Top 10 Non-Americans in the European League of Football

It can hardly be argued that the European League of Football (ELF) no longer represents the best talent Europe has to offer. 

International American football players wishing to ply their trade flocked to the league in abundance as its second year came into being. And as the league draws to an end and the playoffs rapidly approach, it is no longer just the Americans who are making the biggest impact in Europe.

It is for this reason that we have devised a list of the Top 10 Non-Americans in the league to show a little love to all the home-grown talent showing the rest of the world that football does belong in Europe.

1. Glen Toonga – RB – Hamburg Sea Devils – 1,127 yards, 16 touchdowns

Glen Toonga is dominating his position like no other in the ELF. The leaps he has taken this year as a running back are monumental.

He is not only the best non-American in the ELF but arguably one of the most dominant players period.

2. Philipp Haun – WR – Tirol Raiders – 42 receptions, 428 yards, three touchdowns

Haun was the Austrian Football League’s (AFL) MVP in 2021 with the Danube Dragons. He dominated American and Austrian defensive backs alike. 

The young Vienna product hasn’t missed a step since coming over to the ELF. He is an integral part of the league’s most productive passing attack with the Raiders Tirol.

3. Alejandro Fernández – DE – Barcelona Dragons – 11.5 sacks, five forced fumbles, 33 tackles

Fernández appears to have sprung out of a hole in the ground. The 21 year old has been discreetly sharpening his skills in Finland and Germany and has now taken the ELF by storm, quickly establishing himself as one of the league’s most impactful pass rushers. 

4. Goran Zec – DB – Wroclaw Panthers – three interceptions, seven pass breakups, 63 tackles, 2.5 sacks

In 2018 a young Serbian by the name of Goran Zec signed with the Schwäbisch Hall Unicorns. He quickly established himself as a utility defender with the ability to play anywhere on the field.

Zec has since cemented his position as Mr do-it-all and is without a doubt one of the Wroclaw Panthers most valuable players.

5. David Izinyon – DE – Berlin Thunder – 63 tackles, 2.5 sacks, one forced fumble

Izinyon is an absolute train. His sheer strength and athleticism scare the life out of runners.

It is no coincidence that the Berlin Thunder’s fortunes began to turn when he signed for the team in week 3.

6. Thomas Schnurrer – LB – Vienna Vikings – 80 tackles, two interceptions

Thomas Schnurrer is surrounded by Americans in the stats table when it comes to tackles. This is something the young Austrian is used to from his time in the AFL with the Graz Giants last year.

Schnurrer is one of the many Austrians in the ELF showing the rest of Europe why Austrian football is elite.

7. Anton Wegan – RB – Vienna Vikings – 528 yards, three touchdowns

The Vikings are fortunate to have been blessed with the Wegan brothers. Two running backs with low centers of gravity and an ability make plays with the ball in their hands.

Anton Wegan has been the highlight this year for the Vikings following his brother’s nagging injuries but has not disappointed. When Anton does well, the Vikings tend to win.

8. Timothy Knuettel – WR – Rhein Fire – 42 receptions, 510 yards, five touchdowns

Rhein Fire’s Timothy Knuettel has possibly the best hands in the league. He has the highest catch percentage of receivers with receptions over 20. 

The 30-year old German has proved to be a lifeline for the quarterbacks he has played for this year. He may not have scored all the touchdowns, but he has certainly made all the tough receptions and picked up countless first downs.

9. Aleksandar Milanovic – OL – Vienna Vikings – a whole lot of pancakes

The Serbian-Austrian Milanovic has been a staple for the Vikings since he began playing for them in 2005. 

Milanovic earned a scholarship to Sacramento State University in California (NCAA Div. 1 FCS) in 2011 but returned to the Vikings in 2017. His experience has been well utilized in Vienna and anchors one of the league’s best offensive lines. 

10. Robin Wilzeck – WR – Berlin Thunder – 21 receptions, 625 yards, five touchdowns

Wilzeck, like the rest of the Berlin Thunder, began the season slowly but has since exploded, averaging a league leading 29.7 yards per catch.

On almost every play he threatens to take the top off with his blistering speed. The young German, who won the German Bowl last year with the Dresden Monarchs, has a bright future of football ahead of him.

Honorable mention

Marco Schneider – WR – Raiders Tirol – 34 receptions, 542 yards, six touchdowns

Creating a top 11 list is just awkward, but it wouldn’t do the Europeans justice if young Austrian Marco Schneider was left out. Along with Haun, Schnieder provides the Raiders a tough, sure handed slot who has the ability to beat man coverage. 

The Raiders have probably the best receiving core in the league, and they’re all Austrian.

Daniel Mackenzie is a Press Association graduate who works in journalism and communications in the third sector. Daniel began playing football for the London Warriors and Team Great Britain and has since played across Europe.