ELF: Berlin Thunder secure outstanding trio of receivers for 2023

In one of the first moves of 2022/23 European League of Football (ELF) offseason, the Berlin Thunder have secured three outstanding receivers in Robin Wilzeck, Max Zimmerman and Aaron Jackson.

The single returning receiver for the Thunder is Wilzeck who exploded into the ELF this year after winning a German Bowl with the Dresden Monarchs back in 2021. Despite his total receptions tallying just 24, he was without a doubt the most impactful receivers in the league averaging nearly 30 yards per reception and on average scoring a touchdown every third reception.

The second move the Thunder made before the official ELF offseason of November 1 had even begun was to sign long-time standout receiver Max Zimmerman. The German-born receiver played the 2022 season with the Berlin Adler of the German Football League (GFL) where he racked up 935 yards and 11 touchdowns over 11 games.

One of the most impressive aspects of Zimmerman’s game, like Wilzeck, is his big-play ability. This year, on 53 receptions Zimmerman was able to average nearly 18 yards per reception. If the two German receivers can replicate their 2022 success, the Thunder are going to be an intimidating prospect to any opposing secondary.

The final move that the Thunder made was for Aaron Jackson, arguably one of the most productive receivers in Europe over the last two years. Berlin’s decision to part ways with running back Jocques Crawford, one of the best players in the ELF this year, signified an intention to lean more on the passing game. Jackson’s signing is a powerplay and may just be what the team needs to become playoff-caliber.

In 2021, Jackson played for the Cologne Crocodiles in the GFL where he led the league with 1,315 yards and 14 touchdowns over 11 games. This outstanding performance earned him an offseason workout with the NFL’s Arizona Cardinals

Jackson returned to Crocodiles in 2022 and had an even better second year. He again led the league and racked up 1,488 yards and scored 17 touchdowns. His ability to make every catch on any part of the field led to him being Cologne’s most indispensable weapon. 

An exciting prospect for any Thunder fan for 2023 will be Wilzeck, Zimmerman and Jackson all taking the field for the team. It is still uncertain as to whether quarterback Joe Germinerio will remain with the team though after the American quarterback finished middle of the pack in 2022.

Germinerio or not, Thunder have a stacked receiving core this year and are set to do some damage whoever is throwing them the ball.

Daniel Mackenzie is a Press Association graduate who works in journalism and communications in the third sector. Daniel began playing football for the London Warriors and Team Great Britain and has since played across Europe.