Things started off slow for the Strong as they were incorporating an array of new pieces to both sides of the roster, but it didn’t take long for the fireworks to start.
Starting quarterback Shakem “Buck” Buckmon made his return to the Strong this season with a bang uncorking a 67-yard bomb to wide receiver Martia Rufus. That connection put the first seven points on the board for Syracuse.
Rufus would score his second touchdown of the day in the second quarter. All in all, he hauled in two receptions for 73 total yards. Coming off the season opener with a 100% touchdown conversion rate on your catches? Not too shabby.
Buck was 6-for-9 from the field for 132 passing yards and those two passing touchdowns. Although the most exciting part of his game may be his dual-threat ability where he added an additional 73 yards on the ground.
Whenever he didn’t see what he wanted on the backend, Buck took matters into his own hands making plays throughout the game with his wheels.
Speaking of the ground game, a tried and true player made his presence felt and reminded the rest of the GDFL who he is. That was running back Rashad Burns who was an absolute workhorse in this contest with 15 carries for 148 yards.
Burns hit the Colonials with a 62-yard highlight-reel worthy touchdown where he blew through multiple defenders as he high-stepped it to the end zone giving fans the LaDainian Tomlinson flip to celebrate.
Wide receiver Joshua Thomas also got his chance to celebrate in this game, but the referees deemed his extracurricular activities too extreme. JT had three catches for 83 yards highlighted by his 67-yard catch and touchdown run where he channeled his inner Tyreek Hill as he threw up the deuces sign on his way to the endzone.
Syracuse punctuated their scoring efforts with a little trickiness. Buck took the shotgun handoff and flipped it to Burns on his left who initially started running before he chucked one deep for LaQuan “LA” Rouse who was wide open on the trick play for the 28-yard touchdown.
It was an exciting effort and a nice debut for the Strong as they won the contest 33-0. Their defense was suffocating and didn’t allow the Colonials to put together much momentum.
Charlotte shot themselves in the foot with a safety and a muffed kick that helped the Strong keep their foot on the throat.
Welcome to the GDFL.