Championship Game: A Closer Look at the Defensive Lines

The Championship Game will feature two loaded defensive lines!

September 16, 2021
Tim Hanswillemenke
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Sea Devils DT Yeboah against Galaxy's offensive line in week one of the regular season. ©Michael Freitag

The Frankfurt Galaxy (9-1) and the Hamburg Sea Devils (7-3) both have outstanding defensive lines that could dictate the outcome of the Championship Game on September 26th.

Let’s have a look at both units and their production throughout the regular season and the conference playoff games.

Frankfurt Galaxy (9-1)

21.0 Sacks | 34 TFL | 52 Solo | 2 PBUs | 2 PDs | 1 FF

The Frankfurt Galaxy defensive line was dominant throughout the entire 2021 season. The defensive line was responsible for 21 sacks out of 38 total sacks recorded by the team. On top of that, the Galaxy defensive line came up with 34 tackles for loss and 52 solo tackles. However, two pass-breakups and two passes deflected are not a lot compared to the Sea Devils defensive line. The Galaxy defensive line also forced one fumble throughout the regular season and in the South Conference playoff game combined.

Players that stand out with their performance and production are defensive end Kevin Maier, defensive end Ville Valasti, and All-Star defensive tackle Marc-Anthony Hor. All three of those players were set as starters against the Cologne Centurions (5-5) in the South Conference playoff game.

Especially defensive tackle Marc-Anthony Hor is a player to look out for in the upcoming Championship Game as he alone had twelve tackles for loss and six sacks for a combined loss of 100 yards over the course of the season.  

A player that stepped up in the South Conference playoff game was defensive end Cedric Udegbe. He had six total tackles and one tackle for loss against the Centurions which ranked sixth among all Galaxy defenders, alhtough he did not start the game. He could be a difference maker as avaluable rotational player in the Championship Game.

Overall, the strength and depth of the Galaxy defensive line is note worthy. Six players on their defensive line have recorded at least 1.5 sacks over the course of the season. In addition, eight total players on the Galaxy defensive line recorded at least one tackle for loss.

Hamburg Sea Devils (7-3)

21.0 Sacks | 55 TFL | 63 Solo | 8 PBUs | 9 PDs | 2 FF

The Hamburg Sea Devils defensive line recorded 21 sacks over the course of the regular season and in the North Conference playoff combined. However, this is not even half of the 44 total sacks by the Sea Devils defense. Despite recording the same number of sacks as the Galaxy defensive line, the Sea Devils recorded astonishing 55 tackles for loss and 63 solo tackles throughout the course of the season. This marks 21 more tackles for loss and eleven more solo tackles compared to the Galaxy defensive line.  What also stands out are the number of pass-breakups and passes deflected. With eight pass-breakups and nine passes deflected, the Sea Devils clearly have the edge over the Galaxy defensive line when it comes to pass defense.

The Sea Devils defensive line features a lot of impressive players as well who stood out with their performance and productionin the inaugural season of the league. Defensive tackle Hiswill Awuah, defensive tackle Evans Yeboah, defensive end Nelson Imasuen, and All-Star defensive end Berend Grube all stand out on the Sea Devils defensive front.

Especially, All-Star defensive end Berend Grube and defensive tackle Evans Yeboah could be difference makers on September 26th. Grube recorded five and a half sacks and 14 tackles for loss over the course of the season, alongside three pass-breakups, three passes deflected and one forced fumble. Yeboah has the most tackles for loss on the Sea Devils defensive line with 15. He also recorded five and a half sacks, one interception, three pass-breakups, four passes deflected, and one forced fumble.

Grube, Yeboah, and fellow defensive end Nelson Imasuen will look to pressure Galaxy quarterback Jakeb Sullivan in less than two weeks. Imasuen recorded six and a half sacks and 13 tackles for loss himself in ten games played.

Tickets for the European League of Football Championship Game are stillavailable via Ticketmaster.

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