The Alliance of American Football kicked off Week 2 action Saturday with the Birmingham Iron and Arizona Hotshots staying undefeated with wins over the Salt Lake Stallions and Memphis Express, respectively.
Birmingham and Arizona both bounced back from two-score deficits. The Iron were down 9-0 before scoring 12 unanswered points, and the Hotshots were down 12-0 and 18-6 before their 20-18 victory.
Here's a look at the Week 2 results, recaps and highlights.
Week 2 Results—Feb. 16
Birmingham Iron (2-0) 12, Salt Lake Stallions (0-2) 9
Arizona Hotshots (2-0) 20, Memphis Express (0-2) 18
Birmingham Iron 12, Salt Lake Stallions 9
Special teams play was the difference.
Salt Lake kicker Taylor Bertolet missed three field goals, including a 48-yarder with 1:03 left. His make was from 53 yards, while his other attempts were from 50 and 55 yards.
Also, Birmingham cornerback Jamar Summers stripped Salt Lake's De'Mornay Pierson-El on a punt return, leading to a touchdown from Shaheed Salmon after a recovered fumble in the end zone.
That score pulled Birmingham within 9-6 in the third quarter.
Salt Lake defensive end Karter Schult was the game's top star, as he amassed two sacks, six tackles, four quarterback hits and a forced fumble:
He also stopped a fake punt and a two-point conversion attempt.
Schult was a big reason the Birmingham offense, which gained just 216 yards, sputtered for most of the game.
Richardson did finish with 91 yards from scrimmage, while quarterback Luis Perez completed 24 of 38 passes for 184 yards.
The Stallions were without Week 1 starting quarterback Josh Woodrum, who sat with a hamstring injury. Austin Allen filled in and finished 15-of-31 for 114 yards.
The Salt Lake rushing attack carried the Stallion offense, with Joel Bouagnon and Branden Oliver combining for 129 rushing yards on 24 carries. Bouagnon scored Salt Lake's touchdown on a three-yard run with 1:56 left in the second quarter:
Salt Lake will host Arizona on Saturday at 3 p.m. ET. The two teams played in Week 1, with Arizona winning 38-22 at home.
Birmingham will visit the Atlanta Legends on Sunday at 4 p.m.
Arizona Hotshots 20, Memphis Express 18
Hotshots running back Tim Cook scored a touchdown off a four-yard pass from John Wolford with 7:07 remaining as Arizona beat Memphis 20-18 at Liberty Bowl Memorial Stadium in Memphis, Tennessee:
Per CBS Sports, the Hotshots were 11.5-point favorites heading into their matchup with the Express, who lost to Birmingham 26-0 in their Week 1 matchup. BetDSI has also listed Arizona as the 5-2 favorite to win the championship.
However, Memphis dominated for much of the game thanks to some crucial turnovers and a bruising ground game led by running back Zac Stacy.
First, this Josh Huff fumble set up a Josh Jasper field goal:
After a Channing Stribling interception, Stacy found the end zone to put Memphis up 9-0:
The Express defense wasn't done, though, as a Jeremy Cutrer pick led to another field goal:
The Hotshots finally got on the board late in the third quarter when Wolford hit Rashad Ross for a 16-yard score:
However, the Express rebounded with an impressive scoring drive. Stacy got things going with this 49-yard run:
Express quarterback Christian Hackenberg, who gave the Hotshots problems with his running abilities, capped the drive with a four-yard rush to put his team up 18-6:
But the momentum moved back to Arizona's favor when Justin Stockton scored on a 45-yard draw, which is something you don't see every day:
Wolford rushed the ball in for the two-point conversion. After Memphis failed to score on its next drive, Arizona marched for the winning score. Memphis had the ball in its own territory with a minute remaining but did not cross midfield.
Wolford finished 20-of-29 for 194 passing yards, two touchdowns and two picks. The Hotshots rushed for 209 yards as a team.
Stacy finished with 101 rushing yards and became the first AAF player to cross the century mark in that category.
Both teams will play on Saturday. Arizona will travel to Salt Lake, and the Express will visit the Orlando Apollos.
The only matchup between two teams that won their Week 1 games takes place on Sunday at 4 p.m. when Orlando visits the San Antonio Commanders.
The 8 p.m. nightcap features Atlanta at the San Diego Fleet. Both teams lost in their AAF debuts.