MEMPHIS, Tenn.--The Express season opener, well it didn't go as planned falling 26-0 to the Iron. Avoiding another shutout loss is something starting quarterback Christian Hackenberg got to work on immediately. A former second round pick of the Jets struggling in his first ever pro game going 10 of 23 for just 87 yards and pick.
"I watched it on the plane honestly. We just have to be better man, all around. There were some good things in there from all of us, some bad things in there and some real ugly things and we as a unit had to do some self reflection, coaching staff and everyone included and we've done that so far," said Christian Hackenberg.
Now there is a new game on the horizon. As the Express turn the page to their first ever home game Saturday. but don't think the team wants to forget about week one. They want to learn from it.
"You can take that and fold or continue to grow and continue to fight through it and figure out where you have to get better. If you don't do that, you shouldn't be out here and I think all these guys have been committed to doing that stuff,” said Hackenberg.
Memphis has been a city starved for professional football, and not because of a lack of interest.
"Ole Miss, like 45 minutes or and hour away, we came up here and played Memphis a few times. Good atmosphere, good football atmosphere. They know already, the fans know too, they are following us. They are ready for it. I think everybody loves football," said DeMarquis Gates.
And now the 901 getting a team of it’s own. Saturday at the Liberty Bowl should be a sight.
"Greatness, we hope it's packed out, come see your boys play, we are going to put on a show," said Gates.
"Being able to come out in front of this home crowd and show them who we really are," said Hackenberg.
"I have an expectation for our team but I don't have an expectation for our fans. I hope that we have a full stadium, I'm hoping that they are excited. That they come out and cheer us on. That would be fantastic," said Mike Singletary.
And the Express have to play a whole lot better as they get ready to host the Arizona Hotshots, who look like one of the best teams in the league after week one, putting up 38 points in their victory. At the Liberty Bowl. Megan Rice News Channel 3 Sports.