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Who Would Win An NFL Game – Pokémon vs Digimon?

The Pokémon vs Digimon debate is as old as time itself (or more accurately, 22 years), the arguments have raged on over which has the better games, the better anime, or the stronger characters. But until now, no one has been brave enough to ask what we’ve all wondered: When tasked with assembling an NFL roster, who wins a football game between Pokémon and Digimon?

I am prepared to answer this question.

To prevent this project from going even more off the rails than it already is, some rules have been put in place with team assembly.

  1. Only first generation for both franchises will be used. For Pokémon, this means the original 151. For Digimon, it’s only characters that appeared in the original 54 episode run of Digimon Adventure. We’re sticking to the classics here because that’s where the debate started.
  2. Pokémon of the same evolution family can’t be used. If the team has a Machamp, it can’t have a Machoke as well.
  3. Similarly, multiple forms of a Digimon can’t be used. If the team has a MetalGreymon, it can’t also have a SkullGreymon, or even a regular Greymon.

That’s it; those are the only rules set in place. Now a team must be formed for each roster, for simplicity’s sake we’re going to ignore substitutions and backups. Each team will consist of 23 players: 11 on offense, 11 on defense, 1 kicker/punter.

With all that established, let’s take a look at the two teams:

TEAM POKÉMON

  • QB – Alakazam
  • RB – Rapidash
  • RB – Tauros
  • WR – Mew
  • WR – Jolteon
  • TE – Machamp
  • LT – Lickitung
  • LG – Blastoise
  • C – Mr Mime
  • RG – Golem
  • RT – Snorlax
  • MLB – Mewtwo
  • MLB – Dragonite
  • ROLB – Onix
  • LOLB – Primeape
  • RE – Nidoking
  • DT – Rhydon
  • LE – Nidoqueen
  • CB – Pidgeot
  • CB – Dodrio
  • SS – Gyarados
  • FS – Tentacruel
  • K/P – Hitmonlee

TEAM DIGIMON

  • QB – MagnaAngemon
  • RB – MetalGarurumon
  • RB – Centarumon
  • WR – Angewomon
  • WR – Piximon
  • TE – Garudamon
  • LT – MegaKabuterimon
  • LG – Cherrymon
  • C – Monzaemon
  • RG – Shellmon
  • RT – Mammothmon
  • MLB – WarGreymon
  • MLB – LadyDevimon
  • ROLB – Leomon
  • LOLB – Andromon
  • RE – Zudomon
  • DT – Machinedramon
  • LE – SkullMeramon
  • CB – Lilymon
  • CB – Piedmon
  • SS – Devidramon
  • FS – Phantomon
  • K/P – MetalEtemon

Wow, if you’re not both an anime and football fan, I’m so sorry because none of the above makes any sense to you. The following analysis will make even less sense, so please enjoy:

TEAM POKÉMON

This is a finesse team who will be able to find success with their speed, technique, and smart playcalling. With an offense led by Alakazam – a Pokémon with a recorded 5000 IQ – there’s no doubt that they’ll have a game plan in place for anything the defense throws at them. Alakazam’s Pokedex entry states that it can memorize anything and never forgets what it learns, so predictable defenses that rely on the same plays and formations will be chewed alive by this field general.

In the backfield is Rapidash who can hit 150mph at full speed, with Tauros providing blocking and short yardage gains up the middle with its furious charges. The offensive line is centered by Mr. Mime whose ability to create invisible barriers is an unrivalled asset in the world of pocket protection, with Lickitung protecting the blind side with its nearly 7-foot long tongue capable of sticking to opponents as well as causing paralysis.

Lining up as the Tight End, Machamp may end up being the passing game’s key target. Its four arms are strong enough to send opponents over the horizon and would prove key in being able to make catches in traffic making Machamp the perfect weapon for a West Coast style offense. Rounding out the receiving targets are the speedy Jolteon and Mew whose ability to not only teleport, but also transform make it virtually impossible to contain.

Captaining the defense is middle linebacker Mewtwo whose Pokedex entry states that, “Because its battle abilities were raised to the ultimate level, it thinks only of defeating its foes”. This focus and killer instinct is exactly the kind of instinct needed to stop a strong offense. Dodrio works as a shutdown corner, with its speed complimented by three heads that can keep an eye on the ball as well as one on the opponent.

With 80 long arms, Tentacruel is the perfect last line of defense as it slots in the free safety position, while the fierce Gyarados and Onix use their reach to cover ground or rush the QB when necessary.

Operating as kicker for this team is, of course, Hitmonlee which requires infinitely less justification than anything else here.

TEAM DIGIMON

Team Digimon is quarterbacked by MagnaAngemon, an Ultimate level Digimon who makes up for its lack of size with its unbelievable ability. Able to vanquish evil with a single strike, this Digimon leads all the other Angel/Saint Digimon and regularly saves the day when things are looking dire. MagnaAngemon is literally Drew Brees.

In the Digi-backfield is there very own zoom and boom, led by MetalGarurumon whose ability allows it to run and fly at extremely high speeds along with sensors such as infrared rays to warn it of incoming opponents. Offering their support is Centarumon who uses its muscular human torso in conjunction with its horse-like lower body to strong-arm opponents before charging forward.

This team features a literally monstrous offensive line with left tackle MegaKabuterimon using its size and four muscular arms to prevent any incoming blitzes. Helping guard the line are the equally massive Cherrymon, Monzaemon, Shellmon, and Mammothmon, with Garudamon holding strong in the hybrid position, ready to take off and make a catch when needed. Angewomon and Piximon line up as receivers, using their speed and agility to compliment the chemistry they have with the team’s QB.

On defense the terrifying Machinedramon lines up at defensive tackle, labelled the world’s strongest Digimon it also has been programmed with high intellect and evil intentions. Machinedramon’s malice and infinite power give it the drive needed to power past any offensive line.

The trickster wizard Digimon Piedmon is the team’s star corner as its ability to disguise itself and read communications make it perfect for disrupting the opponent’s game plan. Playing a similar role in the backfield is free safety Phantomon whose ability of clairvoyance allow it to foresee everything, this used in conjunction with strong safety Devidramon’s wickedness, elongated arms, and ability to paralyze with a glare make it nearly impossible for an offense to work the ball deep against this team.

The team’s secret weapon on defense though is the fallen angel LadyDevimon, while not as physically imposing as some of her teammates, LadyDevimon has the Darkness Wave ability which stops and reverses an opponent’s power while destroying them from within. This ability is the ultimate suppression tactic and would be critical in the defense stopping any opponent from being able to muster an offensive attack.

VERDICT

So who wins? Does the offensive flair of Pokémon survive the brute strength defense of Digimon? Are Digimon the digital and Super Bowl champions or did Pokémon run, pass, and catch ‘em all? And most importantly, which of you maniacs out there actually read this far and genuinely shares this molecularly tiny Venn diagram crossover of interests.

Well to prevent things from dragging out further than Super Bowl 53, let’s make it official:

Digimon wins.

Going into this I expected the pocket monsters to have the upper hand, with several Pokémon able to teleport, and Alakazam’s 5000 IQ, I figured that this game would be an easy walk over for the Pokesquad. Yet the more I looked into it, the more I discovered that many Digimon had equally, if not far superior abilities. Pokémon can disable, but LadyDevimon can completely reverse powers and cause harm while doing so. Pokémon can teleport, fly, and sometimes transform, all things which Digimon can do as well.

Pokémon’s only saving grace is the aforementioned IQ of Alakazam and its ability to use future sight, however, even with all the knowledge in the world, it seems impossible for this QB to draw up a game plan to stop a Digimon team which absolutely dwarfs this Pokémon squad. Seriously, go look up the size of Pokémon, they’re smaller than you think. Many Pokémon on this team don’t even reach 5 feet tall, while several of the Digimon are shown to be taller than houses.

All things considered, this game is likely a massacre. Many Pokémon are just animals with some sort of elemental quirk to them while a good chunk of Digimon are literal demonic beings that won’t hesitate to destroy something with military-grade weaponry just for standing in its way. In a standoff battle, Blastoise’s hydro-cannons versus Machinedramon’s dual super-dreadnought class giga cannon energy waves ends with the tortoise getting obliterated every single time, this is not an efficient blocking strategy for an offensive lineman.

I thought this would be a fair fight because these are both battle animal animes but I’m slowly realizing that Digimon is low-key just a mecha anime hidden behind cuddly friends. This should have been very obvious when there was that season where the DigiDestined could turn into Digimon themselves and join the battle. I’m livid it took me this long to realise this. This whole experiment has been a terrible mistake.

FINAL SCORE PREDICTION

Digimon – 73. Pokémon – 9.

Tune in next time when I analyze whether the cast of Power Rangers could beat the cast of Rugrats in a game of Slam Ball.