The former Army wide receiver joins the Streets for his second season in the National Arena League
By Peter Schwartz
“Once upon a midnight dreary, while I pondered, weak and weary.”
From Edgar Allan Poe’s “The Raven”
Edgar Allen Poe Jr.is named after his father and not the famous authorand poet Edgar Allan Poe but that didn’t stop him from trying to find out where his name came from. He asked his grandfather that very question on numerous occasions but each time it seemed like he would get a different answer. So to this day, the New York Streets wide receiver still gets asked about his name and all he can do is chuckle because he’s used to it. He also admits that there’s a similarity between Edgar Allen Poe the football player and Edgar Allan Poe the writer and poet.
“Absolutely,” said Poe, who read a lot of Edgar Allan Poe’s work growing up. “Almost every day, somebody makes a joke or reference to it.My dad really prepped me for that. There’s a little bit of comparison between me and that crazy guy.”
Poe used to write some poetry when he had more free time and has even written music and likes to sing, but football is his first love and the Tucson, Arizona native is getting ready for his second season of Arena Football in the National Arena League as the Streets kick off their season this Saturday in Jacksonville against the Sharks. Poe will be continuing his professional football career about 30 miles away from Michie Stadium at West Point where he played college football for Army. In 37 games over four seasons with the Black Knights, Poe had 43 catches for 982 yards and eleven touchdowns along with 29 punt returns for 157 yards.
Now that he’s back in the shadows of his alma mater, Poe is not only ready to help the Streets on the field, but he’s also going to try and help fill some seats for home games at the Westchester County Center.He’s hoping some old friends will make the 40 minute drive from West Point to White Plains. “I’m probably going to make my way up to West Point a few times during the time that I’m here,” said Poe. “There’s still a couple of people there that might want to come out to a couple of the Streets game.”
Last season, Poe played for the Maine Mammoths and had a terrific season with a team leading 82 catches and he was second on the team with 710 receiving yards and 17 touchdowns. With Maine taking a hiatus for this season while they find a new local ownership group, the Streets brought Poe into the mix to give the offense a superb playmaker with a year of Arena Football already under his belt.
“Edgar is a bright artistic player,” said Streets Owner Corey Galloway. “He is no nonsense and is all about perfecting his craft as a player. It is a pleasure to have him on our roster.”The return of Arena Football to New York after an eleven year absence has certain created a buzz around the Streets. They’ve been able to acquire some quality players from major colleges around the country and they’ve also added players like Poe with prior Arena Football experience.With an expansion team, it takes some time during training camp for things to come together, but as the Streets get ready for their first game, it seems like the offense is shifting into a higher gear.
“It was slow in the beginning but as soon as we started getting a little bit of chemistry, we picked it up a lot quicker,” said Poe. “Now it looks like a well-oiled machine. Right now, we’re looking pretty smooth.”The Streets will have to be on top of their game on Saturday against a Sharks franchise that has been involved in Arena Football since 2010 when they joined the Arena Football League. They won the AFL championship in 2011 and then won the inaugural NAL title in 2017. With Carolina winning the NAL Bowl last year in their first season, the Streets are hoping to duplicate that feat in their initial campaign.
And what better way to start than to travel to a hostile environment with an Arena Football history and Arena Football legend Siafa Burley as their Head Coach.
“Word cannot explain how juiced up I am,” said Poe. “It’s probably the best place to start the season. They have a great fan base there and a great coaching staff with a lot of tradition behind their team. We know they’re going to be ready.”While Poe and the Streets are looking ahead to the start of the season, let’s go back to the Edgar Allan Poe quote at the beginning of this story. That quote came from the poet’s most famous piece entitled “The Raven”, so if Poe the football player can continue to rack up catches, yards and touchdowns indoors and makes a name for himself, what if he soared to a new height that even Edgar Allan Poe would be proud of.
What if Edgar was signed by the Baltimore Ravens?
“That would be one of the biggest dreams come true ever,” said Poe. “That would be amazing.”
Well…Poe the Ravens mascot is going to have to wait for that because Edgar Allen Poe the football player is ready to take his game to the streets…
Make that poetry in motion for the New York Streets!