Runaway GFL rushing leader Straubing Spiders RB Lamar Carswell, talks transition to GFL and chances for the German Bowl

As the German Football League heads into the home stretch, the Straubing Spiders, newcomers to the top league in Germany this season, find themselves in a surprising second place in the GFL South, thanks in large part to their ground game led by the league’s leading rusher, Lamar Carswell.

After seven games, the Spiders lead the league in rushing, averaging 258.4 yards per game. Carswell is the biggest contributor. The GFL’s top rusher has carried the ball 100 times for 1,211 yards and 17 touchdowns, averaging 173 yards a game and 12.1 yards per carry.

However, this should come as no surprise to anyone familiar with football in Finland. Playing for the Kuopio Steelers in 2020, Carswell put up similar numbers in helping the Steelers capture their first ever Maple League title.

Following that season in Finland, Carswell decided to take a year off from football after initially accepting a roster spot with the Wrocław Panthers in the European League of Football. Now, in the GFL, the running back has been given the task of carrying the load for the Spiders who are in their first season in the top league.

With his dominance, the Spiders are poised to make the playoffs in their first year in the GFL and potentially finish in second place in the South, just behind the ever-dominant Schwäbisch Hall Unicorns.

AFI has decided to chat with him during his team’s bye week to discuss his time with the Spiders and his prospects for the rest of this season and beyond.

AFI: How did you end up on the Spiders?

Carswell: I ended up with the Spiders through coach max messaging me. He had great energy when recruiting me and gave me a great opportunity to come play for a an already good team which I’m very grateful for.

AFI: How does your time in Germany compared to Finland?

Carswell: My time in Germany has been different from my time in Finland mostly from a mental standpoint. I’ve been much more focused on taking care of my body and really just being the best football player I be, as opposed to me being in Finland I was a bit younger and a lot less mature.

AFI: With how you have been playing this season, some people believe you are the league MVP for this season, do you believe you are?

Carswell: Truly, it doesn’t put very much pressure on me at all. I never really had any goals for individual accolades set out before our season began, I just wanted to play as well as I could play to help our team. Which is what I have been doing and will continue to do. I am definitely very grateful to be able to go out and play at a high level but I’m more concerned with winning, in my opinion that’s where the pressure real pressure lies.

AFIHow do you believe your team can make it to the German Bowl?

Carswell: In my opinion we will to need eliminate turnovers and reduce our mental mistakes to a minimum. We all know the Unicorns are a very well coached team with unbelievably disciplined players which is a very difficult combination to beat. As long as we can contain their playmakers & we don’t shoot ourselves in the foot I think we will be in good shape.

AFIDo you see yourself playing again for the Spiders next year?

Carswell: At this point in the season, I would like to just focus on winning the German Bowl. After the season is over, I will step back and begin to evaluate what the best decision is for me going forward.

A recent graduate of Hofstra University in New York. He is currently a sports freelance journalist and podcaster