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Offseason In Review: Birmingham Stallions Defensive Line

Going into the 2023 the Stallions have done a pretty good job, at keeping their core pieces together outside of Doug Costin leaving for the NFL and then signing with the Arlington Renegades of the XFL. The Stallions have brought this offseason three defensive linemen, while bringing back eight from their championship team. One the players brought in this season Jessie Lemonier unfortunately passed away, with him and his girlfriend expecting their first child later this year.

New Faces in Birmingham:

To replace Costin, the Stallions brought in Darius Stills and Darrion Daniels. Like many of the new transactions on the signees that are joining the Stallions, come to the USFL with recent NFL experience. Stills who’s a former All-Big 12 Defensive Lineman from West Virginia spent 2021 and 2022 in the AFC West with the Raiders and Chiefs respectively, before being cut by Kansas City in May of 2022. Daniels joins the Stallions, after coming from Nebraska in 2020 as a UDFA. Despite a shortened NFL offseason, to prepare he’d join the 49ers practice squad appearing in four games during 2020 recording four tackles for San Francisco. He’d spend 2021 with the 49ers Practice Squad and 2022 with the Falcons in training camp, however, was cut in August of 2022. Both players come into 2023 with an opportunity to serve as rotational players for the Stallions moving into the USFL’s 2nd season.

Who Is Returning to Birmingham?

The Stallions are set to bring back Chauncey Haney, Willie Henry, Jonathan Newsome, Dondrea Tillman, Seth Thomas, Willie Yarbary, Jordan Thompson, and Keyshon Camp. The Defensive Line was led by Tillman, Yarbary, and Newsome who all had a minimum of 2.5 sacks and 29 tackles. The Stallions also saw solid play from rotational Defensive Linemen, Chauncey Haney, Willie Henry, Seth Thomas, Jordan Thompson, and Keyshon Camp, who all recorded a sack themselves. In total the Stallions recorded 27 sacks last season which led the USFL and looks to be a driving force going into 2023.

Final Thoughts:

As with many of the positions on both sides of the ball the Stallions were able to retain a great deal of talent that prompted them to a championship in the inaugural season. As we’ve recapped in every article for the Stallions, the team did an exceptional job of reloading not rebuilding after seeing several players depart for the XFL and NFL. As the defending champs get ready to head into training in about six weeks the Stallions remain the top team it appears as the USFL returns for their 2nd season in April 2023.

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Pat Rifino is a former Security Contractor turned writer. He began his writing career talking about geo-politics, and the defense industry. Now Pat writes about alt-league football, while hanging out with his dogs in his off time.

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