It's not just ball-carriers getting improvements in Madden NFL 17
as the defensive AI (vs. run & pass) has been vastly improved along with the addition of gap control. Alignment, assignment, and technique all matter in the new run fits system.
To help with alignment, the game has added a new defensive auto-flip feature. When ON, this will see the AI automatically flip the defense when the offense flips so that the defense aligns against the strength of the offensive formation. The entire defense, coverage, or front could flip depending on the defensive play call. Each play-type has it's own 'flip rules' to make this determination.
While individual defensive gap assignments will be shown pre-snap, it doesn't mean that will be the gap assignment the entire play. Players will react to the action and update their gap throughout the play. The Play Recognition Rating is very important as the higher the rating, the faster the defender will break out of the new 'read & react' animation to fill their gap.
New run-fit techniques help make defenders play their gap authentically. These techniques include: Force, Cutback, Fill, Jet, Crack-Replace and 2-Gap.
Finally, the detailed blog concludes with information on improvements to blocking, namely zone blocking AI and new animations. Continue on to read the full blog with even deeper details and information from M17 designer and former NFL offensive lineman Clint Oldenburg.