Key starters injured in loss

The Florida A&M Rattlers may have lost more than Saturday’s game against the Hampton Pirates.

Several key offensive players suffered injuries in the Rattlers’ 25-0 loss to the Pirates and may be questionable for Saturday’s Florida Classic against state rival Bethune-Cookman.
Starting quarterback senior Curtis Pulley left the game in the first quarter after re-aggravating a groin injury and did not return.

Redshirt junior Eddie Battle came in for Pulley and played until the fourth quarter when he separated his shoulder and had to leave the game.

Redshirt-freshman Martin Ukpai had to come in relief of Battler and finish the game.
Starting receivers Isaac West and Kevin Elliot also went down in the first quarter against the Pirates with ankle injuries and did not return.

West and Elliot have combined for 1,186 yards receiving and eight touchdowns this season.  Without two key targets, the Rattlers’ offense was held to just 73 total yards against the Pirates.

Pulley is the team’s leading rusher with 881 yards on the ground and six touchdowns this season. He has also passed for 1,824 yards and 12 touchdowns.

“It hurt, the two key injuries were Pulley and Kevin Elliott and without them we had trouble executing our plays,” junior defensive back Qier Hall said.   “At this point we just have to get back to the drawing board and prepare to play Cookman at the Orlando Classic.”

Elliot said Sunday that he was confident that he would be able to play in Saturday’s game.

“I’m alright, I sprained my ankle pretty bad but I’m going to do a lot of rehab this week so I’ll be able to play against Cookman in the Florida Classic,” Elliott said. 
Saturday’s loss hurt the rattler’s post-season hopes, dropping them to 7-3 overall and 6-2 in the MEAC.

The offense for now is looking to rebound and not let the weight of this loss tarnish the remainder of their season.

“We’ll come back and do the same thing we usually do,” Elliot said.  “Take our anger out on our next opponents. In this case that would be Cookman.”