Stars QB Bryan Scott finds his groove in Week 2 win over Maulers

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By RJ Young
FOX sportswriter

BIRMINGHAM, Alabama— Philadelphia Stars strategist Brian Scott limped towards the locker room at the protective stadium, walking on a cramp, sweaty black eyes and matted hair.

But there was an unmistakable smile on his face after leading the Stars to a Victory 30-23 against the Pittsburgh Maulers in the Battle of Keystone State. The win tied the Stars for first place in the North Division alongside the New Jersey Generals who won their first game of the season on Friday night.

Highlights: Bryan Scott throws for 272 yards and three touchdowns

Highlights: Bryan Scott throws for 272 yards and three touchdowns

Bryan Scott passed for 272 yards and three touchdowns as the Philadelphia Stars beat the Pittsburgh Maulers, 30-23, in Week 2.

Passing for 272 yards, three touchdowns and just one interception against the Maulers, Scott played the kind of football that many who have watched him since playing Division-III Western have come to expect. to have.

Scott is the only quarterback in the league to pass for at least 200 yards in every game so far.

Stars coach Bart Andrus had no doubt that Scott would establish a relationship with Philadelphia’s receiving corps, not to mention the offense. It was only a matter of time.

But the system Andrus employs is much more about giving the offense a concept to interpret – rather than a narrow game to execute – based on what the defense shows before and after the snap.

“Coach [Andrus] has a great system,” Scott said. “But with this system there’s also a lot of play between me and the receivers – a high [safety]at two heights [safeties] looks. We know if we get quarterbacks or cover sixes, whatever it is, the receivers have to read it too. And then we just have to earn that trust.”

Andrus mentioned that almost 18 months have passed since he and Scott coached and played, respectively, in a live game.

“It just takes time to get the rust off a bit – for each one of them,” Andrus said of his active roster of 38 players. “I mean for us, defensively and offensively, the offensive lineman, getting used to the speed of the game. It’s so different from the speed of practice.”

And it certainly seemed so. After giving up six sacks in Week 1 — three to New Orleans Breakers defensive end Davin Bellamy — the Stars reduced that number to four and gave Scott more time to progress.

As proof, Scott threw the ball 70 more yards on Saturday than last Sunday (202) – on the same number of attempts (36). And while he passed the ball to seven receivers, eight of his 26 completions went to former Florida international wide Maurice Alexander.

Alexander accounted for 87 receiving yards and two touchdowns – this from a player who was added late to the USFL draft pool.

“We actually held on – it was our choice – and we held on, we stalled and did everything we could to make sure our receiver coach had time to look at him because he was a late addition. “Andrus said. “And we looked at about half a dozen plays. That’s about all we had time for. And we picked it, and, man, I’m really glad we did.”

The Maulers take a big leap forward

The Maulers were the only USFL team that failed to score a touchdown in Week 1. The Maulers only passed for 186 yards in their season opener against the Tampa Bay Bandits, and only 97 of those yards went through the air.

On Saturday, the offense came to life midway through the second quarter. Maulers quarterback Josh Love found his groove with 225 passing yards, and Pittsburgh edged Philadelphia, 348-303.

Josh Love strikes tight end Hunter Thedford

Josh Love strikes tight end Hunter Thedford

Josh Love throws a strike to tight end Hunter Thedford for the Pittsburgh Maulers touchdown.

Maulers coach Kirby Wilson is still not happy with his side’s performance, but he admitted that one of the reasons the attack played better on Saturday is that he was better.

“First of all,” Wilson said, “I got better as a play caller. And they couldn’t get better until I got better. So I got better at that. . Therefore, they were allowed to be better.”

The Maulers defense also had a few moments, including a sack and a pick in first practice.

Jaylon McLain-Sapp made his interception with one hand.

Jaylon McClain-Sapp makes an incredible choice

Jaylon McClain-Sapp makes an incredible choice

Jaylon McClain-Sapp helped the Pittsburgh Maulers stop the Philadelphia Stars on their first practice with an impressive one-handed interception.

Later, Maulers defensive end Carlo Kemp fought through a block against a struggling Scott for a backpack fumble. McLain-Sapp picked up the ball and pushed it back 79 yards for the Maulers’ first touchdown of the season.

McLain-Sapp left the game in the second half with a hamstring injury. Wilson said he wasn’t sure how serious the injury was, but it was serious enough that he couldn’t finish the game.

“This young man is as tough as any player on our team pound for pound,” Wilson said. “He just couldn’t go.”

The Maulers defense created three turnovers in the first half, helping the attack climb from a 14-3 deficit to have a chance to win the game with their last possession. That effort was thwarted, however, when Stars corner Channing Stribling caught Love’s angled pass with 38 seconds left.

“Man, I’m so sick of him in practice already,” said Scott of Stribling. “I’m just happy that other quarterbacks can go through my pain that I have to go through five days a week.”

The first 3-point conversion in the history of professional football

After a touchdown pass from Scott to Alexander in the fourth quarter, Andrus opted to go for the full three points on the extra-point try.

With the ball spotted at the 10-yard line, Scott found Paul Terry on the flat to turn a 27-23 lead into a 30-23 lead with 8:51 left.

Bryan Scott and the Stars convert in the USFL’s first-ever 3-point play

Bryan Scott and the Stars convert in the USFL's first-ever 3-point play

The Philadelphia Stars extended their lead against the Pittsburgh Maulers, thanks to a successful 3-point conversion in the fourth quarter.

“Well, that was fine,” Andrus said. “I mean it just suited that particular moment in time.”

It was the first time the new rule established by the USFL had been enforced, and it was just in time. Andrus knew that if the Stars converted the three-point try, they would force the Maulers to walk down the field, score a touchdown, and then decide whether to score two or kick the tying extra point – with a kicker who missed one. of his three tries for extra points.

“So it turned out to be the right move, the right move, for us at that time,” Andrus said.

RJ Young is a national college football writer and analyst for FOX Sports and the host of the podcast “The #1 Rated Show Starring RJ Young.” Follow him on Twitter at @RJ_Youngand subscribe to “The RJ Young Show” on YouTube. It’s not on a StepMill.


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