Week one in the AAF saw the Arizona Hotshots, Birmingham Iron, Orlando Apollos, and the San Diego Commanders all collect their first win in their franchise’s history.
Let’s get a brief recap in for the games that happened this past weekend.
Arizona Hotshots 38, Salt Lake Stallions 22
The Hotshots honestly looked like the best team in week one and quarterback John Wolford looks like he may be the week one MVP. Wolford, the former Wake Forest standout, completed 18 of 29 passes for 275 yards and 4 touchdowns. Rashad Ross was Wolford’s favorite target of the night catching 5 passes for 103 yards and 2 touchdowns.
The ground game for the Hotshots was strong all night rushing for 149 total yards. The running back trio of Jhurrell Pressley, Justin Stockton, and Larry Rose III kept the ground game strong.
The defensive side of the ball is where the Hotshots may have the most talent. Steven Johnson and Robert Nelson both had interceptions while Will Sutton had a QB sack and 2 QB hits.
The Stallions really struggled moving the ball through the air. Josh Woodrum started and completed 10 of 22 passes for 103 yards with a touchdown and an interception. Matt Linehan, the former Idaho QB, came in for relief and wasn’t much better completing 7 of 13 passes for 56 yards with a touchdown and an intercpetion.
What was supposed to be a team that should’ve been able to run the ball, the Stallions stuggled all night. Branden Oliver and Matt Asiata were held in check all night while Joel Bouagnon led the team with 16 carries and just had 39 yards to show for it.
Birmingham Iron 26, Memphis Express 0
Is Christian Hackenberg really this bad? The former second round pick of the Jets completed just 10 of 23 passes for 87 yards and an interception. Not the ideal start the Express were looking for from the QB.
WIth Hackenberg being brutal all game, the Express were shut out in their first game. Zac Stacy had a solid game rushing 12 times for 58 yards.
The Birmingham Iron looked like a Nick Saban led defense and dominated the Express from the beginning. Jonathan Massaquoi was a beast all game recording 5 tackles (3 for a loss), 2 sacks, and 3 QB hits. Jamar Summers and Xzavier Dickson both had interceptions.
On offense, Luis Perez looks like a rising star and maybe the best unknown Qb in the league. In week one, Perez was impressive completing 19 of 33 passes for 252 yards. Perez completed both his two point conversions (1 passing and 1 rushing).
Trent Richardson made his return to the gridiron and had a solid debut. Richardson rushed 23 times for 58 yards and scored two touchdowns. In the passing game, Quinton Patton was the leading receiver catching 4 passes for 107 yards.
Orlando Apollos 40, Atlanta Legends 6
Nothing legendary about Atlanta’s performance in Orlando. The old ball coach led the Apollos to a beat down of the Atlanta Legends in what was the biggest point differential during the opening week.
Garrett Gilbert played a good game for the Apollos throwing for 227 yards and two touchdowns. The Apollos brought out the “Philly Special” and even had Jalin Marshall throw a TD pass in the blowout. Akeem Hunt added 73 yards on the ground while De’Veon Smith had the lone rushing touchdown.
Gilbert’s two top targets, Charles Johnson and Jalin Marshall, combined for 7 catches, 111 yards, and 1 TD.
The Atlanta Legends were dreadful throughout the night. Matt Simms and Aaron Murray both stunk it up and combined to complete 19 of 35 passes for 164 yards and 3 interceptions. The running game wasn’t much better as the team rushed for 80 yards on 24 carries.
San Antonio Commanders 15, San Diego Fleet 6
Both teams struggled to move the ball as defense dominated throughout the game. The two teams combined for 5 interceptions.
The Commanders made enough plays in the running game to squeeze out an opening week one. Kenneth Farrow rushed for 14 times for 37 yards and a touchdown while David Cobb and Aaron Green combined for 15 carries and 79 rushing yards.
Damontre Moore was the standout for the Fleet. The Defensive End had 6 tackles, 1 sack, and 6 QB hits. Moore was in the Commander’s backfield all night. On offense, Gavin Escobar led the team in receiving yards with 66 on four catches.
This week’s schedule:
Saturday: Salt Lake Stallions (0-1) @ Birmingham Iron (1-0)
Arizona Hotshots (1-0) @ Memphis Express (0-1)
Sunday: Orlando Apollos (1-0) @ San Antonio Commanders (1-0)
Atlanta Legends (0-1) @ San Diego Fleet (0-1)