Who is ready for some more football?
On Saturday, a report was published via the Associated Press titled, "New developmental league launching in Fall." The story has already been out there for about a month, but now seems like a fitting time to discuss it a little more.
The league is called the Fall Experimental Football League (FXFL), and has no affiliation to any other football leagues currently in existence. It will be launching this October, though, with 6 teams and 40 players per roster on limited salaries. Each team will play 6 games in minor league baseball stadiums. At the inception of the league, the following locations will have teams:
- New York area
- Boston area
- Austin, Texas
- Portland, Oregon
- Omaha, Nebraska
- Florida area
Salaries will be $1,000 a week for the players, and coaches will draw from a pool of around $110,000 for the staff, according to the report. The league will place an emphasis on trying to reach out to younger players versus veteran players, and are also even considering opening the league up to players from right out of high school who did not want to the college path right away. It might seem like a low salary for these players to put their body on the line, but it gives them another opportunity to put their skills on tape in live game action, perhaps for another shot at the NFL.
Brian Woods, the FXFL commissioner, said that the league hopes to become the developmental organization for the NFL one day, and also a "testing ground" for things that the NFL might want to implement, such as the elimination of the kicking game:
"Our long-term goal is to establish a partnership with the NFL," Woods says, "and we feel can do that on many platforms. It would give them a way to work with younger players that they don't currently have. We can help them train prospective NFL officials — in the NBA, every referee entering the league (in recent years) comes from NBA Developmental League. ... We can be a testing ground for proposed rules, too."
What types of new rules? For one, the league is considering the removal of kickoffs, extra points, and punts, according to the report.
Personally, I am 100% in favor of the NFL having a developmental league in which teams can assign several players to. If that happened, I would probably follow the games regularly to see which players we might have coming up on the horizon. Without a partnership already set, though, I feel no allegiance to any of the players, and that's not going to garner my interest a lot...unless there is one stud player who absolutely dominates the league, and then an NFL team breaks ground by signing them.
What do you think of the league, Browns fans? Does it have a chance of succeeding?