At the start of each new year, normally people come up with a list of their goals for the year and call them their New Year’s resolutions, and the Pirates wanted to do the same. As the year 2021 comes to a close, the Pirates wanted to reflect on this past year but also look forward to 2022 and list out the team’s New Year’s resolutions:
The Pirates hope to defend the United Bowl championship
During their first season in the Indoor Football League, the Pirates took the league by storm and won the United Bowl off of a game-winning field goal from kicker Garrett Hartley in overtime. The Pirates’ main goal for 2022 is to defend the United Bowl title and hoist up the trophy once again this next season. The Pirates Co-Owner and General Manager Jawad Yatim has already re-signed nine players from that championship roster and has added multiple other players that will be a huge part of accomplishing this resolution.
Alejandro Bennifield hopes to get even better in his second season as the starting QB
Going into 2021, Bennifield started the season as the Pirates’ backup quarterback, but became the starter after the first game of the season vs the Lousiville Xtreme when starting QB Sean Brackett went down with an injury. Alejandro showed why he deserves to be the starting quarterback and led the Pirates to the United Bowl and performed so well in the championship game, he received the United Bowl MVP. Going into the United Bowl, he was ranked second in the league in passing yards as well as touchdowns and third in passing efficiency. Bennifield will be looking to use his success in the 2021 season to motivate him to be even better going into his second season as the starting quarterback of the Pirates.
The defense hopes to once again be the top defense in the league
The defense was the top-ranked defense in the league and was one of the biggest strengths for the Pirates in 2021. The unit’s success showed when the league awards were announced and 5 of the Pirates’ 9 defensive starters earned All-IFL defense team honors. Chucky Williams and Harlan Miller were two of the biggest forces on the defense and both combined for 8 total turnovers. Miller finished second in the league in picks with 5, while Williams led the league in fumble recoveries with 3. Luckily both players have been re-signed for the 2022 season along with key defensive players Toby Johnson, Aarion Maxey-Penton, and Khalid Wooten.
The defensive coordinator Rayshaun Kizer was the mastermind behind the dominant unit last season and has already been hired back for 2022. During this offseason, the Pirates also added former NFL players Defensive Back Corrion Ballard, former XFL player Defensive Lineman Vantrel McMillan, and Linebacker Koby Quansah from Duke University. The return of key players and Coach Kizer and the new signings will all help the Pirates defense be even better in 2022.
Thomas Owens hopes to repeat his impressive 2021 season
Throughout 2021, Pirates wide receiver Thomas Owens was one of the best players at his position in the league. It showed when he was one of two wide receivers in the league to earn 1st Team All-IFL Offense honors. Over 17 games, Owens led the IFL in receptions (77), receiving yards (1,014), and ranked second in touchdown receptions (27). Owen made multiple clutch plays throughout the season and was Pirates quarterback Alejandro Bennifield’s top target. The Pirates are hoping the wide receiver can repeat his dominant performance during this season to help propel the Pirates to another championship.
The Pirates hope to stay healthy
Every sports team’s main goal each season is for their players to stay healthy, especially in football due to how easily players get sidelined. The Pirates were lucky last season and didn’t have too many of their key performers get injured or get COVID-19 This could be due to the great athletic training staff or the healthy habits of the players, but the goal for 2022 is to have the same fortune.
The Pirates organization greatly appreciates all of the support throughout the year 2021 and looks forward to making 2022 even better.
The 2021 United Bowl Champions; Massachusetts Pirates are members of the Indoor Football League (IFL). The Pirates play all home games at Phoenix Field at the DCU Center located at 50 Foster St. Worcester, MA, 01608. For more information on the Massachusetts Pirates please call (508)452-MASS (6277), email firstname.lastname@example.org or visit http://www.masspiratesfootball.com. For 2022 season, half-season, luxury, or group ticket packages please call 508-452-MASS (6277) or visit http://www.masspiratesfootball.com/tickets. Follow the Pirates on Facebook via Facebook.com/MAPirates, Instagram @mass.pirates, and Twitter @mass_pirates