The new Alliance of American Football allocated 32 quarterbacks Tuesday night for its inaugural 2019 season, including former NFL notables Christian Hackenberg, Scott Tolzien and Zach Mettenberger.
The league, which begins play Feb. 9, gave its eight teams the option to protect a quarterback with geographic ties to the franchise -- or pick someone else in the first round. The first player to be allocated was Josh Johnson, who went to the San Diego Fleet. Hackenberg and Mettenberger went to the Memphis Express, while Tolzien was drafted by the Birmingham Iron.
The AAF, co-founded by television executive Charlie Ebersol and Pro Football Hall of Fame general manager Bill Polian, views itself as a spring league that can feed fan interest once the NFL season is over. Polian hired a series of high-profile former NFL coaches, including Steve Spurrier (Orlando Apollos), Mike Martz (San Diego), Brad Childress (Atlanta Legends) and Mike Singletary (Memphis).
Other quarterbacks to be drafted or protected Tuesday night included former University of Georgia star Aaron Murray (Atlanta), former NFL backup Stephen Morris (Orlando), former New York Jets backup Matt Simms (Atlanta) and B.J. Daniels (Salt Lake Stallions), who spent time with the San Francisco 49ers, Seattle Seahawks and Houston Texans.