Look out XFL and AAF, there’s another sheriff in town.
Today we learned that a new football league will be joining what has become a crowded field.
BREAKING: Former Pro Bowler Ricky Williams announces new Freedom Football League, founded in part by former NFL players. Teams will be "partly owned by the players, partly owned by the fans, and partly owned by the operators." pic.twitter.com/sEonBKygr9
— Outside The Lines (@OTLonESPN) December 6, 2018
Yes, you heard it right. Former NFL player, Ricky Williams, has revealed that a new league, the Freedom Football League will enter the mix of spring leagues.
In an interview with ESPN, Williams announced that there are approximately 100 stakeholders n the league, 50 of them being former players. This includes players such as Williams, Terrell Owens and Simeon Rice.
“It’s a new spring football league,” Williams told ESPN. “And it’s for the fans and it’s by the players. It all started with a bunch of guys sitting around a table, talking about the good old days and realizing ‘you know? We have a lot of experience. We’ve been there before, we know how to do it, what if we started a league and really made it about developing young men?'”
Williams elaborated further on the reason for the FFL.
“The purpose of this league … is about community and the development of players,” said Williams on OTL. “… In thinking about creating this league, I wanted to create a league that I could have stayed in and been comfortable and really thrived.
“The NFL started a long time ago, and since then a lot of things have changed. And we want to create a league that’s ready for that change and invite some more of it.”
According to ESPN, the league will be played in the spring and summer with an initial field of 10 teams. No start date has been given as of yet.
ESPN also revealed that “the first 10 teams would be the San Diego Warriors, Oklahoma City Power, Portland Progress, Texas Revolution, Ohio Players, Florida Strong, Birmingham Kings, St. Louis Independence, Connecticut Underground and Oakland Panthers.”
The League’s mission is “to attract football players at their highest level of athletic ability, including those defecting from the NFL, graduating college or high school or playing in international or alternative professional football leagues.”
But overall, it gives players another opportunity to continue playing the sport they love.