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Let’s Get Ready To Fumble!

By Annalece Montgomery

FAN Take is a series that highlights trending events, issues, and decisions in the world of sports and analyzes how they may or may not factor into the Fan Controlled Football League. We would love to hear your feedback, so let us know what you think about each FAN Take!

Okay, so maybe we shouldn’t get ready to fumble, but we do want to talk about the worst rule in football. Last week in a match against the Denver Broncos, Xavier Grimble of the Pittsburgh Steelers fumbled the ball out of the endzone, resulting in a turnover to the Broncos on their own 20-yard line. Granted, Denver didn’t score on this particular drive, so there wasn’t too much harm done. Unfortunately, the Steelers did end up losing the game 24-17.

So why do we consider this rule the worst? Well, when a player fumbles the ball out of bounds, it doesn’t get turned over. It’s another example of how arbitrary (and inconsistent?) the rules of the NFL tend to be. Last year, the folks at The Ringer offered up a few options as to how the rule could be changed, and unfortunately for Grimble, they didn’t listen.

While we think this rule is especially awful, we want to know fans, which rule drives you nuts? Which one makes your blood boil anytime it gets called by a referee? Do you hate seeing the offense keep the ball at the spot of a fumble? Maybe pass interference, specifically how it manages to exist even when the ball is uncatchable? We want to hear from you, fans, which rule is the absolute worst?

Power To The Fans!

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Another $9M for Mickelson

By Annalece Montgomery

Last Saturday, Phil Mickelson tee’d off against Tiger Woods for “The Match” in Las Vegas, NV, and there was plenty of drama. When the two marched up to the 22nd hole, the two were tied after 18 regulation holes and three playoff pars. Mickelson knocked in a 5-foot birdie to secure the prize, beating one of “the greatest of all time,” a description he affectionately used for his opponent.

There were plenty of complaints about the match, most of them downright silly. The most prevalent seemed to be that the amount of money on the line was obscene. We get it, $9 million is a LOT of money for a single round of golf. However, it wasn’t Phil and Tiger forcing the hand of any of the sponsors to put up the money for the winner. And for those complaining that the money “doesn’t mean anything” to the golfers, come on guys, you can’t have it both ways. One thing people couldn’t really complain about? The cost.

Unfortunately for television providers, but pretty great for golf fans, there was a technical glitch that allowed fans to stream the match – that was intended to be Pay Per View – for free. Following reports of the issue, most of the broadcast carriers have agreed to refund those who paid $19.99 to stream the match at Shadow Creek – no word from Cablevision and Verizon just yet.

This was the first head-to-head golf match to hit Pay-Per-View, and anyone would consider the prize truly fantastic for four hours of work. We’re curious to how the fans would react to future televised rounds like this for golf? With the competition being so neck-and-neck throughout the afternoon, we think they would welcome more of these. We think the fans may also appreciate watching more of these head-to-head matches, as opposed to the Masters, which hosts 90-100 golfers. The close competition certainly lends itself to unique opportunities for a captivating storyline, and a chance for fans to “pick their team,” so to speak.

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FAN Take – Gaming: Connecting Athletes and Fans

By Annalece Montgomery

FAN Take is a series that highlights trending events, issues, and decisions in the world of sports and analyzes how they may or may not factor into the Fan Controlled Football League. We would love to hear your feedback, so let us know what you think about each FAN Take!

We’ve talked about well-known NFL players that have voiced their love for gaming, whether it’s PUBG, Fortnite, or any other game – but NBA players like Kenneth Faried are into it too! So much so that it was announced last week that the National Basketball Players Association (NBPA) had partnered up with ReadyUp.  Together they will launch an “esports smart calendar that will act as the comprehensive source to find esports matches, tournaments, and livestreams that includes video game fan experiences and media events with NBA Players.” The players will be filling in the calendar with their own game livestreaming events so that fans are able to either watch or join in and play.

With 85% of NBA players playing video games, what do you think the percentage is like in the MLB, NHL, MLS, and NFL? How pumped would the fans be to see this kind of calendar put together across other sports as well? You could be watching Mike Trout (Los Angeles Angels) one day and Marshawn Lynch (Oakland Raiders) the next? Would you rather watch these athletes stream or get in on the action? If you’re just spectating, would you team up with some of your friends to watch your favorite athletes? Would you want to see a calendar like the one NBPA and ReadyUp are making for FCFL athletes? Maybe even some of the coaches, depending on how savvy they really are? We want to know how important it is to you, the fans, to watch your favorite athletes get their game on!

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Cleveland Wants Condi

By Annalece Montgomery

Is there any story Adam Schefter can’t break? Sunday morning he reported that Cleveland Browns GM John Dorsey had former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice high on the wish list of people to interview for head coach.  If the Browns were to follow through and interview her for the position, she would become the first woman to interview for an NFL head-coaching job.

Unfortunately, after the story broke Dorsey was quick to issue a statement saying that she had not been discussed. Not only that, she posted to Facebook that she was “not ready to coach,” quickly putting an end to the excitement surrounding her potential new title.

We’ve talked about women in the NFL previously (see Can She Play and our Fan Take: First-Female Announcing Duo Debuts On TNF), but not in a head coach capacity, let alone for a team with enormous pressure to move forward and leave their 0-16 season days behind them.

So, what do the fans think of all this? While we think our fans support the idea of women in the NFL, and we know they’ve bought into the idea of fans as play-callers, we just don’t think the NFL can handle those truths! It’s pretty clear, the most important takeaway from all of this comes in the last line of Rice’s statement: she’s ready to call some plays. Well Condoleezza, we think we know just the right league for you!

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Fan Take – New Phone, Who Dis?

By Annalece Montgomery

FAN Take is a series that highlights trending events, issues, and decisions in the world of sports and analyzes how they may or may not factor into the Fan Controlled Football League. We would love to hear your feedback, so let us know what you think about each FAN Take!

Last week, Sport Techie published an article about what happens when you end up with the old phone number of somebody with star power. To get you up to speed, Giana Manzi of Rhode Island recently woke up to a flurry of text messages about an interview with the Texas Rangers. Except the messages were intended for Rocco Baldelli who had recently been reported to be interviewing with the team prior to accepting a position with the Minnesota Twins.

The author of the article, Joe Lemire, shared his own run-in to this issue when he tried to reach out to Jerry Dipoto upon news that he was the new GM for the Seattle Mariners. The current owner of the phone number shared with Lemire that when someone from the Associated Press reached out for a statement, their son provided a bogus one. In the spirit of due diligence, the owner reached back out prior to the publication going to print. They didn’t want to see a reporter lose their job.

 So what do we think the fans would do if they had inherited a phone number from a legend like our Chief Strategic Advisor Joe Montana or Beast Mode himself, Marshawn Lynch? Well, we’re not calling our fans trolls by any means, but we have a sneaking suspicion that more than a few of you would have a little fun in a situation like this. Some of you may have a bit of a conscious like the person who ended up with Jerry Dipoto’s old number and want to have some good karma thrown your way. Would you milk the opportunity for all it’s worth? Would you have a little fun before breaking the news to your new pen pals that you aren’t the person they think you are? Would you play nice and let them down right off the bat? Or would you just change your number in an effort to not be bothered anymore? We want to know fans, what would you do?!

Power To The FANS!

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How To Spend $600k In Three Days

Last week, following a work out with the team on Monday, Dez Bryant signed a one-year deal with the New Orleans Saints. Fans seemed to have mixed reactions, but for the most part were happy to bring in another receiver target for Drew Brees. Given that the regular season is already well underway, he received a pro-rated amount of $1.25M, just over the veteran minimum salary.

This was Wednesday. By the end of practice on Friday, it was reported that Bryant had a torn Achilles and his season with the Saints ended before it ever really started. Fans of the team were less than pleased, and memes immediately cropped up all over the Internet. His new teammates, including Mark Ingram (RB), Alvin Kamara (RB) and Michael Thomas (WR), all paid homage to him in Sunday’s win over the Cincinnati Bengals by throwing up the X following their respective touchdowns – Dez’s signature move in the end zone.

How would the fans react to the news of their recent pick up being out for the season? Would they immediately move on to the next best available free agent? Or would they take it as a sign to leave well enough alone, especially if their team already had a solid line up? We think the fans would go the route of the former and quickly move on from the anguish they may initially feel from news of a season-ending injury. At the end of the day, our fans want to do whatever they can to help their team win, so there isn’t much time for them to wallow or be superstitious. 

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FCFL’s Tech Game Has Been Elevated

The FCFL has found a new Chief Technology Officer in Steve Adler. Aside from being an absolute mobile industry visionary, he ran Mobile Technology Group at the NFL, just a small organization you may have heard of. Prior to his appointment as CTO, he served as a member of the FCFL’s Board of Advisors.

CEO Sohrob Farudi commented, “As an advisor, Steve has been instrumental in helping us realize our technology vision for the league. We are so happy to have him join us as our CTO and look forward to continued advancements in our mobile and broadcast fan experience.”

What does Steve have to say about his exciting new gig? “The FCFL is a quantum leap in the evolution of sports – it is at the nexus where sports, e-sports and fantasy collide and become one, creating a more engaging fan experience. I am inspired and honored to have the opportunity to help architect and build the state-of-the-art tech and platform to help drive this evolution.” We’re pretty thrilled to have him on board as well, welcome to the team!

Steve’s appointment comes hot on the heels of the recent announcement that Joe Montana, legendary Hall of Famer and Super Bowl champion quarterback, joined the FCFL as Chief Strategic Advisor and as an investor, and sports business OG Andy Dolich joined as Chief Operating Officer. The season officially kicks off in June 2019. Get ready fans!

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FAN Take – When The Vote Doesn’t Go Your Way

By Annalece Montgomery

FAN Take is a series that highlights trending events, issues, and decisions in the world of sports and analyzes how they may or may not factor into the Fan Controlled Football League. We would love to hear your feedback, so let us know what you think about each FAN Take!

In the FCFL, fans are going to be voting on just about every aspect of the league from team names, to coaches, to who their teams ultimately draft. It’s the concept that has drawn in fans from all over the world – the idea that they are making a difference in the league as a whole and within their favorite teams. But what happens when the vote doesn’t go their way?

Before there was the FCFL, there were the Salt Lake Screaming Eagles in the IFL. In a highly controversial opportunity, former Dallas Cowboys DE Greg Hardy was looking to rebuild his image by joining the Screaming Eagles. Given the headlines filled with his name, our co-founders handed the decision off to the fans. At the end of the day, fans voted with a 50.1% majority against letting him in to the league. The 49.9% of fans who wanted to see him in the league were unsurprisingly upset.

How will you react if the vote doesn’t go your way? Whether it’s selecting your team’s coach, or calling a play during a really crucial part of the game – are you going to pout? Are you going to complain that the wrong call was made by the fans? Or would you use the aggravation from that moment to push you to be more involved in the league? Remember, not all fan votes are equal. The more you interact with the league, vote for plays or submit a team logo idea, the more weight your vote will carry. We’re giving the fans that are truly dedicated more clout. So, what will you do?

Power To The Fans!

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The NFL Invades Fortnite

By Annalece Montgomery

Epic Games announced yesterday that fans of Fortnite are about to up their skin game with NFL uniforms. All 32 NFL team jerseys will be available for purchase in the game beginning November 9th at 7pm ET. In addition to the jerseys, players will be able to complete the look with goal post harvesting tools, pigskin gliders, throw football-themed emotes and even change up their appearance with referee outfits.

Instead of receiving a standard jersey for any one NFL team, players will be able to customize the jersey number each time they use and swap out for a different team’s helmet, pants, and cleats. Meaning, if you are suited up in a Green Bay Packers uniform in one game, you can switch it up with a New Orleans Saints uniform in the next game. And to answer your question before we get asked, yes, the uniform skin will be available for both male and female avatars.

You may remember that over the summer, we highlighted JuJu Smith-Schuster and his sick Fortnite-inspired dance moves at training camp and Richard Sherman declaring that Fortnite was superior to PUBG – which team uniforms do you think they’ll have their avatars dressed in come Friday evening? We’re personally hoping to see Ninja have Drake and Travis Scott join him for another livestream in rival team uniforms. Maybe half Cowboys, half Giants gear? Or San Francisco v Seattle?

We’re sure the fans love this, but even better, they are going to love being able to customize their live players in the FCFL in a similar way. When we let the fans vote on which color visor a player has that week or what color cleats they’ll tie on, there are likely to be some crazy uniforms that get put together. We definitely think there will be some fans trolling certain players by putting them in some unpleasing accessories, while others will make sure their favorite players are looking more game-day ready than ever. While we can’t wait to see players in Fortnite running around in football skins when they land at Tilted Towers or play the sheet music by Retail Row, we’re WAY more excited to see what our fans come up with in the real world of the FCFL!