ST. LOUIS — The first game this Sunday will feature the New York Guardians traveling to The Dome at America’s Center. The Guardians look to get their first road win of the season after a disappointing shutout loss to the DC Defenders. The BattleHawks also lost their Week 2 matchup against the Houston Roughnecks who were led by quarterback PJ Walker. Walker proved too much to handle as the BattleHawks fell 28-24. A marquee matchup presents itself this week for the BattleHawks when they play their first home game of the season in front of a St. Louis crowd. Yes folks, for the first time in over three and a half years, football will be played in the Gateway City.
Guardians seek redemption
New York fans had much to be frustrated about last week. With only 137 yards and an average under three yards per play, it was easy to see why Quarterback Matt McGloin was so vocal on the disappointing offensive performance. After an interview at the half, McGloin started the opening drive of the 3rd quarter by throwing a pick-six. McGloin was benched, throwing 2 interceptions, and finishing 8 of 19 for 42 yards on the day. The Guardians look to turnaround their offensive woes against a BattleHawks defense that did let up four scores to a Roughnecks offense, but only allowed 238 yards of total offense. The Guardians’ defense will have their hands full again this week with a Saint Louis offense lead by Quarterback Jordan Ta’amu. The Guardians will face a BattleHawks offense that plays primarily off their running attack. A mixture of RPO’s and play action plays make the BattleHawks offense explosive and dangerous.
BattleHawks will look past close Week 2 loss
The BattleHawks fell just short in their Week 2 matchup against the Roughnecks. Without looking at the final score, the stat line for the game showed the BattleHawks winning in almost every category. Outgaining the Roughnecks with 152 yards offense, 10 first downs, and 9 third conversions, it was two costly interceptions by Ta’ amu that would end up as the deciding factor in the matchup.
The BattleHawks will play a New York Guardians team that struggled to find any rhythm in their Week 2 loss against the Defenders. The BattleHawks strong secondary will look to have their way with a Guardians passing offense that only threw for 95 yards last Saturday.
What to Watch
Look out for Guardians receiver Mekale McKay. Standing at 6’6, the large frame of McKay can be be an X-Factor at crucial times for the New York offense. A strong connection between McGloin and McKay was evident in the Week 1 victory against the Tampa Bay Vipers. The Guardians will need a big game from Mckay in order to open up the whole offense.
Arguably the most important factor in Sunday’s game will be the St. Louis crowd. A field that once hosted the Greatest Show on Turf will now be the home for the BattleHawks. The first home game ever for the BattleHawks will have the crowd in a frenzy. Three and a half years is a long time for a city that loves its football. It is likely the home crowd will affect the composure of the visiting Guardians this afternoon.
The game is scheduled at 2:00 PM local time at The Dome at America’s Center in St. Louis, Missouri. Broadcast coverage will be on ESPN.