Actually you can play a friend online but you have to create an online franchise & choose to import the active roster. Download the madden22 roster. If you wait a few days they will probably have all the teams updated with the latest draft picks & free agents for each team.
After you download the roster from the community files, go to load/save files & load the madden22 roster. Create a new franchise & choose to import the current roster you have loaded. Invite your friend or friends to the league.
I did this last year with my brother. I was Panthers & he was a Dolphins. I simulated to the Super Bowl & forced a win for the Panthers & Dolphins through the season & playoffs. We played each other online in the Super Bowl. We would quit the game prior to it actually ending so we could play each other again without having to reset the whole league.