In the first two seasons of the Academy, the only positions covered were offensive line, defensive line, and running backs. Dalton talked about how season 3 of the Academy will expand to covering all positions and moving their location from the Pro Football Hall Of Fame to Arlington, Texas, home of the XFL football operations Hub.
“We did three positions, offensive line, defensive line, and running backs, the first two seasons. This year we’re growing. We’re going to all 22 and moving to a new location.
We’ll be in Texas. We’re in Arlington, Texas, about 15 minutes south of DFW Airport. The housing for the players will be a Sheraton Hotel, and it’s 1 mile down the street to Choctaw Stadium… That’s what will be starting October 2.”
In the April press release about the partnership, there was no mention of the Academy moving. It said they were staying in Ohio, but maybe construction delays on the Center for Performance caused this.
“The Tom Benson Hall of Fame Stadium at the Hall of Fame Village powered by Johnson Controls will initially serve as the NFL Alumni Academy’s headquarters and training facility. The Academy will then move to the Center for Performance, which will be located on the Village’s campus and is anticipated to be completed in 2022. “
Regarding how the Academy will operate, there will be four sessions of three-week training camps with a full team of players.
“We have all the positions and stack them like a team. So we’ll have four inside backers, twelve defensive line, and edge guys. We’re going to have eight to nine DBs, and we have a couple of variable slots depending on the timing of bringing in players.
On the offensive side, we got eleven offensive linemen, four tight ends, a couple of hybrids for H-backs and fullbacks, five running backs and eight wide receivers.”
The dates of the four sessions will take them to the end of the NFL season. Players can get an XFL contract if they are part of any one of the four Academy sessions. Also, if they graduate from the Academy, they are guaranteed a spot at the XFL training camp in January.
Dalton then talks about the partnership with the XFL.
“We have a partnership this year that’s new with the XFL. The XFL is returning in January, and they will be fielding eight teams. They’ve got all their staff put together. They got their personnel directors put together.
They ran some showcases this off-season, and they’re working with us because they’re offering academy graduates a guaranteed XFL contract so that they know they will get paid to play pro football if they don’t make back to a roster during the course of the NFL season.
Come January; they get an XFL contract. They can go into that XFL training camp and compete for a front-line spot. So we prepare the Academy graduates to have multiple layer options because now they’re going to get ten games of game film that is in the pipeline.”
He also goes on to talk about the XFL schedule and its timing to the NFL off season.
“And what we did like about the XFL was there’s a lot of NFL leadership at the top of that league, and they put a lot of thought process in. So they have a very complimentary schedule.
Their calendar aligns with the NFL calendar. So they’ll start training camp in January during playoffs. They’ll begin their games in February and finish in May. So that players in the XFL get those game experiences, get that game film. But then their season is over in time, that they can join an NFL mini-camp, they can join NFL OTAs, and elevate their chances to make the 90-man roster from next year’s training camp. That partnership with the XFL is a unique twist.”
Dalton also talks about USFL players who have their second-year option picked up and will not be part of the first wave of players they look to bring in because of their partnership with the XFL. It also seems like the XFL has some say on who the NFL Alumni Academy will bring in because those players will automatically get an XFL contract.
Dalton talks about in invite process, how there was a TV show based on it filled last season, the player’s financial responsibility, food, logging, workout schedule, CFL players participating in the Academy, and so much more. It is a must-listen if you are a player or agent who wants to learn more about this program.
Thanks to MaxScouts for the info on this event.
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