It was a cloudy overcast day one comes to except in June when one lives in California, but that didn’t damper the sprits of the 5 coaches who made the trip to Irvine on Saturday. After nearly three months of no games due to the corona virus COVID-19, the league shutdown like the rest of America for health reasons. This past Saturday was the first time games were played since March.
Games on tap Eagles vs Raiders first meeting, Forty Niners vs Bills instant classic , Steelers vs Raiders new team same results, and the night cap Eagles vs Forty Niners beat down at the Vet.
Well the Eagles game against the Raiders was billed as a possible championship game preview. Early on that preview was gone. The Raiders scored early and often as the Eagles inability to hold on to the ball while passing cost them big plays and possible touchdowns. The game turned on the first punt of the game by the Eagles which went 11 yards. The Eagles defense just missed stopping the Raiders short of the goal line. Raiders 7-0. Philly couldn’t do anything on their possession and the Raiders took the ball and drove downfield for another score and a 14-0 after the first quarter. The second quarter saw Philly pull to within one score at 14-7, but they couldn’t get closer than that as the Raiders pulled away late for the 27-7 win. Coach Isaac Cash praised the Raiders for out coaching him. “My players didn’t lose this game I did”.
This game wasn’t suppose to be played but in a strange turn of events I’m sure the league was happy it was. Instant classic game. Before we get to the climatic ending we first have to tell you how we got there. Well 6 plays into the game Jim Kelly scrambles right eluded a few Niner defenders and waltzed 63yds for the first score of the game. The Bills wouldn’t lead or share the lead until late in the game. First back to the first half. The Niners came back with a drive that featured Jerry Rice he caught two passes the last a 61yd catch and run for the go ahead score. After a blocked punt the Niners wasted no time with another Rice score from 21yds out to put them up 14-6 at the half. Jim Kelly started the scoring for the Bills with a 30yd touchdown run to cut the lead to just two points. Again they missed the extra point the Bills trail 14-12 going into the final quarter. Now down 20-12 after Steve Young tossed his third touchdown of the day to Terrell Owens from 53 yds out. Paul Cofer missed the extra point which set the wheels in motion for this instant classic. The Bills start their drive from the 20 yd line and had the Forty Niners defense on their heels. Running the ball had them at the 49 yd line of San Francisco. Kelly drops back and fires a dart to Don Beebe who then shows his speed and out runs Jeff Fuller to the end zone. Touchdown Buffalo! Needing the two point conversion to tie they cross up the Niners defense and Thurman Thomas takes it in to tie the game at 20. With just a 1:54 to play Steve Young calmly brought his team to the line called his play and threw an incomplete pass. His next three were darts. 15 yds to Rice, then 7yds to Owens, then not calling time out dropping back and hitting John Taylor who out ran the Bills defense to the right corner of the end zone for the game winning score as time expired. 26-20 Forty Niners
The only thing that changed in this game was Coach Anthony Price was now coaching the Steelers. He and Coach Eric Robinson met in last years SHOW won by coach Price 7-0. “ Today’s game wasn’t even close”, stated a defeated coach Robinson. The Steelers jumped on the Raiders early and forced them to be one dimensional pretty much the rest of the game. The Raiders offense couldn’t get anything in motion. The running game couldn’t penetrate the Steel Curtain defense. If it weren’t for Stablers scramble of 72yds the Raiders could have been shutout for the second game in a row to coach Price. Well there were two changes. Coach Price came out slinging the rock all over the field. This new scheme threw the Raiders as they were setting up for a power run game and saw the ball continually go over their heads. Terry Bradshaw had 4td passes on the day. Coach Price now has a passing game to go with his running game the Steelers will be a tough out for anyone. Their only down fall might be the defense. They played with 10 players on defense most snaps. Going forward they will need to clean that up.
The beat down at the Vet saw 7 combined sacks, 3 turnovers, and no scoring in the second half. Randall Cunningham started game off going 63yds for the score and the Eagles never looked back. They did all their scoring in the first half and rode their defense in the second half for the win. John Taylor had the Niners only score as the defense once again struggled to contain a running quarterback. Cunningham finished the game with 2td passes along with his earlier run. He accounted for all of Philly’s points.
For the Buzz the unofficial newsletter of the LAEFL I’m Rastahaze and this is the LAEFL according to me. Next game day tentatively scheduled for July 11th. Site still to be determined.