Well it is just about that time of the year again, arguably every American male’s favorite time of the year…football season. So, naturally after having so much fun building a Marvel and a DC football squad last year I’ve decided to continue the fun this year by building a Nintendo character-inspired football squad. I must say this proved much more difficult than I originally intended especially trying to put characters in their best positions possible, but ultimately I was satisfied with the team I’ve put together. However, I’ll admit I was forced to change my favorable 3-4 defensive scheme into a 4-3 to accommodate the physical characteristics most Nintendo characters have. I hope y’all enjoy the team as much as I did creating it.
QB: Mega Man – What else can I say about this pick that the old cliché, “Cannon for an arm,” can’t? Mega man literally has cannon for an arm and will most certainly decimate an opponent’s secondary.
RB: Bowser – A nearly unstoppable force once he gets going. Bowser would most certainly be a hard-nose, downhill Jerome Bettis/Jim Brown style running back. I sure as heck wouldn’t want to stand between him and the goal-line.
FB: Bass – Full-back was actually a highly contested position for me to determine. Ultimately, I settled on Mega Man’s best-rival, Bass. After-all the ‘Bass-Buster’ would blast running lanes wide open for Bowser to stampede through.
WR: Yoshi – Everyone’s favorite lizard and clearly a lethal option at receiver. Yoshi has sub 4.4 speed and elite hands, well tongue in Yoshi’s case.
WR: Diddy Kong – Another tough decision here as my number two receiver behind Yoshi. Decided to match Yoshi’s blistering speed with an equally fast counterpart in Diddy Kong, who has unquestionable agility, scrappy enough to go across the middle, and has the vertical to be a red-zone threat.
TE: Luigi – Not fast enough to be an outside receiver, but Luigi has always been a safety-blanket type of character. He is a perpetual unsung hero doing all the necessary dirty work to ensure the job is done, add in the fact Luigi is a tall, lengthy, scrappy Italian with some solid ups he’s a perfect fit to be Mega Man’s check-down guy or go to end-zone target.
OT: King Boo – An effective large force, whose sheer size would slow down a defensive’s edge rush. Add in the fact he can be extremely annoying and you have a perfect offensive tackle.
OG: Koopa Troopa – He’s a warrior. Always dead-set on doing his job and if his job is opening a running lane for his King Troopa (Bowser) you better bet he’ll find a way to make the boss happy.
C: Kirby – A versatile player. Could’ve put Kirby nearly anywhere, but at center he can gobble up any major defensive tackle lined up against him no matter how big they are.
OG: Shy Guy – Just like his offensive-guard counterpart, Shy Guy, is an integer able part of the work-force. He’s a gritty, workaholic-type of player that will sacrifice themselves to get the job done.
OT: Nidoking: I could’ve theoretically layered my team with Pokémon, but Nidoking was the only one to make my cut. I needed a solid blind-side tackle for Mega Man and Nidoking fit the bill. Massive, destructive, and durable Nidoking is a sure-bet to make sure nobody sacks his quarterback.
K: Paper Boy – Won’t lie, I nearly put him at quarterback because of his unquestionable arm strength, but his accuracy left something to be questioned. I couldn’t afford Eli Manning-styled inconsistency at quarterback, but I could afford some comedic relief at kicker. Plus he’s the paper-boy you can’t stay mad at the paper boy just like you can’t stay mad at the kicker.
DE: Donkey Kong – With his size, speed, and strength Donkey Kong would wreak havoc all day coming off the edge.
DT: Ganon (Dorf) – Link’s routine thorn-in-his-side would become an offensive’s biggest pest. His strength and agility may make him better suited to be on the outside, but Ganon is a schemer and his use of magic would consistently keep offensive lines on their heels plus open holes for the linebackers to make a clutch play.
DT: Captain Falcon – A defensive tackle tends to be more of a role player than highlight reel player. His main job is to clog running lanes and not allow a runner to get to the second level (linebackers). He also is expected to open up blitzing lanes for his linebackers during blitz packages. Captain Falcon can do both effectively with one good ‘Falcon Punch.’
DE: Waluigi – Agile and sneaky. Was contemplating having him at corner, but doesn’t have elite speed. Waluigi is sure to cause offensive lineman headaches with his painstakingly annoying laugh, but more importantly he’d make plays for his defensive with his lengthy arms getting around offensive tackles and swatting down passes like a J.J. Watt.
OLB: Star Fox – Speed and underrated physical attributes. May be undersized, but has speed to rush off the edge or keep up with elite receivers and the strength to force the occasional fumble.
MLB: Samus – I don’t want to hear the girls can’t play football because Samus could play nearly any position on defense. Has that bounty-hunter chip on her shoulder you’d like to see in a linebacker plus has too high of an IQ to not terrorize the middle of the field and keep the front seven organized.
OLB: Snake – Just like Samus, Snake could play nearly position on defense (even offense for that matter), but at outside linebacker he can team-up with Samus as a defensive team leader plus his battle experience and espionage brilliance makes him a perfect fit to help disguise various defensive packages.
CB: Falco Lombardi – Nearly made the team on his last name alone, but in all truth Falco has perfect blend of size, speed, and strength to be a legitimate shutdown corner. Plus his bravado doesn’t hurt the mystique a solid defense should carry.
CB: Mario – I’m sure at this point, you were beginning to wonder where I’d put the face of Nintendo. Mario was probably the hardest player to find a position for on the team (to be honest he was on the bubble), but ultimately I felt he’d do his best at corner. Not as agile or fast as an elite corner should be, but Mario has the solid defensive backup from his teammates to help limit him getting exposed. Big enough to jam receivers at the line and with an unquestionable vertical Mario would certainly surprise quarterbacks with out of nowhere interceptions. Mario would bend, but not break with his defensive coverage, but his jumping ability could nearly shut down any deep threat.
FS: Pitt (Kid Icarus) – Give him time and he’ll find a way. Pitt has speed and knowledge to sit back and watch an offensive play develop and ensure it doesn’t execute when he’s on the field. Add in the fact he can fly across the field he’d be a laid-back, ball-hawking safety.
SS: Link – Another expert tactician like Pitt. Link has the IQ to quickly find a way to expose a threat. No outstanding physical characteristics, but an iron man’s will. At strong safety he’d be able to roam more than at free safety allowing Link to constantly help his defensive teammates maintain a systematical advantage and rarely let their game plan be foiled.
P: Hammer Brothers – They could take turns who actually stepped on the field, but I felt with the Hammer Brothers as punters you’d have a legit repeating threat to run a fake punt and throw a quick, accurate pass to keep the chains moving. Plus, they are the Hammer Brothers you don’t make a Nintendo team and leave them off the roster.
Coach: Ash (Pokémon) –Yes, I could’ve put Mario here, but honestly out of my entire team Ash as the coach was my surest pick. You cannot second guess the leadership and battle tactics he holds. He’s a Pokémon master, master strategists and as coach he’d surely consistently put together a competitive team capable of turning the tide at any moment.
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