This is going to be an article about the Top 5 users in the XCFL. This is a tough article to write because there are a lot of factors that go into a user but we are going to look at 2 specifics to determine the list.
- Stick Skills- who has the best pure skills on the sticks. Utilizing jukes, hurdles, different pass types and swats on defense
- Football IQ- Making the correct play calls against certain defenses, Using proper defenses against certain formations ETC..
#5: Josh Hannah- Josh and the Falcons have been a perennial playoff team and this is almost all due to the fact that Josh is actually good on the sticks. If you watch Joshs gameplay, the dude spins, jukes and hurdles more then anyone with high efficiency. Josh beats up on the small fish and can’t seem to get past the big fish and this is due to his football IQ. The dude is from Europe and I doubt he knows the difference between cover 2 and 3, other then one has 2 blue bubbles up top and the other has 3. If Josh wasn’t born on the wrong side of the Atlantic, things could be different for him but his lack of football knowledge has been made up for with his stick skills.
#4: Regan Long- Reegs has the best of both worlds. If you have ever watched or played Regan, then I’m sure you’ve been faked out by the read option and watched Lamar spin and juke his way down the field. This requires skill, running the read option is an art and Regan has mastered it. He also has learned how to throw on the run and move the pocket, which is another very tough skill to master, as we saw when Tosh had a running QB in the playoffs. Regan also posts a fairly high Madden & Football IQ and can hold his own in almost all the conversations that have been had about the X’s and O’s of real football. He disguises defenses well and does a lot of things at a high level.
#3: Nick Larson- Nick is the QB whisperer, he makes all the throws from the pocket and does it better then anyone else. Utilizing the touch pass to the high ball and everything in between, Nick has shown he can get it done at a high level. Nick also knows how to read defenses and get into play calls that benefit him the most. If we had the same 32 owners as we did in the start of the cycle, Nick would be #2 on this list but his arch nemesis has shown he is a step above. Nick also gets a few points for being an elite drafter and team builder, getting guys that fit his play style and then utilizing them perfectly. Look for Nick to be competing for a super bowl once again but we will see if his game has improved enough over the cycle to get back on top.
#2 Tosh- This is a tough one. Tosh may have the highest Madden IQ of anyone in the league. He knows the game inside and out BUT he also knows football and this combination is deadly. Tosh is fluent in football speak and has the best game plans of anyone in the league. His stick skills may be a small step below Nick but his football IQ vaults him ahead. Tosh disguises defenses and plays defense better then anyone in the league. He is easily the best user linebacker in coverage in the league and always seems to make the big play when he needs to. If Tosh can improve offensively on the sticks, he can finally break through and win a super bowl.
#1 Jack Tyler- Jack played college football at VT and for that reason his football IQ is off the charts. Jack has taught Tosh and I, HS football coaches, a few things this season and can have highly intelligent conversations about the Xs and Os of football. He is probably on track to be a college football coach one day and his knowledge of the game is superior to everyone in here. Mix that with the best user LB against the run in the game and the 2nd best user LB overall and you have a deadly combo. Jack is also possibly the best RB user in the league and at worst top 3. All of these things combine for the best overall user in the XCFL and the title is well deserved.
Brent: Honestly, he could easily be top 5 but I was more impressed with Joshs stick skills with the ball in his hand. Plug and replace Brent with almost any of these 5 and the list still has integrity.I
IWreck: Wreck has a high football IQ also and is one of the better user Linebackers in the game but gets overshadowed by Tosh and Jack. If Wreck can improve offensively and with team building, he could make this list.
Dave: I honestly don’t know Daves football IQ but he kills it with Chark and had an elite defense. Playing him twice a year, I think there is things he can improve on but the stick skills are surely there
Coach Brian- I could not put myself on the list but would like to think I have one of the better football minds and decent stick skills.
Coach Boone- Very good passing stick skills, awful running stick skills, decent football IQ and HORRENDOUS team building. But still worthy of a mention.
My hand are starting to hurt from writing 2 straight articles but other guys that probably should be mentioned are Doss, JMO, VBD and maybeeeeee Van.
I am sure there are some guys that are left out but this is the list I came up with, feel free to chime in if you think you got robbed or want to admit you suck.