AAF Opens With Strong Ratings In Debut Saturday

Orlando Apollos rout Atlanta in AAF debut, 40-6

Orlando Apollos rout Atlanta in AAF debut, 40-6

The events occurred in a odd, chronological order, nearly as though fans were watching an inspirational Hollywood movie instead of the inaugural game of an upstart football league. Be sure to go to there site and support them. For the quarterbacks, a four-round draft was held that allowed teams to protect one player from their region or pick from the entire pool. Some of those changes are that there are no kickoffs or extra points - teams must always go for two after a touchdown- the play clock is 35 seconds instead of 40 seconds and there are no television timeouts. Other startup football leagues like the USFL and XFL did fantastic ratings right away, and then those fizzled quickly. At all. There will still be a coin toss, with the victor deciding whether to receive or defer, but the team that receives the ball will simply send out its offense to start from their own 25-yard line.

The AAF has already found multiple broadcast partners for the 2019 season. Despite the long list of failed pro football franchises in the Alamo City, the locals ate this stuff up. It was a pleasure to watch the defense manhandle the offensive line.

The AAF's leadership board features multiple former National Football League players. Retired defensive ends Jared Allen and Justin Tuck will advise on Player Relations, as officiating consultants Mike Pereira and Dean Blandino offer up the experience they both acquired as the NFL's Vice President of Officiating.

There are many big names in the coaching staff throughout the league like Steve Spurrier, Mike Riley, and Mike Martz. While the San Antonio Commanders and San Diego Fleet game left some to be desired in scoring, there was a lot of positive things to pull from the way the game played out.

Having lower-level leagues is good for these platers, but not necessarily good for the guys who now have spots on NFL rosters.

Looking forward, the AAF hopes to complement - not compete with - the NFL. Fans will be able to log on to an app during the games and interact with a livestreamed broadcast.

"I'd just like to be a story of growth", Ebersol said.

It's never going to be the same quality as the NFL, but the early returns show fun and exciting football to help pass the time in the offseason. Every AAF game will be available to watch thanks to the league's media partners - CBS, Turner Sports, and NFL Network.

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