AAF Week 5 how to watch: TV channel, live stream, picks, viewer’s guide, storylines, watch online
Just like that, the AAF regular season is about to be halfway over. Having such a compact season is smart for a start-up league, but it’ll also be over in the blink of an eye. Careful if you do, though. Week 5 might be a don’t-miss slate.
The most-anticipated game so far leads off the weekend when Orlando, the last remaining undefeated team, heads to Birmingham to take on the Iron in what will be a clash for the East division lead. That’s followed by the Salt Lake Stallions playing against the short-handed San Diego Fleet. The Stallions are looking to get out of the West cellar while the Fleet need to keep their heads above water.
Sunday’s action is equally as important. Memphis and Atlanta play in the battle for “not last in the power rankings” followed by two enigmatic teams, San Antonio and Arizona, in the evening game. Here’s everything you need to watch and enjoy Week 5 of the AAF season.
Orlando Apollos at Birmingham Iron
Date: Saturday, March 9 | Time: 2 p.m. ET
Location: Legion Field — Birmingham, Alabama
TV: TNT | Live stream: fuboTV (Try for free)
Memphis Express at Atlanta Legends
Date: Sunday, March 10 | Time: 4 p.m. ET
Location: Georgia State Stadium — Atlanta, Georgia
TV: CBS Sports Network | Live stream: CBS Sports Network
San Antonio Commanders at Arizona Hotshots
Date: Sunday, March 10 | Time: 8 p.m. ET
Location: Sun Devils Stadium — Tempe, Arizona
TV: NFL Network | Live stream: fuboTV (Try for free)
Orlando at Birmingham: No, it’s not the battle of undefeated teams, but the Apollos and Iron are No. 1 and No. 2, respectively, in the. Four games in, it’s safe to say Birmingham isn’t going to win by scoring a bunch of points. It’ll need red zone defense, hidden yards and likely one, maybe two, big offensive plays (or a non-offensive score) to win. As good as Birmingham’s defense is, Orlando’s is almost every bit as good.
Still, this will be Orlando’s biggest challenge to date. As good as the offense has been, that points-per-game number has dropped each week. It’s also the second-straight road game for the Apollos, who will be traveling a lot in the coming weeks to practice in Georgia. Depending on how the East division shakes out over the next month, it may be the first of three games between these two.
Salt Lake City at San Diego: Mike Bercovici is back at quarterback for the Fleet after Philip Nelson was ruled out for the next month, at least,. The last time Bercovici started for the Fleet, they put up six points in a Week 1 loss to San Antonio. At least the defense is capable enough to win; San Diego might have to lean on that more for the rest of the regular season. Meanwhile, the Stallions can make up some significant ground in the West. Forget being 1-3, every West team is 1-1 in the division. If Salt Lake City is truly better than its record — and that’s the impression I’ve received from around the AAF — then this would be the perfect time to prove it.
Memphis at Atlanta: Chortle at a game of bottom dwellers if you must, but thank the high heavens the Express and Legends notched their first wins in Week 4. Otherwise, this might have been really sad. Besides, it’s clear both teams have improved and it’s no coincidence that changes at quarterback have played a part. Originally coming off of the bench in Week 3 for Memphis, Zach Mettenberger has quickly become one of the most efficient passers in the Alliance. And in a Week 4 win at Arizona, Atlanta’s Aaron Murray came off the bench to compile 308 yards of total offense. Which one leads their team to victory in Week 5?
San Antonio at Arizona: I can’t think of two teams in the AAF who have either looked playoff-worthy or flown entirely off the rails like Arizona and San Antonio. So this game should be interesting! That being said, Commanders running back Kenneth Farrow has been a beast and is emerging as one of the top running backs in the Alliance. Between him and Trey Williams, the Commanders have been a better ground-and-pound offense as of late. However, even through its two-game slide, Arizona’s defense remains one of the AAF’s best.
Orlando (-5.5) at Birmingham, O/U 41: This game is going to go one of two ways. Either it’ll safely hit the under thanks to both defenses playing well and be decided by four points or fewer, or the Apollos will blow the doors off of the Iron. Birmingham’s defense, especially in the red zone, is legit, but I have serious concerns about whether the offense can put up enough points to win. Pick: Orlando -5.5, Under 41
Salt Lake City at San Diego (PK), O/U 39: Stallions running back Branden Oliver is one of the AAF’s best and his matchup vs. an excellent San Diego defensive front will be one to watch. Can the Fleet offense keep moving with Mike Bercovici back at quarterback? Philip Nelson’s injury may be the biggest of the season so far. Pick: Salt Lake City PK, Under 39
Memphis at Atlanta (PK), O/U 38.5: Both teams got a much-needed first win in Week 4 and their switches to quarterbacks Zach Mettenberger and Aaron Murray, respectively, have injected some life into once-hapless offenses. Ultimately, Mettenberger’s ability to stretch the field with his arm, and the disruptiveness of the Express defense, are the difference-makers. Pick: Memphis PK, Under 38.5
San Antonio at Arizona (-3.5), O/U 40: The Commanders have one of the worst passing defenses in the Alliance, so don’t be surprised if the Hotshots’ offense, flailing over the past few weeks, gets back on track. But as we saw vs. Orlando, San Antonio can put up points of its own and has found a running game with Kenneth Farrow II and Trey Williams. Will it be enough? Pick: Arizona -3.5, Over 40