By Mikkel Hyldebrandt

Photos: Connor Barber

At the beginning of March, the National Flag Football League of Atlanta (NFFLA) kicked off its Spring football season with an event at the Hideaway. Ahead lies an entire season of games for the teams. DAVID caught up with J. Enrique Vellon-Everett, Commissioner for the Atlanta chapter of the National Gay Flag Football League, to talk tournaments standings and much more.

First, tell us about the NFFLA.

NFFLA was formed 21 years ago. 2023 has seen one of the largest turnouts ever, with over 200+. The league has a total of 15 teams, divided into two divisions: one competitive and one recreational. 

What do you think a sports team like the NFFLA means to the community here?

 The National Flag Football League of Atlanta aims to offer individuals of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer or questioning, intersex, asexual, or aromantic communities, and straight allies across all genders an opportunity to meet and compete without fear of discrimination. The NFFLA is committed to providing the opportunity for these individuals.

What has been the most significant thing you have learned about yourself from being part of a team like this?

 The value of inclusivity, of having people from all sorts of backgrounds, genders, and sexualities coming together to play the sport we all love and having a great experience while respecting each other. 

Why would you recommend someone to become involved in a local gay sports team? 

It is a great way to meet new people in the community and get some good cardio. 

How do you become part of the NFFLA? 

 We have open registration twice a year. We also hold Opens Plays and Rookie Mini Camps before every season.

How about if you’re a little intimidated about the whole sports thing – is the NFFLA still something for you?

 Yes, I recommend checking out the Falcons Division; it is the more recreational division with a mix of skill levels. 

What does the 2023 season have in store for the team?

 We are looking forward to our regular season, plus holding our first Women’s + Fall League. Also, travel teams will be heading to Chicago for Pride Bowl and Seattle for Gay Bowl 2023.

Where can we follow you and see you in action?

 Follow us along, @Atlpridefootball (IG), and National Flag Football Of Atlanta (FB) to keep up with games and registration.