AFI’s All-Europe Team: Offensive Line – Nick Wiens, Cologne Centurions

To paraphrase an old saying, in front of every great running back is a great offensive line.

So, when the AFI voters sat down to select our All-Europe offensive line, it was only natural to look at who paved the way for All-Europe running back Madre London. The ELF’s first ever MVP rushed for more than 2,000 yards behind one of the best road-grading offensive lines in all of Europe. All were serious candidates for this team, but in the end only one representative found his way onto our highly exclusive list.

It speaks volumes that that player was Nick Wiens.

The Cologne Centurions left guard was an impact player at a position rarely viewed as such, opening up huge holes for London to burst through. As a group, the Centurions averaged 6.43 yards per carry and just 1.5 sacks allowed per game, with Wiens being named an ELF All-Star in the process.

The 6’22, 275-pounder deserved all that acclaim and the some according to the man that ran behind him.

“His ability to get in and out of his stance is unbelievable,” Madre London raved to AFI. “He’s not the biggest, but he’s by far the toughest and strongest of them all when we’re on the field. His IQ for the game is what make him one of the best in all of Europe.”

Just three years removed from a stint stateside at New Mexico Military Institute, Wiens is coming into his own as a European force. The former Dortmund Giant and Cologne Crocodile came to define the hard-nosed, pound the rock style of the Centurions last year and his best may be yet to come.

J.C. Abbott is a student at the University of British Columbia and amateur football coach in Vancouver, Canada. A CFL writer for 3DownNation, his love of travel has been the root of his fascination with the global game.