Amazon Catcher Overview:
When you compare an Amazon Catcher to catchers on other teams, they may seem to be rather poor alternatives. They aren’t very fast, they have average agility and still have the typical low armour of a receiver. If you look at them like that then they don’t seem a very attractive prospect, though in my opinion they are the second most important player on the Amazon team.
You need to look at them not in the mindset of them being Catchers, but of how they fit into the team and what they bring to the table. If you don’t know already Amazon teams play a caging, running, hitting play style in a far more effective way than a passing one. Their average agility and lack of speed are the main reasons for this. They are also hard to knock over so they can get stuck in. The advantage Amazon Catchers bring to the team is that they get agility skill access. This may not seem that great when they start with two agility skills already, but it gives easy access to Side Step and Diving Tackle. These are two great skills to have on the team for both offence and defence.
If you don’t think of them as being out and out Catchers you can build them to be far more effective players. They can be built under the current rules to be far more effective at catching then they were previously, though that isn’t your primary play style with this team. I would think of that more as an option to take when your drive breaks down or you need to score quickly.
Amazon Catcher Man Markers:
Amazon Catchers are incredibly useful to have and don’t need any double rolls to become effective. Start with Block rather than Wrestle, as you want to keep them upright as often as possible. This will keep their Catch skill in play for bouncing balls and interception attempts. Side Step comes next to keep you next to a target, to control the space and cuts down on the number of hits they will take. Diving Tackle comes next to keep the opponent you are marking tied up more often. After that Fend can be handy to protect against Frenzy and Piling On, or take Tackle if you need more of it and face a lot of Dodge.
For doubles you should take Guard, for a caging team with no players stronger than three you are going to need it. It also combines really well with Block + Dodge + Side Step. Stat increase are great on a team that is so average across the board, strength will make them even better at the role. An agility increase opens up more ball handling options, if you have just taken Block and Side Step so far then perhaps go for a more specialist Catcher build. Movement is also helpful as you can get over half the pitch length without going for it when you have MV7 or more.
Receiving Amazon Catcher:
- Normal: Block, Diving Catch / Side Step, Sure Feet, Fend
- Doubles: Nerves of Steel / Guard
- Stat Increase: +ST +AG +MV
I personally think you don’t really need any builds of this type and would happily go for two of the above build. Start with Block again for the same reasons as before. Diving Catch comes next, more so you can get the +1 to catch an accurate pass, but it may also help you occasionally to grab inaccurate passes or stray balls. You may want to take Side Step before it as it will be more useful during the whole match, though Diving Catch in theory may speed the number of SPP they get. After that Sure Feet will help make up for their average movement and Fend will offer more protection and help prevent having to make dodges.
For doubles Nerves of Steel will let you get the ball to them in traffic and make them harder to mark or go with Guard as it is hardly ever going to be a bad choice. Stat increases follow the same logic as before, though an early strength increase may be a waste to develop them into a pure catcher.
Amazon Catcher Summary:
Amazon Catchers may play second fiddle to their Blitzer team mates but they are easily your second best player type. Don’t try and force them to be something that they naturally aren’t very good at compared to other races. Utilise their abilities and development options in a perhaps less obvious route to get the best out of them and increase the performance of your team. Whatever you do though, for a first normal skill increase if you don’t take Block I think you are making a mistake or a less effective option. Leave the Wrestle for your Linemen as they don’t have the access to the useful agility skills that your Catchers have.