European League of Football: Wroclaw Panthers re-sign two-time All-Star LB AJ Wentland

The Wroclaw Panthers of the European League of Football have announced that American linebacker AJ Wentland has returned for the 2024 season.

Despite missing out on three games due to the collapse of the Leipzig Kings, the 6’3, 225-pound Rockford, Illinois native finished his 2023 ELF campaign top three in total tackles with 112 over nine appearances.

Beginning his professional career in Dresden with the Monarchs in 2018, Wentland is a well-decorated and respected player in the European football scene, winning a German Bowl with the Monarchs in 2021, months after winning an Austrian Bowl with the Swarco Raiders Tirol.

Wentland spent his 2022 season with the now-folded Kings, where he led the league in tackling and found himself on the ELFAll-Star first team – a feat which he would go on to repeat the following year with appearances for the Kings and Panthers.

Following the German Football League’s 2020 season cancellation, Wentland joined the Kuopio Steelers in Finland. As a member of the Steelers defense, Wentland made 36.5 tackles, four and half tackles for a loss, and one sack. The former GFL All-Star’s play helped Kuopio win its first Maple Bowl championship. His play in Finland earned him All–Pandemic team honors.

Before coming to Europe, Wentland was a standout two-time All-American linebacker with the McKendree University Bearcats (NCAA, Division II) where he was also a three-time All GLVC (Great Lakes Valley Conference) selection. Over three years, he amassed a total of 412 tackles including 145 in 11 games in his senior year, 2017. He also had two touchdowns, three interceptions, and six forced fumbles.

Wentland now returns to a strong Panthers side, who finished their 2023 campaign with an impressive 8-4 record. With the addition of All-Star return specialist and standout defensive back Devan Burrell, the Polish side are off to a strong start this offseason.

A current student at Bournemouth University as well as a quarterback with eight years of playing experience. Brad's goal is to be a part of the growth of the game around the world through journalism and media.