Dark Elf Lineman Overview:
Dark Elf Linemen do the dirty work for the team as is usual for their position. Their biggest advantage though compared to other Linemen from other teams is that are also very flexible. With their high agility which comes from being an Elf they can fill in to do any required ball handling should your ideal choice be out of position or injured. They can also move around the pitch fairly easily to mark up specific targets without getting tied up away from the action. You can also move them into positions to screen off their team mates, get into scoring positions, or stand in front of a cage to slow its progress. Dark Elf Linemen also have a reasonable armour value at AV8 so they aren’t as fragile as some of their elven counterparts and don’t have to worry so much about doing jobs marking opposition where they will be getting hit. Having access to agility skills as well can aid them against a lot of players, for either direct protection or minimising the number of hits they take.
The biggest downside though is their cost, for players who are going to be taking hits, especially from dangerous players. They are worth more in Team Value than other Linemen on other teams and so you lose out more when they get injured and don’t get as much of a value difference when marking up other players. Against some players they may be marking you can find yourself marking a player of less value, like Norse Linemen, or even worse if your player has some skill increases as well.
As for jobs they do, as usual one will be equipped to do the kicking duty. You may want a couple to deal with opposing ball carriers depending how the rest of your team looks. Otherwise I would build them to be able to effectively tie up opposition or block their path by being good screening players. You may be tempted to build one for fouling duty though a lot of the time you will get a fairly expensive player sent off, sometimes in trade for a worse one. With expensive players this probably isn’t the best of ideas. I would look to be flexible with the skill choices and fill in the skill gaps in your team, especially taking into account other races in your league environment. Remember that with high agility getting a first skill on all of them shouldn’t be too much of a problem as you just have to gain a completion on any that get an MVP. I often try to get completions on all of my Elven Lineman before they get the MVP so you get the skill after that game rather than the following one.
Dark Elf Kicker:
- Normal: Kick, Block, Dodge/Side Step
- Doubles: Guard
- Stat Increase: +ST +AG +MV
Your first Lineman to skill up I would recommend to build into a kicker unless you roll a double or stat increase. All Eleven teams are agile enough to take advantage, even though Dark Elves are the slowest of the Elven teams. So Kick first and follow it up with Block for protection and keeping him on his feet. I often find they don’t get many skills as you try to keep them in reserves when you aren’t kicking and out of the action when you are so they don’t get hurt. If you get more though Dodge is great (unless in Tackle heavy leagues) and Side Step is handy for marking receivers as your kicker tends to be behind your lines. Guard is needed on Elven teams as they have no strength access on normals, though I really prefer not to get them really stuck in to preserve the Kick ability. I wouldn’t pass up +ST or +AG, though you have a dilemma for either +AV, +MV or just taking a normal skill. I think I actually prefer the skill as it keeps the Team Value down a bit and I think it will be more useful in more situations.
Ball Blitzing Lineman:
- Normal: Wrestle, Tackle, Strip Ball/Side Step/Leap, Diving Tackle
- Doubles: Guard
- Stat Increase: +ST +AG +MV
As you have four Blitzers with Block and chances are you gave at least one of your Witch Elves Block as well, you could do with building at least one specialist player for taking down ball carriers. With only MV6 I would like two with Wrestle and Tackle and then vary the skills after that. It is also harder for the opposition to remove two of them compared to one. So after that Strip Ball could be handy if none of your Blitzers have it, Side Step to remain next to the ball carrier if you don’t knock them down. Leap to get at ball carriers that are screened off or in a cage and Diving Tackle to make it harder for them to dodge away. Chances are you probably won’t get more than two skills unless you are playing a very long league though so pick skills to fill in the gaps for roles not already fulfilled by a team mate. Guard on doubles as usual for most Elves and +ST, +AG or +MV are all nice for this player.