Updated: May 26, 2022
Week 11 Thursday 18:00 ET
Which Snowhawks team will travel to San Diego? And which Crusaders team will show up to welcome them?
We have 2 inconsistent teams in this huge divisional clash. But the one consistent thing this season is how the Crusaders operate their offense. They love to air it out. Quarterback Ben Wakefield is playing at an MVP level this season. He leads the whole RFL in passing yards and has thrown 26 touchdowns and 8 INT’s. And with a QB rating of 111.8 opponents have struggled to find ways to stop him this year. What is interesting is that they don’t throw the ball deep much, in 10 weeks there have only been 2 games where they completed a pass over 35 yards. Instead they just focus on completions completions completions. Wide receiver Elijah Bentley leads the entire league in receptions with 78.
Perhaps the Snowhawks will look at the tape from weeks 5 and 6 when Wakefield had 2 poor weeks throwing 5 interceptions and only 1 touchdown. This Portland defense is very good unit… with some young exciting playmakers. Drement Deere has 4 snatchies this season and his fellow corner Marquise Washington is always fun to watch, he had a huge impact week 8 with 2 sacks and a force fumble. Finally the rookie linebacker Josh Hardy has been great in coverage showing experience above his years and the last time we saw these guys he had a pick 6 when they demolished the Condors.
Portland‘s offense is balanced on the season between pass and run but productive with Guidugli regularly throwing for 300 yards a game. When you watch the 30 year old play it’s clear to see his intelligence as he rarely takes a sack. Look for him to find his favourite target Carus Currie a lot. Also he has done a good job of feeding their star tight end Keelan Linton who defenses have tried to shutdown. Young half back Jacob McDonald is having a good year and is the main reason the team averages 129 yards per game on the ground.
The Crusaders defense love to rush 4 and Stephan Wilcox and Cole Bacon are eating this year with 8 and 7 sacks respectively. As a team San Diego are a top 3 team sacking the quarterback with 35 total through 9 games. Gonna be tough for them to get 4 sacks today though vs Joseph Guidugli. But a fascinating angle and is the biggest key to the game I believe.
Thanks to Cameron Reed for the head to head record:
Crusaders 23, **Snowhawks 39** (S2 W11)
**Snowhawks 45**, Crusaders 14 (S3
Crusaders 20, **Snowhawks 27** (S4 W11)
Snowhawks 14, **Crusaders 28** (S5
**Crusaders 30**, Snowhawks 16 (S5 W12)
Crusaders 21, **Snowhawks 31 **(S6
**Snowhawks 27**, Crusaders 20 (S6 W10)
I think Portland will benefit from having Coach Mitchell O’Brien Sr. in charge of the gameplan this week, and that’s because the Crusaders are a one dimensional team. So if the Snowhawks focus on stopping the pass they should have success with their playmakers. This is a great opportunity for Ben Wakefield however and if he really wants to lead the MVP race the a big game today and leading his team to victory will certainly help.
Snowhawks 30 vs 24 Crusaders