TAMPA — Tampa Bay quarterback Adrian McPherson was named Arena Football League offensive player of the week for his 10-touchdown performance in Saturday 69-47 win against Cleveland.
"I just try to come out and do my job and that's get the ball to the playmakers," McPherson said. "My offensive line is doing a great job protecting me and my receivers are making plays, so I give them all the credit."
The former Florida State QB finished 25-of-38 for 362 yards and eight passing TDs. McPherson also ran for 31 yards and two scores. His 580 passing yards ranks fourth in the league and he tops the AFL in rushing yards (89), TDs (seven) and average per carry (6.8).
"I pride myself on just trying to get better day in and day out," McPherson said.
More Awards: Joe Hills earned the league's catch of the week honor with his circus grab against Cleveland. Hills hauled in a pass deep in the right corner of the end zone, touched his feet in the end zone then flipped completely over the end boards. He got up to take a victory lap through the "Party Area" just beyond the end zone wall. The TD gave Tampa Bay the lead for good at 28-27.
Injuries: WR Greg Ellingson tweaked his back during the fourth quarter against the Gladiators and did not return. Former FSU and St. Petersburg Catholic wideout Chris Davis took Ellingson's place, catching four passes for 40 yards.
Coach Dave Ewart said Ellingson, a former Robinson High star who is second in the AFL in catches (20) and receiving yards (254), is expected to play tonight.
DL Pernell Phillips, who has yet to play this season, will miss the Utah game and his status for the April 12 against San Antonio is in question. Phillips, who led the Storm with seven sacks last year, had elbow surgery near the end of training camp.
Scouting the Blaze: Utah reached the 2012 National Conference Championship game, falling 75-69 to eventual league champion Arizona. … The Blaze is coming off a 77-49 loss last week to Arizona. … QB Tommy Grady, an All Arena performer a year ago, threw five interceptions against the Rattlers, including two returned for TDs. … Grady's main target last week was Mario Urrutia, who ranks first in the league with seven receiving TDs. … Urrutia caught 11 passes for 172 yards against Arizona, but the receiving corps could get a boost form the possible return of Aaron Lesue. … Lesue, a 2012 All Arena wideout, has missed the first two games with a hamstring injury but could suit up tonight. … Last season, Lesue was second in the league with 55 TD catches and fourth with 154 receptions.
Transactions: The Storm signed OL Nick Torresso this week. The 6-foot-2, 310 pound Bowling Green product played for Milwaukee the past two seasons. To make room, the Storm released former Jefferson standout Max Holloway.