2015 Year In Review

In 2015, the fourth season of the Super 16, the league lost the St Claire Lions, the Bucking Froncos, and A Thug’s Life, but still retained 7 charter members of the original 12 team league.  In the off-season, RG3PO relocated their franchise from the Redskins to the Jets and became Geno’s Jaw Breakers.  In the West, Extreme Pain Ram Parts bailed on St Louis a season ahead of their NFL franchise, relocating to the vacated Lions franchise to become the Motor City Kitties.  The move left the Arizona Firebirds as the only returning team in the West Division; new franchises went out to the Raiders – 1 Eye Til I Die, the 49ers – SF’s BowMen, and the Chargers – Los Angeles Super Chargers

The Draft

Round 1 of the 2015 Draft

Round 1 of the 2015 Draft

The season kicked off with the 4th annual draft, expansion newcomer 1 Eye Til I Die picking first overall.  The Raider Squad selected Adrian Peterson, followed by Geno’s Jaw Breakers – the relocated RG3PO franchise – number two overall pick, Adrian Peterson.  The Who Dat Nation was on the clock, and, with the third overall pick…they selected….a kicker?  Coach Mel showed up late to the draft, and when she found that Dan Carpenter had been autodrafted for her, she cursed us all, vowing to beat us all this season with karma and a kicker!  The Who Dats went on to finish 7-6, one game back from the playoffs.

Moment #5

Week 1

In Week 1, The Birds of Prey didn’t waste any time reminding the league that they were still the team to beat, putting on a show in a MNF SimulPlay game, dominating a promising Eagle Has Landed team and capturing the high score of the week.  Their 226-155 victory over The Eagle has Landed in the Week 1 Game of the Week put the rest of the S-16 on notice that after coming up just short of a 3-peat last season, they were out for that 3rd ring in 2015.  The victory meant they started off, once again, in control of the South Division.

The first look at the league’s three new teams was two parts intimidating, one part embarssing.  In one of the season’s first SimulPlay matches, the LA Super Chargers put up 221 points in their league debut against the Motor City Kitties in their Detroit opener, while SF’s BowMen embarassed their cross bay rival 1 Eye Til I Die in a 213-97 point rout – it was one of only 3 losses 1 Eye would suffer all season and one of only two occasions that they scored less than 175 points.

Moment #4

Week 2

GOW 15-2

The Week 2 Game of the Week featured the expansion Los Angeles Super Chargers, coming off a 225 point Week 1, facing an Ice Cold Bruschi team that was also 1-0, with a 198 point Week 1 performance.  It wasn’t even close.  The Bruschis obliterated the previous league record for single game points in their trouncing of the Super Chargers 294 – 152.  The record-breaking 294 point total surpassed the previous #1 of 246.50 set by the Extreme Pain Rams in Week 13 of last season.

Meanwhile, in the South Division in Week 2, two active win-streaks collided as the H-Town Foster Kids and their 5 game win streak faced off against the Birds of Prey who were riding an 8 game regular season win streak.  The match was incredibly close, but with the 174 – 167 win, the Birds extended their streak to 9 games, which brought them into a 3-way tie for all time win streaks ( with the Bruschis from 2012, and with themselves from 2013-14).

 Week 3

In Week 3, the Game of the Week featured the overall #2 and #4 teams in the league at the time, both of them undefeated, facing off for control of the unexpectedly strong Western Division.  At #4 overall, and the #4 scoring leader at this early point of the season, the Arizona Firebirds, despite being 2-0 were still second place in the West Division.  and that’s because the expansion SF’s BowMen were #2 overall, also 2-0, and had outscored Arizona by 22 points  in the first two weeks to take their place as the league’s #2 scorer.
GOW 15-3
 The Firebirds prevailed, defeating the BowMen 236-144 in a SimulPlay match to move to 3-0 and 1st overall in the division.  Also remaining undefeated were the Birds of Prey, who advanced to 3-0 after destroying division rival BIGDOGINTEX, 289-147 in another SimulPlay match.  The win marked the second highest single game score in league history, and set a new record for winstreaks as The Birdsthe victory marked Birds of Prey’s 10th consecutive regular season victory.  Also still undefeated at this point in the season were the 3-0 Ice Cold Bruschis, who defeated the returning champ BEARMINATORS by a score of 214-157.

Week 4

Going into Week 4, The Dawg Pound controlled the North Division.  They were 2-1, having just lost a close one in Week 3 to the league #5 1 Eye Til I Die, but were still ranked 6th overall in the league.  In the Week 4 Game of the Week they would face the league #7 Los Angeles Super Chargers who GOW 15-4were in a dead heat with Arizona and 1 Eye for the West Division lead.  Preparing for this Game of the Week, League Offices brought us this gem of a stat:  going into this match, The Dawg Pound  was 5-3 vs teams with a horse mascot.

The hapless brown’s franchise would emerge, as it turned out, 5-4 vs teams with horse mascots as the Super Charged expansion squad shocked the Dawgs 205-156.  The win dropped Arizona to 3rd place in the West, as Los Angeles climbed into second and 1 Eye Til I Die took over 1st when they defeated theBrowns Box BEARMINATORS.  The defending champions from Chicago, at this point in the season had lost each of their first 4 games to post the worst start in franchise history.

In other Week  4 action, The Birds of Prey continued their record setting regular season win-streak in a tough division victory over H-Town 162-140.  The win put the Birds at 4-0, firmly in control of the South with 11 straight regular season wins.  In another big win – only 19 points shy of the week’s high score – the Ice Cold Bruschis continued on,  undefeated and in first place in the league after beating division rival, The Eagle has landed who fell to a struggling 1-3.

Arch Rivalry

Arch Rivalry

Week 5

The Week 5  Game of the Week featured former West Division rivals the (#3) Arizona Firebirds (3-1) and the (#7) Moter City Kitties (2-2).  To commemorate the rivalry game – and sell more jerseys – both teams agreed to wear their throwback uniforms for the game.  The teams had faced each other 4 times previously, and the series was split 2-2.  Arizona took this one, 216-170, remaining in first place in the West with 1 Eye Til I Die right on their heels, also advancing to 4-1 after beating H-Town 177-160.

Birds of Prey and Ice Cold Bruschis both extended their win streaks, each advancing to 5-0 with wins against the Northern Fins and BIGDOGINTEX.

Moment #3

Fire In The Hole

Fire In The Hole

Week 6

A show down in the west had to come, and the day of reckoning was in Week 6 as the Game of the Week.  Both teams were 4-1, but with 1 Eye playing at BYE week strength, The Vegas line had the Firebirds installed as whopping 90 point favorites.  As it turned out, though, the Firebirds barely escaped the black hole, and narrowly pulled off the victory, 199-181.   Arizona advanced to 5-1 with the rest of the division still right behind them at 4-2.

The Birds of Prey survived their closest game of the season, squeaking by the rival Who Dats 178-173 extending their record win-streak to 13 games, while, the Ice Cold Bruschis had quietly done nothing but win all season, and did it again in Week 6, trampling the Indy-structibles 189-146.  At this point in the season, the Bruschis were 6-0 and had outscored Birds of Prey by 100 points.

Week 7

The Week 7 Game of the Week was all sunshine and doom as the #5 Super Chargers (4-2) faced the #6 1 Eyes (4-2) in a divisional SimulPlay match.  With the West Division teams ranked 3, 4, 5, and 6 overall, the season was shaping up to be one in which practically every single snap in every West Division match-up was going to be important.  This game would prove to be pivotal.

Lightning and Thunder

Lightning and Thunder

Los Angeles came into the game ranked 5th in the league, but only 3rd in the Division, and were 0-1 in their divisional matchups after falling to the BowMen two weeks before.  1 Eye Til I Die were right behind the Chargers, ranked 6th in the league and 4th in the division at 0-2 in division play.  The teams’ winless division records made this a must win game for each franchise in the most hotly contested division of the season.  The Vegas line had Los Angeles favored by only 9 points, as this one was predicted to be a barn burner.
For the first time ever in 4 Super 16 seasons, a match ended in a draw, with the Super Chargers managing to match 1 Eye’s score with an interception on the final play of the final game of the week on MNF, ending the game in a 228-228 tie.  The lasting affects of the tie would prove to be huge, as the game became a turning point for the worse for the Chargers, while the ‘half-win’ would become a standings asset to 1 Eye on their quest for the post season. At this point in the season, though, Arizona (6-1), followed by BowMen (5-2) were in firm control of the West as the tie smudged 1 Eye’s and the Charger’s records, leaving them at  4-1-1.
In the South, Birds of Prey easily dispatched the Who Dats in a rivalry rematch, extending their regular season winstreak to an unbelievable 14 games to put them at 7-0, and the Ice Cold Bruschis continued to dominate the East, moving to 7-0, with their second win vs the Jawbreakers, stomping them 256-159.  Besides sweeping the Jets franchise, they had already posted a win vs the Eagle has Landed, and were about to face a back to back series against a very strong ‘Fins squad.  Their 7 game win streak put them into the record book this week with the Birds as they now possessed the 4th position on the all time win-streak record list.  The Motor City Kitties advanced to 4-3, for 7th overall and first in the North with their win over The Dawg Pound.

Week 8

The Week 8 Game of the Week, featured the 7-0 Birds of Prey, in the midst of an unbelievable 14 game win-streak facing their toughest test of the season in the Los Angeles Super Chargers (4-2-1) who were ranked 5th overall and averaging 210 points a game over their last 4 games.  Still,  Vegas had Los Angeles installed as 59 point underdogs.   In the end it was worse than that, as the Birds of Prey extended their regular season win streak to 15 straight with a trouncing of the Super Chargers 269-176.  With the win, the Birds clinched their Division Championship earlier than any team’s ever done it, securing their 2015 post season ticket.

Bears Box In the East, at this point, the Ice Cold Bruschis were quietly still the best team in the league, 8-0 after a convincing 254-192 SimulPlay win over division rival Northern ‘Fins, the Bruschis had outscored the Birds by about 75 points on the season, and could  clinch their own Division Championship with a win the following week in a rematch with the ‘Fins.  In the North, the strugling 2014 Defending Champion BEARMINATORS recorded their very first win of the season while the rest of the division stumbled.  The Kitties still held the lead, but their record in Week 8 was a middling 4-4.  Meanwhile out West, the 3 franchises not based out of Los Angeles all won, keeping the standings knotted up.

Week 9

The Game of the Week for Week 9, was a rematch of the season opener, with the all-important West Division standings hanging in the balance as the expansion SF’s BowMen (6-2-0) took on the expansion 1 Eye Til I Die (5-2-1) for the second time.  The two were ranked 4th and 5th overall in the league, but 2nd and 3rd in their division, trailing the Firebirds by 1 and 1.5 games, respectively.  The oddsmakers had 1 Eye installed as a mere 10 point favorite, so it looked like it would be a close game.  The way the early playoff picure was shaping up, both Wildcard slots could have come out of the West, and neither the 49er or Raider franchise could afford to lose this game.  This was the two teams’ second all-time meeting, the BowMen having decimated 1 Eye in the Week 1 opener 213-97.  The BowMen were 2-1 in Division, including that win over 1 Eye.  A win this week would give them a tiebreaker over the silver and black in the playoff race.  1 Eye had won every non-division game they had played to this point in the season, but had not yet won a single division game, posting losses against the BowMen and Firebirds, and having to settle for the Week 7 tie with Los Angeles.  A win this week, would propel them ahead of SF in the division race on the strength of that tie.

The Raider franchise prevailed – barely, dispatching rival BowMen 173-168 in what would prove to be a pivotal moment in the 2015 play off push.  1 Eye moved into second place in the West, a half a game behind the Firebirds and a half a game ahead of the BowMen by virtue of that tie on their record.  The real story of Week 9, however were the killer fish of the Northern ‘Fins squad, who knocked off the league #1 and ended division rival Ice Cold Bruschis’ win streak at 8 in their 226-151 rout of the East leader.  The Fin’s win also prevented the Bruschis from clinching the division title for one more week.

Birds of Prey extended their regular season win-streak to an unbelievable 16 straight with their 210- 165 dismantling of The Eagle has Landed, while in the North Division, Motor City easily handled rival Indy 186-154 to stay a game ahead of the Dawg Pound (4-5) for a tenuous hold on the division.

Standings through week 9Week 10

Going into Week 10, the playoff picture looked like this:  Birds of Prey had won the South Division and clinched a playoff spot, and the Ice Cold Bruschis could clinch the East with one more win.  In the North Division, Motor City and the Dawgs were slugging it out, the pair of them scheduled to play 7 division matches in total over the final four weeks, including a season finale against each other that could end up deciding the division.  The West was still up for grabs, and could mathematically still be won by any of it’s four teams.  The Wild Card race looked like it would likely come down to whoever the 2nd and 3rd place teams from the West turned out to be, but the Dawgs, Jaw Breakers, Fins, and Who Dats all still had a shot.

The Week 10 Game of the Week would be absolutely pivotal in shaping the playoff picture, specifically in how the West Division would shake out.  The Arizona Firebirds came into the match fresh off of a stunning defeat at the hands of the Jawbreakers, while 1 Eye Til I Die was riding the high of the narrowest Week 9 win over cross-bay rival BowMen.  A win for the Firebirds would put them in the catbird seat with a 3-0 division record setting them up nicely for their closing schedule vs LA, SF, and then LA again.  But if 1 Eye could win the rematch, they’d move into the division lead by half a game.

just Winning Baby

Just Winning, Baby

The first match between these teams, in Week 6 was won by the Firebirds with only a 14 point margin of victory.  The Vegas line on the rematch had the Firebirds favored once again, but this time by only 6, but it was 1 Eye that would come out on top, pulling off the upsetand advancing their record to    It was never as close as the 187-174 final score would indicate, as 1 Eye Til I Die led the Firebirds throughout the match, and a MNF comeback was not to be had for Arizona.  With the win, 1 Eye took over as the West Division leader, and moved into 3rd overall with their 7-2-1 record.  Arizona dropped to 4th overall, a half game back from the Oakland franchise with a record of 7-3-0; SF’s BowMen right behind the Firebirds also with a 7-3-0 record of their own after effectively ending Los Angeles’ playoff hopes in a 175-145 win over the them.  Arizona held the tiebreaker with SF, and the two were scheduled to meet again in Week 12.

In the East, the Ice Cold Bruschis rebounded from their Week 9 upset loss to dominate the Foster Kids, securing a 192-148 victory, and with it the East Division Championship.  The Northern ‘Fins completely dominated the Eagle, posting a 221-162 win.  It was the second consecutive 220+ point outing for the ‘Fins, and the 5th with a score topping 190.  Now at 5-5-0, the Dolphin franchise was sitting two games back from the pack of likely Wild Card teams, to punch their ticket, the ‘Fins would need to win out, and hope for a meltdown by one of the western squads.

The Birds of Prey extended their win-streak in Week 10 to 17 consecutive regular season wins,  surviving their bye-strength match, they dispatched BIGDOGINTEX in a close 145-122 match.  A first round bye seemed almost certain for the Birds at this point, but they had not yet clinched it.  Like the Fins, the Karma and a Kicker Who Dats still had a glimmer of hope for a shot at a Wild Card spot after they defeated the Jawbreakers 184-151 to advance to .500  They’d need to win out and get lots of help from the West.  In the S16 North, all four teams still had a statistical shot at the division crown, but the Motor City Kitties were the odds on favorites as their win over Indy in Week 10 left them as the only team in the division above .500  They could clinch the title in Week 11 with a win AND a loss by the Dawg Pound.

Week 11

North By North-West

North By North-West

The SimulPlay match-up set as Week 10’s Game of the Week was essentially an early playoff bout.  For either team, a loss would not be the end of the world, but a win would go a long way toward locking down their playoff future.  The 7-2-1 Raider squad was fresh off a victory over the Firebirds that gave them control of the West Division with just a half game lead over both Arizona and San Francisco.  They were on a 3 game winning streak with, mathematically, the softest finishing schedule of the 3 teams fighting for the Western crown.  The Motor City Kitties were, at this point, ranked 6th overall in the league and had a 2 game advantage on their nearest division rival.  They would secure the North Division Championship this week with a win AND a Dawg Pound loss.

Moment Hon Ment

In what proved to be a game that helped define the season, the Kitties unleashed all the horses, defeating 1 Eye 180-141 to secure their playoff spot and the Division Championship.  The loss dropped 1 Eye back into second place in the West, by half a game with a 7-3-1 record, as Arizona advanced to 8-3-0 after defeating Los Angeles.  San Francisco was screwed by Marshawn Lynch once more, as the BowMen dropped to 7-4-0  in their upset loss to The Eagle.  The loss put the BowMen out of the division race, but they still controlled their own destiny for the Wild Card.

The biggest news of Week 11, though, was the roller coaster ride Birds of Prey‘s win streak took the league on.  As the weekend’s games wound down, it became clear that the seemingly impossible had happened as the Birds of Prey fell to the Indy-structibles 174-178, ending a 17 game regular season win-streak.  The Falcon franchise had not lost a game since Week 6 of 2014, and had beaten their division rivals 9 times in that same span.  But then, miraculously, a Wednesday stat correction overturned the loss, giving the Birds a 1 point victory for what would have been an 18th straight win.  It was a win that never made it to the record books as The Indy-structibles would not be denied their triumph.  A Thursday stat correction reversed the outcome for a second time, and the score finaly settled at 177-175 Indy.  The incredible win streak was over.

tri panel destructible

These were the update headline photos as the League Offices scrambled to keep up with the changing victory/loss of the Birds, Indy match-up

Colts Box

Week 12

Week 12 brought us what could have been the game of the season, as old rivals clashed in the Thanksgiving Classic.  Birds of Prey (10-1-0) and Ice Cold Bruschis (9-2-0) had been on a collision course since the season began, and finaly they would meet, ranked #1 and #2, with only 3 losses all season between the two of them.  Would it be a rematch of Super Bowl I or a preview of Super Bowl IV?  The two had played each other 5 times in league history up to this point, and the Birds led the series 3 games to 2…including their 15 point win in Super Bowl I

The match-up did not disappoint.  A close, back and forth affair that wasn’t decided until the end.  A last-ditch rally on Sunday Night Football (101.00 points, or 71% of their total score) wasn’t enough for the Ice Cold Bruschis, as the Birds of Prey got the 163.00 to 142.00 victory.  The Birds were led by A.J. Green who scored two touchdowns and contributed 21.00 points to the cause,  while Ice Cold Bruschis’ lead receiver, Demaryius Thomas disappointed, being targeted 13 times and only able to reel in one catch.

1

The win locked down the #1 seed – again – for Birds of Prey, while the rest of the playoff field, though becoming more clear, still needed seeding.  The loss prevented the Bruschis from securing the other first round Bye, and they were now in a race for that slot with both Arizona and Motor City.

Arizona won a hugely important match vs division rival BowMen, while 1 Eye won an equally important one against the Super Chargers that prevented the Firebirds from clinching the division, and also clinched, at worst, the #6 seed for 1 Eye.  The final wild card slot was now a race between BowMen (7-5-0) and the Northern ‘Fins (7-5-0) after the Karma and a Kicker Who Dats eliminated themselves in a Week 12 meltdown vs arch rival H-Town (121-161).  The ‘Fins pulled off a 215 point monster Week 12 win vs the Jaw Breakers (177), so that, despite losing 4 of their first 5, they had managed to close the gap and put themselves into position for the playoffs.

Week 13: Regular Season Finale

In the regular season finale there wasn’t quite as much drama as the final week normally brings the league.  5 of 6 playoff teams were set, with only seeding left to be determined.  But for the BowMen and ‘Fins, it was the last chance to get into the post season.  Playing for the last remaining Wild Card,  BowMen were to play the BEARMINATORS and the Fins would get the Who Dats.  Neither of their opponents had ever won in Week 13, but the Who Dat’s finaly did, although with not much help from their kicker, defeating the ‘Fins 213-197, playing spoiler for the Miami squad’s season, and sending the BowMen, who won in Week 13, 181-148, to the Wild Card Game.

INSERT HERE

How The West Was Won - Banner

How The West Was Won

The Arizona Firebirds 10-3-0 (5-1-0) posted a Week 13 win, sweeping the 2015 series with division foe Los Angeles to clinch the #2 seed and win their division for the second time in franchise history.  They finished just a half a game ahead of 1 Eye Til I Die 9-3-1 (3-2-1) who’d been chasing them for the Western title all season.  In the end, the Week 7 tie between 1 Eye and Los Angeles, made all the difference.  With their Week 13 victory, 1 Eye would have to settle for the #5 seed as a playoff Wild Card spot.

Birds of Prey suffered an uncharacteristic defeat (187-207) against Geno’s Jaw Breakers in their finale, but still retained control of the #1 seed and a first round bye, while their rival Bruschis finished their season with a dissappointing loss to The Eagle has landed.  The loss, coupled with the Arizona win dropped the Bruschis down to the #3 seed and gave the Firebirds the #2 seed and a first round bye.  The Bruschis started the season with a record setting 8 game win-streak, but were now in the midst of a 3 game slide.  Motor City Kitties took the #4 seed, a Week 13 win to end their season holding a 9-4-0 (6-0-0) record – tied with Bruschis, but behind them in points.

 Moment #2

Post Season – Wild Card Round

In Round 1 of the 2015 Playoffs – Wild Card Weekend – the match-ups were set to be the #5 seeded 1 Eye Til I Die (9-3-1) facing off with the North Division Champion #4 seeded Motor City Kitties ( 9-4-0) in a rematch of a Week 11 SimulPlay Game of the Week that 1 Eye lost 141-180, and the #3 seeded, East Division Champion Ice Cold Bruschis (9-4-0) hosting the #6 seeded SF’s BowMen (8-5-0) in the teams’ first ever meeting.
 The Kitties had won 5 straight, including that Week 11 victory, and had won 7 of their last 8 matchups going all the way back to Week 6. They were averaging 173 points per game for the season, but 193 points per game over their last 5, while, despite their seeding, 1 Eye was ranked 3rd overall in league standings, and was no stranger to big games, having been featured in the Game of the Week an unprecedented 5 times this season and were an AF Pro Bowl nominee. The Week 11 loss to the Kitties was their only loss over the previous 7 weeks, a period of time in which they had averaged 192 points per game.
The Bruschis got off to a red hot start this season, winning 8 straight with a monstrous per game average of 226 points. Beset by injuries, however, they had only won 1 of their last 5 and averaged only 159 points per game in that span. The Bruschis had been to the playoffs twice previously, but had never played in the first round. They were 1-2 in the post season going into the match, with one of the losses coming in Super Bowl I.  SF’s Bowmen had had to fight through the season’s most competitive division and did not secure their Wild Card berth until Week 13 with their victory over the defending Champion BEARMINATORS and the Northern ‘Fins defeat. They were averaging 174 points per game this season, 166 over the last 4 games. The match-up was being projected at 184-190, Bruschis.

2015 playoff tree
The results of the weekend would prove to be decisive. Behind a monster performance by Khalil Mack, 1 Eye Til I Die defeated the Motor City Kitties on the strength of Mack’s 5 sacks and 7 qb hits contributing to the posting a 49 point afternoon in 1 Eye’s 199 – 170 win. Despite disappointing 1 point performances by Charles Clay and Megatron, Motor City still managed to post a 78 – 49 point offensive advantage, but the Raiders franchise won with their defense. At the team defense position, the Raiders out-scored the Lions’ Defense 22-6, and with IDP’s, 1 Eye Til I Die turned in a 128 point defensive outing while Motor City only had 86. Besides Mack’s 49 points, 1 Eye Til I Die also got a 31 point day from LaVonte David, the two players combining for 80 of their 199 points (40%) If you add in the Raiders Defense’s 22 points, the three positions accounted for 51% of 1 Eye’s team total.

In the second game, the explosive Ice Cold Bruschi (9-4-0, 2601.00 points) squad we saw in the early season were back, thrashing SF’s BowMen 117.00 to 74.00. They were led by Tom Brady (226 Pas Yds, 2 TD) with 36.00 points and Todd Gurley (140 Rsh Yds, 2 TD), who had 30.00. The Ice Cold Bruschis scored first and went into Sunday leading 19.00 to nothing That advantage slipped away after the early Sunday games and they trailed by 3, but the Bruschis reclaimed the lead during Sunday’s late afternoon games with the help of 11.00 points from Demaryius Thomas, and would maintain the advantage for the remainder of the matchup. Brady at this point had led Ice Cold Bruschis in scoring in three straight weeks, and for four of the previous five.

Semi-Finals

The Super 16 season had wound its way down to the 2015 Final Four, and it was a magnificent collection of fantasy juggernauts. Between the four of them, the semi-finalist teams had lost only 12 games all season, 9 if you remove the ones they lost to each other, and they collectively accounted for 16 playoff wins or byes over the League’s 4 seasons. All four were 2015 AF Pro Bowl nominees – the only league in the AF family to have a playoff bracket made up entirely of Pro Bowl nominees, and were ranked #1-4 in the league both by standings and total points.

Would Super Bowl 4 be another round of Arizona and 1 Eye’s West Division war? A rematch of Super Bowl II? Of Super Bowl I, even? Or the first time ever meeting of two teams? here were the match-ups.
fab four

The Fab Four

Game 1: #1 Birds of Prey (11-2-0) vs #5 1 Eye Til I Die (9-3-1)
The #1 seeded Birds of Prey were in familiar territory. They had been the #1 seeded team in every playoff in league history. They’d won the League Title twice, were 4-0 in head-to-head playoff matches, and – at 44-12-0 all time, they were the league’s winningest team. As the league number two in points scored this season at an average of 199 points per game, they were outscoring 1 Eye by 30 points per game on average.
The expansion 1 Eye squad, had played surprisingly dominant football all season outside of a Week 1 walloping, 97-213, delivered by cross-bay rival Bowmen. Their only other two losses came from Arizona in Week 6, and Motor City in Week 11. But they followed those latter two losses with rematch wins, in Week 10 vs the Firebirds, and in the Wild Card game against the Kitties. They were in the midst of a 3 game win-streak, having posted final numbers of 234, 200, and 196 over that span.
When the game kicked off, the Birds of Prey took the victory with the one thing that’s always made them great: consistancy. Their stud receiver, Julio Jones set a team high of 25 points with his 118 yards and a touchdown, and Matt Ryan scored them 21 points from the QB position, but it wasn’t a case of a few standouts coming through for the Birds, it was the consistancy of 10 of 14 starters hitting double didgits, it was the all around solid line-up that gave them the win. They did leave 54 points on the bench as their back-up QB, Teddy Bridgewater lit up Chicago, but in the end it wasn’t needed as they posted a solid 186 points to 1 Eye’s 162. Oakland had back-up defenders on the bench posting numbers that could have helped them, but it was primarily a matter of too many Raiders in single didgits to keep up with the veteran Birds. Although Amari Cooper did turn in a steller 120 yard, 2 TD, 27 point day for them, they ended their season just short of reaching the Championship Round in their inaugural season.
semifinal BoP vs 1 Eye
 
Game 2: #2 Arizona Cardinals (10-3-0) vs #3 Ice Cold Bruschis (10-3-0)
Having the distinction of being the teams that Birds of Prey beat in Super Bowls I and II, this pair now would face each other to see which team got a shot at revenge. The Arizona franchise had been to the playoffs twice before, and were 2-2 in the post season. They were 1-1 all-time vs the Bruschis, the last meeting between the two of them being all the way back in Week 2 of 2014, a contest the Firebirds won. Led by a tandem of the number 3 and 4 QBs and a trio of top tight ends, they had scored 190 or more points 6 times this season, and only once scored below 175.
Ice Cold Bruschis were 1-2 in the playoffs entering the match, but both of their playoff losses had been to the eventual league champion. They were the league points leader on the season, having broken scoring record after scoring record all year. They averaged an unbelievable 226 points per game through an opening season 8 game win-streak. Thanks to a rash of injuries to close the latter portion of their schedule, that per game average fell to 186 on the season, however.
The match-up turned out to be both closer and higer scoring than Game 1 of the semi finals. The Firebirds saw 6 of their players score 20 or more points, including a 33.5 point outing for their linebacker Melvin Ingram, but the Bruschis matched them every step of the way. The Patriot franchise also had 6 players top 20 points, including QB Tom Brady with 33 points of his own, posting 267 yards and 2 TDs. The Bruschis matched the Firebirds tit for tat throughout the game, and ultimately won with more of their starters scoring in the mid teens than Arizona had. The Firebirds could have been victorious with a personel change at defensive line, as William Gholston left 19 points on the bench while Arizona fell by less than 10 points, 220.50 – 230.00
Semifinal AZ vs Bruschis

Super Bowl IV

So the stage was set for Super Bowl IV to be a rematch of Super Bowl I as Birds of Prey and Ice Cold Bruschis both defeated their oponents in the semi finals to advance and face off with each other in the title game.

Super Bowl IV

Super Bowl IV

The first Super Bowl meeting between these two teams in 2012 – with the Bruschis playing as Brady’s Bunch – ended with Birds of Prey hoisting the first league championship after a 186-171 weekend of football, that was close the whole way. This season, the two had been first and second place through most of the year, and were separated by a season points total of just 6 and a half points. They had met just a few weeks before in Week 12 in a match where the Birds of Prey won by only 21 points. Birds of Prey led the pair’s all time series 4 games to 2.

After starting the season red hot, both teams had been hit with the injury bug and seemed to be limping into the championship. The Falcons’ franchise had won just 2 of their last 4 games, while the Bruschis had only 3 wins in their last 7. That they both made it to the Super Bowl after season finishes with major personel problems is an indication of the kind of true championship caliber football that these Super Bowl IV contenders were playing.
This one turned out to be nowhere near as close as the pair’s first Championship meeting as the Birds of Prey routed the Bruschis 190 – 156. Kawann Short (2 Sack, 7 Tack) did the most damage, putting up 29.00 points. To make matters worse, Ice Cold Bruschis got a goose egg from their starting pass rusher, Geno Atkins.

Bruschi QuoteFor the victors, a few players had been heating up in the postseason, most notably Teddy Bridgewater and Short. During the playoffs, that duo has outperformed their season scoring averages by 57% and 46%, respectively. Conversely, Birds of Prey had a couple of players heading in the opposite direction. A.J. Green and Aaron Donald had both fallen well beneath their year-to-date averages during the postseason. Despite the loss, Ice Cold Bruschis had several players performing their best in the playoffs, including Jamie Collins and Michael Floyd. During the postseason, that combo averaged 23.67 and 13.67 points, respectively, topping their season-long marks by 84% and 57%. On the other hand, the losers had a player who was sputtering under the brightest lights. Averaging 12.75 points on the season, Chandler Jones mustered just 9.33 per game in the playoffs.

Moment #1

Wrapping up a thrilling 2015 season, for the third time in 4 seasons, Birds of Prey won the Super Bowl to take the Super 16 Championship. They remained undefeated on the year in two matchups against Ice Cold Bruschis (5-2 all-time) with the 190.00 to 156.00 Super Bowl win. Their overall record finished at 13-2 and an amazing 48-13 all-time, while Ice Cold Bruschis fell to 11-5 (37-23 all-time). The Birds also ranked first in the league with 199.62 points per game. After a bye in the first round of the playoffs, they beat the league’s top defense, 1 Eye Til I Die, 186.00 to 162.00, on their voyage to the championship. They had the league’s best average scoring margin this season, outpacing opponents by 39.37 points per game. A very special congratulations to Birds of Prey on a very well deserved Championship.

2015 champions

Now, we look ahead to 2016! Thank you to all the team owners who are the ones that make this league so special.

Advertisements