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

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


The Chatter

The Preakness Has a New Date–at the Same Home. But Will Any Fans Be There?

Pimlico Race Course is scheduled to host the final leg of the 2020 Triple Crown in October.

The Chatter

Hall of Fame Coach Don Shula, Who First Won Big in Baltimore, Dies at 90

Architect of Miami Dolphins' perfect 1972 season was 33 when he took Colts helm.

The Birds Nest

Trey Mancini Opens Up About Cancer Diagnosis Shock and Chemo During a Pandemic

“I want everybody to know that I’m O.K.,” the Orioles fan favorite says.


The Birds Nest

Lamenting a Spring Without The Orioles

What we miss most when the game goes away,

The Birds Nest

Checking in with Orioles Pitcher Branden Kline

Awaiting MLB's return, Kline talks being a wine nerd, his terrible golf game, and his scene-stealing daughter.


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

Connect With Us

Most Read


Teachers Continue to Fight for Education Equality While Instructing Virtually: Despite a lack of resources, students and teachers work to find feasible solutions.

How to Support Small Businesses Amid Pandemic Panic: As foot traffic slows due to coronavirus, owners worry about lasting impacts.

Grocery Workers Manage to Keep Morale High and Give Back Despite Long Hours: Managers and employees are working in overdrive to keep communities fed.

Maryland Farmers Market Association Closes in Vital Time for Local Foodways: What will the loss mean for Baltimore farms and food-insecure communities?

Maryland Hoops, and Everyone Else, Stomachs A Sudden End to Their Seasons: Plus, an update on Trey Mancini’s health and Joe Flacco shows for Marshal Yanda’s retirement party