Atlanta Steam (1-0) rookie quarterback Dakota Hughes will miss the next two Steam games due to the fractured wrist on her throwing hand that she suffered while leading the team to a 20-13, last minute victory in their 2014 home opener against Omaha (0-2) on June 7. Hughes fractured her wrist early in the second half, but still managed to hit Jodie Nettles for what turned out to be the winning score with 30 seconds remaining in the contest.
Hughes was 9-of-17 passing for 102 yards and two scores, both to Nettles, in her first Legends Football League game. The 19-year old QB did throw an interception late in the final quarter, but the Steam defense stepped up and got the ball back, leading to the winning toss from Hughes.
The injury comes at a time when Atlanta is scheduled to play two games in three weeks, both on the road, and means that Nettles, who pulled in three balls for 73 yards and the two scores, will now step in as the signal caller while Hughes is on the mend.
Nettles was the No. 2 QB last season, and did gain game experience. She was also credited by Coach Dane Robinson with accelerating Hughes’ progression, so all involved believe Nettles is fully capable of running the offense. The question is which receiver will step up and fill the role that Nettles has?
The first of the two games is set for Saturday, June 28 against the Baltimore Charm (0-1) at the 1st Mariner Arena. The Steam will then travel to Toledo to play the Crush (0-0-1) two weeks later on July 11 at the Huntington Center. This game was rescheduled from earlier in the season. Atlanta must win one of the two road games to stay in the chase for the Eastern Conference title.
Jacksonville (2-0-1) will visit Atlanta to play the final regular season game of the season on August 16, and that contest is likely to determine the conference champion. The Breeze is 1-0 on the road already, so the Steam MUST win one of the away games. If there is a cancellation of either game, the teams involved would be credited with a tie, meaning that Atlanta would have only one chance to earn a road W-which they must do to win the conference.
Join the Atlanta Steam News Facebook Group for news and discussion with and about the team and league.