League of their Own

Introducing the Baltimore Brigade.

By Nehal Aggarwal​ - April 2017

League of their Own

Introducing the Baltimore Brigade.

By Nehal Aggarwal​ - April 2017

Baltimore Brigade head coach Omarr Smith. -Photography by Mike Morgan

Get Baltimore Daily.

Sign up today and you'll get our latest stories delivered straight to your inbox every weekday afternoon.

Craving football in the Ravens off-season? You’re in luck! This month, the Arena Football League (AFL) kicks off its inaugural season in Charm City with the brand-new Baltimore Brigade. The indoor team has the first of its 14 games on April 7 at the Verizon Center in Washington, D.C., followed by its home opener shortly after that at the Royal Farms Arena on May 7.

“The arena is thrilled that the Baltimore Brigade will play at our venue this spring and summer,” says Frank Remesch, general manager of the Royal Farms Arena, which also features indoor soccer games played by the Baltimore Blast. “Baltimore has always been a sports town, and we are proud to continue that tradition.”

The AFL has many of the same rules as the NFL, but with a smaller field and fewer players (eight on the field at a time per team compared to the NFL’s 11, with a roster of 24 compared to the NFL’s typical 53). The AFL uses a rebound net, which can keep the ball in play, and sorry boys—no punting allowed (on fourth down, a team may go for a first down, touchdown, or field goal).

In their sleek blue and silver uniforms, the Baltimore Brigade includes seasoned players and rookie talent, with a few athletes hailing from Maryland and even Baltimore. “You have to have great people from top to bottom,” says head coach Omarr Smith, a longtime AFL champion. “Building a football team from scratch is a huge challenge and I’m excited about the opportunity.”

In a city that treasures its underdog status, the team hopes to gain a loyal following. “Baltimore has a great fan base for all of its sports,” says wide receiver LaQuan Williams, who played at Baltimore Polytechnic Institute and the University of Maryland before joining the Ravens in 2011 and now the Baltimore Brigade. “I’m excited to see how the town takes to the new team. It’s an exciting game and it gives the community something new to cheer for.”

You May Also Like

On The Town

Urban Axes Will Bring Hatchet-Throwing and Beer to Highlandtown

Coming in 2018, new space encourages beginners to try axe-throwing.

The Chatter

Aaron Maybin Helps Shine Spotlight on Cold Schools

Former NFL player turned Baltimore City teacher shines powerful spotlight on school infrastructure.

The Chatter

Katie Ledecky Named AP Female Athlete of the Year

The Bethesda native wins over tennis phenomenon Serena Williams.


Ravens Players Share Thanksgiving Food Traditions

Willie Henry had a lot to say about cake while Jeremy Maclin praised his mom's sweet potato pie.


Five Biggest Questions Facing The Orioles In 2018

With spring training just six weeks away, the Orioles have a lot of work to do.

Health & Wellness

The (Every) Body Issue

A celebration of our Bodies—and ourselves.

Baltimore Brigade head coach Omarr Smith. -Photography by Mike Morgan

Connect With Us

Most Read

Ten Incredibly Easy Ways to Be More Active in 2018: Get creative with walking meetings, workout buddies, and local sports leagues.

The Rowhouse Grille Hosts LLS Fundraiser Honoring Alex Wroblewski: The 41-year-old Locust Point resident was fatally shot outside of Royal Farms in November.

Walters Curator Says Google Arts App is Good Start But Not Perfect: The museum has more than 1,400 works represented in the app's collection.

Former Terp Makes Catch For the Ages: Wide receiver Stefon Diggs shocks the world.

Baltimore Women’s March Moves Downtown as Thousands Plan to Participate: This year’s theme encourages voter registration in 2018 elections.