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Tebow’s out in race for ‘Madden NFL 13′ cover

Plugged In

There won't be any Tebowing on the cover of this year's Madden.

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Tim Tebow (Getty Images)

The New York Jets quarterback, who was the odds-on favorite to front the next version of EA's football game, was eliminated in the first round of fan voting in this year's seeded bracket tournament. Houston running back Arian Foster defeated the media darling in a close matchup.

Technically, Foster was seeded higher than Tebow in the EA rankings, but Las Vegas oddsmakers had given Tebow a 5 to 1 shot of making it. Foster, as of mid-March, was further back in the pack with 18 to 1 odds.

Carolina Panthers QB Cam Newton -- EA's #1 seed -- and New England Patriots tight end Rob Gronkowski, who trailed Tebow in the odds, are still in the running.

All totaled, 8.5 million votes were cast in the first round of voting, which started March 7. The second round, which is now underway, pits 16 NFL players against each other. Voting is open until April 4.

Other familiar names that remain contenders include Saints QB Drew Brees, Detroit's Calvin Johnson and Green Bay's Aaron Rodgers.

If you happened to have placed a bet on the Madden cover tourney earlier this month — and you went for a longshot -- things may still be looking good for you. San Diego's Antonio Gates and the Cardinals' Larry Fitzgerald are still in the running. Both posted 50 to 1 odds before the brackets were formed.

The seriously long odds against Buffalo's Stevie Johnson, Kansas City's Dwayne Bowe, Washington's Brian Orakpo and Indianapolis' Dwight Freeney proved to be right on point, though. All four 100 to 1 shots are out of the running.

The ultimate winner of the brackets — and new cover athlete for Madden NFL 13 — will be announced on a special version of ESPN's SportsNation on April 25 at 5pm.

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