Veras

History of a Fictional Football League (1986 Postseason: Quarterfinals)

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9 hours ago, Veras said:

The most obvious candidates are those that have had failed bids in previous expansion councils.  Indianapolis, Birmingham, and Connecticut all come to mind.  It's also not unreasonable to consider the possibility of them joining a major market that already has a team.  NYC already effectively has a second team with in the New Jersey Sharks, but Los Angeles and Chicago are both presumably capable of supporting a second team.

Does this mean you'll be taking new NPCs soon, I would love to be the 'video game developer' for your league.

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MBurmy    428
9 hours ago, Veras said:

The most obvious candidates are those that have had failed bids in previous expansion councils.  Indianapolis, Birmingham, and Connecticut all come to mind.  It's also not unreasonable to consider the possibility of them joining a major market that already has a team.  NYC already effectively has a second team with in the New Jersey Sharks, but Los Angeles and Chicago are both presumably capable of supporting a second team.

I would LOVE to see what you'd have thought up for a team in Anaheim/Orange County...

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Veras    429
1 hour ago, RightGuard said:

Hey Veras, I was attempting an Excel spreadsheet of your league so far, but I got stuck on what colors to use for each team. When I say that, I mean for each team what colors would you designate as primary or secondary? I ask this because I noticed you do this thing with your recent playoff images where the team's bracket is the primary and the text is the secondary, of which it must be easy when most teams have just two colors and white assigned. But then you have teams that have three colors plus white (Arizona, Colorado, New Orleans) and I wonder, which is the secondary and which is just an accent? I hope you're able to discern what I've just typed out.

Yeah, I understand what you're asking.  I'll post the bugs for each team below.  Generally speaking, if you look at the logo guides, I put the colors in order of importance (though I think the Krewe's is wrong by that standard - I had intended to dramatically reduce their use of purple and changed my minds on the uniforms).  LA is blanked out because they'll get a new logo and colors this offseason, and I've already switched it over to the new one for them.

 

Out of curiosity, what data are you planning on including in the spreadsheet?  I have dozens of spreadsheets that I'd be willing to post, depending on what information you've been looking for.

 

I've been considering making a new database that would allow me to automatically track the series records for every team, as well as head coach records, and would enormously reduce the amount of time that it takes me to check things like "this is the first time since 1958 that so and so have won a playoff game."  I've just been holding off because there have been over 5300 AFA games and I'm almost certain that they would all have to be manually transcribed.  Until the last few seasons, I've used cell formatting to indicate whether a game is home or away, and as far as I know Excel can't run a function that returns a result based on cell color.  I've come up with a few ways around that problem, but they're all still going to be fairly time-consuming.

 

afa_team_bugs__1982__by_verasthebrujah-d

 

53 minutes ago, nick_crenshaw82 said:

Does this mean you'll be taking new NPCs soon, I would love to be the 'video game developer' for your league.

The next expansion probably won't happen again until the late 1980s or early 1990s, but I like the idea for the character.

 

39 minutes ago, MBurmy said:

I would LOVE to see what you'd have thought up for a team in Anaheim/Orange County...

They'd definitely be a strong candidate, and relocation is probably their best bet.  Based on the results of previous expansion councils, it seems that voters put a premium on geographic distance between teams, so I'm skeptical of the possibility that SoCal would be granted a third franchise.

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MBurmy    428
39 minutes ago, Veras said:

 

afa_team_bugs__1982__by_verasthebrujah-d

LOVE 'em!  I noticed that LA's marker is all-black...I presume their next of many rebrands is coming this offseason?  (If so, how massive should we expect it to be?)

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RightGuard    8
1 hour ago, Veras said:

Yeah, I understand what you're asking.  I'll post the bugs for each team below.  Generally speaking, if you look at the logo guides, I put the colors in order of importance (though I think the Krewe's is wrong by that standard - I had intended to dramatically reduce their use of purple and changed my minds on the uniforms).  LA is blanked out because they'll get a new logo and colors this offseason, and I've already switched it over to the new one for them.

 

Out of curiosity, what data are you planning on including in the spreadsheet?  I have dozens of spreadsheets that I'd be willing to post, depending on what information you've been looking for.

 

I've been considering making a new database that would allow me to automatically track the series records for every team, as well as head coach records, and would enormously reduce the amount of time that it takes me to check things like "this is the first time since 1958 that so and so have won a playoff game."  I've just been holding off because there have been over 5300 AFA games and I'm almost certain that they would all have to be manually transcribed.  Until the last few seasons, I've used cell formatting to indicate whether a game is home or away, and as far as I know Excel can't run a function that returns a result based on cell color.  I've come up with a few ways around that problem, but they're all still going to be fairly time-consuming.

 

afa_team_bugs__1982__by_verasthebrujah-d

 

 

 

 

My spreadsheet only included the teams and divisions, no stadiums or whatnot. I tried to chronicle the league from its inception, but I was never satisfied with what I cranked out. Though I would like for you to share what spreadsheets you already have on hand.

Edited by RightGuard
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Dan O'Mac    194
25 minutes ago, MBurmy said:

LOVE 'em!  I noticed that LA's marker is all-black...I presume their next of many rebrands is coming this offseason?  (If so, how massive should we expect it to be?)

I know he always said LA would be on the "cutting edge" of changes (i.e. BFBS)

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Red Comet    35

Looking forward to seeing what the Comets new look would be. I remember seeing that black and neon green were planned at some point, but what would the uniforms look like with a redesign in 1983? Maybe the Comets are the team that starts the 90's a few years early?

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Jimmy Lethal    242

Well, since I'm one to root for teams that have never won a title... go Stallions!

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Veras    429

82r3g1clevstex_by_verasthebrujah-db452g3

The expert predictions all stated that Texas’s key to the game was to avoid falling behind early.  They failed spectacularly at this, as Cleveland won the toss, and Law Roller returned the opening kickoff 102 yards for a touchdown.  Then, on the Stallions first play from scrimmage, SS John Bow streaked into the backfield on a blitz and blew up RB Kelvin Barker, knocking the ball loose.  LB Mario Barreto, who had only been a step behind Bow, fell on the ball at the Texas 8.  Fortunately for the Stallions, Cleveland was only able to get a field goal, but they found themselves down 10-0 after a single snap.

 

Throughout the remainder of the first quarter, both offenses had just enough success to approach field goal range, but in every case, the drive stalled and the punter came on with a chance to pin the other team deep in their own territory.  With just under 2 minutes remaining in the quarter, the Stallions had done just that, and the Ghosts faced a 3rd and 7 from their own 5.  Frankie Farragut dropped back to pass, and never saw ROLB Gary Brun blow past his man.  Brun blindsided Farragut, knocking the ball from his hands at the 1 yard line, where it bounced into the end zone.  Farragut was able to slip free from Brun’s grasp and cover the ball, but Texas was on the board with a safety.

 

Momentum failed to swing their way before the half, however.  Cleveland added two field goals and picked off Mikey McGowan in the second, and took a 16-2 lead into the locker room at the half.

 

As had been the case a week ago, the Stallions looked much better after taking the field in the second half.  A 20 yard touchdown pass to Tom Fraser and a field goal in the third quarter made the score 12-16, and they then took the lead thanks to a big play by their defense to start the fourth quarter.  There was a miscommunication between QB Frankie Farragut and RB Jose Ortuno on the play, and the two went opposite directions.  Farragut panicked and hesitated when there was nobody there to make the handoff, and that slight delay allowed DE Mike Henry to get to him and tear the ball from his hands.  Henry sprinted 41 yards to the end zone, giving the Stallions their first lead of the day.

 

The Stallions didn’t have long to celebrate, however, as the Ghosts wasted no time in striking back.  Farragut, looking to atone for his errors, led a 9-play 80-yard drive which ended with a 3 yard TD pass to TE Doug Rimmer to reclaim the lead 23-19 with just over 10 minutes remaining.  As it turns out, those were the final points of the game.

 

The Cleveland Ghosts are going to the Victory Bowl for the first time in 23 years.

 

82r3g2detvsmin_by_verasthebrujah-db452gc

The first half of this matchup was closely contested.  The Angels struck first when RB Tommy Howard plunged through the line for a 1 yard touchdown run 8 and a half minutes into the game.  RE Lee Thomas was a disruptive force for the Angels, sacking Paul Langdon twice in the first quarter, including one that resulted in a fumble recovery for the Angels.

 

In the second quarter, the Gladiators shuffled their line, moving RG Tom Roberts to the left side and keeping TE Sylvester D’Abruzzo on Thomas to slow him down.  This generated some success, and they were able to get on the board with 3:40 remaining in the half on a 12 yard pass from John Langdon to WR Howie Gordon.  The Angels refused to go into halftime with a tie, however, and put up a field goal in the final minute of the half to reestablish a 10-7 lead.

 

After halftime, the Angels ran wild over Detroit.  They had Lee Thomas move around the field, lining up all along the defensive line, and occasionally even at outside linebacker.  The Gladiators simply had no answer, and the veteran DE more or less spent the evening camped out in the Detroit backfield.  It took some time for the Minnesota offense to capitalize on this, but the game swung strongly in their favor over a 34 second duration late in the third.

 

Angels RB Tommy Howard scored his second touchdown of the day on a 3 yard run to put Minnesota up 17-7.  The kickoff was a touchback, and on first down Langford attempted a pass to D’Abruzzo, which was picked off at the 33 by LB Ricky Chickering.  Two plays later, Darnell Holly, a speedy rookie wideout split the safeties on a playaction pass, and Tim Kewley found him for a touchdown.

 

The home team’s spirits were broken.  The Detroit offense managed to gain a net total of 10 yards in the game’s final 18 minutes, while the Angels put up 10 points in the same time on their way to a convincing 38-7 win.  1982 was the first year that the AFA tracked sacks as an official stat, but Lee Thomas recorded 7 of them today, a record that could very well never be broken.  The Angels, a team who nobody considered to be a serious playoff contender, will be playing in the Victory Bowl with a great deal of confidence on their side.

 

1982_afa_playoffs_by_verasthebrujah-db39

 

Victory Bowl Preview

 

These two teams have a lot in common.  Both are defensively-oriented, run-first teams, though their approaches differ.  The Angels biggest strength is their defensive line, while the Ghosts rely on a talented secondary.

 

It will be the performance of the two running backs, Minnesota’s Tommy Howard and Cleveland’s Jose Ortuno, that will determine the outcome of the game.  Power backs often struggle against the Angels defense, but Ortuno draws frequent comparisons to former New Orleans Krewe RB John Hambro, who had a great deal of success against an even better Angels defense in the 70s.  Look for Cleveland’s Ezekiel Dogwood to make a contribution as well.  The 32-year old veteran and team leader is expected to return from a broken wrist that he suffered in December, and will be playing in his final game..  The speedster is no longer much of a threat as a rusher, but is still dangerous as a receiving option and punt returner.

 

Minnesota’s Tim Kewley will be the first rookie QB to start a Victory Bowl since 1946, when Charlie Kadlec led the New York Imperials to a win over the Guardians of Cincinnati.  This will be a difficult game for him, however.  His greatest asset is his arm strength, but deep throws against a secondary that features CB Kevin Rubin and SS John Bow are a risky proposition.

 

Cleveland’s passing attack will depend on containing Lee Thomas, who has an absurd total of 27 sacks in 18 games this year counting the postseason.

 

Both of these teams are founding members of the AFA (this will be the first time since 1973 that 2 of the original 12 face off for the Victory Cup), and both have several championship appearances in their history.  This will be Minnesota’s 6th trip to the big game and the 4th for Cleveland.  It will actually be a rematch of the 12th Victory Bowl (1957), in which the Angels defeated the Ghosts 21-15.  The Angels also won the 10th (13-10 over New York, 1955) and 34th (23-16 over Texas, 1979) Victory Bowls and lost the 13th (27-20 to Pittsburgh, 1958) and 27th (17-3 to Philadelphia, 1973).  In addition to their loss against Minnesota in the 13th, the Ghosts also came up short in the 7th (20-0 to Los Angeles, 1952) but won the 14th (21-13 over Philadelphia, 1959).  The two teams haven’t played one another since 1979, which the Angels won 24-17.

 

37th_victory_bowl__arlington__by_verasth

 

I can't say that I really like this field.  The game will be played on Polyturf, which doesn't look very good to begin with, and I don't care for how the team colors look together.  This is the first time that the team boxes have been painted, and I think the first time that the helmets in the end zone have faced toward the sideline rather than the center of the end zone.

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Red Comet    35

A man with the last name Thomas has the single-game sack record with 7 sacks. I like the sound of that.

 

Let's Go Ghosts! Also, I can totally see Detroit's defense being called the Ghostbusters when that movie comes out.

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eick74    75

Are the Ghosts using their old or new uniforms? Field has new helmet, the playoff game summaries has the old helmet.

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CodeG    60

#Believeland!!! Let's win the Victory Bowl!!!

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Well I can't say I'm excited about this matchup since I'm not a fan of either team. I was really hoping Texas would prevail. Oh wel... I'm looking forward to next season! 

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RightGuard    8

Since I noticed you gave each team its own divisional logo, do you also happen to have a collection of those? Because those would probably help me out more than the playoff bugs could.

Edited by RightGuard
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Veras    429

82r4g1clevsmin_by_verasthebrujah-db4wr2t

 

37th Victory Bowl - Arlington, TX

 

The Cleveland Ghosts had spent all season repeating the phrase “win one for Zeke.”  Ezekiel Dogwood, their 32-year old team captain was in the final season of an 11-year career, most of which was with the Boston Captains.  He had never won a title, and his teammates, all of whom universally looked up to him, wanted to send him off on a high note.  Adding to the drama of the moment, Dogwood was cleared to play after missing several weeks with a broken wrist, allowing him to take the field one last time.

 

However, the game’s first major momentum shift came by an error by the beloved veteran midway through the first quarter.  Probably as a result of the still-painful wrist, Dogwood muffed a punt near his own 17 yard line, and Minnesota special teamer Jerome Sigel recovered.  Fortunately for Dogwood, the Cleveland defense was able to limit the damage, not giving up a first down and forcing the Angels to settle for a field goal.

 

Cleveland’s offense then came back onto the field and put together a drive which ended with RB Jose Ortuno blasting his way into the end zone, putting Cleveland up 7-3.  It took nearly a full quarter for Minnesota to answer.  Late in the second, they drove deep into Cleveland territory, but where Ortuno had gotten through, their RB, Tommy Howard failed, and the Angels once again came away with a short field goal.

 

For the third consecutive game, the Ghosts took a lead into halftime, and for the third consecutive game, they lost it.  Minnesota found the end zone for the first time 5:10 into the second half when Tommy Howard finally found some room to run, and took the ball in for a touchdown, putting the Angels up 7-13.  With the game becoming a defensive struggle, both teams leaned heavily on their rushing attacks.  Early in the fourth, this set up the Angels used this to their advantage.  On third and inches from the Cleveland 13, they came out in a heavy, one receiver formation, going so far as to sub in Harry Smith, their big, third string wideout who was known for being a solid blocker.  Kewley took the snap, faked the handoff to Gordon, and then tossed a jump ball into the end zone between Smith and CB Kevin Rubin.  Though there is no doubt that Rubin is the better player, this was a straight tossup, and the 6’5” Smith had a tremendous advantage over the 5’11” corner.  Smith came down with it, and the Angels had a 20-7 lead.

 

Less than four minutes later, the Angels defense nearly put points on the board.  Working deep in his own territory and under heavy pressure from Lee Thomas, Cleveland QB Frankie Farragut forced a throw into coverage, which was picked off by CB John Hastings at the 19.  It was nearly a pick 6, but Ezekiel Dogwood made a heroic tackle to stop him inches short of the goal line.  As it turns out, the effort was meaningless.  Minnesota’s offense came onto the field, and Tim Kewley slipped into the end zone on a sneak on first down.

 

At this point, the Angels led 27-7 with 4:48 to play, and the game was effectively over.  On their next possession, Cleveland was forced to punt after facing a 4th and 27 from their own 6.  They would stop the Angels and get the ball back, even scoring a touchdown on a 14 yard pass from Farragut to Dogwood, but by this time there was only 44 seconds remaining on the clock.  In fact, Minnesota could have stopped Dogwood short of the end zone – SS Tom Collier could clearly have taken a shot at him as he approached the goal line, and instead pulled up.  After the game, he admitted to letting Dogwood score, “We were up by three scores with less than a minute left to play.  You don’t lay a hit on a guy in that situation, especially a guy who has meant as much to the league as Ezekiel Dogwood.  He was playing hurt in garbage time in the last game of his career.  That takes some toughness, and now he can look back and remember that the last thing he did as an AFA player was score a touchdown in the Victory Bowl.  He deserves that.”

 

Unwilling to give up, the Ghosts attempted an onside kick, but the Angels recovered, and ran out the clock.  Tim Kewley took a knee and became the first rookie quarterback to lead his team to a championship since the first Victory Bowl, and the Minnesota Angels joined the Washington Wasps and New York Imperials with four titles each, second only to Pittsburgh’s 8.

 

1982_afa_playoffs_by_verasthebrujah-db39

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cubsfan2015    111

Congratulations to the Minnesota Angels for their fourth Victory Bowl win. Well deserved at best.

 

Now, let's see if Chicago can put together a good run in '83 and make a push twords the playoffs.

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Veras    429

Sorry for the delay in posting the Victory Bowl there.  The teething baby has suddenly been acting like a teething baby (@officerpain138 any insight on how long we can look forward to this?), and much of the free time that I have has been sunk into other things.  But it occurred to me that today is the three year anniversary of the thread, so it seemed like a good day for a title game anyway.

 

On 3/31/2017 at 0:59 PM, eick74 said:

Are the Ghosts using their old or new uniforms? Field has new helmet, the playoff game summaries has the old helmet.

They're wearing the update.  The old logo never technically existed, I just apparently forgot to update it the game result template.  Thanks for pointing that out.

 

On 4/1/2017 at 7:27 AM, officerpain138 said:

Well I can't say I'm excited about this matchup since I'm not a fan of either team. I was really hoping Texas would prevail. Oh wel... I'm looking forward to next season! 

And next season looks bright for both of the teams you support.  With Rob Connery's status up in the air, there is no doubt that Ron Adams is head and shoulders above every other QB in the league, which will give New York a tremendous advantage, and New Jersey... well... there's pretty much nowhere to go but up for them, right?

 

On 4/1/2017 at 11:26 AM, RightGuard said:

Since I noticed you gave each team its own divisional logo, do you also happen to have a collection of those? Because those would probably help me out more than the playoff bugs could.

I don't have divisional logos for every team.  I did at one point, but they're ten years out of date.  I don't particularly like them, and their only use is the fields, which I don't really do anymore, so I stopped keeping the list current.

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Congrats on three years. That's a lot of time to put in to something that doesn't exist, but trust me when I say I've enjoyed reading it all.

 

I was really pulling for Zeke and the Ghosts there, but props to Minnesota for outplaying them. Looking forward to next year - hopefully the Caps can be a tiebreaker or two more relevant....

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