The Arlington Seahawks organization started off strong four years ago by winning the Texas United Football League AA Championship in their first year, but their mountaintop experience wouldn’t last long.
Attrition hit and the team followed up their championship season by going 0-10 in the Minor Professional Football League in 2015. In 2016, they made up some ground and finished 3-7, and this year, they look to get over the hump.
“We were having a lot of commitment issues with guys seeing something they like at other teams and kind of jumping ship,” Seahawks owner James Hodge told Developmental Football USA. “Basically, my focus is the guys that are actively at practice all of the time. I’m heading everything this year, so it makes it easier this year. I’ve lost coaches right before the season starts in the past, so me taking the reins makes it a little easier.”
The Seahawks are in a division with the Dallas Vikings, Metroplex Pride, DeSoto Golden Eagles, Garland Aztecs, and Dallas Panthers – a division that, right now, looks to be anyone’s for the taking.
“I think we have a tough road ahead of us, considering we’re going to be an underdog in any game we play,” Hodge said. “I want to shock everybody. We don’t have a lot to say, we just want to get out there and play.”
Should Arlington make the playoffs, they’ll face up against some of the elite teams in the MPFL.
“The North Texas Stampede are always handling business,” Hodge said. “The Texas Bullets are, of course, always doing their thing. The Rhinos, they moved out, so we don’t have to worry about them. The Dallas Panthers, I’ve heard they’re pretty stacked over there, so we look to have a lot of competition.”
Looking ahead to the season, the Seahawks currently have 42 players on their roster and key players are starting to emerge on both side of the ball.
“We have Junior Hill, he plays quarterback and safety,” Hodge said. “He’s a dual-threat quarterback, he can run and pass and read defenses. He’s very, very explosive. At running back we have Ellis, he’s from Louisiana. He’s a really heavy duty runner. He runs kind of like Marshawn Lynch. He’s going to be really good. We expect to mix up the pass and run a lot.
“Receivers wise, Tyler Stephens has been coming along. He’s a second-year man and he’s been working and improving to make the offense better than we were last year.”
Defensively, safety Wilbur James is expected to lead the charge in the secondary for Arlington.
“He’s a veteran guy that’s been playing for like eight years,” Hodge said. “He’s a real solid guy. He can catch any ball that’s thrown towards him.
Leading the linebacker unit is Sebastian Hood and a big things are expected out of a newcomer to make a push in the trenches to lead the defensive line.
“Hood is really solid,” Hodge said. “He came to us from the Arlington Longhorns arena football. We also have Vincent Smith. He’s a rookie, he can penetrate any offensive lineman, he plays defensive end.”
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