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Imagining the Yankees as a football team

There wouldn’t be a more tantalizing MLB team to go up against in pickup football.

Houston Astros v New York Yankees Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images

We’re all baseball fans here, but my favorite time as a professional sports fan is the dawn of the fall season. Not only do we get playoff baseball and the pennant race, but we have the potential for the “sports equinox” – the rare day of the year when all four major sports leagues play on the same day.

With that in mind, it’s officially football season, and some of the Yankees have already shifted their attention to the gridiron. Before the Yankees’ road trip to Boston, they donned football jerseys for the plane trip.

The infield duo of Gleyber Torres and Gio Urshela repped local star Saquon Barkley:

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And here’s the full lineup, per’s Brendan Kuty:

The football fandom got me thinking – how would a lineup of Yankees do as a football team? One thing’s for sure – no other baseball-football hybrid team could match up to the “hog mollies” on this Yankees team.

Quarterback – Mike Tauchman

This one may seem outside the box, but Tauchman was a starting quarterback in high school. He also played cornerback, where he intercepted future NFL QB Jimmy Garoppolo. Tauchman has the arm strength, speed and clutch gene to succeed as this team’s QB.

Running Back – Cameron Maybin

There are a lot of Yankees with wheels, but I want a good combination of size and speed for my starting running back. Maybin, a former 40-stolen base man, is fast enough and has the size (6’3”, 215 lbs.) to take a few hits between the trenches.

Wide Receivers – Clint Frazier, Tyler Wade

A good batch of wide receivers are speedy, shifty and energetic. None of that is a problem for Frazier or Wade. If we give Frazier some sticky gloves, he won’t have an issue catching, either.

Tight End – Aaron Judge

Who could possibly be a better matchup nightmare than Judge at tight end? He’s too big for a DB to cover him, and too fast for a linebacker. Judge would thrive in a potential Rob Gronkowski role on this team. Even Rams running back Todd Gurley has said that Judge would make a perfect tight end.

Offensive Line – CC Sabathia, Luke Voit, Mike Ford, Edwin Encarnacion, Dellin Betances

Size and relationships are key to an offensive line. Sabathia fits the mold as Tauchman’s chief pass protector, and he has great chemistry with his fellow bookend tackle, Betances. As for the guards and center, all three are slugging first basemen, which makes their best comps a group of mauling interior linemen.

Defensive Line – Gary Sanchez, Austin Romine, Gio Urshela

This team is going to be led by a more “speed” defense than a power one. That said, Sanchez, Romine and Urshela are the three biggest guys left to stick on the defensive line, and two of them are already used to squatting, at least.

Linebackers – Tommy Kahnle, Giancarlo Stanton, Aaron Hicks, Miguel Andujar

We’ve reached the strongest point of this team. Stanton is a beast of an outside linebacker, akin to a Khalil Mack or a Jadeveon Clowney. He’s a pass-rush specialist. Kahnle is kind of a madman at times, which will help him with the linebacker mindset. As for Hicks and Andujar, they have a good combo of agility, size and strength that will serve them well as the middle linebackers.

Cornerbacks – Didi Gregorius, Gleyber Torres

The best cornerbacks are rangy, twitchy and super-athletic. Gregorius and Torres aren’t physical enough to be top-notch tacklers, but I don’t doubt that they could shadow top receivers. They also have the chemistry that NFL GMs only dream of.

Safeties – Brett Gardner, Aroldis Chapman

Safeties are the last line of defense on a football field. Who better to patrol center field as the free safety than Gardner, who has provided stellar outfield defense for the better part of a decade. As for Chapman, he’s already used to saving games, so putting him at safety only makes sense.

Kicker – DJ LeMahieu

It was kind of hard to figure out where LeMahieu fits on this team, but his low-key personality and penchant for clutch moments would make him a great kicker. Couldn’t you just see LeMahieu nailing an Adam Vinatieri-style kick?

Punter – Adam Ottavino

Adam Ottavino really likes soccer, and soccer involves kicking. So does punting a football. Several punters are former soccer players, so it’s a natural fit.