Players to watch: #3 QB Michael Birdsong - Week 7: 328 passing yards, 3 TDs, C-A-I 30-52-0. Returned last week after he had missed every game since Week 3 (last game against the Panthers in W2) due to an injury. Won championship in X-League and was the X-League MVP in his few years in Japan. He was with the Seattle Seahawks in training camps. Week 1 + 2: 7 TDs, 429 passing yards, 4 INTs, 60% completion rate.
The whole WR-core is very dangerous:
#11 WR Anthony Dablè-Wolf: Week 7: 9 receptions (one for 27 yards), 103 yards. Great game in Week 3, 2 TDs (first of the season), 118 yards receiving in week 3. Played in the NFL for Atlanta Falcons and New York Giants as WR. One of the first players to go through the International Pathway Program. Played for the Hildesheim Invaders and French national team before. Week 4 + 5: Only 4 receptions for 40 yards (W4) and 4 receptions for 35 yards.
#8 Alpha Jalloh WR/S: Plays KR, PR, S, and WR as well. Week 7: 3 receptions for 59 yards, 1 TD and 1 INT for 30 yards. Week 5: 6 receptions for 55 yards, 2 kickoff returns for 60 yards. Stats and performances before: Had a 68-yard TD on the first play for Leipzig in week 3 against Cologne. Has a lot of return-yards every week (three return-TDs, one each in Week 1 - 98 yards against Berlin + PAT return + one in week 2 + in week 4 -100 yards return TD after the kickoff was repeated). Week 4: 3 kickoff returns for 156 yards + 1 TD / 5 receptions, 1 TD, 84 receiving yards as WR / 2 solo tackles, 1 TFL and 1 INT + 44 yards. 303 offensive yards in Week 4 (against Stuttgart)!!! Was a possible MVP candidate in Week 4, but Jakeb Sullivan (QB Frankfurt) won this award with 5 TDs. Played in Sweden and Finland before (for example Stockholm Mean Machines, like Jan Weinreich during the pandemic and the WASA Royals in Finland – Part of the AFI ALL Pandemic Team). One of the best athletes on the Kings roster and in the ELF in general - very exciting player due to his “triple threat” (defense, offense, returner on special teams).
#12 WR Jaleel Awini - Week 7: Was questionable but had 1 reception for 15 yards. Played in Week 3 at QB. Has college experience playing QB, WR at University of Colorado (DIV I). Week 3 stats: 4 passing TD, 1 rushing TD at QB (1 INT as well) + 147 net rushing yards (3rd most in league off all players including RBs), 341 net passing yards for him at QB in Week 3 - incredible stats. In Week 4 he had some issues and played a little bit as QB and as WR - Week 4 stats: QB - 9 passing attempts, 40 passing yards, 1 INT / WR - 4 receptions, 29 yards. Week 5: He played mainly as QB and so Leipzig has one less target. Only 112 passing yards, 56% completion rate - 2 INTs, he was sacked 7 times by Hamburg´s DL.
#6 WR Timothy Knuettel - Week 7: 9 receptions, 86 yards, 2 touchdowns. Week 4: 7 receptions for 101 yards against Stuttgart. Height: 1,88m, Weight: 90kg.
#2 RB Jason Aguemon - Week 7: 23 carries, 133 net rushing yards, 1 TD + 3 catches for 38 receiving yards.
Keep an eye on #92 DL Aslan Zetterberg and #99 DL Vincent Buffet: Both players are very important for the successful pass rush, high pressure and sacks. Week 7: 5 solo tackles combined / Buffet had 1 sack and a fumble return (forced by Rohnebak). The defense played with much pressure against Berlin (2 sacks, 7 TFL, 1 forced fumble, 2 interceptions - keep an eye on Kyle Kitchens, too). Week 5: 3 sacks, 4 TFL, 7 total tackles (combined) vs. Hamburg.
#85 TE/WR Anton Doroshev - Week 7: 5 receptions for 27 yards. Doroshev as TE fits into the playing style of QB Birdsong.
Unofficial team stats: Games: 6 / Average Net Yards Rushing per Game: 98,67 / Average Per Rush: 3,98 / Rushing Touchdowns: 5 / Average Net Yards Passing per Game: 273,5 / Average per Completion: 10,42 / Passing Touchdowns: 16 / Punt Return TDs: 0 / Kickoff Return TDs: 3 / Interceptions by Defense: 4 / Scored a pick six (INT return TD): 1 / Average Possession Time: 32:11 / 3rd Down Conversions: 24 of 72 / 4th Down Conversions: 9 of 16 / PAT: 7 of 14 / FG: 0 of 3 / Allowed 3rd Down Conversions by Defense: 27 of 63 / Allowed 4th Down Conversions by Defense: 4 of 9
Coaches: Fred Armstrong - Coaching consultant for the NY Giants at the NFL combine since 2002, once assistant RB coach with the Giants, 2015: trained WR and TE for the New York Jets. A lot of experience as a High School and College coach. Favorite NFL-Team: NY Giants. Coaches he looked up to: Tony Dungy (the first black HC who won the Super Bowl - 2006 with the Indianapolis Colts, 2016 Hall of Fame) and Tom Coughlin (2004 - 2015 HC NY Giants and 2x Super Bowl Champion as HC - He is also an inspiration for Stuttgart´s HC Martin Hanselmann).
DC Joe Bommarito: 2000-2012: Scout for the New York Jets. Football coach in Europe since 2014
Players to watch: #2 QB Aaron Ellis - Season: 4 games, 6 TDs, 768 passing yards (he is the 4th best QB in the league in terms of average yards per game. He is the only starting QB who has not had the pre-season with his team), 3 INTs, Height: 1,90m, Weight: 103kg. Played football in Finland before. He listens to music right before the game and goes through the game in his mind. He is a fan of the Chicago Bears.
#42 LB Zachary Blair - was questionable for the game against Frankfurt in Week 7: 11 total tackles (3 solo tackles, 2 TFL), 1 forced fumble, 1 deflected pass. He joined the team ahead of the game against Leipzig in Week 4. Week 6: 5 solo tackles (10 total tackles), 2 TFL. Nickname: Hitman; works as a teacher in a special school. Holds the record for NCAA Div. II - career tackles for loss - 75,5)
#5 TE David Meza - He will probably return against Leipzig and will have an impact on the offense. Week 4: Scored the game-winning TD (14-yard pass) - 4 receptions in the game for 64 yards. Hobbies: Watching movies, skateboarding and chess.
Additional player stats: #18 WR Paul Steigerwald - Week 7: 2 receptions for 24 yards. Week 6: 11 receptions, 159 yards, 1 TD - His performance promoted him to the top-10 receiving yards ranking of the ELF. Nickname: “To Tall Paul”, started playing football for the Stuttgart Silver Arrows in 2017 (2017-2020), is a fan of the Seattle Seahawks.
Keep an eye on #45 LB Nijaz Hamulic and #23 CB Marcel Dabo: Hamulic had 7 assisted tackles vs. Cologne in Week 6 (2 total tackles, 1 solo against Frankfurt) - he plays overall really well on defense. Nickname: “Ninja”, hobbies: riding motorcycle. Marcel Dabo always plays against the best receiver on their opponent´s offense. Had two difficult games in the past two weeks. Dabo is a potential candidate for the NFL-Pathway-Program and he could possibly be invited to the NFL-Combine. According to some experts he is an extraordinary talent who needs a little bit more experience to make it to the NFL in the future. He was born in 2000 and played very well against Dable-Wolf (Leipzig) in Week 4. Week 6: 3 total tackles, 1 safety (PAT return). In Week 7 he had only one solo tackle.
Unofficial team stats: Games: 6 / Average Net Yards Rushing per Game: 88,5 / Average Per Rush: 3,47 / Rushing Touchdowns: 6 / Average Net Yards Passing per Game: 179,83 / Average per Completion: 11,8 / Passing Touchdowns: 9 / Punt Return TDs: 0 / Kickoff Return TDs: 0 / Interceptions by Defense: 3 / Scored a pick six (INT return TD): 0 / Average Possession Time: 29:37 / 3rd Down Conversions: 21 of 71 / 4th Down Conversions: 2 of 11 / PAT: 5 of 11 / FG: 1 of 4 / Allowed 3rd Down Conversions by Defense: 27 of 67 / Allowed 4th Down Conversions by Defense: 9 of 13
Head Coach: Martin Hanselmann - 1982-1993 WR and QB for the Rothenburg Knights, later Franken Knights; 2000-2006 HC of German National Team, 2007-2010 HC Düsseldorf Panther (and a lot of other HC jobs).
NFL: Hanselmann was a big fan of Joe Montana - so he likes the 49ers and was happy when Mark Nzeocha joined them in 2017. Coaches who inspired him: Bob Nielson and Tom Coughlin (2004 - 2015 HC NY Giants and 2x Super Bowl Champion as HC). He would like to meet Coughlin.