If you’re reading this, congrats, you survived week 1 of the AAF also known as the Awesome As Fuck League. Give yourself a small round of applause wherever you’re at. Now that is out of the way, we can get down to brass tax and that is that the Arizona Hot Shots showed the rest of the league that the title goes through the desert. I know y’all have been reading Trevor’s blog about how the Orlando Apollos are going to run through the league and win the trophy because they’re being led by Steve Spurrier. Quickly on them, Shane Mathews and Danny Wuerffel aren’t walking through that door, so I’m not to worried about what’s going on down in Orlando. Let me reiterate what I said last week when I previewed the Hot Shots and Stallions, the Hot Shots are going to run ruckshaw over the Awesome As Fuck League and there isn’t anything anyone could do to stop it. They began their assault on their competition as they took apart the Salt Lake Stallions. Here’s what I saw.
~Right off the bat you gotta appreciate the high drama that occurred before the game when it was announced that Trevor Knight, the guy everyone thought was going to be the starting QB for Hot Shots, would actually be the backup and that John Wolford would be the opening day starter. I have to say, that I like how the Hot Shots are letting it be known that you can’t trust their depth chart because at any moment they might roll out a whole new team and flip your world upside down. The Hot Shots are taking the mantra of the late great Rowdy Roddy Piper which is; “just when you think you have all the answers, I change the questions” and putting it into motion and I’m all for it.
~Can we figure out how we’re going to write the team name? Is it HotShots, Hotshots or Hot Shots? I’ve seen all three being used and I would like a ruling on which one is the preferred spelling before we go further into the season. Thank you
~Going with John Wolford ended up being the move of the weekend.
Wolford, a Wake Forest product, ended up with a stat line of 18/29 for 275 yards and 4 TDs and 23 yards with his legs. Pretty decent game out of Wolford and by decent I mean he carved up the Stallions defense like some sort of surgeon. The 4 TDs and 275 yards make Wolford the AAF all time leader in passing TDs and yards. That’s a lot of momentum heading into week 2. But, based on Wolford’s three C approach of being calm cool and collected, that shouldn’t be a problem. Wolford really did look good out there making the proper reads and having very good accuracy on deep balls. He’s certainly the cream of the AAF.
~Lets give it up for the big boys upfront. They controlled the pass rush of the Stallions, keeping Wolford upright, which made it much easier for him to tear them a part. I don’t think they gave up a sack, but if they did, I’m not really bothered by it because for the most part, they played very well.
~I love how Maurice Jones Drew kept calling the AAF The Alliance. It just sounded so bad ass. Need to keep that up. Marvin Lewis was just okay. There were times where I thought he was trying to channel Tony Romo and call plays out before they happened, and other times where I think he was calling golf.
~Jhurrel Pressley ran hard to the tune of 18 carries for 64 yards and a 2pt conversion. To me, he seemed like had some twitch in his step but also ran it tough between the tackles. His YPC is nothing to right home about but he kept things balanced and made play-action something that needs to be respected. Oh and he did this,
If Pressley can provide that type of ability out of the backfield, then the Hot Shots are cooking with some serious gas. I’m guessing there aren’t that many LBs that can cover guys out of the backfield mainly because there aren’t many LBs that can do that in the NFL. So, the Hot Shots can take a strangle hold on the league, even more than they already have, if they utilize Pressley out of the backfield.
~I thought Josh Huff was going to be the guy that the Hot Shots looked to get the ball too. But since the Hot Shots are possessed by Rowdy Roddy Piper, they went in another direction and it was Rashad Ross. Ross had 5 catches for 103 yards and 2 TDs on only 7 targets. A very efficient day for Mr. Ross.
As one handed catches go, this is sort of pedestrian. But, I feel this is only a precursor for when Ross is catching balls with only one finger or even no hands.
~The Hot Shots defense was pretty stout. They gave up 22 points, but like coach Rick Neuheisel said before the game “I don’t care about the score.” So in this instance, I don’t care about the score. What I do care about are the impact plays the Hot Shots made right from the get go. The Stallions first few drives went no where due to the Hot Shots d-line stuffing Matt Asiata and Brandon Oliver repeatedly. They’re were wishing they were back in the NFL so that they could stop getting bludgeoned.
Robert Nelson provided this athletic play, that really let the Stallions know that they were in for a long day.
The Hot Shots defense added another INT later in the game. All in all, the Hot Shots played very well, only giving up 159 yards through the air. That’s going to pay off in big ways going forward because there appears to be a lack of quality of QB play in AAF and by lack of quality QB play I mean that most of the quarterbacks in the AAF couldn’t start for Goldie Hawn’s Wildcats.
~Rough couple of weeks for the Linehan clan. First Scott Linehan was fired by the Cowboys after it was said that he wasn’t going anywhere and now his son threw an INT in a relief effort. Glass half full, things can only go up.
~Hats off to Nick Folk for making AAF history and being the man with the longest FG in AAF history.
Folk had a solid night making all of his FGs and just looking like he was having a grand old time out there. I was wondering as I watched Folk boot that 53 yarder effortlessly, would you rather have Nick Folk or Cody Parkey right now. Then, I remembered this fun fact.
~The rule changes are mostly positive. I like that the play is always moving and that the XP has been eradicated. That’s a rule change I really wouldn’t mind seeing used in the NFL. It opens the door for a lot of possibilities. The only rule I don’t like is that you can’t rush more than 5 guys on defense. Not a fan of that. I’d rather it be just regular style where you could rush as many people as you want. I get that you want more scoring and with less guys trying to hammer the QB, there should be more scoring. But, I don’t like the idea that a defense can’t do everything possible to stop a team. Maybe I’ll get used to it.
~My favorite part of the whole game was on 3rd downs when the Hot Shots were on defense, you would hear the gentle sounds of a chainsaw buzzing through the stadium in an attempt to pump the team up and enlist fear into the minds and souls of the Stallions. Can you imagine being a QB and you’re staring down a 3rd and 8 and all you hear is a chainsaw? Here’s footage of exactly what happened when the Stallions were on 3rd down.
~Big time victories deserve big time celebrations. Glad to see that the Arizona Hot Shots have adopted the perfect victory song.
Though it was the first game in their existence, the Arizona Hot Shots treated Sunday like it was Any Other Sunday. It was business as usual as the Hot Shots were always in control of the Stallions. Rocky Balboa’s name was dishonored from the opening whistle in this contest as the Hot Shots KO’d the Stallions to the tune of 38-22. Next week, the Hot Shots are on the road as they take on the Memphis Express. Hopefully nothing happens to Christian Hackenberg’s in regards to his playing status, because if he’s still QBing for the Express next Saturday night, then it’s going to be an early Thanksgiving for the Hot Shots because they gonna be feasting(that’s a Dad joke for all you father’s out there).
To the Hot Shot’s faithful, enjoy this win. But the biggest game of the season is the next one and we’re not satisfied with just being 1-0. We’re on to Memphis.
Follow me for more Arizona Hot Shots talk and other stuff @2ndSatSports