Per Carolina Cobras head coach Billy Back, the National Arena League has applied a new rule for all players. Any player that signs for even one game in the Indoor Football League, American Arena League, Champions Indoor Football or China Arena Football League will not be eligible to play in the NAL that same calendar year.
In addition, if a player is signed by an NAL team and signs with a team and/or plays in one of those leagues, they will be placed on league suspension and will be ineligible to return to the NAL that season. Several players among several leagues have done this.
Superstar wide receiver Joe Hills started 2017 with the Tampa Bay Storm, then played one game with the Jacksonville Sharks. Former Jacksonville Sharks quarterback Damien Fleming was signed by the Nebraska Danger, then signed with the Atlanta Havoc, and is now back in Nebraska with the Danger.
The NAL doesn’t want their players to have that happen to them because that could mess with a team’s chemistry or with the team’s payroll.
“This lets everyone know that the NAL isn’t messing around,” Back said via the Facebook post announcing the rule.
The league kicks off their second season on April 7 and the regular season concludes on Aug. 4. Three of the six teams return from last season, along with three expansion teams in the Maine Mammoths, Massachusetts Pirates and Carolina Cobras. The second National Arena League title game, now named National Arena Bowl II, will be played on Saturday, Aug. 25.