The 2022 Pittsburgh Maulers have picked up right where they left off from 1984.
Finishing their first and only other season in existence at 3-15 overall and tied for the league’s worst record, the rebooted Maulers dropped to 0-2 Saturday following a 30-23 loss to the Philadelphia Stars.
The offense is the main detractor from the Maulers defeating Philadelphia in a game with five different lead changes and the first-ever three-point attempt and conversion.
Former San Jose State quarterback Josh Love played the entire game Saturday while first-round pick Kyle Lauletta watched from the sidelines.
Love completed 21-of-39 passes for 236 yards and two touchdowns. He also threw two interceptions and was inaccurate throughout the game but especially on the final possession and the Maulers driving to tie the game.
Garrett Groshek (77 yards) and Madre London (46) both rushed for over four yards-per-carry and Bailey Gaither emerged as the team’s most dependable receiver.
Despite this, the offense has not performed nearly as well as the defense.
The Maulers forced three turnovers, two fumbles and an interception, scoring seven of the 23 points on a Jaylon McClain-Sapp scoop and score.
The point totals don’t do justice for the quality football the Maulers have played defensively.
Giving Lauletta an opportunity to prove himself could be the key to a successful offense. The Richmond product and former fourth-round pick by the New York Giants was selected on opening night for a reason and is surprising he stays on the bench.
The defense plays physical, forces turnovers, and holds its ground when necessary. They are sometimes put in bad positions by the offense and need a major play to keep the opposition off the scoreboard.
Playing hard like a Pittsburgh defense while getting to the quarterback and taking the ball away will make the team more entertaining and help the offense to gell as the season moves forward.
The Maulers need to win to draw additional attention for a city ready to watch the Penguins enter their 16-straight playoff appearance and a growing Pirates team trying to break through.
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