1. You don't trade - trading is key to improving your roster.
2. You don't do weekly training - training using gold drills, focus training young players and making sure you have scheme fits is key to player development.
3. You don't utilize coach xp - weekly training bonus, position xp bonuses, extra scouting points all help your team get better.
4. You don't scout/ make your draft picks - scout every week, pay attention to draft storyline, set your draft board. If you are wasting picks, you will fall behind.
5. You think "ratings don't matter" - this is just false. Ratings matter more than ever at all positions.
6. You don't scout your opponent- look at their roster/depth chart/stats. You can figure out who they like to get the ball to and defend against it.
7. You pick your defense before seeing offensive personnel - please stop coming out in a 4-3 blitz against a spread offense. Match your defense accordingly. Know where the best players are.
8. Know your limitations as a user- if you are bad at coverage, play DL and sprinkle in some coverage until you get better. If you can't user tackle, let the cpu do it. If you throw a lot of picks, move to a run heavy, short play action gameplan.
9. You don't use the tools available to you - DL and LB adjustments, play the sticks, zone depth, CB matchups, hot routes to the sticks, contain, etc. There's so many in game tools to use. If you just pick a play and roll with it, you will be easy to read.
10. You don't ask questions - if you struggle in an area ask for pointers from someone that excels on that area.