With the news that the AAF allegedly had to be rescued by an investment by NHL team owner Tom Dundon, we discuss whether the NFL should invest.
19459019] Diana Payan, The Republic | azcentral.com
PHOENIX – Plans to bring an MLS franchise to Detroit may never materialize, but the city could be ripe for another professional sports team.
So says at least the founder of the Alliance of American Football. 19659005] In a Twitter conversation with Detroit-based rapper Eminem, TV producer Charlie Ebersol, who founded the AAF, offered a chance on Monday to bring a franchise to the city.
As of February: New AAF League Has Michigan Ties
The exchange began when Eminem, whose real name is Marshall Mathers, marked the AAF in a tweet in which the league prompted players how to fight in hockey.
"I would watch every game (even if there is no Detroit team – TIP) DO NOT," wrote Mathers.
Ebersol responded with a tweet of his own phrase: "Detroit is not a bad idea for a future franchise – let me know if you want it."
The AAF, which began as a football development league earlier this year, currently consists of eight teams in mostly non-NFL markets such as San Antonio, Orlando , Memphis and Salt Lake City.
The league also has teams in Tempe, Ariz., Near the Arizona Cardinals, and in Atlanta, home to the NFL's Atlanta Falcons.
It is unclear how serious Ebersol was about his proposal – an e-mail seeking a comment was not returned immediately – or why he believes Detroit would be the most suitable for an expansion franchise.
The city already has four professional sports teams, including the NFL Lions, and a new team would probably have to deal with bad weather for their home games (assuming it would play in a location other than the home of the Lions at Ford Field).
San Antonio Commander, who runs Kenneth Farrow II (20) back, faces the Atlanta Legends at Georgia State Stadium in the first half. (Photo: Jason Getz, USA TODAY Sports)
Seven weeks after the opening season, the AAF has received mixed reviews.
The league has better than expected TV ratings, but it also runs into financial and legal challenges. The owner of Carolina Hurricanes, Tom Dundon, had reportedly provided $ 250 million to the League. It reportedly had payroll problems and Ebersol was sued by a man who claimed the league was his idea.
From a footballing point of view, the AAF employs players who were largely marginal in the NFL or were inferior players, most of whom are looking for the league after a final shot.
The league will also face future challenges from start-up leagues such as the revised XFL in 2020.
Contact Dave Birkett at [email protected] Follow him on Twitter @davebirkett. Read about the Detroit Lions and sign up for our Lions newsletter.