I know y’all were looking forward to my observations of everything yesterday, only for me not to release my findings. For that, I apologize. I shouldn’t keep you, the Arizona Hot Shots faithful, waiting for the words of the self-appointed voice of the Arizona Hot Shots. It was bad form and I’m truly sorry. The only thing I can say on my behalf is that I’ve never suffered a Hot Shot’s loss before. I thought I could handle the sting of defeat, but alas, I succumbed to depression and complacency. But, today is a new day, and like the Phoenix, I shall rise with this blog. Maybe, we all could learn something from my lapse of consistency and all rise up to take down the day. Learn from my mistakes. With all that being said, here’s what I saw.
~ Another week, another game where the Hot Shots start off slow. I cover another team that plays professional football that is notorious for starting games as if they are in a mile of quicksand. I don’t want to mention any names but they’re team name rhymes with Fiami Zolphins. And like them, the Hot Shots started slow, wasting possession after possession, giving the Stallions hope. Like Red said while he was in Shawshank prison, hope is a dangerous thing. Hope gives teams like the Stallions the idea that they can hang, which leads teams like the Stallions to defeating much better competition. The Hot Shots need to figure out how to start fast and put pressure on their opponent not tomorrow, not after breakfast, NOW!!
~ The Stallions game plan of taking the ball deep and taking the top of the defense isn’t a bad strategy if they were good at it. But they aren’t so I’m glad they kept doing it.
~ Nice to see that the Stallions use their practice time wisely with all the miscommunications Woodrum had with essentially all his receivers. Makes it even worse that the Hot Shots didn’t take advantage of all the gifts Salt Lake was serving up.
~ One particular aspect of the Arizona offense that was working well was them using the 2018-2019 football buzzword of the year, and that’s the RPO. Wolford connected with Rashad Ross over and over again with it. It was beautiful to see Wolford reading those ends and delivering strike after strike.
~ Speaking of Wolford to Ross…
This TD pass to Rashad Ross was traveling no less than mach 2. I’m surprised the ball didn’t go straight through Ross’ chest injuring people in stands. It’s good to see that Wolford has his guy in terms who’s his go-to-guy. I like it because Ross is producing when Wolford looks his way. Personally, I think they’re the best QB/receiver tandem in all the AAF. I honestly think that Ross has as good a chance as anybody to head back to the NFL. I have a hard time believing that Ross isn’t as good as at least one of the 160 receivers in the NFL.
~ I don’t hate seeing Trevor Knight running the two point conversion. He’s an athlete and with the rule of always going for two, him being the two point QB isn’t a bad option.
~ Nick Folk needs to have confidence on all his kicks. On his first kick, that me missed, he seemed to hesitate a little bit, thus pushing it right. His next 3 kicks, which he drilled, had no hesitation and the kicks were true. Believe you’re going to kick the ball into the crowd, and you’ll be fine.
~ The Hot Shot’s starter jackets are off the chain. They’re beautiful and it’s crazy that Starter stopped making them years ago. I had a Fiami Zolphin’s Starter jacket at one time in my life, and I can say with confidence that it was the greatest time in my life. So yeah, I’m going to need to get an Arizona Hot Shots Starter jacket.
~ QB John Wolford made a pros pro throw when he was pressured by the Stallions d-line. He rolled to his right and with a man bearing down on him delivered an accurate pass to TE Thomas Duarte which yielded a first down. It was the kind of the throw that not many guys can make, and it solidified to me that Wolford deserves at the very least a look form the NFL. I’ll use the low hanging fruit comparison of if Nathan Peterman can still get offers to be in the NFL than John Wolford should be getting the same.
~ The Hot Shots running game with Pressley, Cooks and Stockton failed to ever get going. A lot of that has to do with the Stallion’s d-line, which played very stout and controlled the game from the get go, but some of that has to laid to the feat of the backs themselves. Simply put, sometimes you need to make a play even when it’s not there. As the season progresses, relying on the Hot Shots running game is going to be paramount. Arizona will not be able to start their dynasty solely relying on the pass. They need balance to bring the title to the desert.
~ Let me just say what everyone has already said; having the games played on Bleacher Report,Youtube, CBS, etc is not a good look for the league. I understand that you’re a small operation but if you’re looking to be any kind of read-deal league, albeit just a possible filter to the NFL, then put the games on NFL Network, CBS or whatever. Don’t relegate games to just the internet. The reason for this is because the internet can’t be trusted and many people who were using Bleacher Report had problems watching the game in the second half.
~ Oh and the Stallions not removing the markings of the Utah Utes on the field is as small time as it gets. Not really surprised because I suspect that Salt Lake doesn’t have to much pride, but a little bit of effort goes a long way.
~ The second half got off to just an abysmal start with a double decker shit sandwich that was Wolford throwing an INT while also getting knocked out of them game. This was turning point in the game. The Hot Shots lost their leader and their best thrower of the ball.
~ I can see why Trevor Knight didn’t beat out Baker Mayfield. It’s because he can’t throw the ball that well. A big part of being a QB is the ability to throw the ball to your own receivers more often than you don’t. It was pretty apparent that Knight is not very accurate. I’m pretty sure he only finished with 31 yards passing. That’s not going to get it done in any league. I know he’s mostly being looked at being the running QB, but if Wolford goes down, I don’t have much reason to think the offense will really get it going. As of now, I can’t find much of an update on where Wolford is in regards to his back injury. Lets all hope that Wolford is ready to go against Atlanta.
~ Credit the Hot Shots defense for keeping them in the game while the offense was sputtering all over the place. Eventually however, the damn broke a bit and the Stallions were knocking on the door. Then BS happened…
Just a friggin tragedy that the Hot Shots who had a great goal line stand, keeping the Stallions out of the end zone 3 times in a row from the 1, got rooked like this by Terry Valenti. Understand, this isn’t because she’s a woman making decisions in football. If you have a position anywhere in life, just be good at it. Calling this a TD, when it was called short on the field is nothing short of dumb. There’s no way you can definitively say that the ball broke the plain. You simply don’t know for sure. If the referees called it a TD on the field, and it was over turned, I would be just as annoyed and frustrated. If this happens in the NFL, I’m fairly confident that this would get chalked up to not having enough evidence to be overturned. She even says “it’s close.” That means that you’re not 100% sure about it. What sucks even more is that this wasn’t even the first time in this game where she made a call like this. Remember on Trevor Knight’s 2 point try, the call on the field was called good and then Valenti came in and said that he lost the ball before he broke the plain of the goal line. I like the idea that you get to hear their rational when deciding what to do with booth reviews, but if you’re going to just do whatever regardless if you have sufficient evidence then what the hell are we doing here?
~ After that debacle, the Hot Shots managed to get one more FG, but that was it. The game was over and the Hot Shots lost their first game in franchise history and also gave the Stallions their first ever win. Not fun
We are in uncharted territory as Arizona Hot Shots fans. This is our first loss in franchise history and how we respond from this will determine if we truly are forming a dynasty or not. I’ve already explained that I didn’t respond well right off the bat. I hope others had more strength than me. For those like myself that had their lives flipped upside down, it’s time to rise and get back up. We host the Atlanta Legends who are 0-3 and look God awful. It’s the biggest game of the season and I don’t want to lose grip of this season. Get things back on track and keep getting better. Remember…
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