Explosive back Devon Francois returns to boost Berlin Adler

The Berlin Adler of the German Football League have confirmed the return of an American import defensive back and running back. The Adler are very happy to welcome back running back Devon Francois.

In 2016, Francois originally committed to the Adler as a safety, but was able to show that he is a complete football player, adding value on special teams and as a running back. In fact, in only four games at running back, he gained 590 rushing yards on only 65 attempts, posting an average of 8.9 yards per run, the top average in the German Football League.

In seven total games in 2016, the safety scored a total of 13 touchdowns. Francois was also a key defensive leader and last line of defense for the Adler. The Berlin coaching staff is excited about Francois’ return and justify his commitment with the following words;

Berlin head coach Eric Schramm on Francois;

“Devon is a very explosive player. We will try, as often as possible, to put the ball in his hands. He was able to prove this impressively last season. But it is not only on the field where he is a great enrichment, because from the beginning he has convinced us through commitment and passion. The young players in our ranks can still learn a lot from his character and his willingness to help.”

American Football International: Hi Devon! What is your background with American football?

Devon Francois: I played safety at Alcorn State. There we won a SWAC Championship and in 2014 the black college national championship. I was a tw0-time 1st team All-Conference player and All-American. Last year (2016) was my first year playing in Europe for the Berlin Adler. I signed as a defensive back but started playing running back while I was there. Also, I left mid-season with when a great friend of mine got killed back in New Orleans.

AFI: That is awful, sorry for your loss. Why have you chosen to return? What is appealing to you about playing American football in Berlin?

Francois: Playing in Germany was great it was amazing to see another country and live within their culture.. what amazing history the place with whole. Plus, I left after playing only four games with 11 TDs and over 1,500 all purpose yards. At defensive back, I had 40 tackles and 2i INTs. So this year, with me playing running back full time, I’m excited and expecting big things.

AFI: What are your goals for 2017?

Francois: My personal goals are to score 35-40 TDs. I want to lead the league in rushing and all-purpose yards. And to win the EFL (European Football League tourney) and compete for a GFL championship.

AFI: What do you think the Adler need to do to break back into the top of the GFL?

I believe it comes with having veterans on the team. The Adler have a lot of great, young athletes but it comes time for those guys to put it together. I believe the organization is making the right moves and things should be better this year. We have great coaches who played the game and and relate to their athletes.

John McKeon
John McKeon is a former professional and collegiate American Football player and coach now living and working in New York. His goal is to spread news, information, and opinion on the global growth of the sport he loves.
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