The 2021 Spring Football League is upon us!

FROM WIKIPEDIA COMMONS

The Spring League is an American football developmental league and scouting event (pro showcase) that began play in 2017 and was founded by Brian Woods. Aimed at professional athletes but not paying a salary or expenses, the league’s goal is to “serve as an instructional league and showcase for professional football talent.”

The Spring League was the second football property to be established by Woods, following the Fall Experimental Football League (FXFL) from 2014 to 2015. The league consists of four to eight teams and plays an abbreviated four to six game “season” in April or May. There is an additional exhibition games during the year called Spring League Showcases, that were first played in July 2017.

2021 season

Main article: 2021 The Spring League season

In March 2021, TSL announced that they reached a partnership agreement with Stephen Austin‘s American National Combines, and will hold tryouts for the first time in league history. They also declared that players who were on an active roster during TSL’s fall 2020 season are not required to participate in the tryouts. In April, TSL announced the 2021 season will start in May 6th, and will features two new teams – the Linemen and Sea Lions (eight teams in total), competing in a six-week regular season from two hub cities: The North Division in Indianapolis, Indiana and the South Division in Houston, Texas. For the first time, one game every week will be broadcast on Fox including the championship game, while all other games will be broadcast on FS1.

The 2021 The Spring League season is the sixth overall in league history. It’s the first season to feature eight teams, in two divisions.

Format and rules

The 2021 season will kickoff on Thursday, May 6 and will be divided to two divisions that will play in hub cities: The North Division in Indianapolis, Indiana and the South Division in Houston, Texas. Each division champion will advance to the 2021 TSL Championship game, that will take place on June 19.

The 2021 season will feature new rules that aim to improve the game, specifically introducing a new overtime format, the “spot and choose” rule, which means that the team that wins the overtime coin toss will pick the spot of the ball, while the other team will choose whether to play offense or defense.[2] A similar rule to the one proposed by the Baltimore Ravens after the 2020 NFL season.

Players

The player fee for the 2021 season will be $2,000, with exception for players who have been in an NFL training within the past three years, who are not required to pay. According to league CEO Brian Woods, the preference will be for TSL coaches, players and staff to be vaccinated for COVID-19 before the season begins. If not, they will be asked for proof of a negative test upon arrival and will be subject to daily testing thereafter.

Tryouts

In March 2021, TSL announced that they reached a partnership agreement with Stephen Austin‘s American National Combines, and will hold tryouts for the first time in league history. They also declared that players who were on an active roster during TSL’s fall 2020 season are not required to participate in the tryouts.

Coaches

For the 2021 spring season TSL featured a mix of returning coaches from previous seasons and former college football college or minor leagues HC’s. Terry Shea (Aviators), Ted Cottrell (Blues), Jerry Glanville (Conquerors) and defending champion Bart Andrus (Generals) returned to their 2020 Fall season teams, while Peter Vaas (Alphas) and Kevin Gilbride replaced Steve Fairchild and Chuck Bresnahan (respectively). Hal Mumme was appointed as the “Linemen” head coach, while Mike Riley was first announced as the “Sea Lions” coach, but it was later changed to Larry Kirksey.

Some of the more recognizable assistants will be Dale Carlson (Linemen) and Blake Brockermeyer (Sea Lions), while fellow former Chicago Bears Mike Singletary also schedule to return in some capacity.

Teams

The 2021 season will feature two new teams: The Linemen and Sea Lions, that will be added to the six returning teams from the 2020 fall season.

NORTH DIVISION

Alphas

Aviators

Conquerors

Linemen

SOUTH DIVISION

Blues

Generals

Jousters

Sea Lions

Games

The games will be played on Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays, and for the first time, one game every week will be broadcast on FOX (including the championship game), while all other games will be broadcast on FS1 and FS2.

COURTESY WIKIPEDIA COMMONS & THE SPRING LEAGUE

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