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Alliance of American Football Week 1 Spreads & Picks

Alliance of American Football Press Conference
The Alliance of American Football kicks off Saturday, February 9th. Photo by Rlauzmww18 (Wiki Commons) [CC License]
  • The Alliance of American Football kicks off its inaugural season Saturday on four fronts
  • The league is the brainchildย of TV executive Charlie Ebersol and former NFL GM Bill Polian
  • The eight teams will each play a 10-game schedule

The Alliance of American Football wants to know if you are ready for some (more) football?

Just six days after the New England Patriots won their sixth Super Bowl, the AAF will tee it up for its first season, with all eight league franchises in action.

CBS Sports, Turner Sports, and the NFL Network are all set to broadcast games. Nearly 70% of the players on Alliance opening-day rosters have played in the NFL in the past 18 months.

All players are signed to three-year, $250,000 contracts and each contract contains an out clause for any player who gets an offer from an NFL team.

Alliance Of American Football Rules

There are some different rules in the AAF compared to the NFL.

For example, it’s not a very kicker-friendly league. There will be no kickoffs, with possessions beginning on the 25-yard line following any scoring play. All point after touchdowns will be two-point conversions from the two-yard line.

No more than five defenders are permitted to rush the passer and secondary blitzing is forbidden. If overtime is necessary, each team gets possession of the ball on the opposition 10-yard line with four downs to score a touchdown.

Laugh at the Alliance of American Football if you must, but they also scoffed at the USFL, and that league eventually gave the NFL Jim Kelly, Steve Young, Reggie White, Herschel Walker, Anthony Carter, and Gary Zimmerman.

The AAF is hopeful that increased sports betting in the US will help create an audience for their product.

Now let’s dive into Week 1.

Atlanta Legends vs Orlando Apollos

Teams Moneyline Spread Total at MyBookie
Atlanta Legends TBA +5 (-110) O 50 (-110)
Orlando Apollos TBA -5 (-110) U 50 (-110)

*All odds taken 2/9

Kickoff: Sat, Feb 9 at 8pm EST

The Legends already lost their only legend on the eve of the season opener. Former Atlanta Falcons quarterback Michael Vick is out as the team’s offensive coordinator, but will stay with the team in a consulting role.

The Legends start ex-Georgia Bulldogs QB Aaron Murray under center and former Michigan Wolverine Denard Robinson in the backfield. Robinson ran for 582 yards and 4 TDs with the Jacksonville Jaguars in 2014.

The Apollos have grizzled football veteran Steve Spurrier, 73 years old, as coach. He’s been a head coach in the NFL, USFL, and led the Florida Gators to an NCAA national title in 1996.

Former Carolina Panthers backup Garrett Gilbert is Orlando’s QB. Every FBS school in Florida is represented on the Apollos’ roster.

Pick: Apollos -5, under 50 at MyBookie

San Diego Fleet vs San Antonio Commanders

Teams Moneyline Spread Total at MyBookie
San Diego Fleet TBA +3 (-110) O 50.5 (-110)
San Antonio Commanders TBA -3 (-110) U 50.5 (-110)

Kickoff: Sat, Feb 9 at 8pm EST

If you lost money betting on the Los Angeles Rams in Super Bowl 53, now you can bet on former Rams coach Mike Martz, who lost Super Bowl 36 to Tom Brady and the Patriots.

In charge of the Fleet, Martz has ex-Arizona State QB Mike Bercovici at the helm and he can target former Dallas Cowboys TE Gavin Escobar. Ex-Buffalo Bills LB AJ Tarpley leads the defense.

Commanders running back David Cobb rushed for 1,202 yards with the Minnesota Golden Gophers in 2013 and played one season with the Tennessee Titans. Edge Jayrone Elliott played for the Green Bay Packers.

Pick: Commanders -3, under 50.5 at MyBookie

Memphis Express vs Birmingham Iron

Teams Moneyline Spread Total at MyBookie
Memphis Express TBA +3 (-110) O 49.5 (-110)
Birmingham Iron TBA -3 (-110) U 49.5 (-110)

Kickoff: Sun, Feb 10 at 4pm EST

Both of these cities have seen their share of minor-league football, with franchises in the WFL, USFL, and XFL.

Birmingham’s iron man figures to be former Cleveland Browns running back Trent Richardson. Iron GM Will Lewis is the brother of Express coach Tim Lewis.

One time New York Jets QB Christian Hackenberg starts for the Express. But Express DT and former NFL-er Lawrence Okoye did the fledgling league no favors Wednesday when he was arrested for soliciting a prostitute.

Pick: Express +3, Under 49.5 at MyBookie

Salt Lake Stallions vs Arizona Hotshots

Teams Moneyline Spread Total at MyBookie
Salt Lake Stallions TBA +3.5 (-105) O 51.5 (-110)
Arizona Hotshots TBA -3.5 (-115) U 51.5 (-110)

Kickoff: Sun, Feb 10 at 8pm EST

This game is being viewed as a potential championship preview. The Hotshots are expected to live up to their name and are the betting choice to win the AAF title.

Arizona suits up two athletic double threats at QB in John Wolford and Trevor Knight, who figure to wear down defenses. Former NFL-er Joseph Fauria is at TE and there’s plenty of NFL experience on the defensive side of the ball as well.

Stallions RB Terrell Newby scored 22 TDs at Nebraska and he’ll be joined in the backfield by Matt Asiata, who spent five seasons with the Minnesota Vikings, rushing for nine TDs in 2014.

Pick: Hotshots -3.5, Over 51.5 at MyBookie

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An industry veteran, Bob literally taught the course on the history of sports at Elder College. He has worked as a Sports Columnist for Postmedia, appeared as a guest on several radio stations, was the Vice President of the Society For International Hockey Research in Ontario, and written 25 books.