Impressions from Week Three of the 2016 AFL Season

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Two blowouts, two shootouts. After this week, one can tell just from the scoreboard which teams are real and which are not going to go very far in the playoffs. This also marked the first week that Arena Football was broadcasted on Univision Deportes, as in “All-Spanish sports, all the time.”

LA @ CLE (AFL)

Los Angeles at Cleveland

  • Did not watch.

One of two shootouts of Week Three. Despite the final score of 47-42 being relatively low by AFL standards, it was still back-and-forth enough to constitute as such. After looking fairly good in the season opener, the KISS have shown to be a rather pedestrian team since then. Luckily for them, Cleveland is yet another pedestrian team in a league full of displaced talent.

So what’s to say about this game? Were the defenses dominant? Or were the offenses less than dominant? I’m going to go with the latter, with three combined interceptions in the game and two missed field goals by Cleveland’s Adrian Trevino. In a game as (typically) high-scoring as the AFL, one field goal is plenty, but two field goal attempts in one game? Your offense clearly isn’t getting the job done.

Neither quarterback has been sterling this season. That might be the difference in these games. They have pieces of offensive talent on both sides with Collin Taylor and Donovan Morgan, but if they can’t get a quarterback to throw it to them, what’s the use? And to think, if Trevino would’ve made those two field goals, Cleveland may have won this game.

TB @ ARI (AFL)

Tampa Bay at Arizona

  • Did not watch.

One of two blowouts of Week Three. Is there really anything about these two teams that already hasn’t been said? Tampa Bay is the worst team in the league and Arizona is the best. When you pit the worst team against the best team, 60-27 is a score that won’t surprise anyone.

Three weeks in a row that Tampa Bay can’t manage more than 30 points of offense. Even with recently-returned Jason Boltus, the Storm can’t manage to do anything right this season. In their defense, two of the last three weeks they went up against the better teams in the league in Arizona and Orlando. Though, even against Cleveland they faltered their chance to do anything.

Arizona is Arizona. If not for San Jose last year, they’d likely win their fourth championship in four years. They seem to be high and above any other team in the league right now. Unless they fuck up royally, I don’t see any reason they couldn’t have a perfect season this year.

PRT @ PHI

Portland at Philadelphia

  • Watched.

The score at halftime was 6-42. That’s really all that needs to be said. Philadelphia is good. Portland is bad.

ORL @ JAX

Orlando at Jacksonville

  • Watched.

¡Que rico!

The Spanish broadcasting of this game was muy bueno. I really appreciated the energy and the spirit that was put into just about every play, and especially the touchdowns. ¡Touchdowns, más touchdowns, y más touchdowns! There were a couple slip-ups here and there, such as one announcer calling Derrick Ross “Tiger Jones” and calling the Predators the “Pranthers,” but for the most part, they knew their stuff. Despite not knowing 98% of what they said, I still enjoyed the game just as much (if not more) than I would the English counterpart.

Now, the game itself was also muy bueno. The second of two shootouts in Week Three. The game had all sorts of goofs and different ways of scoring, including a missed field goal return for a touchdown late in the second quarter. Both teams played their cojones off, but Orlando ended up outlasting Jacksonville despite playing poorly early on.

Jacksonville is a lot like the now dubbed Los Angeles Rams. They have loads of talent on one side of the ball (Rams with their defense; Sharks with their offense), yet can never consistently use it to their advantage. Grady is one of the better quarterbacks in the league, with two of the best wide receivers in the league with Tiger Jones and Joe Hills. Despite this, they can never blow the top off of most defenses in most games, only occasionally. One would think that with this kind of firepower that the Sharks would be up in the ranks with the Arizona Rattlers, but for whatever reason, they don’t always click. Whatever it may be, they’re quick to falter, and Orlando took advantage of it. Though, it ended up being closer than I would’ve expected it to be.

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