A bit of a dark cloud has formed over the Arena Football League this week, specifically rumors that the league has stepped in and taken control over the New Orleans VooDoo and the Las Vegas Outlaws. Nothing has been 100% confirmed, but if the news is true, this is yet another season where the league has had to step in for a franchise struggling to pay its bills. Last year, the league stepped in for the San Antonio Talons and the Orlando Predators. Orlando managed to find a new owner, but the Talons ended up folding last fall after the league was unable to find suitable owners that would be willing to pay the Talons’ debts.
We’ll keep an eye on this story whenever the news is confirmed, but for now, it’s something to be weary of.
Now, let’s take a quick look back at the Week 13 scores and player awards:
Tampa Bay Storm 52, Cleveland Gladiators 48
Orlando Predators 35, Arizona Rattlers 55
Philadelphia Soul 56, Los Angeles KISS 48
San Jose SaberCats 63, Las Vegas Outlaws 31
Spokane Shock 69, Portland Thunder 54
Bye: Jacksonville Sharks, New Orleans VooDoo
Week 13 AFL MVP: DB/JLB/WR AJ Cruz, Arizona Rattlers
No job is too big for a player of average height, and AJ Cruz proved just that during Saturday’s game against the Orlando Predators. Cruz made his impact on offense, defense, and special teams in Arizona’s 65-35 win over Orlando; he caught 9 passes for 62 yards and 2 touchdowns, scored a rushing touchdown, returned 2 kicks for 45 yards, and recorded 2 tackles on defense. Cruz is mainly known for his kickoff return duties, but if given enough time, he could potentially become a better Jack Linebacker or Wide Receiver.
Shock WR Nick Truesdell and Storm WR Julius Gregory were also nominated for Week 13 MVP.
Russell Athletic Offensive Player of the Week: QB Carson Coffman, Spokane Shock
In order to stay in the playoff race in the National Conference, Spokane faced a must-win against Portland. Head Coach Andy Olson named Coffman the starter prior to the Sunday night game against the Portland Thunder, benching rookie QB Warren Smith in favor of Coffman, who last started in Week 6. Coffman had an explosive first half for the Shock, throwing 6 TDs in the first half. He finished the game 20 of 32 for 328 yards, 9 TD, and 0 INT as the Shock won 69-54.
Riddell Defensive Player of the Week: DE Mike McAdoo, Arizona Rattlers
This week’s Defensive Player of the Week made himself known to the Orlando Predators and sent them back to Florida wondering what went wrong. McAdoo lead all Arizona defense men with 7 tackles, 1 pass defended, and 2 sacks for a loss of 11 yards, The former NFL player and current AFL rookie has now recorded at least one sack in four straight games, tightening the Rattler defense as the team aims for another ArenaBowl repeat.
For the complete list of winners, check out the official AFL Website.
Now here’s our weekly look at the league leaders so far this season.
Passing Yardage: 3,714; Dan Raudabaugh, Philadelphia
Passing Touchdowns: 86; Dan Raudabaugh, Philadelphia
Interceptions Thrown: 18; Jason Boltus, Tampa Bay
Completion Percentage: 75.3%; Randy Hippeard, Orlando
QB Rating: 139.5; Randy Hippeard, Orlando
Rushing Attempts: 106; Derrick Ross, Jacksonville
Rushing Yards: 406; Derrick Ross, Jacksonville
Rushing Touchdowns: 23; Derrick Ross, Jacksonville
Receptions: 114; Marco Thomas, Philadelphia
Receiving Yards: 1,437; Tiger Jones, Jacksonville
Receiving Touchdowns: 31; Marco Thomas, Philadelphia
Returns: 64 (tied); Duane Brooks, Portland & Brandon Thompkins, Orlando
Yards: 1,436; Duane Brooks, Portland
Touchdowns: 6; Duane Brooks, Portland
Sacks: 12.0; Joe Sykes, Jacksonville
Interceptions: 11; Jeremy Kellem, Arizona
Return Yards: 105; Joe Phinisee, Cleveland
Pick-Six Touchdowns: 3; Joe Phinisee, Cleveland
That does it for Week 13. Here’s what to look forward to this weekend.
Week 14 Schedule:
Friday, June 26th:
Tampa Bay Storm (6-6; 2-3) at Philadelphia Soul (11-2; 6-0 Home)
Wells Fargo Center, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
7:30 PM (EST), 4:30 PM (PST)
San Jose SaberCats (12-1; 7-0 Away) at Spokane Shock (4-8; 2-4 Home)
Spokane Veterans Memorial Arena, Spokane, Washington
10:00 PM (EST), 7:00 PM (PST)
Saturday, June 27th:
New Orleans VooDoo (2-10; 0-4 Away) at Orlando Predators (7-6; 4-2 Home)
Amway Center, Orlando, Florida
7:00 PM (EST), 4:00 PM (PST)
Cleveland Gladiators (7-6; 5-2 Away) at Jacksonville Sharks (6-6; 3-2 Home)
Jacksonville Veterans Memorial Arena
7:00 PM (EST), 4:00 PM (PST) on CBS Sports Network
Arizona Rattlers (10-2; 5-1 Away) at Los Angeles KISS (2-10; 1-4 Home)
Honda Center, Anaheim, California
10:00 PM (EST), 7:00 PM (PST)
Sunday, June 28th:
Portland Thunder (3-9; 0-5 Away) at Las Vegas Outlaws (4-8; 2-4 Home)
Thomas & Mack Center, Las Vegas, Nevada
5:00 PM (EST), 2:00 PM (PST)