SUPER 16 – The biggest upsets can only be delivered by your biggest rivals and such was the case in the Super 16‘s Week 7 Game of the Week between the AF#1 SF’s BowMen (5-1-0) and the AF#20 1 Eye Til I Die (5-1-0). More than just pride at stake, control of the league was up for grabs in this league #1 vs #2 heavyweight match as well as – maybe more importantly – control of the explosive S16 West Division in this pair’s 6th all-time meeting.
Coach Mac’s Raider squad got things started on Thursday night, putting up 115 points in a game their NFL counterparts won in dramatic fashion. Putting to rest any questions of how they’d handle the season loss of their starting quarterback, 1 Eye’s home team backup posted 47 points to lead the team on the night. BowMen, though, ranked not just #1 in the league, but #1 in the entire Association according to the latest AF Top 25, didn’t plan on just sitting back and absorbing 1 Eye’s blows. With their own signal caller playing in the Thursday night game as well, BowMen matched 1 Eye’s 47 points at quarterback with 48 points of their own, and came out of the game with just a 67-115 point deficit. They even got 19 points from a Raider after starting their team captain NaVorro Bowman who was traded earlier in the week between these teams’ parent organizations.
But a BowMan comeback never materialized, as 1 Eye went mad-dog on defense through the Sunday games, cranking out 119 points from non-homer IDP’s and Special Teams, including a 38 point afternoon from their FLEX IDP Kevin Byard. The Oakland franchise wasn’t done until Monday night, when they put up an anti-climactic 2 points for the finishing touches on the 243-181 upset victory over BowMen, a score good enough for #14 all-time in the Super 16 Record Book. They say that to be the best, you have to beat the best, and 1 Eye just beat the statistically best team in the Association, to advance to 6-1-0 and take over the division and the league. Their only loss is to, none other than BowMen, who beat them with a 245 point score of their own two weeks ago.
The split wins means a tiebreaker between the two of them could come down to total points and BowMen has the edge there at this point. BowMen fall to 5-2-0, both of their losses from division foes which could be devastating in this division. TheAF#8 Arizona Firebirds, who beat BowMen by just 2 points in Week 4, won their game this weekend vs Steel Curtain, 211-194 and advance to a 5-2-0 record. The expansion Broncs fall to 3-4-0 after a Week 7 loss and rank #9 in the league, but the rest of the West is ranked #1, #2, and #3 in both standings and in total season points. The West Division now has accounted for 28% of all points scored so far this year, with 1 Eye, Arizona, and BowMen combined averaging an incredible 202 points per game, while the rest of the league when combined without their totals comes in at just 137 per game.
In another Week 7 game just as exciting as the Battle on the Bay, two more of the S16‘s best, the AF#18 Birds of Prey faced off with bitter division rival Who Dat Saints in game that literally down to the very end of Monday Night Football. The three-time league Champion Birds came into the showdown ranked #3 in the league with a 4-2-0 record, but the Who Dats, who took the South Division from BoP last season was ranked #4 with the same 4-2-0 tally. When the dust settled, the final score on this one was a 212-211 Birds of Prey victory, but just 1 more yard – or a single reception – from the Who Dat’s RB Blount in that game would have given them a tie. If the outcome survives stat corrections, Birds of Prey will have emerged with a 5-2-0 record, #4 in the league and an all-important head to head win over the Who Dats who will be 4-3-0 and #5…but if just two points change hands over stat corrections the outcome will be exactly reversed. BIGDOG holds onto the 3 spot in the South Division after destroying the still winless BEARMINATORS 217-100, while HOUSTON keeps pace with them, beating Motor City 177-157.
Motor City’s loss was their second stumble in a row, and The Indy-structibles, who had been rising in the North Division, took a 162-187 loss to snap a five game losing streak for Eagle has landed. The losses opened the door for The Dawg Pound to take a one game lead on the division, advancing to a 4-3-0 record after beating Dem Bucking Broncs, 191-171. That lead may be short lived as the Cleveland Dawgs must play 1 Eye Til I Die in Week 8.
In the East Division, Geno’s Jaw Breakers and the Defending Champion Northern Fins each come out of Week 7 with 4-3-0 records, but nothing is equal about those records. After blowing the Fins out of the water in Week 7, 209-124, the Jaw Breakers have now swept the Miami franchise and racked up a 4-1 division record. They control the East and their own destiny and remain undefeated – all-time – when scoring 200 or more points. Steel Curtain is just one game back from both of them, but for now the division race is between Geno and the Fins, and that race may come down to which team can take a beating better….the Jaw Breakers must face Birds of Prey, Motor City, Arizona, and BowMen before the season’s done, while the Fins must take on Steel Curtain, 1 Eye, BowMen, and Arizona.