Are you ready for some football (the American game, not the one that is actually played with the feet)? The National Football League (NFL) currently runs its season from around August to January, giving football fans a lot of downtime in the off-season. A new league scheduled to kick off in 2019 will help fill the gap, while allowing armchair quarterbacks to show if they actually have the right stuff to call plays. As the Fan-Controlled Football League (FCFL) is gearing up, it has now added two new team owners to its rosters and both are NFL heavy-hitters.
Marshawn Lynch and Richard Sherman have signed on as team owners, as well as fan captains for two of the eight teams that will operate in the league. Lynch is currently with the Oakland Raiders as a running back, while Sherman is a defensive back with the San Francisco 49ers. They both have a long history of working together that goes back to their time with the Seattle Seahawks, for which they won Super Bowl rings in 2013.
The FCFL is a different kind of football. Most notably, the league is powered by cryptocurrency. It has partnered with New Alchemy, a blockchain company, which will introduce a digital token system that allows fans to buy, sell and trade digital coins, the Fan Access Network (FAN) token.
The fans—and the FANs—control the game. Fans are able to call plays, draft players, hire coaches, create team names and more. The fans with the most FANs will have more strength in being able to make decisions.
The league will be comprised of eight teams and games will be played in a high-tech production studio. Players will wear helmets with embedded cameras, the balls have embedded sensors and there will be drones galore keeping tabs on everything to allow the fans to make their calls. A deal has already been worked with Twitch to stream the games live on the Amazon-owned platform.
The games will only be an hour long and use a 50-yard field, instead of the normal 100 yards seen in the NFL. The concept is an interesting one and it will be interesting to see how things play out. I’m sure bookmakers are already trying to figure out how to get involved, but, with so many moving parts, there is no way to ensure the league won’t see matches being thrown or ludicrous plays being called just to see the reaction of the crowds.