Did You Watch? The NFL’s Biggest Competitor Kick-Started Their Season On Saturday

The National Football League certainly did themselves no favors for how they handled (or mishandled) kneeling during the National Anthem and as a result, many viewers left the sport.

Some people on both sides of the argument said they were turning off their televisions and would no longer watch or support the NFL. Similarly, some people said the NFL was becoming too political and they would no longer watch it.

Then came the AAF.

The Alliance of American Football jumped at the opportunity to give the people what they want.

The AAF claims to fix or prevent some of the problems the NFL has and even changed some of their rules to do so. Their season kickstarted on Saturday with season openers between the Atlanta Legends at Orlando Apollos and San Diego Fleet at San Antonio Commanders, USA Today reports. The Apollos and Commanders won their games by a score of 40 to 6 and 15 to 6, respectively.

At one point during the second quarter of the Atlanta-Orlando game, the officiating booth had to review whether or not the play was a touchdown. As the crew was deliberating, viewers were able to hear the argument in real time for why the call was eventually overturned. This is a departure from how the NFL conducts its official reviews.

As CBS Sports reports, the AAF will have two more games on Sunday with the remaining teams playing.

From USA Today:

In all, there are eight teams playing a 10-game regular-season schedule. The league championship game will be held on April 27, which also happens to be the final day of the 2019 NFL draft.

The new pro football league features a number of familiar names to NFL fans. Former NFL GM Bill Polian is the league’s head of football. Former Pittsburgh Steelers players Troy Polamalu and Hines Ward are head of player relations and head of football development, respectively. Former NFL vice presidents of officiating Dean Blandino and Mike Pereira are officiating consultants. Charlie Ebersol, son of retired NBC Sports executive Dick Ebersol, is co-founder and CEO of the AAF.


Some major rules differences from the NFL include:

♦ No kickoffs or extra point attempts. Teams must attempt two-point conversions. Possessions will start at the 25-yard line. There also are no onside kicks; instead, a team can attempt a play from scrimmage from their own 28-yard line and need to gain at least 12 yards.
♦ No television timeouts.
♦ A 35-second play clock (the NFL employs a 40-second play clock).
♦ Coaches get two challenges; no challenges, however, in final two minutes of each half.
♦ Overtime will be one possession for each team from their opponent’s 10-yard line. No field goal attempts can be made.

The teams are divided into the Eastern and Western Conferences, with four teams in each.

The Eastern Conference includes the Atlanta Legends, the Birmingham Iron, the Memphis Express, and the Orlando Apollos. The Western Conference includes the Arizona Hotshots, the Salt Lake Stallions, the San Antonio Commanders, and the San Diego Fleet.

Check them out below:

Alliance of American Football/Twitter

Alliance of American Football/Twitter

Alliance of American Football/Twitter

Alliance of American Football/Twitter

Alliance of American Football/Twitter

Alliance of American Football/Twitter

Alliance of American Football/Twitter

Alliance of American Football/Twitter

Here’s what some people are saying about the new league:



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