You probably had no idea that the Alliance of American Football league was set to kick off this weekend. The 10-week, 40-game regular season begins on Saturday, February 9 and runs through Sunday, April 14. A four-team playoff and a championship game at Sam Boyd Stadium in Las Vegas, Nevada on the same weekend as the NFL Draft follows.

It noteworthy that next year's NFL Draft is scheduled to take place in Las Vegas.

One interesting aspect of the new league is how player contracts are handled. Each player, regardless of position, receives a guaranteed three-year, $250,000 deal and can earn bonuses based on play and through fan engagement.

San Francisco 49ers fans may recognize some of the coaching faces throughout the league. Dennis Erickson and Mike Singletary each had stints as a head coach in San Francisco (Erickson — 2003-04, Singletary — 2009-10). Erickson will coach the Salt Lake Stallions while Singletary heads the Memphis Express. Mike Martz, best known for his time as head coach of the St. Louis Rams, spent a season (2008) as the offensive coordinator with the 49ers. He will serve as the head coach of the San Diego Fleet.

The Alliance of American Football strives to be similar to the NFL with some key differences. There are no television timeouts which will help keep games around 150 minutes, and the play clock will begin at 35 seconds, which is five fewer than in the NFL.

In an effort to improve player safety, there are no kickoffs. Teams will begin drives at the 25-yard line, and two-point conversions replace extra point attempts. Also absent are onside kicks. Instead, teams will be given an opportunity to go for a 10-yard first down in one play from their 35-yard line, essentially acting as a fourth-and-10 deep in their territory.

You can view the entire 40-game regular-season schedule here.

H/t to Patrick Tulini for the find.