1-Man’s Opinion on Sports–Thursday “Alliance American Football-Mid Season Report”

Posted by on March 7th, 2019  •  0 Comments  • 

“AAF Football-What We See-What They See”

-0-

The Alliance of American Football, the new spring league, has reached the halfway mark of the 10-game schedule this weekend.

Some good games, some bad games. Some big plays. Some really bad crowds.

A chance to grow football players, but a likely failure in gaining fan support, with some terrible home turnout crowds.

Some big name coaches having an impact on players, like Steve Spurrier and Mike Martz. Some bad situations, like coaching upheaval in Atlanta and bad weather in Salt Lake City.

Bill Polian, the founder of the AAF, and San Antonio GM Darryl Johnston…talked to the nationwide media about the startup season, where they are, where they might wind up.

———

Signing players…no policy to allow NFL teams to sign players….we expect our players to stay committed to our teams thru the season and our playoffs….They can leave once OTA’s start in April.

Johnny Manziel situation…We had feelers from people close to him…we are in the process of doing due diligence…50-percent completed…not ready to comment on his status.

NFL talks…we have had specific talks with them about getting access to young QBs-WRs on rosters and on development squad….We have bandied it about but no deal in place…we want to be complimentary to the NFL player development….Coaches feel new CBA prevents them from developing players….Lots of discussion about it….procedural things to be solved.

Hits on QBs….Yes we are concerned and have talked to officials about protecting the QBs…the San Diego QBs-took big hits…..we are using college officials who need to grow on the job.

Defenses-vs-Offenses…..Defenses are ahead of schedule…building offenses takes time….teams have moved the ball up and down the field, but red-zone scoring is a challenge right now….Teams have had 21-play drives…..offenses have been much more efficient……Our teams cannot run the ball very well….Think second half of season offenses will open up.

Passing Game…..Remind their players work on jugs machine…catch more balls…too many dropped passes…

How measure new league…TV numbers surpass anything we remotely dreamed about-a huge success….ratings are holding…San Antonio-Orlando remarkable at the gate….Birmingham-Salt Lake plagued by really bad weather…Coaches-GMs done tremendous job getting players-teams ready….We have moved beyond a curiosity factor-holding fans….League is developing parity now.

Outlook going forward…Expansion-relocation…is not on the front burner…lots of work to do to solidify our markets…no thoughts to relocation….Because of weather-don’t have a real handle on some of the markets and how well be supported…we expect our players to wind up on NFL off season rosters when our season is over…Need to get the 8-teams on solid footing their own communities.

Surprise in launching…Our hope we could put product on field..real football….for real football people….for real football fans…Thing is so gratifying is these players play hard all the time-it is professional football…these guys are men playing professional football…Fans seem intensity-physicality-competitiveness…it has to be real football…

Rules…I think ‘sky judge’ we are using has been exceptional….best official is the guy whose name you never call…New innovative things are working-we are thrilled about that.

Start up…We got up and running in just 9-months…Our priority was getting product up and running….League wide marketing is behind what we needed to do from a football standpoint…

Money issues at start of season…The payroll issue was purely a mechanical one….New investor coming on board helped us….but they were separate occurrences…just a coincidence…Tom Dundon-new investor-is engaged everyday with us-future is solid and bright.

San Diego Fleet situation…..Crowds have been terrific…it’s a good team…Mike Martz doing a heck of a job with adjustments…this will be a great race to the wire in the West and the Fleet will be right in…

Start up….True start up is challenging but we had foundational elements in place thanks to Bill Polian….GMs feel like they had ADD daily…so much to deal with aside from just football calendar….Biggest thing learning…coming into camp…try not to disrupt chemistry…have to scramble to find players if you get injuries…Two major challenges….time element…we had 9-months to get up and running…..When I was with Carolina Panthers it took 14-months…USFL was a 24-month startup…..Big challenge was finding practice facilities for all of our teams….Incredible field walk out at Alamodome to see the crowd….Hit jackpot to bringing 8-teams into San Antonio for joint training camp….Turned out great-hard deal to find hotels for the 8-teams…get practice facilities…

Why have past leagues not succeeded….WFL-USFL-XFL failed….Investment we have it guarantees us long-term in mind….You cannot live from day to day…need to see over horizon….Tom Dundon as lead investor gives us vision….NFL Europe succeeded-but nobody knew because of time difference….Players did not become well known in Europe….but Kurt Warner-Jon Kitna-Brad Johnson did when they came back here….we’re trying to do what NFL Europe did-do it here…fans get to experience it here…now.

================

Leave a Comment:

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *