The AAF (Alliance of American Football) is a professional American football league that was founded and created on March 20, 2018 by Charlie Ebersol, son of NBC Sports President Dick Ebersol. The league is scheduled to begin play and operations on February 2019, one week following the NFL’s Super Bowl Championship Game. The AAF will be overseen by former NFL General Manager Bill Polian, former Pittsburgh Steelers Safety Troy Polamalu and Executive J.K. McKay. Advisers of the league will include Hines Ward, Justin Tuck and Dick Ebersol himself.
The AAF has been in discussions with potential coaches for the league, with a base salary for a head coach estimated at $500,000. Coaches will not be announced until their team has been announced and potential coaching candidates must sign a non-disclosure agreement. Bill Polian stated that the league would prefer coaches with previous NFL experience to fill the positions. The first team that was announced for the AAF was Orlando with its Coach Steve Spurrier and the announcement was made last April 7, 2018. By June 2018, the league plans to announce all eight teams and their cities. Regional drafts would then be held with protection for local college players that are eligible.
The AAF plans to begin its inaugural, 10-week season on February 9, 2019. By April 26-28 2019, the four-team playoff would be capped off with the league’s championship game. If the AAF survives to reach its second season, it will find itself in direct competition with Vince McMahon’s XFL, which was announced to relaunch by January or February 2020.
The league will operate as a single entity, with all teams owned and operated by the league, under the name Legendary Field Exhibitions LLC. Some of the investors in the AAF include Peter Thiel’s Founders Fund, The Chernin Group (which owns Barstool Sports), Jared Allen, Slow Ventures, Adrian Fenty, Charles King’s M Ventures, and Keith Rabois. The league is also planning special arrangements like player bonuses and scholarships. Player bonuses will be based on performance and fan interaction, and players would earn a year’s scholarship in post-secondary education for each season of play. For the fans, in addition to a fantasy league built into mobile broadcasts, low ticket prices ($35) and inexpensive food are planned. It will be interesting to see which league between the XFL and the AAF will be much more watched and followed by the American people. It will also be interesting to see which league will be much more received and appreciated by the American people as well as the worldwide audience.
For more knowledge and in-depth look on what the AAF will look like and how the games will be played, you can check out the rules of the AAF below:
– Teams will have 50 players on each roster, with some selected by a territorial draft.
– Telecasts will feature no television timeouts and 60 percent fewer commercials, with the league aiming for an approximate real-time game length of 150 minutes, down from just over 180 in the NFL.
– All teams must attempt two-point conversions after each touchdown; there will be no extra point kicks.
– There will be no kickoffs; all possessions will begin on each team’s own 25-yard line, the same as touchbacks in the NFL and NCAA. The team on defense can keep the ball, in lieu of an onside kick, by attempting a scrimmage play from their own 35-yard line and gaining at least 10 yards.
– The play clock will run only 30 seconds, 10 seconds shorter than in the NFL.
– Two coach’s challenges per team are the only replays.
– Outside organizations will handle head-safety protocols.
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