I play on all-madden (all 50 sliders), 15 min quarter and what I love to do is to experiment with different stock defensive playbooks. One play that is mostly on all stock defensive playbooks is Cover2 in both nickel- and 3-4 formation.
When using 3-4 formation, I usually first put my better ILB into bump coverage and the other ILB into hook zone. Next thing I shift+spread defensive tackles, leave the OLBs as they are by default, so they prevent fast runs between b-c gaps (between guards and tackles). When I want to confuse the AI, I change my 3rd CB and put him into man coverage vs best WR, and immediately take closer safety into double cov. AI can gain max.one 1st down or let's say 7-13 yards, but if I swat the ball away or even pick him, AI's next 4-5 plays will surely be run. He won't throw the ball at all.
When in nickel formation, I line up my 3rd CB into heavy blitz position but change it immediately after the huddle breaks into zone, and again, spread the D-line. What mostly happens is that AI gets delay of game penalty or just throws it away or even takes a sack.
On 3rd and Long, I only play DIME Cover-4 zone and put my MLB into "red smart zone", the best AI can pull is 4-5 yards and a punt.
I guess it's not a deep philosophy, but it works all the time.