Memphis Express Daily Update
- The Express started practice at 10:15 am CT on Tuesday at S.T.A.R. Soccer Complex.
- The Express worked on individual drills, 11-on-11, 7-on-7, red zone offense, and two-minute drill.
- The offense fired back on Tuesday, finding more success through the air than it had on the previous day. WR Xavier Rush (Tulane) kicked off the action with a display of his strong hands, securing a pass over the middle from QB Zach Mettenberger (LSU) on the opening snap of 7-on-7s. Mettenberger connected on his first three throws of practice.
- QB Troy Cook (UT-Martin) followed with a 3-for-3 performance of his own, distributing the ball to WR Drew Morgan (Arkansas), WR Pig Howard (Tennessee), and newly acquired RB Jahad Thomas (Temple).
- The offense won inside the red zone. QB Zach Mettenberger (LSU) found WR Reece Horn (Indianapolis) on a fade route from 28 yards for six, and hit WR Fabian Guerra (Fairmont State) for a first down conversion over the middle. In all, the offense converted first downs in nine of 13 snaps.
- Consecutive two-point conversions were scored by RB Rajion Neal (Tennessee) on a toss, WR Reece Horn (Indianapolis) with a sliding catch at the goal line, and WR Christian Briggs (Southeastern Louisiana) catching a fade from QB Troy Cook (UT-Martin). QB Christian Hackenberg (Penn State) connected with Horn on a well-designed fake screen into a fade to the left corner. WR Pig Howard (Tennessee) scored on a jet sweep to the right side.
- QB Troy Cook (UT-Martin) and QB Brandon Silvers (Troy) fared the best in two-minute offense, each driving their team to the opponent's side of midfield by picking up 27 and 31 yards respectively, but none of the four quarterbacks managed a touchdown as the defense responded after its rough start to practice. CB Malik Boynton (Austin Peay) intercepted a pass on the final play to preserve the shutout.
- Head Coach Mike Singletary on Tuesday's practice: "I thought, overall, practice was pretty good. We got down in the red zone and I thought our offense pretty well dominated that. Then we got into two-minutes and I thought our defense pretty well dominated. It was an interesting turn of events. We got a little better. I loved the competition between the offense and defense. We just have to continue to go forward."
- Head Coach Mike Singletary on the offense's response following a down practice Monday: "As a defense, you're only as good as your offense. If they're going three-and-out with penalties and the whole nine yards, we have no chance. Eventually, you'll wear down. So we want to see those guys have some victories too."
- Head Coach Mike Singletary on the quarterback competition: "I think we're in a very competitive mode. I think it's important we give each quarterback close to the same amount of reps so that we can evaluate them properly."
- RB Zac Stacy (Vanderbilt) on his return to the Memphis Express roster: "It feels great. As the great philosopher Lil Wayne said, 'Sorry for the wait.' Nonetheless, it's great to be back competing with the guys in the running back room. We're trying to complement each other and get better every day."
- RB Jahad Thomas (Temple) on the challenge of getting up to speed since being added to the roster: "Helping us with the playbook has been the biggest thing. We all have our different styles of running the ball, but we're trying to get the plays down as quickly as possible so that we can play fast."
Images from this story
Xavier Rush and Malik Boynton of the Memphis Express at practice
Memphis Express quarterback Brandon Silvers
Memphis Express quarterback Christian Hackenberg
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