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This division is possibly the strongest and most talented division in the entire SMFL. This all starts at the quarterback position, these teams posess superstars Kurt Warner, Steve Beuerlein, and Jeff George, along with future stars in Brian Griese, Cade McNown, and Tim Couch. Apart from a strong quarterbacks, each team has its own deverse stretegy used to defeat the opposition. The Shaolin Blackout feature a three-headed monster in Warner-Davis-Muhammad, while the Red Storm will most likely rely on their stellar defense to win them games. The Las Vegas Gamblers have a strong kicking game with top punter Chris Gardocki and one of the most reliable kickers in the game, Wade Richey.
Despite my original raving about the AFC East, we suffered a beating in Week 1 of the pre-season. Here is how each team fared this week:
Shaolin defeated Tombstone 37-14. My pre-season favorite came through with their 3-headed monster of Warner, Muhammad, and Davis posting 329, 120, and 102 yards, respectively. The defense was equally impressive, as Dexter Coakley accumulated ten tackles and two interceptions at the Outside Linebacker position.
The Purple Haze struggled from the opening kickoff. Fresno blanked them, 38-0. Points are not expected to come easy with such inexperience at the helm, although I predicted them to have a respectable season because of their strong defense.
The Happy Hippos got destroyed by Calgary, 42-5. Their offensive woes are not the fault of Jeff George. The run opens up the pass and New England lacks a decent running attack. Their run defense was extremely porous, yielding four touchdowns to Emmitt Smith, althought superstar corner, Sam Madison, did come up with one pick.
The Gamblers suffered the worst defeat of all, getting bageled by the Orange Crush, 48-0. Moose Junction does have a strong defense, but there is no reason why this defense gave up 48 points to a mediocre defense. Expect the offense to be more potent in the future, although defensive help is a must.
Thogh closer than the other games, St. Johns were still to Edgerrin James and Missuagua, 31-21. The offense played well, although there was a lack of a pass rush, which most likely led to this defense surrendering thirty-one points.
In overview, the AFC Eastern division might not be as strong as anticipated. Each team has its specific needs and unless they patch them up, this might be the weakest division in the Smashmouth Football League.