Longshot is a story mode first introduced in Madden NFL 18. Longshot follows Devin Wade, a quarterback from Mathis, Texas, as he tries to reach the NFL, and includes high school and college football games.
Quarterback Devin Wade, along with childhood friend and wide receiver Colton "Colt" Cruise, visit Indianapolis to participate in the NFL Regional Combine. There, Devin's performance catches the attention of TV producers Ross Fountain and Julia Vasco, who want him to be the star of a series titled Longshot, which would follow the story of a player with low odds of making it into the NFL and turn him into an NFL Draftee, receiving the assistance of coach Jack Ford, the presenter of the program. Devin and Colt leave without an answer to think. On the drive home, Devin reminisces about his successful high school career before his struggles at the University of Texas, which he left after just four games following his father's death in a car accident. To Devin, Colt, and Julia's surprise, Ross arranges for three other quarterbacks to compete with him on the show. Although Jack urges Ross to select another quarterback due to Devin's inability to call plays, Ross forces Jack to choose him for his better marketing potential and guilt tripping him by mentioning Devin's deceased parents.
Annoyed by what he considers boring television, Ross arranges an exhibition match for Devin in front of NFL scouts, scheduled to take place in two weeks. Devin is worried about the game, but Colt, who had been invited to the NFL Super Regional Combine, instead decides to join the show and help him. At a press conference the day before the game, Devin's confidence is shattered by questions about where he had disappeared after his Texas career. Devin asks Ross to postpone the game, but he and Julia are fired. Jack attempts to persuade Devin to stay, but he and Colt drive home.
In Texas, Colt tells Devin he is tired of helping him, only for Devin to quit whenever the situation proves to be too difficult. Devin starts working at his friend's construction business, where his coworkers and former Mathis teammates remember their high school days. That night, Devin is still working against his friends' interests as a Mathis High School football ceremony is taking place. Colt eventually arrives and makes amends with Devin. After the ceremony, Julia visits the two and convinces them to rejoin the show.
Returning to the Longshot studios, Devin reunites with Jack and apologizes for leaving, while Jack does so for failing to properly train him. At the meeting, the chairman of the TV network that Longshot is on, declares Ross' behavior onscreen inappropriate and allows the player to choose whether to demote or fire him. Following said meeting, Jack introduces Devin to his good friend, former Miami Dolphins great Dan Marino, who further coaches Devin. The two visit a military base in Dubai in the United Arab Emirates, where Devin was stationed after enlisting in the Army following his time at Texas. There, Captain McCarthy explains he had helped Devin rediscover his love for football.
For the Legends Game, Devin's team is to progress through five challenges, with the first three based on moving the offense downfield from certain starting yard lines in an allotted time frame. In the fourth, Devin has to complete a scoring drive without throwing a pass to Colt. For the final challenge, rain falls on the stadium as Devin faces a 3rd and 15 situation, an atmosphere resembling his final game at Texas. After scoring, Devin is greeted by the cheers of Longhorn fans, having finally redeemed himself.
Devin and Colt's NFL futures vary based on the player's behavior in the Legends Game. There are two possible endings related to the Draft: Devin gets drafted by his favorite team (which the player picked earlier in the game), or Colt gets drafted by Devin's favorite team's rival and Devin is undrafted. In the former, Devin is selected in the seventh round, but Colt is not drafted. Devin tries to encourage him, but Colt tells him to enjoy the feeling. Devin leaves the house and shouts in glee before stopping to remember his childhood.
In the undrafted ending, Colt is drafted in the sixth round, but apologizes to Devin out of disbelief. As the seventh round concludes, Devin is not drafted and leaves the house, where he vents his frustration and sits on the porch. A flashback to his childhood days with his father takes place, where Cutter tells him while victory does not always occur, if one gives it their best, they have the right to feel like a winner. However, Dan calls Devin to announce two teams have expressed interest in signing him as an undrafted free agent: his favorite team and Colt's team. After telling Colt of his new team, the two celebrate.
Standing on his porch, Devin receives a text from Jack, who congratulates and thanks him for allowing him to be his coach. Devin returns to his room and looks at his Texas cap on the desk, telling his father he finally had something to be proud of before placing his NFL team's cap with it.