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FAN Take: Life After Football

Posted on November 20, 2019

By Annalece Anhalt-Slaughter

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!

The last time we prepared ourselves for an exciting announcement from former TE Rob Gronkowski, we were left disappointed – although we did appreciate him being open about his reasoning behind leaving the NFL behind. So naturally, this week when we heard there would be another announcement from Gronk, we weren’t expecting much. To our surprise, yesterday he announced he’ll be making an appearance in Miami for the Super Bowl – but instead of on the field, it will be to host a one-day music festival the day before the big game. “Gronk Beach,” will feature artists like Diplo, Kaskade and Flo Rida and while we think the name is lacking some creativity, we are loving the event logo. Clearly, Gronk’s having a great time after ending his NFL career.

We always enjoy seeing NFL players have a career after football, especially one that isn’t just serving as an analyst on a sports network. Our very own Co-Founder Ray Austin became an actor, model and entrepreneur after hanging his jersey up for good. So what kind of career paths do the fans hope to see their players take after playing in the FCFL? Do they want to see a few stick around in the FCFL as coaches? What about working with some of the fantastic corporate partners of the league, including Twitch? Maybe even follow in the footsteps of Ray and show up on some of your favorite tv shows? Let us know!

Power To The Fans!

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All the Right Angles

Posted on October 21, 2019

By Annalece Anhalt-Slaughter

If we’ve learned anything from Sunday’s game between the New Orleans Saints and Chicago Bears, it’s that sky cams belong in football (and probably every sport for that matter). Bears WR Cordarrelle Patterson executed one of the most seamless, beautiful touchdowns we’ve ever seen from a kickoff return. We can only imagine how excited FCFL Co-Founder and former Bears DB Ray Austin was while watching – it’s too bad the NFL doesn’t allow co-streaming for their games like we do 😏. If you think we’re overhyping this play, see for yourself. You don’t need to admit you were wrong, we already know you were.

We’ve spent a lot of time talking about how we can optimize the fan experience, but haven’t spent much time talking about how the fans will be viewing the game – what about the angles that they view the game from? Do the fans want sideline cameras? Sky cams? A view from above? Why not both? We want to give the fans more than one view from the production studio. Offering multiple views of what’s happening on the field won’t just make the game more entertaining to watch, which it will, but will help with their play-calling abilities. Think about it this way, with every possible view of the game imaginable, fans will be able to dial in on which players perform the best in certain formations and apply that knowledge towards the next plays they call.

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Da Bears Rewrite History

Posted on September 3, 2019

By Annalece Anhalt-Slaughter

With the NFL’s 100th season officially kicking off this Thursday, it was only fitting that the folks at NBC Sports got Green Bay Packers legend Brett Favre and Bill Swerski’s Superfans together to discuss the historical rivalry between the Packers and Chicago Bears, or Da Bears, if you will. While Bill Swerski’s recollection of past events can be described as shaky at best, the segment has us instantly looking for old clips of the popular Saturday Night Live sketch, featuring the late Chris Farley.

Is this all a ploy to keep people from remembering how disastrous the Bears’ season was last year (*cough* Cody Parkey *cough*)? Or is this the Bears just falling back on the fan-favorite segment, which only narrowly beats out the Super Bowl Shuffle? We think a majority of fans will agree this is the latter, but for any fans of the Lions, Vikings, or Packers, they may go with the former. Either way, we hope the fans get a kick out of it. We’re patiently awaiting the review from former Chicago Bear and FCFL Co-Founder, Ray Austin!

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Put Your Money Where Your Mouth Is

Posted on August 19, 2019

By Annalece Anhalt-Slaughter

We aren’t even finished with NFL Preseason, and fans are already putting down money for the Super Bowl. According to Las Vegas sportsbooks, there are currently more bets on the Chicago Bears winning the Lombardi Trophy than any other team right now, with the Cleveland Browns close behind them. A senior oddsmaker for Caesars Sportsbook, Alan Berg, shared “every time the Bears go to the playoffs, the following year, the money just pours in.” Clearly, the fans are feeling optimistic! While they may have the most bets, the Bears only have the fourth-best odds (9-1) at Caesars, behind the New England Patriots (7-1), Kansas City Chiefs (7-1) and the New Orleans Saints (17-2). We’re curious to see how these odds change after the regular season has kicked off, especially for the teams that have had major roster changes in the last few months.

With the Fan Controlled Football League calling Las Vegas home, it can be expected that there will be fans betting on our games. Sure, fans can bet on the outcomes of each week’s games and who will make it to the championship game, but what about which fan will be crowned the “Top Fan,” with the highest FanIQ at the end of the season? What other aspects of the league would you want to throw a little money at? Would you bet on how many times Co-Founder Ray Austin gets in the broadcast booth and talks about his days with the Chicago Bears and New York Jets? Spoiler alert: that will happen at least once during any game where Ray is in the house. What about the number of times Team Owner | Fan Captain Bobby Bones comes up with an impromptu song during a livestream of his team’s game? We think the fans will want to get in on some of these more “fun” bets. Let’s make this interesting, fans!

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Best of the 2019 NFL Draft

Posted on April 29, 2019

By Annalece Anhalt-Slaughter

Over the last few days, we lived and breathed the NFL Draft for you, because we know it can be a LOT to take in. So we have you covered fans! Behold, some of the best (or worst, depending on how you look at it) moments of the 2019 NFL Draft!

Fans of the Oakland Raiders were left VERY confused by their team selecting Clemson DE Clelin Ferrell with their first pick.

The Buffalo Bills got draft pick approval from their biggest fan, Pancho Billa.

Reggie Wayne taunts Tennessee Titans fans.

Pete Carroll took off his shirt. Really.

Pat McAfee stole his job (back) from an orangutan.

The Baltimore Ravens made draft history in the sweetest way.

And one more moment that isn’t *technically* from the draft, but still very much draft related: Co-Founder Ray Austin called our bluff, and showed that he can still rock the hell out of the suit he wore to the 1997 NFL Draft. We know when to admit we’re wrong, Ray!

Overall, the draft was a ton of fun to watch, but now we’re just counting down the days until the inaugural FCFL Draft! We’re not going to spoil everything we have planned for you fans, but we want to know what you’re expecting from us. We think you’ll want to be able to immerse yourself in the experience. We’re pretty sure you plan on having a ton of fun while calling the shots. Are there any specifics that we’re missing? Let us know!

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That’s a Wrap On the 2019 NFL Combine

By Annalece Montgomery

Yesterday the 2019 NFL Combine came to a close, but not without leaving behind some clear winners, like Montez Sweat, who stood out at the Reese’s Senior Bowl to members of our Virtual Front Office!  And the folks at SB Nation shared that one of the key things we all learned from the combine was that rumors are in full swing, especially for quarterback Josh Rosen. With the buzz about Kyler Murray going as the No.1 pick in the NFL Draft, it looks like the Arizona Cardinals QB may be out of a job. Even our very own Ray Austin called that in his recap of the weekend’s events.

Of course, the weekend wasn’t ALL about Murray – as Team Owner and Fan Captain Marshawn Lynch would say, it was all about that action. Sure, we watched a lot of hours of these guys run through the drills, but there was one moment that stuck out more than others: the annual Rich Eisen run. We have to say, the NFL Network’s Simulcam of Rich Eisen up against some of the best prospects, past versions of himself, and a rogue high school student was an instant classic.

We know a lot of you out there were watching based on the feedback we were getting in our DMs, but we have a feeling the fans were left wanting something more. We think if the fans were the ones running this, they’d come up with new drills to test the skills of these guys. Maybe some of you would want to run the interviews with better questions than what we heard over the weekend. Either way, we know that by putting the fans in charge, combines will never be the same again.

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The GOAT – Joe Montana – Joins the FCFL

Originally published September 24, 2018

By Annalece Montgomery

Big news, people! Hall of Fame NFL quarterback and venture capitalist, Joe Montana, is joining the FCFL as Chief Strategic Advisor and as an investor!

This is what Joe had to say: “I’m tremendously excited to be partnering with the FCFL. What this team has created is innovative, engaging, and will energize the digital age football fan. Fans will hire the coaches, draft the players and call all the plays in real time. It’s a real-life video game and the future of sports.”

Widely regarded as one of the greatest football players of all time, Joe Montana was not only a talented passer, but he was an inspirational leader with the almost magical ability to lead his teams back from certain defeat. During his Hall of Fame career with the 49ers and Kansas City Chiefs, he led his teams to 31 fourth quarter come-from-behind wins, including a 92-yard drive in the closing seconds of Super Bowl XXIII. Over 16 seasons in the NFL, Joe led his teams to nine divisional championships and victories in Super Bowls XVI, XIX, XXIII, and XXIV. Additionally, he is a technology pioneer and partner in the early stage venture capital firm Liquid 2 Ventures, where he oversees and advises an impressive portfolio of start-ups.

In Joe’s role as FCFL’s Chief Strategic Advisor, he will be a driving force in the formation and development of the league’s brand messaging, integral in football and technical innovations and will provide invaluable expertise from front office operations to fan engagement.

Joe joins a diverse team of advisors with experience across all aspects of sports, technology and gaming, including the league’s appointed Chief Operating Officer, Andy Dolich. Andy is a renowned sports executive who brings over five decades of experience in the industry, including front office positions in the NFL, MLB, NBA & NHL.

According to our CEO and Co-Founder, Sohrob Farudi, “We couldn’t be more thrilled to have the GOAT, Joe Montana, join the FCFL. As we continue to build and launch the sports platform for the digital fan, we will look to Joe for leadership and expertise in every facet of the league.”

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Calling All Players…Combines Are Coming

First One at IMG Academy in Bradenton, FL

Ready, players? Five cities will host combine events for prospective players looking to enter the 2019 FCFL Draft. Players with collegiate or professional football experience who think they’ve got what it takes to play for the fans and are interested in being a part of the league’s inaugural season can register for the combine in their region and submit video at http://bit.ly/FCFLPlayerApplication.

Combine dates and locations:

1/12/19
IMG Academy
5650 Bollettieri Boulevard
Bradenton, FL 34210

2/09/19
Atlanta Silverbacks Suwanee Indoor
4285 Brogdon Exchange
Suwanee, GA 30024

2/23/19
D1 Training
8081 Walnut Hill Lane #1000
Dallas, TX 75231

3/16/19
D1 Training
8080 N. High Street
Columbus, OH 43235

4/06/19
Longevity
5975 S Topaz Street
Las Vegas, NV 89120

The FCFL Football Operations Team and registered FCFL fans will evaluate players as they participate in position-specific skills tests and one-on-one competitions. Fans are welcome to attend the combines and conduct their own evaluations, but are required to pre-register for the FCFL’s Virtual Front Office in order to receive Fan Scout credentials for their preferred combine location. Virtual Front Office fans will also be able to evaluate players on the league’s video platform.

“This is a great opportunity for young players to show us what they’ve got! Our league gives players a unique platform to showcase their skills and build their personal brands,” according to our very own Ray Austin, former NFL defensive back and FCFL Co-Founder & Head of Football Experience.

Our Chief Strategic Advisor, Joe Montana, added, “When the FCFL kicks off this June, we’re going to change what it means to be a fan. From the start, at the combine, fans will be able to actually influence who plays on their team. I know there is a lot of talent out there, and I can’t wait to get a look at the guys who think they have what it takes to help us make history!”

#PowerToThePlayers!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rLgzcVW3xrw

 

 

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FAN Take – What’s In A Nickname

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!

For the second year in a row, during MLB’s Players Weekend players will be wearing special jerseys with their nicknames on the back instead of their last names. This weekend, August 24-26, all eyes will be on the jerseys, not the ball.

We wouldn’t be surprised to see some of these guys sharing photos of their jerseys on social media in the coming days, and frankly, there are some we’re pretty excited for. Some of our favorites that we can’t wait to see are Keynan Middleton (Angels, “Major Key”), Jake Marisnick (Astros, “Big Fudge”), Ken Giles (Blue Jays, “100 Miles Giles”), Carl Edwards Jr. (Cubs, “Stringbean Slinger”), and Drew Steckenrider (Marlins, “Steckasaurus”). For the full list of who is wearing what nickname, click here.

A few weeks ago, we shared a story a story about players having emojis featured on their jerseys instead of last names. While we did not do an official poll on whether or not the fans would like to see something like this incorporated in the FCFL, we received some quick “Please God no” responses, while others said they loved the concept.

How do we incorporate this into the FCFL – or better yet, should we incorporate this into the FCFL? Should athletes be allowed to pick their own nickname, or should a teammate decide for them? This could lead to some fun hijinks behind the scenes. Or better yet, should the fans vote for the names on their backs? If it’s not emojis or nicknames, how about Twitter handles, gamer tags, Insta names, or Twitch IDs? Whether or not we see nicknames – or anything other than last names – on the jerseys for our athletes, something tells us Co-Founder and Commissioner Ray Austin will be found frequently wearing a jersey featuring “The Commish” on the back. We want to hear from YOU on this hot topic, so let us know what you think!

 Power To The FANS!