Preseason favorites the Rhein Fire host Frankfurt Galaxy in opening week clash

In perhaps the best matchup of the opening weekend of the European League of Football, the Rhein Fire take on the Frankfurt Galaxy on Sunday at Schauinsland-Reisen-Arena in Duisburg, Germany.

Due to an influx of domestic and imported new talent that featured the likes of stars Glen Toonga and Alejandro Fernandez, the Fire were undoubtedly the champions of the offseason.  Jim Tomsula’s team missed out on the playoffs last season with a record of 7-5, but many have named the Fire as preseason favorites to win the title this season.  As such, all eyes will be on the Fire this season to see if they can live up to the hype, and their first test will come on Sunday.  With that being said, the Fire will be without Toonga, last year’s league-leading rusher, who will miss this game due to an offseason suspension, so the team will not necessarily be at full strength.  Perhaps that means new offensive coordinator Andrew Weidinger (last year’s Coach of the Year with the Barcelona Dragons) will rely on quarterback Jadrian Clark and the passing game against a talented Frankfurt defense.  The Fire led the league in attendance last year by a longshot, and there is no doubt that their crowd will be ready to go for the home opener.  

On the other side, the Galaxy are a team looking to bounce back from a disappointing 2022 campaign in which they missed the playoffs following their championship-winning season of 2021.  Frankfurt returns many key offensive contributors from last year, including Jakeb Sullivan, who is back at the quarterback position for the third straight year.  They also boast a strong defense which features arguably the best defensive secondary in the league.  Frankfurt is definitely a talented squad, but in a division as tough as the Western Conference, it could be a challenge for them to keep up with the likes of the Fire, Musketeers, and Sea Devils.  This opening game should tell us a lot about their outlook for the rest of the season.

The last time these two teams faced off in Duisburg, the game ended in a crazy yet controversial fashion which made it one of the best games in the brief history of the ELF.  If this game is anything close to last year’s game, we should be in for a treat.

A current student at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Carter played football in high school and has been a lifelong avid football fan.