardom lives on as part of the legacy of one of the best video game franchises of all time.