The Helsinki Roosters, defending and 21 time Finnish champions, have signed QB Garrett Safron for the 2019 season.
The 6’1″, 200 lb native of Santa Monica, California spent the 2018 season with Austria’s Dacia Vienna Vikings leading his team to the Austrian Bowl where they lost 51-48 to the Swarco Raiders in a thriller. Safron threw for 371 yards and five touchdowns and rushed for 57 and another touchdown in that game. Despite missing three regular season games with an injury, he finished as the seventh leading passer in Austria with 2,249 yards and 33 touchdown passes. He also rushed for 796 yards and nine touchdowns, good for fifth overall in the league.
In 2017, in leading the Dresden Monarchs in the German Football League to the semifinals, he threw for 3,463 yards and 45 touchdowns while rushing for 884 and another 14 touchdowns. In 2016, he guided Italy’s Milano Seamen to the Champions League final as well as the Italian semifinals where they lost by a single point to the eventual champions, the Milano Rhinos.
At Sacramento State he set a team single season record for pass yards, 3,490 and passing touchdowns, 34 in his senior year. he was 2nd team All Big Sky and was named the FCS National Player of the Week. He finished his four year college career, where he started for the last three, with 9.713 yards and 86 touchdowns passing and 1,906 yards and 16 touchdowns rushing. He was invited to the Oakland Raiders mini-camp.
American Football International: What prompted your move from Vienna to Helsinki, Finland?
Safron: I was weighing out my options on who I had offers from. Helsinki kind of came in late in the picture. Mikko [Roosters GM] and I had a great conversation. After we caught a solid vibe I felt like that’s where I needed to be and basically signed right away.
AFI: You played against Helsinki in 2018. What struck you about the team?
Safron: Helsinki battled all game ! They had no quit and they seemed really determined. They had to overcome some adversity and that says a lot about who they have on there team. And how they are being coached. I’m excited to go to war with those guys !!
AFI: You have played in three different countries so far in Europe. What part of each has stayed with you?
Safron: Every experience has been amazing in its own way ! But there’s no way to explain and put into words my experience over here in Europe. To be able to play for some of the top teams out here is a blessing ! The best part is keeping in contact with some of the people I’ve played with and played against out here … I post occasional YouTube videos. If you want to check them out. Subscribe to MOM3NTS.
AFI: What do you bring to the Roosters?
Safron: What I bring to the Roosters is my competitiveness. And my playmaking ability ! Y’all going to have to stay tuned for that.
AFI: Do you have any meals or foods you have ?
Safron: I hope they have a Vapianos [restaurant] over there. Because I murder that spot.
AFI: What are your expectations for 2019?
Safron: My expectations are sky high ! Obviously Ima take it one game at a time. But honestly I don’t plan on losing. And yes that includes winning a championship
Check out Garrett Safron’s highlights from Dacia Vienna Vikings in 2018
Highlights from Dresden Monarchs in German Football League in 2017