Outlaw Flag League Honours – Award Winners
With the long awaited Outlaw Flag League Finals Day nearly a week away, we have been in discussions with Stanley Flashman to announce the award winners for the all-important OFL Honours 2017.
Most Valuable Players (sponsored by Elegant IT)
Ollie Tibbles (Northants Titans Prometheus) & Ben Roberts (Northants Titans Atlas)
The votes have been counted and in a first for the Outlaw Flag League we have a tie for Regular Season MVP with Ollie Tibbles and Ben Roberts both securing the same amount of votes to win this prestigious award.
Ollie Tibbles has been electric this season, carrying on his form which saw him pick up two tournament MVP’s in the Brighton Tsunami Charity Tournament and V-Day Tournament. This makes it a hat-trick of MVP awards since July. It’s no surprise, as he has dominated defences with his silky smooth jukes and incredible speed which makes him not only a short and intermediate threat, but an incredible deep threat too. Tibbles has picked up 22 TD’s and 12 XP’s in an impressive season which he will be hoping to carry that form into the Playoffs as the Titans Prometheus will be looking to claim their first OFL title.
Ben Roberts has been an absolute defensive force this season as he was last season when he won the Defensive Rookie of the Year. He’s snagged 7 Interceptions and returned 5 for touchdowns. He also broke the single season record for tackles with 53 showing, that you can’t pass over him and you can’t run through him either. Roberts cuts a formidable figure at the front of the Titans defence and makes opposing QB’s throw away from him into the arms of his other team mates.
Special Mention – 2nd Place (Corey Bedford – Chichester Sharks) & Tied 3rd Place (Connor Melay – Northants Titans Atlas & Dino Vernazza – Wigan Bandits)
Offensive Player of the Year (sponsored by NC Coaching)
Corey Bedford (Chichester Sharks)
Corey Bedford started off his OFL season in the unfamiliar territory of starting QB for the Sharks and led his team to a perfect record on the day, throwing for a league high 18 touchdowns and 10 XP’s. After Week 1, he returned to his usual role of top offensive weapon and excelled. He snagged 18 touchdowns and 10 XP’s receiving of his own, including a throw off return (one of only three to do so this season). Corey is a worthy winner considering he has contributed to 242 out of the 341 points scored by the Sharks this season. Corey has been a popular player in the voting earning the 3rd most votes in the league because of his dynamic playmaking ability in every aspect of the game.
Special Mention – 2nd Place (Dino Vernazza – Wigan Bandits) & 3rd Place (Elis Nash – Cynon Valley Celts)
Defensive Player of the Year (sponsored by NuOla)
Connor Melay (Northants Titans Atlas)
Transitioning from offence to defence is pretty common in flag football, as a lot of players play both ways. Connor Melay went from one of his team’s top receiving threats to an award winning defensive player. After securing our SWC Defensive Player of the Year award, he’s now added the OFL Defensive Player of the Year trophy to his cabinet. He broke the single season interception record in the last game of the season against the rival Phantoms in a play that epitomises Melay as a player. Playing on one leg due to calf cramps, he caught an interception and hopped his way past the Phantoms offensive players into the end zone. The strength of the Titans is their defence, and thats evident as the top 3 defensive players in the OFL this season were Ben Roberts, Connor Melay and Nathan Coles, they’ll be hoping to shut teams down heading into Finals Day.
Special Mention – Tied 2nd Place (Nathan Coles – Northants Titans Atlas & Josh Evans – Cynon Valley Celts) & 3rd Place (Sean Keaveney – Coventry Panthers Black)
Offensive Rookie of the Year
Elis Nash (Cynon Valley Celts)
Elis Nash is your Offensive Rookie of the Year! That’s pretty impressive, especially considering he had never caught an American Football until late May. Fast forward until October and Elis has caught 12 touchdowns, which is good for 4th best in the league. The Celts will be hoping for some more production from Elis as they look to claim the Stanley Flashman Plate.
Special Mention – Tied 2nd Place (Jake Shaw – Warrington Revolution & Jamie Willars – Northants Titans Atlas) & 3rd Place (Sean Atkinson – Northants Titans Oceanus)
Defensive Rookie of the Year
Sean Keaveney (Coventry Panthers Black)
Having only started playing flag in February, Sean Keaveney had a quietly productive season in the BAFA National Leagues, picking up 12 sacks whilst still learning to hone his skills as a blitzer. Fast forward to the OFL season and he has amassed an insane 19 sacks from 9 games for the Panthers Black side who ranked 5th in total defence. It’ll be interesting to see how he develops going into his second season after already picking up 31 sacks in 2017. With a mix of blistering speed and excellent tackling ability, Keaveney will be a QB’s nightmare for years to come.
Special Mention – 2nd Place (Vadim Cretu – Northants Titans Prometheus) & 3rd Place (Dewi Wood – Cynon Valley Celts)
Coach of the Year
Josh Evans (Cynon Valley Celts)
The Celts are by far the youngest team that we’ve had in Outlaw Flag League, but considering the Cynon Valley Celts didn’t exist until the the middle of the year, we’ve been massively impressed by their performances. It shows the hard work of Head Coach Josh Evans to build such a large squad who are willing to travel long distances to play the game. Not only do they turn up, but they’re competitive in the process. They earned a 4-4-1 record this season and bagged themselves the top seed in the Stanley Flashman Plate Playoffs. Also, two of the Celts making Pro Bowls in their first season, which is a testament to how well Josh has ran his squad. Josh Evans will be hoping to finish his OFL campaign with the Plate in tow back to the Valleys!
Special Mention – 2nd Place (Dan Archibald – Northants Titans Atlas) & 3rd Place (Pat Lane – Coventry Panthers Black)
Man / Woman of the Year (sponsored by Cecil Martin)
Pat Lane (Coventry Panthers Black)
Pat Lane has had a busy second season in the OFL which saw him enter two teams. One of which made the playoffs with an impressive showing throughout the schedule. He also made the Pro Bowl as a captain while marshalling two outfits to complete their schedule and perform admirably. Pat Lane has managed that with relative ease along with establishing his squad as a competitive force in the league. Pat is a great role model for teams who just want to play flag. He is a worthy winner of our Cecil Martin Man of the Year award!
Special Mention – Tied 2nd Place (Shailen Tailor – Rugby Raccoons & Josh Evans – Cynon Valley Celts) & 3rd Place (Grace Conway – Coventry Cougars Ladies)
Play of the Year
Ian Sanger’s Coast-to-Coast TD Run vs (Chichester Sharks)
Let’s set the scene: Swindon Storm had just turned the ball over on downs and the Sharks snapped the ball whilst Storm were still sorting their defence out. A short throw to Ian Sanger on a screen play saw him spring down the field past the Storm defence as he raced past the halfway line with the Storm defence toiling to keep up. As he raced downfield everyone was urging him to the end-zone. Sanger kept his speed until he crossed the line and sent the Sharks into a frenzy. A coast-to-coast run, and a worthy winning of our Play of the Year award.
Special Mention – 2nd Place (Jake Shaw’s Throw Off Return vs Cougars Ladies) & Tied 3rd Place (Connor Melay’s One Legged Pick 6 & Harry Brailey’s Almost Pick 6 turned Safety)
Team of the Year (sponsored by Elegant IT)
The Team of the Year highlights the best players per position throughout the OFL Season!
Despite all these awards, the main award is to call yourself an OFL Champion and Stanley Flashman Plate Winner so for all teams/players that are disappointed with no winner awards, go out there on the 14th October and win the most important award on the day!
All winners will receive an OFL T-Shirt produced by NuOla Custom Clothing by Rudi Halfmann & & Neil Wymer!