Power Rankings: Week 11

July 12, 2023
By Adam Ruffner

24. Detroit Mechanix (-)
Record: 0-9
Most recent result: Loss, 23-14 vs Madison
Upcoming matchup: July 15 vs Toronto

With more talent on the offense than before, Joseph Cubitt has really refined his passing game this year. He’s completing a career-best 94 percent of his throws while still leading the team in passes, and has upped his huck completion rate over 22 percent from last season, connecting on a sterling 16-of-18 of his deep looks. But with their lone remaining home game coming against a Toronto team fighting for their playoff lives, the Mechanix are likely staring at their fifth straight winless season. 

23. Portland Nitro (-2)
Record: 0-10
Most recent result: Loss, 25-10 at Oakland
Upcoming matchup: July 14 vs San Diego

Similar to 2022, the wheels have fully come off of the wagon for the Nitro as the end of the season draws near. Portland scored just 24 goals in two games on their Week 11 road trip, and completed just 85 percent of their throws. The 45 turnovers on Saturday in Oakland is the most in a game by a team in 2023. 

22. Dallas Legion (+1)
Record: 0-9
Most recent result: Loss, 25-16 at Austin
Upcoming matchup: July 15 vs Houston

Dallas looked frisky facing familiar foes from Austin, able to apply throwing pressure with numerous deep shots while committing a season-low 18 total turnovers. Connor DeLuna helped pace the Legion’s D-line counterattack to their most breaks of the season, and Jason Hustad had his fifth 500-yard passing performance of the season. With their play heating up, Dallas has their best shot getting their first win of the season this Saturday at home. 

21. Montreal Royal (+1)
Record: 0-10
Most recent result: Loss, 18-10 vs Philadelphia
Upcoming matchup: July 21 at Boston

Excluding the abbreviated 2021 Canada Cup schedule, Kevin Quinlan has now registered at least 30 assists in an unparalleled eight of his last nine complete seasons. With two games remaining on the schedule, Quinlan needs just eight more assists to move into second place all-time with 391 career assists. And with Boston and New York as their upcoming opponents, that may be the bright spot for Montreal in a likely winless campaign. 

20. Houston Havoc (-)
Record: 2-8
Most recent result: Loss, 25-20 at Austin
Upcoming matchup: July 15 at Dallas

The Havoc had the game in hand on the road in Austin, but their third consecutive sub-90 percent pass completion performance sealed their fate. Houston is not shy at striking deep with their throws, attempting at least 10 hucks in five of their last six games. But with the fourth most huck turns per game and an unestablished backfield, there’s too much risk with not enough reward. Ben Lewis had one of the most explosive offensive performances of the season in Week 11, tallying 12 scores and averaging 28 yards per touch. 

19. Madison Radicals (-)
Record: 2-8
Most recent result: Win, 23-14 at Detroit
Upcoming matchup: July 21 at Chicago

After surrendering a five-goal lead in their loss last Friday at home—their third straight defeat at Breese Stevens—the Radicals avoided ignominy the next day on the road with an easy W in Detroit. Anthony Gutowsky leads all rookies with 34 goals, and is tied for fifth in the league. Madison’s defense had 25 blocks in Week 11, but the critical turnovers in their own half of the field continue to undo their chances for redemption in the back half of their schedule. 

18. Seattle Cascades (-)
Record: 2-8
Most recent result: Loss, 18-9 vs Colorado
Upcoming matchup: July 15 vs San Diego

If the Cascades can get a win in either of their final two games, they will avoid their third double-digit loss season in four years. Zeppelin Raunig has just three turnovers this season compared to 40 scores, and they’re all on huck attempts. The 2022 All-Star is still 7-of-10 from range in his second season, and is averaging a robust 1.7 assists, 17 completions, and 138 throwing yards per game. 

17. San Diego Growlers (-)
Record: 2-7
Most recent result: Loss, 26-16 vs Salt Lake
Upcoming matchup: July 14 at Portland

After bouncing between Atlanta and Nashville his first five seasons in the league, Paul Lally has found a home as San Diego’s QB1. He leads the team in completions for the second straight year, and is just outside of the top 20 all-time in total completions. Lally has always had distribution skills, but his range the last few years has really taken on new dimensions. He’s connected a career-high 13 throws from deep so far this year in just seven starts, and is coming off of a 553-yard passing performance against the Shred defense that included 4-for-4 on hucks. 

16. Toronto Rush (-)
Record: 4-5
Most recent result: Loss, 24-21 vs Boston
Upcoming matchup: July 15 at Detroit

Toronto struggled with turnovers in their first five games, but have started to focus down the stretch and have committed just 26 turnovers in their last two games. Luc Comire’s heavy workload and ability to anchor the backfield almost by himself allows for the rest of the Rush offense to play more fluid roles, which is to their liking. The fourth-year thrower has almost double the number of completions (413) as the second highest member of the Rush (Ryan Poloz, 248), and he’s completing a career-best 96 percent of his throws, including 11-of-13 on deep attempts. 

15. Pittsburgh Thunderbirds (-)
Record: 5-5
Most recent result: Loss, 20-14 at Chicago
Upcoming matchup: July 15 at Indianapolis

It’s too loaded of a field this season for the award, but Carl Johnson deserves some consideration for “Most Improved.” The second year receiver has been consistent-to-excellent in one-on-one coverage downfield, and has been a favorite target of Max Sheppard. Johnson leads the team with 35 goals, including 19 in just his last four appearances. He led the Cannons last year in receiving, and now has a chance to be an impact player for a playoff team. 

14. Chicago Union (-)
Record: 6-4
Most recent result: Win, 20-14 vs Pittsburgh
Upcoming matchup: July 15 at Minnesota

Chicago’s split of their Week 11 home-and-home against Pittsburgh may have saved their playoff hopes, but there’s still work to be done as the Union have two tough rivals from Minnesota and Madison still remaining on their schedule. And while Andrew Sjogren definitely deserves his flowers for becoming the first player in AUDL history to reach the 11,000 receiving yards milestone (since the league began tracking receiving yards in 2021), what’s really been impressive about his play of late are his distribution skills. Sjogren’s ability to get separation at will gives him a lot of touch opportunities, and after taking his first four games with Chicago to adapt and learn their offensive system, he’s completed nearly 26 throws per game in his last six starts. 

13. Indianapolis AlleyCats (-5)
Record: 7-3
Most recent result: Loss, 22-17 at Minnesota
Upcoming matchup: July 15 vs Pittsburgh

The 28-turnover loss in Minnesota that snapped Indy’s seven-game win streak was bad enough on its own, but the larger ramifications have really put some concern in an AlleyCats team that looked so solid just seven days ago. The defeat not only essentially forfeits their chance at the first seed in the Central, but also opens up the possibility for the Thunderbirds to outright eliminate Indy from playoff contention if Pittsburgh sweeps their two remaining games, both versus the ‘Cats. 

12. Philadelphia Phoenix (-3)
Record: 5-5
Most recent result: Loss, 21-20 vs Boston
Upcoming matchup: July 15 vs DC

In true Philly gut-punch fashion, the Phoenix played their cleanest game of the season with just 12 turnovers, but couldn’t get consistent defensive pressure and had a season-low six blocks against Boston. The loss leaves them without control of their playoff fate, and is quite the headspin after their midseason five-game winning streak and impressive results. Even in the loss, rookie Calvin Trisolini continued his torrid second half of the season, throwing for 520 yards and four assists, including 5-for-5 on hucks against the Glory.  

11. Los Angeles Aviators (-)
Record: 6-4
Most recent result: Loss, 20-18 vs Salt Lake
Upcoming matchup: July 15 at Oakland

Since the start of the 2018 season, Sean McDougall is averaging 75 scores and over 14 blocks per year, and has moved into the league’s top 20 all-time in both categories. Scoring and taking the disc away are about as fundamentally important as it gets in this sport, and only Ben Jagt exceeds McDougall in those two areas over that same stretch. And with two regular season games remaining—and the carrot-on-the-stick of more if LA makes the playoffs—McDougall needs 23 more goals to become the sixth player to join the 300 club. 

10. Minnesota Wind Chill (+2)
Record: 8-2 *
Most recent result: Loss, 25-15 at Colorado
Upcoming matchup: July 15 vs Chicago

No team in the division plays “rock fight”/ugly ultimate better than the defensive minded Wind Chill, which is why they currently stand atop the melee that is the Central Division standings. Minnesota’s offense converted just 21 of their 49 offensive possessions (43 percent), but the D-line scored 16 combined breaks and held Indy and Madison to just 30 total goals. Sam Berglund’s return to the lineup meant the team could resume blitzing opposing offenses off of his booming pulls and advantageous field positioning, which in turn unleashed Dylan DeClerck on the counterattack. Tristan Van de Moortele is having one of the most underrated seasons in the league this year, and leads the team in completions (340) and is second in completion rate (96.9 percent) while splitting time almost evenly between offensive and defensive rotations. 

9. Boston Glory (+4)
Record: 6-5
Most recent result: Loss, 22-15 at DC
Upcoming matchup: July 21 vs Montreal

Boston had their first back-to-back, single-digit turnover performances in franchise history, and it may lead directly to the team’s first-ever playoff berth; Glory are just a victory against the winless Royal shy of the postseason. And though the seven-goal final score doesn’t show it, Boston battled in DC in their second game in as many nights in Week 11, which is especially impressive given the emotional nature of Friday’s win in Philly. Rookie Simon Carapella has really become a force for the Glory offense, and is now second among all rookies in goals after scoring 10 in two games against the Phoenix and the Breeze, including a career-high seven against Philadelphia. He’s averaging nearly 290 receiving yards per game in his last seven starts, and possesses a kind of Anders Juengst-ian burst and slipperiness in the red zone.  

8. Austin Sol (+2)
Record: 9-3 *
Most recent result: Win, 24-21 at Dallas
Upcoming matchup: TBD

The Sol finished their regular season schedule with a five-game winning streak against in-state competition, securing a home playoff game in the first round, and with the possibility of earning the one seed in the South still on the table. Austin has so precipitously risen their stock in the last two years that nine wins and hosting a playoff game feels slightly underwhelming, which is a big credit to the ambitions of this Sol team. One week shy of his 30th birthday, Evan Swiatek has now led the team in scoring each of the last two seasons, and receiving yards in each of the last three. He had nine total scores in his lone playoff start last year against Carolina, and will likely be electric once again in Austin come postseason. 

7. Oakland Spiders (-)
Record: 6-3 
Most recent result: Win, 25-10 vs Portland
Upcoming matchup: July 15 vs Los Angeles

Dating back to last season, the Spiders are averaging over 28 goals per game in their last three matchups with Portland. Before last Saturday’s 14 break score bonanza against the Nitro, Oakland’s highest D-line mark for the season was nine back in Week 3 against Seattle. Five different Spiders now have 30-plus scores and over 3,000 total yards this season—Keenan Laurence, Walker Frankenberg, Mac Hecht, Chris Lung, and Evan  Magsig—with only Indy exceeding that kind of production balance across their O-line. But for as talented as this Oakland team is, they are also one of the youngest and most inexperienced rotations in the league, and will have their resolve put to the test as they push for a playoff spot against LA. 

6. Colorado Summit (-)
Record: 8-3 *
Most recent result: Win, 18-9 at Seattle
Upcoming matchup: July 14 vs New York

Colorado’s Week 11 bye could not have come at a better time for their banged up roster, and now they host New York on Friday with a near full-strength lineup. Veterans Jay Froude and Matt Jackson continue to be two of the most productive and versatile weapons in the league, with a combined 190 scores and over 14,000 yards of offense in their not-quite-two seasons with the Summit. And for the first time since 2018, Froude has notched double-digit regular season blocks, upping his career total to 134 and good for 14th best all-time. Froude and Jackson’s defensive toughness on O-line turns could be vital against an Empire defense that leads the league in blocks per game.  

5. DC Breeze (-)
Record: 7-3 *
Most recent result: Win, 22-15 vs Boston
Upcoming matchup: July 15 at Philadelphia

After two games of uncharacteristic, self-inflicted mistakes, the Breeze completed a season-high 345 passes (97 percent) and committed just nine total turnovers in their Week 11 win against Boston. The victory clinched DC’s seventh consecutive playoff appearance—the second longest active streak in the league to Carolina's eight straight appearances—and made it 86 total franchise wins, the fourth most in AUDL history. Christian Boxley once again epitomized DC’s offensive flow, scoring a season-best five goals and finishing the game without a turnover for the third time this season. And for all of the jaw-dropping raw stat totals over his last two seasons and 22 starts—86 scores, 461 completions, 52 hockey assists, 4373 receiving yards—the most telling number about Boxley is his zero drops. Sure hands. 

4. Atlanta Hustle (-)
Record: 8-2 *
Most recent result: Win, 23-12 at Dallas
Upcoming matchup: July 15 at Carolina

With two games remaining, Brett Hulsmeyer is within range of the vaunted 20-assist, 20-goal, 20-block season. Though a bit more common in pre-modern AUDL, just one player has reached the milestone since 2018—when the regular season schedule was shortened from 14 to 12 games—and that was 2021 MVP ​​Ben Jagt. When in rhythm, no other player in the league possesses the power and finesse of Hulsmeyer, who ranks top four on the Hustle in: assists, goals, blocks, completions, throwing yards, receiving yards (leads the team), total yards, hockey assists, and points played (leads the team). The Hustle are just one win away from their first-ever South Division regular season title, and another big Hulsmeyer performance would clinch it.  

3. Carolina Flyers (-)
Record: 6-3 *
Most recent result: Win, 22-20 at Austin
Upcoming matchup: July 15 vs Atlanta

Remember the Flyers? Five weeks out from their last game, this team’s dormant engines will need to get up to speed quickly against an Atlanta team looking for revenge after the last meeting between these old rivals. Carolina committed a season-low 12 turnovers in their Week 4 six-goal win against the Hustle, but will be without notable stars Matt Gouchoe-Hanas, Liam Searles-Bohs, and Joe White, making possession an even bigger focal point against an Atlanta defense that is second in the league in takeaways per game. Elijah Long already has 97 completions in two games against the Hustle in 2023, and could see a similar workload on Saturday alongside Sol Yanuck in the backfield. 

2. Salt Lake Shred (-)
Record: 11-0 ^
Most recent result: Win, 30-14 vs Portland
Upcoming matchup: July 15 vs New York

Not only did Jordan Kerr set a personal season-high with 11 scores against Portland, he did it in just 19 points played. In 2023 he is the most efficient high-volume scorer in the AUDL by a country mile; Kerr has 77 total scores through 11 starts and an OEFF rating (how often the team scores on offensive points Kerr plays on) of 64.4 percent; no player with 50-plus scores has an OEFF over 60 percent, and the next highest is Quinn Finer (56 scores, 57.8 percent OEFF). By tossing the second most assists ever in a single season and finishing as the MVP runner-up in 2022, Kerr had seemingly peaked in terms of individual performance. Wrong. Kerr has only honed his game further, and now has his eyes set on the ultimate prize of unseating an Empire. 

1. New York Empire (-) 
Record: 9-0 ^
Most recent result: Win, 21-18 vs DC
Upcoming matchup: July 14 vs Colorado

As much as we all yearn to watch this weekend’s scintillating Empire road trip through Colorado and Salt Lake, this New York team wants the games and the competition even more. Leadership has spoken publicly and since the preseason about the importance of facing the West’s best, and how much it fuels the Empire in their title defense. MVP Ryan Osgar is locked in and as dangerous as ever, and ranks second in the league this season in assists per game (5.67), trailing only Jonathan Nethercutt. New York remains phenomenally balanced in their offensive attack, which only further strengthens Osgar’s vision and ability to expose defenses with his pinpoint throws. 

* Clinched playoff spot
^ Regular season division champion

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