The UFL Dispersal Draft took place from Jan 5-15, 2024. Due to it not being covered live by any major radio or television stations, it was covered on social media with independent UFL media members giving updates on either X, Instagram, or Facebook.
The updates were from teams that were poaching talented players from a team that did not make season one of the merger.
Biggest Hits in the UFL Draft
Some of the key hits that were made in the UFL draft were former Philadelphia Stars (K) Luis Aguilar being taken away by the Houston Roughnecks.
Aguilar surprisingly did not make an active NFL roster last year, as the Dallas Cowboys chose Birmingham Stallions kicker Brandon Aubrey over him. Aguilar kept working hard and this year, he will have a chance to showcase his big leg as everything is bigger when you’re in Texas.
Another big hit for the Roughnecks was speedy (WR) Isiah Hennie from the Pittsburgh Maulers. Known by USFL podcasters as, “Hennie Time, Hennie Where”, or “Henniething’s” possible, according to podcaster Bryan Webster, the 5’11”, 189 lb. wide receiver can fly with killer speed.
His ability to motion in on jet sweep attempts makes him that versatile receiver the Roughnecks could use this season.
It’s nice to see two familiar faces who now everyone has gotten to know in the spring football world, make a roster for a now merged league like the UFL on new teams.
One more big hit in the draft was former Maulers (DT) Boogie Roberts. Being selected by the DC Defenders as they are the closest team to Pittsburgh geographically, the fan experience is like no other in spring football with the world-famous, “Beer Snake”.
Roberts is a giant space-eater in the middle and was part of the reason why the Maulers had one of the best defenses in the USFL, especially against the run.
He will be a nice addition to a Defenders’ defense that can already rush the passer under defensive coordinator Gregg Williams and will be complimentary in stopping the run game.
In any type of draft, there will always be talented players who were left out of the party and were not selected by any teams in the league.
The 2024 UFL Dispersal Draft is no exception. Some of the biggest misses of this draft were former Houston Roughnecks starting (QB) Brandon Silvers and former Pittsburgh Maulers starting (QB) Troy Williams.
Silvers started out great for the Roughnecks last year leading them to a 4-0 start. He then hit a wall late in the season, losing the 2023 XFL South Division Championship game to the 4-6 Arlington Renegades at home.
The strong athlete probably would have liked to be drafted by the Roughnecks this year to prove that last year was only a fluke.
Unfortunately, Silvers will not be participating in this new UFL and will have to look to alternative leagues like the Indoor Football League, Canadian Football League, or Arena Football League to resurrect his spring football career.
As for Williams, he was a game-managing quarterback who could take off with the legs and throw with his strong arm as well. He steadily improved from his first two games of the season when the Maulers started 0-2.
His career performance came in the 2023 USFL North Division Championship against the Michigan Panthers when Williams led the Maulers to a 31-27 win in OT by winning the North Division.
UFL’s Next Steps?
Next up for the UFL is free agency which started on Tuesday, Jan. 16, 2024. There have already been some notable signings.
The St. Louis Battle Hawks resigned 2023 XFL Special Teams player of the year, Darrius Shepherd on Jan. 16, while former NFL first-round pick, Robert Nkemdiche signed with the DC Defenders on Jan 17.
There seems to be many interesting draft picks while many talented players are coming back to form the new “UFL” League this off-season.
It will be exciting to see what this new league brings.
For another interesting UFL story, please check out: