Week 8 Power Rankings

1. Orlando Rockets (6-2) – No Change
Last Week: W – Atlanta Firebirds – 38-6

After a scoreless first quarter this looked like it was going to be the great heavyweight bought we all through it would be, but the Orlando Rockets flipped the switch midway through the second quarter and took off. Trevor Harris was tremendous and Eric Rogers made another strong case to be a serious MVP candidate at the wide receiver position with nine catches for 186 yards and a touchdown on their way to a rout of their closest division rivals.

2. Michigan Stags (7-1) – Up 1
Last Week: W – @ Columbus Explorers – 37-17

The Stags didn’t fall into a rivalry game trap. They just dominated. The Stags rolled over the Explorers with a well-balanced effort. Thomas Rawls and Marlon Mack worked perfectly off each other and Zach Collaros got to pick his passes, all while the defense never let the Explorers get going. It wasn’t even close.

3. New York Marauders (7-1) – Up 1
Last Week: W – @ Philadelphia Bulldogs – 38-27

On paper, it was a total mismatch. The Bulldogs certainly made a tough game of it, but the New York Marauders’ offense didn’t slow down one bit as Vad Lee threw another four touchdowns, with two going to the tremendous receiver Stefon Diggs. But the biggest success for the Bulldogs was holding Jay Ajayi to only 72 yards and 3.1 yards per carry. They are not happy about his two touchdowns, but NaVorro Bowman didn’t let Ajayi break loose.

4. San Antonio Marshalls (6-1-1) – Down 2
Last Week: T – @ Dallas Six-Shooters – 10-10 (OT)

The two 6-1 teams in the terribly-named Mid-South Division went into the Cotton Bowl and still nothing was able to come between them as they got the first tie since the Columbus Explorers and New Orleans Nightmare met back in 2014. For the Marshalls, it was a display of how dominant their defense is. John Bowman, David Mayo, Teddy Jennings, Sam Acho…they were all incredible in the game, and that was just their top guys. They have a deep unit defensively and it was on display at Dallas.

5. Seattle Orcas (6-2) – No Change
Last Week: W – Utah Raptors – 10-0

Can anybody stop Isaiah Crowell? Until further notice, no. And that is why they are so dominant. This team has a very clear gameplan – give the ball to Crowell – and nobody has been able to slow it down. When defense know exactly what you are going to do and can’t do anything to stop you, you’re an impossible matchup. The Orcas aren’t flashy, just amazing.

6. Atlanta Firebirds (5-3) – No Change
Last Week: L – @ Orlando Rockets – 38-6

Atlanta has hit a bit of a cross-roads with their third-straight loss. They no longer look like the elite team they were once thought to be. Now these have been the three best teams the Firebirds have gone up against, so maybe they just aren’t there, but this team is determined to figure out how to make their passing attack better, and it might start with a change in the backfield to make defenses more worried about big plays coming from there.

7. Pittsburgh Forge (5-3) – No Change
Last Week: L – @ Washington Wave – 17-13

What a stunner. The Forge saw Jon Jennings have another down game and when that happens things take a turn for the worst. They have talent, but Devontae Booker is best as a receiver. He’s a good runner, but couldn’t take over the game with his running ability.

8. Louisville Cougars (6-2) – Up 1
Last Week: W – @ Memphis Bombers – 10-6

The Cougars didn’t have the offensive success they’ve had, but once again, their defense was shut down. They are a very physical unit and are one of the biggest surprise teams this season because of that side of the ball. It’s sounding like a broken record week after week, but they are out to lay the wood.

9. Dallas Six-Shooters (6-1-1) – Down 1
Last Week: T – San Antonio Marshalls – 10-10 (OT)

It’s hard to know how to feel about a team after a loss, but while the Marshalls should feel great about their defense, the Six-Shooters maybe should be a bit disappointed in their offense. They did go against a dominant defense, and they played very well defensively as well, but this was their home game against a huge rivalry in a huge stadium, and they didn’t capitalize.

10. Boston Dragons (5-3) – Up 2
Last Week: W – Carolina Generals – 17-10

They aren’t sexy, but they are winning. Cooper Rush is doing great as a rookie game-manager while Andre Ellington continues to dominate games as he looks to show he is still a game-breakers despite Orlando giving up on him way too soon. But look at the addition of Coby Fleener and what he was able to go in his debut. With 6 catches, 129 yards and two touchdowns, he’s already made a huge impact for his team’s passing game.

11. Utah Raptors (5-3) – Down 1
Last Week: L – Seattle Orcas – 10-0

Once again, the Raptors sold out to stop the run, and couldn’t do anything to stop Isaiah Crowell. He rushed for 158 yards on the game. Utah was still in position to win, giving up only 10 points, but their offense just isn’t explosive enough right now to get wins against the elite teams.

12. New Orleans Nightmare (4-4) – Up 3
Last Week: W – @ Houston Wranglers – 38-10

From 0-4 to 4-4, Jack Del Rio has done an amazing job turning the Nightmare around. They are red-hot, having won four-straight games. Steven Ridley is going strong and with Aaron Murray in full swing, this offense has a lot of ways they can score.

13. Omaha Express (4-4) – Up 5
Last Week: W – @ St. Louis Stallions – 17-14

When LeGarrette Blount and Rex Burkhead are doing what they just did, combining for 140 yards and two touchdowns, nothing will stop the Omaha Express. Matt Moore didn’t have to do much, but they are fine with that. Blount and Burkhead are the best duo of backs in the league and this is what they are capable of doing. That kept their defense fresh and let them keep the physicality up on their way to the win.

14. St. Louis Stallions (4-4) – Down 3
Last Week: L – Omaha Express – 17-14

The was a key game in the Mid-West division, but the Stallions came up short at home. It’s clear this team has some nice talent, probably more than expected from them in the beginning of the season, but they just didn’t have enough defensively to get the job done. And that is said keeping in mind that they only allowed 17 points. They are good, but just not there quite yet.

15. Birmingham Predators (4-4) – Up 4
Last Week: W – @ Mississippi Cottonmouths – 27-14

The addition of Alvin Kamara has given this team a tremendous weapon out of their backfield, something they have sorely been missing all year long. On top of that, they continue to make moves to improve their offensive line. This team might be due for a strong second-half run with many of the moves they have made.

16. Memphis Bombers (3-5) – Down 3
Last Week: L – Louisville Cougars – 10-6

They are 3-5, but watch out. The Bombers went out and acquired two really talented wide receivers – Malcolm Mitchell and Weston Dressler – to put with Jamison Crowder. While they are still a team that will still lean on Jordan Howard, the Bombers ownership commands their passing game gets better and they are doing everything they can to make it better. Now, there doesn’t look to be any excuse.

17. Houston Wranglers (3-5) – Down 3
Last Week: L – New Orleans Nightmare – 38-10

While Aaron Jones is having one of the best rookie seasons in recent memory, Johnny Manziel is still trying to get his feel under him. But look out for the Wranglers move to get Aldrick Robinson. He’s a very talented and underrated wide receiver who had great success in Phoenix last season. Now, after a short stint in Carolina, he’ll immediately be the No. 1 option in Houston.

18. Philadelphia Bulldogs (3-5) – Down 1
Last Week: L – New York Marauders – 38-27

Philadelphia might actually be happy with how tough they played a team like the Marauders, but they also have to be disappointed in their defense. They looked like one of the better units in the league coming into the year, but they have been getting lit up. Virtual Bon Jovi reportedly flipped out on his coaching staff after the game.

19. Carolina Generals (3-5) – Down 3
Last Week: L – @ Boston Dragons – 17-10

Colin Kaepernick has a miserable game passing the ball, just a miserable game, and he’s had more of those then he’s had good games. That is why the Generals are 3-5, but everybody also knows he may be the most dynamic quarterback in the league and as the Generals attempt to figure out their running game and work their passing attack around to get guys in different spots, they still have hope for a nice turnaround.

20. Washington Wave (2-6) – Up 4
Last Week: W – Pittsburgh Forge – 17-13

The Wave have really been working hard to get things figured out. While this probably won’t set them up for an epic playoff run, they are thrilled to get the big win. Samaje Perine is their future, they were able to feed him and they got the huge upset win.

21. Iowa Threshers (3-5) – No Change
Last Week: W – @ Minnesota Freeze – 23-17

Justin Davis is giving the Threshers a lot more than Alfred Morris was and it’s opening up the passing game. Tight end George Kittle has been tremendous and had seven catches for 178 yards and another touchdowns. All that together, the young up-start Threshers got a victory over the veteran-led Minnesota Freeze. The Threshers will still be an up-and-down team, but they are trending in the right direction.

22. Mississippi Cottonmouths (2-6) – Down 2
Last Week: L – Birmingham Predators – 27-14

Brock Osweiler didn’t have the magic he has coming in for Ricky Ray last week, but the Cottonmouths are quite clearly a work-in-progress. At this point, they are still doing everything they can to go out and win, but they are very willing to move some of the older guys down on their depth chart to create opportunities to see who can stick in the future.

23. Los Angeles Stars (2-6) – No Change
Last Week: L – @ San Diego Diablos – 27-10

The Stars look like they’ve figure out their running game as Brian Hill racked up 126 yards against the San Diego Diablos, but their passing game needs to make some adjustments. The Stars might be willing to keep Case Keenum, but with the deadline being pushed back he’ll have one more shot to prove himself as a weapon. Joe Hills is another talented veteran who might be in town only one more week if he doesn’t turn things on.

24. Columbus Explorers (1-7) – Down 2
Last Week: L – Michigan Stags – 37-17

At 1-7, the Explorers are going to ride with Joshua Dobbs, hoping their rookie will get through all of the growing pains and start turning it on. Kenyan Drake is certainly a downgrade from Alvin Kamara, but is arguable a better pass-catcher, which could be something that will help Dobbs out.

25. San Diego Diablos (1-7) – Up 1
Last Week: W – Los Angeles Stars – 27-10

Trevone Boykin gave the Diablos their first victory since returning to the league, thanking them for giving him a second chance. He’s a tremendous athlete, still rough around the edges, but he’s given this team a spark. He’s making for an effective running game with Alex Collins. The Diablos still have work to do, but those two guys are at least clear weapons.

26. Minnesota Freeze (0-8) – Down 1
Last Week: L – Iowa Threshers – 23-17

Whether the team is winning or losing, at 0-8 things might be more on the legs of Corey Clement as the team looks to the future. They traded veteran wide receiver Weston Dressler, with the trade deadline pushed back a week could we also see any other veterans on the move for future help?

Weekly Awards

Offensive Player of the Week
RB Steven Ridley, New Orleans Nightmare
144 Rush Yards (5.1 YPC), 3 Rush TDs

Defensive Player of the Week
DE John Bowman, San Antonio Marshalls
13 Tackles, 2 Sacks, 4 TFL, 2 Hurries

Special Teams Player of the Week
P Sergio Castillo, San Antonio Marshalls
9 Punts, 429 Punt Yards (47.7 YPP), 1 TB, 1 In20, 58 Long

Rookie of the Week
RB Aaron Jones, Houston Wranglers
233 Rush Yards (10.6 YPC), 1 Rush TD, 2 Rec, 13 Rec Yards (6.5 YPC)

Mid-Season Awards

Most Valuable Player
RB Isaiah Crowell, Seattle Orcas
1,530 Rush Yards (6.3 YPC), 5 Rush TDs, 15 Rec, 92 Rec Yards (6.1 YPC)

Offensive Player of the Year
RB Isaiah Crowell, Seattle Orcas
1,530 Rush Yards (6.3 YPC), 5 Rush TDs, 15 Rec, 92 Rec Yards (6.1 YPC)

Defensive Player of the Year
DE Gabriel Knapton, Louisville Cougars
50 Tackles, 6 Sacks, 9 Hurries, 4 TFL, 2 PD, 1 FR

Offensive Rookie of the Year
RB Aaron Jones, Houston Wranglers
1,062 Rush Yards (7.8 YPC), 7 Rush TDs, 15 Rec, 77 Rec Yards (5.1 YPC)

Defensive Rookie of the Year
DE Kwaku Boateng, Omaha Express
23 Tackles, 6 Sacks, 4 Hurries, 5 TFL

Comeback Player of the Year
RB Andre Ellington, Boston Dragons
842 Rush Yards (4.9 YPC), 1 Rush TD, 23 Rec, 152 Rec Yards (6.6 YPC), 2 Rec TD

Coach of the Year
HC Jack Del Rio, New Orleans Nightmare
4-0 since taking over team after an 0-4 start

Breakthrough Player of the Year
DE Gabriel Knapton, Louisville Cougars
50 Tackles, 6 Sacks, 9 Hurries, 4 TFL, 2 PD, 1 FR

Newcomer of the Year
DE Paul Kruger, Utah Raptors
35 Tackles, 8 Sacks, 6 Hurries, 7 TFL, 2 PD

Offensive Lineman of the Year
OG Willie Colon, Seattle Orcas
22 Pancakes, 0 Sacks Allowed, 1 Bad Block

Special Teams Player of the Year
RET Garry Brown, Philadelphia Bulldogs
26 KR, 721 KR Yards (27.7 YPR), 1 KR Yard, 30 PR, 769 PR Yards (25.6 YPR)

Iron Man of the Year
FB/DT Patrick Ricard, New York Marauders
20 Tackles, 6 TFL, 2 PD, 1 Rec TD

Executive of the Year
Alex Gray, Louisville Cougars
5-11 in 2017, 6-2 in 2018

SFL News

Trade deadline pushed back to Thursday, June 28

Following a meeting of league owners, the SFL Trade deadline has been pushed back one week to Thursday, June 28 at 8 AM EST.

Aldrick Robinson and Duron Carter traded to Houston, Brandon Marshall cut

With Brandon Marshall not making an impact for the Houston Wranglers, owner Ryan Clark went out and made a move to get a guy who has proven he can be an impact receiver. Aldrick Robinson had over 1,200 yards in Phoenix last season but wasn’t taking off in Carolina with Colin Kaepernick. He’s a Texas guy, going back home to Texas. It would be a move to spark this Wranglers passing attack. Carter is a tremendous athlete as well, coming in through a trade with Columbus. He’s got some nice size too. Now the Wranglers will have two proven top weapons for Johnny Manziel to throw to. And with those two moves and Marshall not performing, he was cut after only a few games, in which he totaled 10 catches for just 82 yards on a $3M contract.

Memphis trades for Malcolm Mitchell and Weston Dressler

Tired of their own struggling passing game, the Memphis Bomber went out and made some powerful moves to acquire two very talented receivers. While they already had the very talented Jamison Crowder, they now brought Malcolm Mitchell back one year after trading him to Atlanta in 2017, and brought in the long-time premier SFL receiver Weston Dressler. It’s the best trio of receivers in the league right now.

Predators trade o-line for o-line for interior boost

Virtual Bo Jackson wasn’t settling for having perhaps the worst offensive line in the league. He’s been active making moves to get better up front and now he’s made probably the most notable move to improve his team’s offensive line. The Predators sent offensive tackle Greg Robinson and a draft pick to Columbus for Corey Linsley. Linsley may only be a rental who will be tough to keep away from the NFL, but he’s one for the premier centers in the league. Birmingham’s center spot was killing them. Now it’s plugged.

Playoff Look

Empire Conference
1. New York Marauders (7-1) – Atlanta Division
2. Orlando Rockets (6-2) – Southeast Division
3. Omaha Express (4-4) – Midwest Division
4. Pittsburgh Forge (5-3)
5. Atlanta Firebirds (5-3)
6. Boston Dragons (5-3)

Metropolitan Conference
1. Michigan Stags (7-1) – Central Division
2. San Antonio Marshalls (6-1-1) – Mid-South Division
3. Seattle Orcas (6-2) – Pacific Division
4. Dallas Six-Shooters (6-1-1)
5. Louisville Cougars (6-2)
6. Utah Raptors (5-3)

Week 9 Preview

Iowa Threshers (3-5) @ New York Marauders (7-1)
Could this be a trap game for the New York Marauders? The Threshers are coming off a victory and have their running game going with Justin Davis, but it’s not likely they have nearly enough to compete with the offensive attack the Marauders have.
Pick: New York Marauders

Columbus Explorers (1-7) @ Carolina Generals (3-5)
This game probably won’t be very pretty, but both teams really want a win. The Generals need one a lot more than the Explorers, which have pretty much resigned themselves to playing for the future at this point. The Generals need to get Colin Kaepernick and their passing game going. They have made some major moves to try to fix it. We’ll see how it does for them.
Pick: Carolina Generals

Washington Wave (2-6) @ Orlando Rockets (6-2)
The Wave shocked the Pittsburgh Forge. Could they shock the Orlando Rockets? Washington is the team that is going to spoil great teams all-year-long, and with an explosive player like Tyreek Hill and the grinding Samajae Perine going, they could get the win. But the Rockets are on fire having won six-straight games. Eric Rogers is the most unstoppable receiver in the league going against the league’s worst defense.
Pick: Orlando Rockets

Philadelphia Bulldogs (3-5) @ Michigan Stags (7-1)
While Philadelphia’s passing attack is probably a lost cause, they still have Jay Ajayi and that makes them very dangerous. Michigan is playing great and their balanced offense combined with their treat defense is why they are 7-1. But maybe there is an upset this week. The Bulldogs played very tough last week. Ajayi is hungry and desperate for a win.
Pick: Philadelphia Bulldogs

Los Angeles Stars (2-6) @ Louisville Cougars (6-2)
As the Stars are making some big changes to their offensive strategy to try to get things going, they are also going to face a very tough draw against the physical bullies in Louisville. The Stars need to get a big win here, and if they don’t guys might start getting sent out of town but Louisville is also in need of the win to keep pace with the Stags.
Pick: Louisville Cougars

Atlanta Firebirds (5-3) @ Memphis Bombers (3-5)
Malcolm Mitchell has been traded back and forth between these teams, but now he’ll be on the sidelines with the Bombers again. And he won’t be alone. The Bombers brought in Weston Dressler with Mitchell to join Jamison Crowder. That is a very talented group with Jordan Howard coming out of the backfield. The Firebirds are still loaded as well. This game is much more of a toss up then it was a few weeks ago.
Pick: Memphis Bombers

Pittsburgh Forge (5-3) @ St. Louis Stallions (4-4)
The Forge are angry after suffering a shocking loss to the Washington Wave. They will be out for blood against any opponent, the Stallions just so happen to be in their way this week. Jon Jennings has had some down games, but he keeps coming back with huge ones.
Pick: Pittsburgh Forge

New Orleans Nightmare (4-4) @ Minnesota Freeze (0-8)
New Orleans is on fire and Minnesota is frozen solid. Anything can happen, but the way these two teams are going, there is no reason to pick the Freeze. The Nightmare train keeps going full speed.
Pick: New Orleans Nightmare

Seattle Orcas (6-2) @ Omaha Express (4-4)
What a battle of running backs this one is. The Orcas has the most dominant running back in league history and the Express have perhaps the best backfield duo in league history. This one will be a fun one for those who love great running. Omaha does have the passing advantage, but the Orcas edge them defensively. It will be close, but Seattle still looks like too much right now.
Pick: Seattle Orcas

Utah Raptors (5-3) @ San Antonio Marshalls (6-1-1)
While the Raptors have been a tough team this year because of their defense, they just don’t have the offensive firepower to beat a team like the Marshalls, which are proving to be one of the most balanced teams in the league with a very dangerous offense that has been proven, and a shut down defense that was showed off last week.
Pick: San Antonio Marshalls

Dallas Six-Shooters (6-1-1) @ San Diego Diablos (1-7)
Trevone Boykin got the Diablos their first win. Will he look for revenge when he goes up against his former team? The Diablos might have gotten closer to figuring it all out, but the Six-Shooters are just way better right now.
Pick: Dallas Six-Shooters

Mississippi Cottonmouths (2-6) @ Houston Wranglers (3-5)
This is another possible revenge game, with Brock Osweiler possibly out to show his former team that never gave him a snap that he can be a quality starter. The Wranglers do appear to have the best player in the game in Aaron Jones, but if Johnny Manziel can’t be effective with an improved passing attack that has brought in Aldrick Robinson, it would be hard for them to pull off wins no matter how good Jones is running.
Pick: Mississippi Cottonmouths

Birmingham Predators (4-4) @ Boston Dragons (5-3)
Dak Prescott and Alvin Kamara is one incredible duo for the Predators to build on, and they have really worked to make their offensive line a lot better. This game is interesting because the Predators have the flash, but throughout the season the Dragons have been able to just quietly get the job done more often than not.
Pick: Birmingham Predators