TAMPA BAY – “Welcome to the Hive.” That’s all you need to say to yourself when watching the Storm defensive backs go to work on the field. The style of play has them swarming to the ball with reckless abandon. It’s the style of play that should make this one of the best defensive backfields in the League.
During the 2015 season, the backfield made name for itself with its physical and opportunistic style of play. When asked why they were successful, they said they were like bees in a beehive.
“Our backfield is like a beehive,” said defensive back James Harrell. “When attacked, we’re going to swarm to the ball and try to force a turnover.”
This is the current mentality of the Storm’s defensive backfield. The players work together in order to make the opposing team’s life that much harder. A lot of the success can be attributed to communication. At practice, all you could hear on the field was chatter. They talk to each other so they know exactly what to do.
“So much of the success of the backfield will depend on communication,” said defensive back Nick Addison. “We talk a lot on the field, but we want everything to become second nature and just a part of the routine.”
Some of the best defenses in the League just go out and play. They each know what the other is thinking and that is the philosophy that the team is trying to instill.
“We want to go out as one,” said defensive back Cameron McGlenn. “We need to stay focused and trust each other to know what our teammates are doing.”
Look for the backfield to continue to improve as the season approaches. With this current crop of defenders, the team has potentially put together one of the top backfields in the League.
So when you watch this team go to work and force turnovers, remember to say, “Welcome to The Hive.”
Media Day: The Tampa Bay Storm will host its media day tomorrow, March 23 at Skyway Park (3901 George Road, Tampa). All players and coaches will be made available for interview. Media day will start at 12:00 p.m.
Player Spotlight: Today’s spotlight is on wide receiver T.T. Toliver. The 13-year veteran is currently on the road to greatness, as he attempts to break Damian Harrell’s record for career receptions (1,164). Toliver sits at 1,089 and needs just 76 to be immortalized in AFL history. Currently, Toliver ranks seventh in professional football history, just six catches behind Tim Brown (1,094). He also seems to be getting better with age, putting up career numbers last season with 35 receiving touchdowns. In 2015, he led the Storm in receiving yards (1,536), receptions (112) and points scored (216). Look for Toliver to keep up the pace as the 2016 season is just around the corner.