Written by Josh Farnzy
Images by Hubba Kimbrel

The Rookie Index – 2.0
Five games hardly makes the Class of 16 rookies any type of veteran…not yet. Still, more and more broadcasters are calling rookie names for big plays in key spots. As progressions are banked, the rooks are coming. Slowly. Steadily. Confidently. OK, enough adverbs. Plenty of plays are being made and names becoming household as the season approaches its midway point. Here are the Top four rookie storylines…
2. DRPOY is a King
No, Dr. Poy isn’t some medical professional – nor a knockoff of a popular soda (although given enough cherry in that beverage, I would absolutely drink a Dr. Poy). It is my Defensive Rookie Performance of the Year. And, despite a number of strong contenders, I have to give it to Jacksonville linebacker, Jay Mart, for his Week 5 performance in 27-20 win over Atlanta. When the dust settled, Mart’s performance read: 12 tackles, 2 TFLs and a 40-yard pick-six that turned the tide of the game with under six minutes left in the fourth quarter. It was the difference. Jacksonville currently employs two rookie linebackers (first round selection Keenan Samuels is no slouch either), who have made an impact early. Mr. Mart, however, you are the current leader in the DRPOY clubhouse. Enjoy the soft drinks that come with it.
3. The right route
It’s hard for a dragon to fly under the radar. Still, one former Annapolis Navigator is quietly making a mark for himself. Josh Gill currently has 31 catches (first among rookie wide receivers and 17th for WRs in the entire league) and is tied with three other rookies – including DC teammate Kae Marion – for the rookie lead with 3 receiving touchdowns. Granted, accolades only travel so far when your team is 0-5, but this wideout is gaining traction immediately as a pro. His secret? From what I can tell, he is a tactician and a precise route runner. His quick cuts have been giving enough of a cushion to grab the ball and get the necessary tough yards. Fly, under-the-radar-dragon, fly.
4. Tritz and copyright infringement
After my Rookie Index 1.0 article, where I called Mexico City DT Dan Tritz “Tritz the Blitz” (and subsequently tried to copyright that nickname), I was informed that nickname was already bestowed upon him when he was in the minors. I never saw a letter from an attorney or patent office, but I will choose to believe it. Still, five games in now, Mr. Tritz is up to 9 sacks, which leads the entire SFL by a sack and a half, and tied for second with 12 tackles for loss. If any rookie currently looks like an all-star, it’s Dan. With his dominant start – and my wallet – in mind, here are a few other nicknames to consider printing t-shirts for…Dan the DT Man. Tritz, the Giver of Offensive Fits. The Aztec Hammer. Glitzy Tritzy (doesn’t seem to be a diva, but work with me here, Dan). I’ll keep workshopping these. Keep up the good work, Dan.
Editor’s Note: The SFL Content Team does not, in any way take, responsibility for the offense called by Farnzy’s terrible nicknames. They were his own creation and we can only apologise to Dan Tritz for any hurt caused. Thank you.