Merrick Itera, Christian Pundt, Zack Sandlin
Offensive MVP: WR #17 Siege Falco
Atlanta had a very potent passing attack through this season. A large reason for that is the play of Siege Falco. The Swarm’s #1 receiver last season continued his high end play to the tune of nearly 1400 receiving yards at over 18 yards per reception. This season he took his game to another level by becoming much more of a redzone threat this season as he took his touchdown total from five to twelve. While there were many key figures in Atlanta’s offensive success this season it’s hard to deny Falco’s integral place in it.
Defensive MVP: S #20 Aaron Lee
Aaron Lee has been a key piece to the Atlanta secondary for three seasons now and he may have just put together his best season yet patrolling the backend. On a team that struggled to stop the pass consistently, Lee played an important role where the team had a high reliance on Lee not making mistakes.
Offensive MVP: QB #7 Mike Dazzo
Dazzo was one of the best quarterbacks in the entire league last season and one could make an excellent argument for him having a top three performance at the position. While the Vultures didn’t have among the most passing yards in the league, they ran a very balanced overall attack and the passing game was among the most efficient.
Defensive MVP: CB #25 Kaz McFly
Baltimore had one of the most dangerous secondaries in the entire league and a big reason for that is the play of Kaz McFly. McFly has over the last several seasons, and especially Season 12, been one of the most dominant corners in the SFL. It’s hard to quantify good cornerback play but what isn’t in doubt is McFly’s excellence on a week-to-week basis.
Offensive MVP: WR #89 Harish Prasad
Even though he didn’t make the Pro Bowl, Prasad was one of the best players in the league last season on the offensive side of the ball, as well as special teams. On a season where the Carolina offense really struggled to get going, Prasad was easily the largest difference maker on that side of the ball. He put over 1150 receiving yards and 10 receiving touchdowns on 91 catches along with playing excellent as a returner. He may be even better than the numbers indicate given the previously mentioned constraints of the offense.
Defensive MVP: DT #93 Christopher Colon
Colon has been one of the best defensive tackles in the league over his career and he definitely turned in his career best performance in Season 12. He broke his previous career highs in both tackles and sacks, while tying his number in tackles for loss. He provided a consistent internal pass rush that was invaluable to the Skyhawks.
Offensive MVP: RB #32 Jarrod McChesney
Is there any other choice? While he didn’t have the numbers or consistently splashy moments down the stretch of last season to outright win the league MVP award, there is little doubt that McChesney was the workhorse that carried the Nightwings to the championship. He put over 1800 rushing yards and 18 touchdowns on over 300 carries while largely opening up the passing game as the playoffs approached. McChesney was not only an elite running back option but added much versatility to Denver’s offense.
Defensive MVP: S #36 Nicholas Warner
Another Pro Bowl snub, Warner was among the league’s best on the backend of the championship runner ups. He was every bit as good as hit statline suggested, picking up over 80 tackles and causing nearly a turnover per game. Warner may not have been given Pro Bowl status by his peers, but he is certainly in the elite defensive back discussion and a key piece to the Nightwings team.
Special Note: K #9 Kramer Jackman
It’s hard to ignore Jackman’s value to Denver this past season. The rookie kicker did not miss a single field goal and added solid range as well. He increased Denver’s scoring radius and total points scored in a very dangerous way.
Oklahoma City Renegades
Offensive MVP: WR #86 Rich Pratchard
While one could make a very good case for last season’s running back here, the Renegades were at their best when they were able to get their passing game going. Pratchard was the clear most dangerous threat on an Oklahoma City team that was capable of getting vertical on any given week. He was a mismatch nighmare and put up 1161 receiving yards with double digit scores on 70 receptions.
Defensive MVP: S #43 Brady Clarke
The league nomination for the fourth Pro Bowl free safety spot, Brady Clarke certainly had an impressive season. He really stuffed the stat sheet being fifth at his position in tackles, first in interceptions, and top ten in pass deflections. That amounts to nearly 90 tackles and nine interceptions. The Renegades secondary, by any measure, struggled at times last season and really need the continued do-everything play of Brady Clarke to be a formidable unit.
Offensive MVP: RB #28 AJ Francis
The workhorse of the Tallahassee Pride offense AJ Francis gets the nod here. The big power back rushed for over 300 carries and 1700 rushing yards, while putting up a dozen scores on the ground. He was a viable threat to the air as well, with 42 receptions, almost 200 receiving yards and another score. Francis started slow last season, but really picked up pace down the stretch run of the season when we saw Tallahassee pick up the play of the rest of their team as well. Coincidence? I think not.
Defensive MVP: DT #96 EJ DeCue
Did you really expect anyone else? The now-retired EJ DeCue won the Defensive Player of the Year award after leading the league in sacks with 23 and putting up a solid presence in run support with 45 tackles and six additional tackles for a loss on top of his sack total. No player was hotter heading into the playoffs than DeCue this last season as he was the key piece to bring the rest of the Tallahassee Pride defense together.
Offensive MVP: QB #16 Tom Pepper
Tom Pepper set career highs back in Andy Hamilton’s scheme, as he led the league in passing yards by putting up over 4000 of them with a 70+ percent completion rate. Whether or not you believe he’s an actual elite league option aside, it’s very difficult to deny his value to the Legion. On a team that was loaded with outstanding offensive performers, Pepper was the only one with the ball in his hands on every play and thus earns the nod over several of his talented teammates here.
Defensive MVP: S #27 Marc Lopez
Vancouver produced the top passing defense by yardage allowed last season and Marc Lopez is probably the biggest reason why. The safety put over over 80 tackles while really giving opposing quarterbacks something to think about by recording eight pass deflections and eight interceptions. On a secondary that could make a case for all four members receiving this honor, Lopez was the most outstanding of them.
Special Note: WR #12 Brett Killian
While Pepper is the clear offensive MVP, we must highlight his teammate who also had a season that was among the most outstanding at his position. Killian recorded 122 (!) receptions for over 1700 receiving yards and 13 touchdowns. He took advantage of slant routes and underneath play and became the incredibly important safety valve and trusted receiver to Pepper this last season.