Time flies by fast! Just three days ago, the New England Patriots were crowned Super Bowl Champions for the 6th time in franchise history. Now, in just a short three days, the Atlanta Legends will kick off the inaugural AAF season versus the Orlando Apollos. Here are my 3 keys to the game:
1. Speed up the tempo
If there’s one thing we know about Atlanta, it is the firepower that is virtually all over the field. Aaron Murray, Denard Robinson, and co. can out class any defense just based on athletic ability. If they can use the no-huddle to their advantage, it will allow the Legends to take control of time of possession and wear down an Orlando team with not a lot of playmakers that will blow opponents away.
2. Rush the quarterback
Unlike Atlanta with Aaron Murray (Georgia), the Apollos really don’t have any quarterbacks who played at a high level in a tough college football conference in the SEC. Austin Appleby (Florida), can’t even be compared to what Murray accomplished while at Georgia, and Garrett Gilbert had a very good senior season at SMU, but the American is far worse than the vaunted Southeastern Conference. This leaves Kevin Anderson, a former Fordham QB, as the last line of defense. If the Legends can apply constant pressure and different types of looks throughout the game, it could prove to be vital in causing turnovers and leading to a Legends victory.
3. Have fun
This is going to sound really cliche, but it’s the truth. When it comes down to it, everyone on the field will be nervous. The AAF is a brand new league, and who knows how long it will last? The best way to get past this is to simply have fun. Use a few trick plays and keep a calm manner, and it will pay dividends for the Legends, who open up their season on CBS. No one will be rooting against any of these guys, as this league could provide a huge boost to the NFL. It’ll be interesting to see who wins, but the key is to be cool, calm, and collected.
It's #AllHailATL game week.
BIG MOOD pic.twitter.com/NYvpTbErKA
— Atlanta Legends (@AafLegends) February 4, 2019
Atlanta wins, 23 to 14.
In the end, this game will come down to playmaking. Nerves will be spread out throughout the field, so the team who comes out with more plays will be the team marking down 1-0 in the record book. The Legends have that advantage, thanks to Denard Robinson, who I expect to shine all season long. Orlando will have their moments, but overall, Atlanta has an offensive edge, taking this one by nine.