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AFL Press Release

Hippeard, Fontenette, and Thompkins earn weekly honors

Tuesday July 14, 2015

 Goard and Sykes also awarded for weekend’s highlights

LAS VEGASOrlando Predators quarterback Randy Hippeard has been awarded Russell Athletic Offensive Player of the Week, while San Jose SaberCats defensive back Ken Fontenette has been awarded Riddell Defensive Player of the Week, and Orlando Predators wide receiver Brandon Thompkins has been awarded J. Lewis Small Playmaker of the Week for Week 16 of the 2015 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. The Cutters Catch of the Week has been awarded to LA KISS wide receiver Tyrone Goard, while the AFL Highlight of the Week has been awarded to Jacksonville Sharks defensive end Joe Sykes.

Hippeard (6-3, 205, Virginia-Wise) completed 72.7 percent of his passes for 346 yards and seven touchdowns in Orlando’s 69-62 “War on I-4” victory over the Tampa Bay Storm in Week 16. He has completed at least 72 percent of his throws in each of his last five games played and leads the AFL in passing efficiency with a mark of 139.7 this season.

Fontenette (5-11, 190, Houston) tied the single-game AFL record for tackles with 17.5 in the SaberCats’ 56-35 victory over the New Orleans VooDoo in Week 16. The League’s leading tackler also broke Arena Football Hall of Fame selection Omarr Smith’s single-season franchise record for tackles by bringing his 2015 total to 121.5, the 10th-highest single-season total in League history.

Thompkins (5-10, 190, Arkansas State) caught five passes for 97 yards and two touchdowns to go along with a rushing score in Orlando’s 69-62 win over the Tampa Bay Storm in Week 16. The League’s all-purpose yardage leader has hauled in a touchdown reception in 12 consecutive games and logged triple-digit all-purpose yards in all but one contest this season.

Goard (6-4, 205, Eastern Kentucky) went over the wall for a spectacular 18-yard touchdown in the second quarter of LA’s 34-28 victory over the Spokane Shock in Week 16. The catch landed on ESPN SportsCenter’s Top 10 Plays and earned Goard a Cutters hat and shirt in recognition of the reception.

Sykes (6-5, 290, Southern) recorded a historic strip-sack in the second quarter of Jacksonville’s 48-72 loss to the Portland Thunder in Week 16. The play enabled the two-time Defensive Lineman of the Year to tie his own single-season AFL record for sacks (16) and set a new League mark for forced fumbles (10) in a season.

Russell Athletic Offensive Player of the Week candidates included: Arizona’s Rod Windsor, LA’s Danny Southwick, Philadelphia’s Dan Raudabaugh, Portland’s Kyle Rowley, and San Jose’s Erik Meyer.

Riddell Defensive Player of the Week candidates included: Arizona’s Marquis Floyd, LA’s Rayshaun Kizer, Orlando’s Terence Moore, Philadelphia’s James Romain, and Portland’s Varmah Sonie.

J Lewis Small Playmaker of the Week candidates included: Arizona’s AJ Cruz, Philadelphia’s Harvey Binford, Portland’s V’Keon Lacey, San Jose’s Reggie Gray, and Spokane’s Arvell Nelson.

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 wide receiver Rod Windsor, Philadelphia Soul wide receiver Harvey Binford, and San Jose SaberCats wide receiver Reggie Gray. Fans will have 24 hours to vote on beginning at 1 p.m. ET on Wednesday, July 15. The winner will be announced on Thursday, July 16.

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 2015 season. This season will also be the first with Scott C. Butera leading the way as Commissioner. The AFL schedule culminates with ArenaBowl XXVIII Saturday, August 29, 2015 at 8 p.m. ET on ESPN.