GDFL Game of the Week:Raiders vs Strong
Syracuse, New York- The Syracuse Strong is coming off a 53 - 6 blowout win over the Charlotte Colonials in non-league play The Strong kick-off week 1 of GDFL League play the Strong are prepared to face a familiar opponent, the East Penn Raiders, in its first GDFL league play.
The last time the Strong and the Raiders met prior to the pandemic, the Strong came out on top by a score of 26 - 6 with the game ending early in the 3rd quarter due to dangerous weather conditions. The Strong will be depending on the offensive play of QB Jason Boltus, star RB Rashad Burns and the dynamite defensive play of OLB Dewayne “Flash” Gordon and SS Damion Blue.
Let’s see if the Syracuse Strong can put on a repeat performance this coming Saturday, May 29th.
Top players to watch Syracuse Strong
Jason Boltus brings a veteran presence to the huddle. The 34-year old has over a decade of professional experience from his time in the CFL, AFL, and playing indoor football. He’s the leader of the Strong offense, has a cannon for an arm, and is a calming presence. If you had to provide a pro player comparison to his game you’d probably mention Peyton Manning. He’s a cerebral assassin that can pick apart any defense in the country.
Rashad Burns, running back
One of the most dynamic football players on the planet. Rashad Burns brings elite speed, human joystick like lateral movements, and never goes down on first contact. The 5-foot-11, 195 pound back is simply a beast and is the heartbeat of the Syracuse offense. Every week the offensive game plan is normally built around Burns whether that’s through the ground game or in the air.
Damion Blue, linebacker
A Mississippi boy born and raised with a relentless passion for violence. Damion Blue has a frame that was chiseled by the gods. You can see him lining up all over the defense, but one thing is for certain, he’ll be wreaking havoc. Blue is a player you have to know where he is before every snap or else.
Dewayne “Flash” Gordon, EDGE rusher
The emotional leader of the Syracuse Strong. Dewayne “Flash” Gordon is an absolute maniac on the football field. He talks a big game, but he backs it up on the football field. Gordon has arguably the quickest pass rush get off in the country and brings an attitude on every single snap. If I only had one word to describe him it would be: intense.
East Penn Raiders players to watch.
DeVaughn Chollette #56 Returning from taking a year off in 2020, he comes back as the anchor to the East Penn defense. With his leadership and talent on the field and off, he has earned his rights as a defensive captain in 2021. In 2019, Chollette was a force to be reckoned with, compiling 107 combined tackles on the season. He returns with a fueled passion to create havoc on the opposing offenses. Chollette played his college football at the University of New Hampshire.
Yogi Wilkerson Jr # 21 Returning to the Raiders for his third season as a leader at the safety position. Yogi has been a exemplary teammate on and off the field. Leading with his play locking down receivers as well as being a vocal captain for the team as well. He is a Philadelphia native and brings that tough Football mentality to the Raiders organization. Yogi is returning as a third-year captain and one of the the team favorites. Having Yogi on the defense is liking having a coach on the field. He is very excited about this journey heading into the 2021 GDFL season and facing tougher challenges ahead.
Cody L’aMour Lamoreaux #10 Running Back
Cody played for Coach Keefer in 2017 before signing a contract to play professional football in Brazil. He was instantly a fan favorite and and simultaneously feared throughout the league. Cody played running back his first season, led the league in rushing and touchdowns. Unfortunately an ankle injury in the championship game preemptively ended his season. He battled back, and In the following season, when the starting quarterback went down, Cody stepped in not missing a beat. Establishing himself as a triple threat, he carried his team to a Championship and was named the league MVP. Due to Covid, football in Brazil has been put on hold, so he returns to reunite with Coach Keefer and the 2021 Raiders.
Andrew Shoop #7 Quarterback Shoop joins the Raiders for the 2021 season as a new member to the organization. Shoop has taken the reins at quarterback and with his solid determination he has helped Coach Bob Kohler form an offensive system that will be competitive throughout the GDFL. His hard work and determination has proven that he has the ability to lead this team. Shoop played his collegiate football at Lafayette College, a division 1-AA school. He was a two-year starter. Shoop then played 2 seasons overseas as well. First in the Czech Republic, where as a first year player at the quarterback position he lead his team a national championship win and MVP award. Shoop comes into the 2021 season with the same mentality, to lead the Raiders to a championship.
ABOUT THE GDFL
The Gridiron Developmental Football League is a Professional Developmental Football League based in Memphis, Tennessee. This League was established to provide the community with high quality sports entertainment and to provide athletes the opportunity to participate in professional sports. We are looking at partnering with national and local area businesses in our pursuit of excellence and commitment to our community. Our commitment, dedication, and vision are set on building a firm foundation for professionalism and quality.
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The GDFL Communications Office contributed to this article