The Houston Rap Football Team's Defensive Starters

Just about a month ago, we wrote about how some of the plays in the playbook of the under-15 football team we coach were disguised with names of Houston rappers and/or songs. Shortly after it posted, mail that was electronic started showing up suggesting that there be more football-related posts. One reader was even bold enough to suggest his own idea: Create a football team using only Houston rappers as players.

Fair enough. So after two weeks of whittling away names using a sophisticated scientific processes, this week and next, we are revealing the Houston Rapper Football Team roster. Two things to consider:

1. There are 23 positions to fill: 11 defensive spots, 11 offensive spots, one kicker. That might seem like a lot, but the preliminary list of local rappers that we started with was over 70 people long. About 50 guys got cut from an pretend team that they weren't even trying out for.

2. Most of the guys, regardless of how vicious they appear in songs, are kind enough people. We're picking rap personas more than rap people, we suppose. Oh, also, size is important.

Defense is always the best side of any game, so we'll start there.

This team (name undecided) will be playing a modified 4-4 scheme. Our template consists of four linemen, four linebackers, two safeties and a corner. The free safety will alternate between that position and alternate cornerback, depending on what offensive package other imaginary rapper-based football teams from other cities are running. (This shit is already ridiculous.) We're going to blitz a lot regardless.

Here we go.

Free Safety/Cornerback: This guy needs to be fast enough to cover receivers, strong enough to tackle running backs, and smart enough to know when he should do one and not the other. He will run more than just about every position on the field, so he needs to have endurance. Ideally, a quarterback would look in this player's direction and think, "Nah, nah. I'll throw the ball at my own testicles before I throw it his direction."

Starter: Kritikal

Why: He's a short guy, but he's quick and he's strong and kind of crazy. Also, we played basketball with him once. He remains the only guy we've ever seen commit a flagrant foul during a timeout. He is not afraid of contact.

Strong Safety: Basically the same duties as the FS, except he has more responsibility in stopping the run. He is the swinging sledgehammer of the defense. Being tackled by him should feel like being attacked by a shark. Ideally, a receiver would look in this player's direction and think, "Fuck. That."

Starter: Rod-C

Why: Rod-C is an unknown right now. He is a member of the SGA, an offshoot of Trae's ABN gang. You've likely seen him lurking around at any number of events. He looks strong and fast, and like he might slit your throat just because he's bored. You want me to run a route towards the guy with the knife hidden underneath his hip pads? Fuck. That. Perfect strong safety.

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Shea Serrano