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Wednesday, April 20, 2011
Poll: Can Hillis reverse 'Madden' curse?

By James Walker

While fans of contending teams don't seem too bothered that their star player was knocked out of the "Madden NFL 12" cover tournament, Cleveland Browns fans are treating this offseason event like their Super Bowl.

Browns running back Peyton Hillis, a No. 10 seed, has made an improbable run to the championship final of the cover tournament to face Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Michael Vick. Thanks to the overwhelming support of Cleveland fans -- and perhaps a boost from rival AFC North fans -- Hillis has beat higher seeds in four consecutive weeks, including the most recent upset of Green Bay Packers quarterback and No. 1 seed Aaron Rodgers.

Most fans don't want the vaunted "Madden curse" to impact their teams, yet the Dawgpound is embracing the challenge. But should they?

As we found out late last season, if Hillis gets hurt Cleveland's chances of winning are slim. The Browns don't have a lot of offensive weapons and struggled to score last year despite Hillis' career season.

Most Browns fans already believe their pro teams are cursed. The Cleveland sports curse, as it's often called, has prevented the city from winning any major pro title since 1964 when Hall of Fame running back Jim Brown led the Browns to an NFL title.

Since then it's been nothing but heartache, year after year, which is why Browns fans are looking at this video game curse as small potatoes. But is this a wise move?

Vote on whether the Dawgpound should be concerned about Hillis and the "Madden curse" in our SportsNation poll, and share your thoughts below.