Somehow Red must have been sleeping or engaged in important activity like smoking ribs, but he completely missed the inaugural game at the Alamodome of the San Antonio Commanders – Texas’ entry into the new Alliance of American Football. The new league which kicked off this weekend is composed of 8 teams in Atlanta, Birmingham, Memphis and Orlando in the East and San Antonio, San Diego, Arizona and Salt Lake City in the West.
The Commanders are headed by former San Diego Chargers coach Mike Riley and Dallas Cowboys legend Daryl Johnston is the General Manager of the team. The Commanders name is a tribute to San Antonio’s military history complete with sword, Alamo profile and one lone star.
The AAF has some interesting rules. There are no kickoffs (possession starts at the 25 yard line), no extra points (teams must go for a 2-point conversion) and no onside kicks (under certain conditions, after scoring teams can opt for a 4th and 12 from their own 28 yard line). Teams are allowed 2 coaches challenges and there are no replays (but there is a 9th “Sky Official” who can review calls and overturn the on-field decision. And most critically to fans of all stripes, the league is streamlining time-outs and aims to complete games in 2.5 hours. And most commendably, the league is outsourcing head injury reviews to a neutral third-party.
Oh, and the Commanders defeated the San Diego 15-6 in their first game.