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Klomp

Assessing the Alliance (AAF)

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1 hour ago, The Gnat said:

I watched about 30 seconds of it. I think it's going to have a lot of trouble in the long run. With the XFL, even the new version coming back, people are still going to treat it like second rate football, the AAF is basically the NFL's minor league's, which is a good thing, but as a more serious football league, the product on the field was not all that great in week one.

If it gets full support from the NFL, it can survive, but that is always going to be an open question.  The USFL had, by far, the best opportunity to survive, but our current President had a huge hand in destroying that chance...and the era of TV that we live in (back then, cable was still a young entity and there were only 3 channels plus PBS, as Fox did not exist yet), with so many multiple other things to watch, makes it a far more difficult environment for a minor league like to this to succeed.  To succeed, it has to find a niche to survive, whether as a true minor league to send draftees/bottom of the roster players to, or as an alternative pathway to the NFL for guys who can't succeed academically in college.  The shtick of trying out new rules won't be enough.     

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13 hours ago, swede700 said:

If it gets full support from the NFL, it can survive, but that is always going to be an open question.  The USFL had, by far, the best opportunity to survive, but our current President had a huge hand in destroying that chance...and the era of TV that we live in (back then, cable was still a young entity and there were only 3 channels plus PBS, as Fox did not exist yet), with so many multiple other things to watch, makes it a far more difficult environment for a minor league like to this to succeed.  To succeed, it has to find a niche to survive, whether as a true minor league to send draftees/bottom of the roster players to, or as an alternative pathway to the NFL for guys who can't succeed academically in college.  The shtick of trying out new rules won't be enough.     

It seems that it has a good portion of backing from the NFL. They played it on NFL network, Kurt Warner (who works for NFL network) was the analyst for a game, have their highlights on their website, and have their schedule on their bottom line.

Edited by byuvike88

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I enjoyed watching it. Christian Hackenburg is still pretty terrible though.

Didn't Bishop Sankey and Jhurrel Pressley play for us at one point?

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I've seen a couple of the games so far. Not bad. Not great. Good production value, and I like most of the uniforms so far. It could find a springtime niche. 

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What I appreciate about the AAF is it isn't gimmicky. They aren't really changing the rules or how the game is played. The field isn't half the length of an NFL field and the game doesn't start with a scramble.

The talent level will improve as the league develops. Getting NFL backing would be big, as I think it could benefit both leagues as well as the players.

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The only issue with the AAF becoming the NFL’s “developmental” league, is that it’s really only going to be for fringe roster players. You're never going to see a young player get “sent to the minors” after their 1st/2nd year. 

It’s great for these guys trying to get back into the NFL, or realize their dreams of playing in the NFL. 

But is the NFL really going to invest enough to make the AAF sustainable, just so that the bottom 5, or so players on their roster get a few extra reps? I doubt it. The AAF is going to need to find a formula for success that doesn’t involve the NFL. 

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3 hours ago, SemperFeist said:

But is the NFL really going to invest enough to make the AAF sustainable, just so that the bottom 5, or so players on their roster get a few extra reps? I doubt it. The AAF is going to need to find a formula for success that doesn’t involve the NFL. 

The NFL got about a decade out of NFL Europe. Personally, I think it would've lasted longer if it were in American markets rather than Europe. They did a good job for the most part of selecting markets not overly saturated by pro leagues. Arizona and Atlanta are two markets with multiple pro teams. This is a niche that I think can work, like how it has for minor league baseball and basketball.

I also think the NFL has opened its eyes some on talent evaluation, making them more willing and able to discover gems that were previously overlooked.

I think they could do something where practice squad players all get a spot in AAF. It allows teams to watch players on other teams and also can be a springboard for players who feel they haven't gotten a fair shot because they're buried on the depth chart. Could you imagine Thielen getting his first real opportunity to shine in that league? Or giving Sloter live reps? Showcasing players like this could even improve the trade value of players who perform well.

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1 hour ago, Klomp said:

The NFL got about a decade out of NFL Europe. Personally, I think it would've lasted longer if it were in American markets rather than Europe. They did a good job for the most part of selecting markets not overly saturated by pro leagues. Arizona and Atlanta are two markets with multiple pro teams. This is a niche that I think can work, like how it has for minor league baseball and basketball.

I also think the NFL has opened its eyes some on talent evaluation, making them more willing and able to discover gems that were previously overlooked.

I think they could do something where practice squad players all get a spot in AAF. It allows teams to watch players on other teams and also can be a springboard for players who feel they haven't gotten a fair shot because they're buried on the depth chart. Could you imagine Thielen getting his first real opportunity to shine in that league? Or giving Sloter live reps? Showcasing players like this could even improve the trade value of players who perform well.

I agree with you, Klomp.  Oh, how people forget what the waffle league did for guys like Brad Johnson, James Harrison, Jake Delhomme, Jon Kitna and Kurt Warner.  

Edited by swede700

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Oh, we also can't forget the one waffle league player still playing in the NFL...one Adam Vinatieri.  

I hope it does succeed.  There have been several attempts at creating a sort of developmental league, and all have failed because of a lack of concrete plans, funding, or endorsement by the NFL.  I haven't watched it yet, but I would if there were some type of regional team, maybe in Omaha, Des Moines, St. Louis, or Oklahoma City/Tulsa.  So, maybe once they get some solid footing and maybe expand to 12-16 teams that will help (with most teams probably being from southern destinations) and I'll consider watching more.  I don't really have a lot of available time on weekends as it is, though, so I'd need a regional team to help garner my interest...at least enough to consider recording it to watch later.      

Edited by swede700

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It would be nice to see a league where the NFL can delegate players to receive NFL level coaching and more reps. I hope that the AAF or the XFL become that. It would definitely benefit QB's. 

I think the affiliations would have to be loose between NFL teams and the teams from the lower league. You don't want to send a man-corner to a team that plays zone almost exclusively, or send a mauler to a ZBS team. 

 

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Well, this isn't promising....

 

Quote

The Alliance of American Football is only a few weeks old and already it has encountered the biggest problem that plagues most startup leagues.

According to a report from The Athletic, the AAF despite a good ratings debut, was running low on cash with the possiblity of missing payroll before its second weekend of play.

But then Carolina Hurricanes owner Tom Dundon stepped up and made a $250 million investment in the league. 

 https://www.si.com/nfl/2019/02/19/aaf-money-problems-tom-dundon-investment

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It's not surprising...as that happens with most leagues (and businesses in general too).  The hardest part is getting through the first year.

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20 minutes ago, swede700 said:

It's not surprising...as that happens with most leagues (and businesses in general too).  The hardest part is getting through the first year.

Not surprising but I'm surprised it only made it two weeks before these issues came abound.

 

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At a time when many are wondering why the Alliance of American Football needed $250 million last week, the correct answer to the question could be that it didn’t.

“It was not urgency,” Ebersol told PFT by phone, explaining that the AAF has been structured like a tech startup, with multiples rounds of investments planned. Dundon decided to short-circuit the process.

With a fresh $250 million, there should be no urgency now. Whether that means Dundon will get a return on his investment is a different issue, as is whether the league will survive for the long haul. Regardless of what the consequences of not getting the money could have been, the reality is that the league should now have the funding to get through at least a couple of seasons, if not longer.

 

https://profootballtalk.nbcsports.com/2019/02/19/ebersol-aaf-cash-infusion-from-dundon-was-about-opportunity-not-urgency/

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