Baltimore Hawks

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Baltimore Hawks
Current season
Established 2016
First season: 2016
Play in and headquartered in The Aviary
Baltimore, Maryland
Baltimore Hawks logo
Logo
League/conference affiliations

NSFL (2016–present)

Current uniform
BAL HOME TOP.PNG


BAL AWAY TOP.PNG


BAL ALT TOP.PNG
Team colorsGold, Red, Black[1]               
MascotCaw Caw
Personnel
General manager[[]] (Dewalt27)
Head coachLeon Ardo
Team history
  • Baltimore Hawks (2016–present)
Championships
League championships (2)
Conference championships (8)
Division championships (9)
Playoff appearances (16)
Home fields

The Baltimore Hawks are a professional American football franchise based in Baltimore, Maryland. The Hawks currently compete in the National Simulation Football League (NSFL) as a member club of the league's National Simulation Football Conference (NSFC) which currently only has one division. The franchise was established in 2016 as one of the six original teams. They have an intense rivalry with the Philadelphia Liberty, and a lesser one with the Yellowknife Wraiths. The Hawks have won the NSFC championship seven times, and two Ultimus trophies.

The Hawks have sold out every home game at The Aviary, in downtown Baltimore, since 2017. Hawks fans and players are known for their "Caw Caw" battle cry.

History of the Baltimore Hawks

The Baltimore Hawks franchise went through some difficulties in its early years, seeing franchise founder RayCobaine relinquish control prior to the Inaugural NSFL Draft. His replacements, evryday and .broken had little preparation time and had to deal with early retirements, while leading the team to a 4-10 record in the first year. At the end of the 2016 season, Gordon Gekko took over as GM, and set about rebuilding the team. His first priority was to retain the services of a few key players in the team, ahead of an impending expansion draft. Between the expansion draft, further player retirements, and trade requests, the Hawks were looking at a tough season ahead. A strong draft class and savvy selections from the new GM turned things around rapidly, however, and the Hawks performed well. A scandal regarding Hawks tight end Carmel Gibson half-way through the season could have been a major setback, but the Hawks cut him and moved Jesse Sanderson into the gap, still managing to claim top spot in the NSFC for 2017. A win over the rival Yellowknife Wraiths put them into Ultimus Bowl II, where they fell 33-6 to the Arizona Outlaws.

The Hawks would hire ItsJustBarry to serve as co-GM as they sought to repeat as NSFC Champions in 2018. They were successful in this aim, thanks to the contributions of another strong draft class, including wide receiver Trey Willie, defensive tackle Ricardo Sandoval and safety Vincent Valentine. A trade for the controversial Las Vegas Legion wide receiver Stormblessed at the trade deadline bolstered a formidable offense. Starting the season 6-0, the Hawks finished with a 9-5 record, and again won the conference championship game – this time defeating the Philadelphia Liberty – before falling to the Outlaws in Ultimus Bowl III.

As a consequence of various changes throughout the league in 2019, there was a substantial amount of roster change for the Hawks as they entered their fourth season, despite not having a first-round pick in that year's draft. Ultimately, the Hawks' post-season hopes came down to their final game, and unfortunately they were defeated 35-33 by the Liberty, ending their season with a 7-7 record. Further roster changes in 2020 saw the Hawks acquire veteran receiver Alexandre LeClair as well as DSFL standout John Wachter and promising cornerback Gregory Fletcher. Reaching the conference championship game again, the Hawks were unable to overcome the Wraiths, losing 37-21.

The arrival of former number one draft pick Noah Goodson in 2021 and promising rookie Austin Roenick saw the Hawks heading into the season optimistic of a return to the Ultimus Bowl. However, once again, the Hawks' prospects came down to the final game of the season, which they lost 41-28 to the Wraiths, keeping them out of the post-season. Hawks veteran cornerback Antoine Delacour would pick up the first defensive player of the year award in franchise history, however, while Owen Taylor set a new single season rushing record for the NSFL with 1,402 yards.

Baltimore would be rocked in 2022 following the shock death of beloved general manager Gordon Gekko. ItsJustBarry served as interim general manager until the end of the regular season, when iamslm22 and manicmav36 took over. With the Hawks having failed to reach the playoffs with their 7-7 record, the new GM duo had the post-season and an entire offseason to prepare for 2023.

2023 saw Baltimore finish 7-7 in the regular season for the second consecutive year, but unlike in 2022 this year they made the playoffs in the NSFC behind the 11-3 Yellowknife Wraiths. Baltimore were bolstered by another strong season from workhorse Owen Taylor who finished the season with 313 rushing attempts for 1263 yards and 15 touchdowns. Unfortunately for Baltimore, their playoff run would be short lived after falling to the Yellowknife Wraiths 38-24 in Yellowknife.

Baltimore however were a much more dominant team during the 2024 season and ultimately finished with an impressive 11-3 record, the best of the NSFC. Baltimore boasted an impressive offense with Avon Blocksdale throwing for over 4500 yards and 26 touchdowns, Owen Taylor rushing for just shy of 1400 yards and 23 touchdowns. Baltimore also had the ever deadly receiving threats of Trey Willie, Alexander LeClair, Budda Browning and Verso L'Alto at their disposal. Baltimore narrowly dispatched Colorado in Maryland 40-34 before moving on to the Ultimus Bowl to face the new look New Orleans Second Line. Unfortunately for Baltimore, they were outplayed and the 12-2 Second Line ran out winners at 37-24.

But the pain for Hawks fans would finally cease in 2025 when they achieved their greatest ever regular season record (13-1). The Baltimore side from 2024 was largely the same, just with a few new rookie pickups most notably tight end Declan Harp and wide receiver Vinny Valentine. Baltimore played the 9-5 Yeti in Maryland and through a tight affair won out in the end 37-28 before facing NOLA for a back to back Ultimus Bowl. Baltimore had their revenge and ran out 29-23 winners as they claimed their first ever Ultimus title in franchise history.

After earning their first Ultimas victory, the Hawks owners gave both general managers an extension for the 2026 season. They would in turn make the biggest splash of the offseason signing Ryan Applehort and transitioning Avon Blocksdale to cornerback. Apart from that the Hawks remained relatively the same, but came into the season as heavy favorites to repeat as the NSFC Champions. The Hawks would jump out of the gate red hot as they would win their first five games. Possibly looking ahead to their week 7 matchup with the New Orleans Second Line, the lost in a shocker on the road to the Philadelphia Liberty. From there they would stumble a bit winning only 4 of their next 8 to finish with a 9-5 record, still good enough to be tops in the NSFC. Baltimore would make quick work of the Colorado Yeti in the opening round of playoffs 45-7 punching their ticket to the Ultimas to face the Second Line for the second straight year. The rematch would live up to all the hype as Turk Turkleton would kick a game tying field goal with 1:47 left in the game, but ultimately Darren Smallwood would find the endzone in overtime to win the Ultimus for New Orleans.

The Hawks would be in for a bit of a shakeup leading into the 2027 season as Ryan Applehort's representative group would take control of the Yellowknife Wraiths and in turn the Hawks would trade Applehort to the Wraiths in exchange for Antonio Summer and draft pick compensation. In turn, defensive end Childish Gambino would make the unlikely change to quarterback. In the draft the Hawks would take highly touted wide receiver Errol Maddox with the pick they received form Yellowknife and took defensive standouts Grayson Kuusela and Charlie Trout with their next two picks. Despite losing Applehort, Gambino showed enough in spring work outs that many were still considering Baltimore heavy favorites. The Hawks wouldn't disappoint their backers either as they'd have a clean sweep in the pre-season and come out with two devastating victories on the road to start the season. What some saw as unbeatable would then become exposed as they'd evenly split their next six games, including losing at home to the Orange County Otters. Baltimore, now with good young depth, would choose to deal away Kuusela and fellow draftee Aksel Danielsson to the New Orleans Second Line for safety Blackford Oakes. Despite adding Oakes, the Hawks would continue to struggle against good passing teams and they'd struggle to an 8-6 record, still securing the top spot in the NSFC. In the first round of the playoffs they'd face off against the Liberty, a team who they destroyed twice in the regular season, but it would take an overtime effort to put them away a 3rd time. Coming into the Ultimas, the Hawks now on the road, you could tell they were still reeling from their win over Philadelphia. Baltimore would struggle as the newly trained quarterback Gambino couldn't lead any kind of offensive charge and the Otters would once again down the Hawks, this time to become Ultimas champions.

Despite their loss last season, you could see the Hawks were in the right direction after a season of turmoil. The Hawks would enter the 2028 season as the NSFC champions. They were a few moves away from tasting glory for the second time in franchise history. Gambino was getting used to being a QB, they had taken some sleepers in the draft, along with a pretty good kicker, Alex Frost in the first round, and it all looked promising. But no, fate had other plans for them. Star TE Verso L'Alto and S Blackford Oakes were traded to the Colorado Yeti for 4 draft picks, in a really shady trade that allowed Baltimore to tamper with them, without being accused of tampering. Their GM at the time, Iam Essellemm, thought they would stay competitive. But they didn't. They finished the season with a 4-10 record, including a 8-game losing streak, placing 3rd in teh NSFC, and missing the playoffs, a season after their miraculous Ultimus run. Iam Esselleem would resign to become a player agent.

2029 started with high hopes for the Hawks. They had a new promising pair of GMs in Epictitus Millburn and Icy Douglas. They also went out to the Free Agent market and shopped good. They picked up star RB Marquise Brown, WRs Howard Miller & Viggo Squanch, brought back L'Alto and Oakes, assembling the first superteam in NSFL history. Gambino had a lot of weapons to throw too. Their defence was stacked as well. Asipi, Hondo, Hornbacher, Roenick, Mbanefo, Oats, Morris, Oakes. They were stacked in both sides of the ball. Rightfully, they finished the season 11-3, atop of the NSFC, boasting a high-caliber offence of 32 PPG, best in the league. They also had the best defence in their division, ranking 3rd overall in the league. They only lost to the eventual champs, Orange County Otters, twice and to the Liberty on the road. Nonetheless, they were heading to the playoffs, where they were the favorites heading to the NSFC Championship game, where they hosted the Liberty. The Hawks lost, 31-28, despite leading by 11 points (28-17), 9 minutes before the end of the game, thus ending their season in utter disappointment.

That disappointment didn't last for long though. The Hawks entered the 2030 with the same roster as last season, apart from the addition of safety Fatih Terim, their second round pick of that season's draft. They were fun to watch, but tough to play against. They finished the season with a 12-2 record, atop the NSFC once again. Their offence was improved. 37.1 points per game. Their defence did as well. 20 points per game. They were the best team both on paper and on the field. Their only losses came to the Wraiths in week 2, and to the Liberty in week 13. They were scary. But they flopped last season come playoff time. There were questions looming over Baltimore. Would the Hawks do what they were supposed to do, or would they be the victims of a second straight upset year? Well, the Hawks silenced the critics. They crushed the Liberty in the NSFC Championship game, 34-13, heading to the Ultimus Bowl after 3 years. There, they would face the best defence in the league, the San Jose Sabercats, in Childish Gambino's final game. The legendary DE-turned-QB had announced his retirement earlier during the season. Well, let's just say this was not the case. The Hawks dismantled the Sabercats, handing them one of the worst losses in league history,a nd the worst loss ever in the Ultimus Bowl history. A 49-0 beatdown, behind a near perfect game from Gambino, and the Hawks were the rightful Ultimus champions after 5 years, sending off Gambino on a high note.

The Hawks entered 2031, hoping to repeat, but they were not lucky. Rookie QB Corvo Havran was now under center, and with the team's success with Gambino, the promising quarterback was under pressure. Combined with the huge losses to the expansion draft, the Hawks were simply outclassed and outperformed. After 7 weeks, they were sitting close to the top of NSFC with a 5-2 record, but in the second half of the season they only managed to win two games, finishing fourth in NSFC, missing on playoffs only a year after hoisting the Ultimus. Nonetheless, they were one of the top defences in the league, only allowing 20 points per game, despite their six losses, and a top-4 pick in next season's draft was more than enough of a consolation prize.

2032 meant back to winning ways for the Hawks. Havran matured in only a season, and the Hawks took advantage of the very chaotic and close NSFC, despite finishing 2nd in the divisional standings. With an intact roster, the Hawks remained one of the top offensive and defensive teams in the league, but they had a rough start in the season, having a 3-4 record after the first seven weeks of the season. They hit their stride in the last six weeks of the regular season, winning five straight, before dropping their week 13 game at the New Orleans Second Line. Nonetheless, they finished with a 8-5 record, same as the Yellowknife Wraiths and the Chicago Butchers, but as mentioned before, finished 2nd in the NSFC due to tiebreakers. They had done it. They were back in the playoffs after only one season. They hosted Chicago in the NSFC Wildcard Game and did easy work of them, beating them 40-6. They went up north, to face the rival Wraiths, and beat them 27-24 in a classic, punching their ticket to the Ultimus Bowl XVII, their second trip in three seasons, and they would host it. They were stopped by the Orange County Otters however, dropping the game 28-17, a bitter ending to a good season. But it could only get better.

The GM changes in 2033 didn't shake the team much. New GMs Taco MacArthur and Scorpus Suckus decided to keep the roster as-is. The team had a promising start, being perfect after 3 weeks, even beating the rival Wraiths, who had ascended to a powerhouse status, in week 1, but then, they only managed to win three of the remaining ten games, finishing with a 6-7 record, which was surprisingly enough for the 2nd place in NSFC, and another trip to the playoffs. The Hawks remained a top offensive force in the league, and them making the playoffs could mean danger for anyone. In the NSFC Wildcard Game, they hosted the Colorado Yeti, and shut them out, 31-0, going to Yellowknife for the second straight year with their hopes of another Ultimus birth high. But the Wraiths were locked in. Havran threw more TDs to Wraiths DBs than his own receivers, and the Hawks lost 29-14, ending their season at the hands of their bitter rivals.

2034 was more of the same for the Hawks, only now their offence and defence had vastly improved. Dorfus Jimbo switching from RB to Safety last season finally paid of, and combined with Havran improving even more, the Hawks had every right to hope for gold. Them finishing the season with a 8-5 record, 2nd in NSFC, only one win behind Yellowknife, could only attest to that. They hosted the Yeti yet again in the NSFC Wildcard game, and beat them once again as easy as last season, 39-17, and off they were to Yellowknife for the grudge match, and a trip to the Ultimus up for grabs. Or so they thought. The Hawks defence couldn't stop a nosebleed, Cooter Bigsby threw his minds out, and the Hawks had to see their rivals get the ticket to the Ultimus, dropping the game 55-14.

The Hawks entered 2035 with hopes of getting back to the Conference finals, they were riding a high with their QB Corvo Havran. They had an up and down start to the season, were they would trades wins an losses, before going on a run starting with a win over the Colorado Yeti, ripping off three straight wins before a brutal loss by the hands of San Jose Sabercats, which sent them into a spiral. This lasted for 4 totals games where they just couldn't buy a win. Luckily for the Hawks however, they were able to rebound on the last game of the regular season, getting a much needed victory over Orange County Otters, propelling them into the Wild Card game. There they would face a really good Colorado Yeti team, who they had beaten earlier in the season. However, the Colorado Yeti proved to be a bit too much for the Baltimore Hawks, as they were oh so close, losing the game 29-26 to Colorado Yeti. The Baltimore Hawks would once again, come up a bit to short, and their hopes for another Ultimus Trophy were dashed. The Baltimore Hawks, were led by a decent offense, but were hoping the following season would see better fortune for the team.

Going into the 2036, the Baltimore Hawks were seen as favorites. They were getting good at the right time, with really peak performances from Harvan and Reed. They started the season on a really big hot streak, facing the Yellowknife Wraiths in the first game of the season. They would go on to blow them out 45-28, one a 5 Touchdown game from their QB Harvan. They were able to use this win to help them run off 5 straight wins, over very good opponents. None of those games were even really close, until they came up against the Austin Copperheads. They ended up losing, breaking their winning streak, which left them reeling. They were not able to recover for a few games until they put a bit of a beating on San Jose Sabercats. This seemed to right the ship for the Baltimore Hawks. As they again went on a winning streak, using that momentum to push them into the postseason. There they faced off in the Wildcard round against the Chicago Butchers and handled them quite easy getting a 36-16 victory, before facing Yellowknife Wraiths. The Yellowknife Wraiths were looking to be a team of destiny, as they were able to hold a potent Baltimore Hawks offense to only 19 points. This would spell the end of the playoffs for the Baltimore Hawks, as they could not defeat the Yellowknife Wraiths.

Following the 2036 season, the Baltimore Hawks looked a lot different for their opening game of the 2037 campaign. Their former Quarterback retired and they had a new face taking snaps. Fujiwara was now under center for the Baltimore Hawks and the season did not start so good. This season also brought on the the expansion teams and the Baltimore Hawks met up with one of them quickly. Sarasota Sailfish was their first game of the season and they were also Baltimore's first loss of the season. Sarasota Sailfish was able to get their first win ever after a lack luster performance for the Baltimore Hawks. Luckily however, Baltimore was able to bounce back in their second game of the 2037 campaign, as they took down the Chicago Butchers in a decided fashion 36-3, but the good times would stop there as they then lost seven games in a row. Baltimore was not used to losing this much, as they were usually a top team in the league, so this was a hard strech on them. Luck would have it though, they would go on to play the Chicago Butchers in week 10, to get back to their winning ways. They were able to get one more win this season against Philadelphia Liberty, but that would be it as Baltimore would only record 3 wins total for the season. The lowest win total for the team in a very good numbers of years. They were not able to qualify for the 2037 playoffs and went home early to watch it on television. The Baltimore Hawks were hoping that this was a flash in the pan for down years and want come back strong.

With Fujiwara no longer a rookie, the Baltimore Hawks were hoping that this season was going to be much better. They began their 2038 at home versus the Yellowknife Wraiths. This was a huge game as the Yellowknife Wraiths, were a really good team and they needed to test their own strength. The Hawks, were able to squeak out a close win 24-23 to take down their foes. Alas, the good times would not roll as the following week, they would be handed defeat by the Colorado Yeti 33-27, but at least they were competitive. This was a good sign and a sign of hope for all the Baltimore Hawks fans. If they could play this strongly versus the top competition, hopefully it meant good things were on their way. They ended up ping ponging wins throughout the season. They would win some and lose some, but most of these games ended up not being close on both ends with wins like 40-7 versus Sarasota Sailfish and loses like 51-17 versus Philadelphia Liberty. By the end of the season, they ended up going 8-8, which was good enough for a playoff berth. They once again found themselves face to face with the Yellowknife Wraiths. This has been a common struggle over the last few seasons and it appeared like it was going to be another one this season. The Baltimore Hawks put up a good fight, but ended up losing in the Wild Card game 24-9, which would end their 2038 campaign in defeat. They took the loss well, vowing to come back even strong next season.

Season-by-season records

Season Regular Season Record Post Season Record
W L T PCT W L
2016 4 10 0 .285 0 0
2017 8 6 0 .571 1 1
2018 9 5 0 .642 1 1
2019 7 7 0 .500 0 0
2020 8 6 0 .571 0 1
2021 7 7 0 .500 0 0
2022 7 7 0 .500 0 0
2023 7 7 0 .500 0 1
2024 11 3 0 .785 1 1
2025 13 1 0 .928 2 0
2026 9 5 0 .643 1 1
2027 8 6 0 .571 1 1
2028 4 8 0 .286 0 0
2029 11 3 0 .786 0 0
2030 12 2 0 .857 2 0
2031 7 6 0 .538 0 0
2032 8 5 0 .615 2 1
2033 6 7 0 .462 1 1
2034 8 5 0 .615 1 1
2035 6 7 0 .462 0 1
2036 9 4 0 .692 1 1
2037 3 10 0 .231 0 0
2038 8 8 0 .500 0 1
Total 180 135 0 .571 14 12

Current roster

Baltimore Hawks roster
Quarterbacks

Running backs

Wide receivers

Tight ends

Offensive linemen

Defensive linemen

Linebackers

Defensive backs

Special teams

Reserve lists

DSFL Send-downs

Rookies in italics

Roster updated June 15, 2020
  17 Active, 5 Send Downs

ASFC rostersNSFC rosters

Current staff

Baltimore Hawks staff
Front Office
Head Coaches
Offensive Coaches
 
Defensive Coaches
Special Teams Coaches
Strength and Conditioning

References

  1. "Baltimore Hawks Team Info". Official Baltimore Hawks Info Page. National Simulation Football League. May 16, 2017. Retrieved January 24, 2018.