Raudabaugh, Gray and Stephens Earn Weekly Honors
Tuesday April 15, 2014
CHICAGO – Philadelphia Soul quarterback Dan Raudabaugh has been awarded Russell Athletic Offensive Player of the Week, while Pittsburgh Power defensive back Virgil Gray has been named the Riddell Defensive Player of the Week and San Antonio Talons wide receiver D.J. Stephens has been named J. Lewis Small Playmaker of the Week for Week 5 of the 2014 NET10 Wireless Arena Football League season. In addition to these awards, the AFL is also awarding the Cutters Catch of the Week and AFL Highlight of the Week. Pittsburgh Power defensive end Anthony Hoke earned the Cutters Catch of the Week, while Orlando Predators quarterback Jason Boltus was awarded the AFL Highlight of the Week.
RUSSELL ATHLETIC OFFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE WEEK
Raudabaugh (6-3, 225, Miami Ohio) completed 20-of-22 passes for 254 yards and seven touchdowns in Philadelphia’s 69-56 victory over the Orlando Predators in Week 5. His completion percentage of 90.9 represents the highest single-game completion percentage for a starting quarterback this season, while his seven touchdowns tied him with Tony Graziani for the franchise record of 225 passing touchdowns in a Soul career.
RIDDELL DEFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE WEEK
Gray (5-10, 185, Rhode Island) set a new single-game franchise record with three interceptions in the Power’s 56-14 victory over the New Orleans VooDoo in Week 5, raising his career total to 41 and moving into a tie for 10th-place all-time in AFL history. The fifth-year pro has recorded an interception in eight straight games.
J. LEWIS SMALL PLAYMAKER OF THE WEEK
Stephens (5-11, 180, Arkansas-Monticello) set a single-game franchise record with 229 receiving yards in the Talon’s 62-63 loss to the Iowa Barnstormers in Week 5. The Talons top target has caught a touchdown pass in each of his last seven games and has accumulated triple-digit all-purpose yards in 11 straight contests. He leads the AFL with 1,007 all-purpose yards on the season. He will be awarded a timepiece crafted by J. Lewis Small for his efforts.
CUTTERS CATCH OF THE WEEK
Hoke (6-1, 250, Cincinnati) put his athleticism on display with a leaping interception at the goal line in Pittsburgh’s 56-14 victory over the New Orleans VooDoo in Week 5. With just more than a minute to play in the first half, the defensive end adjusted mid-rush to pick off a Kurt Rocco pass and returned it one yard for a touchdown. He finished the game with 1.5 sacks and a forced fumble in addition to the pick-six. He will receive a Cutters hat and shirt in recognition of the catch.
AFL HIGHLIGHT OF THE WEEK
Boltus (6-3, 215, Hartwick) stood tall in the pocket to deliver a 37-yard touchdown pass to Greg Carr, despite having his helmet ripped off during the play, in Orlando’s 56-69 loss to the Philadelphia Soul in Week 5. Boltus finished the game with 348 passing yards and eight touchdowns and leads the League with 1,521 passing yards on the season.
Russell Athletic Offensive Player of the Week candidates included: Cleveland’s Shane Austin, Iowa’s Darius Reynolds, Jacksonville’s Mardy Gilyard, Pittsburgh’s Aaron Lesue, San Jose’s Reggie Gray and Spokane’s Andrew Joseph.
Riddell Defensive Player of the Week candidates included: Arizona’s Marquis Floyd, Iowa’s Tramain Thomas, Jacksonville’s Xavier Brewer, Los Angeles’ Andre Jones, Philadelphia’s Joe Goosby and Spokane’s Terrance Sanders..
J. Lewis Small Playmaker of the Week candidates included: Cleveland’s Thyron Lewis, Iowa’s Marco Thomas, Jacksonville’s Mardy Gilyard, Philadelphia’s Dan Raudabaugh, Pittsburgh’s Arvell Nelson, San Jose’s Dominique Curry and Spokane’s Terrance Sanders.
The Arena Football League is also awarding the MVP of the Week, where fans are given the opportunity to select the winner. Candidates include Arizona Rattlers quarterback Nick Davila, Cleveland Gladiators quarterback Shane Austin and Philadelphia Soul quarterback Dan Raudabaugh. Fans will have 24 hours to vote on ArenaFootball.com beginning at 1 p.m. ET on Wednesday, April 16. The winner will be announced on Thursday, April 17.
About the AFL
Since its inception in 1987, the Arena Football League has showcased a fast-paced and exciting game to millions of fans in a myriad of markets across the country. The ESPN family of networks and CBS Sports Network will nationally broadcast AFL games each week for the entire 2014 season. The AFL schedule culminates with ArenaBowl XXVII Saturday, August 23, 2014 on ESPN.