Road to ArenaBowl XXIX Reaches Glendale
Thursday August 25, 2016
GLENDALE, AZ (August 24, 2016) – The stage is set and the Road to ArenaBowl XXIX rolls into Gila River Arena in Glendale, AZ as the American Conference Champion Philadelphia Soul (15-3) and National Conference Champion Arizona Rattlers (15-3) play in ArenaBowl XXIX on on ESPN.
Rattlers head coach Kevin Guy has his squad in the championship for the fifth time in the last six years. Year-end award candidate and First-Team All-Arena QB Nick Davila (69.6 comp. %, 4,198 yards and an AFL best 110 TDs), First Team All-Arena WR Rod Windsor (145 catches for 1,667 yards and 50 total TDs) and WR Maurice Purify (84 receptions for 1,017 yards and 30 TDs) lead the Rattlers. The defense is led by First Team All-Arena DL Damien Borel (6.5 sacks) and First Team All-Arena LB Tyre Glasper (4.0 sacks), while the tandem of DB Arkeith Brown (6 INTs) and DB Jeremy Kellem (4 INTs) patrol the secondary.
Soul head coach Clint Dolezel’s aerial attack is led by 2015 MVP and 2016 Second Team All-Arena QB Dan Raudabaugh (69.3 comp. %, 4,303 yards and 101 TDs). The Soul receiving corps are led by WR Darius Reynolds (112 receptions for 1,447 yards and 38 TDs) and WR Shaun Kauleinamoku (99 catches for 1,304 yards and 26 TDs), and WR Ryan McDaniel (86 receptions for 1,037 yards and 19 TDs). Soul’s First Team All-Arena and Defensive Lineman of the Year DL Jake Metz (AFL-leading 9.0 sacks) and First Team All-Arena and Defensive Back of the Year Tracy Belton (AFL-leading 9 INTs) lead Philadelphia’s defense.
ARENABOWL XXIX CHAMPIONSHIP MATCHUP
PHILADELPHIA SOUL (15-3) AT ARIZONA RATTLERS (15-3)
Play-by-play: Ari Wolfe; Color: Sherdrick Bonner; Sideline: Tina Cervasio, Randy Gatewood
|SERIES LEADER||Arizona leads 7-1 |
|LAST WEEK||W 55-50 vs. Sharks||W 82-41 vs. Gladiators|
|LAST REG. SEASON MEETING||6/7/16 Rattlers 80 vs. Soul 63 |
|TOTAL OFFENSE (RANK)||297.5 (2)||289.4 (3)|
|TOTAL DEFENSE (RANK)||271.4 (4)||300.6 (7)|
|POINTS SCORED (RANK)||61.4 (2)||66.8 (1)|
|POINTS ALLOWED (RANK)||48.4 (T-3)||58.2 (7)|
|TURNOVER MARGIN (RANK)||+5 (T-4)||+17 (1)|
WHAT TO LOOK FOR: SOUL:QB Dan Raudabaugh will look to lead the Soul to their first ArenaBowl victory since 2008…The two-time All-Arena selection has gone for 48-of-71 passes for 541 yards, 14 TDs, and 4 INTs in the playoff this season…In his previous two meetings against Arizona, Raudabaugh completed 42-of-66 passes for 595 yards, 13 TDs, and three INTs…Raudabaugh will look to target the receiving duo of WR Darius Reynolds and WR Shaun Kaleinamoku…Reynolds leads all Soul receivers with 112 receptions for 1,447 yards and 38 TDs during the regular season…Kaleinamoku has recorded 99 catches for 1,304 yards and 26 TDs for 2016…Reynolds and Kaleinamoku have each caught five TDs so far in the postseason…The two WRs combined for 29 catches for 407 yards, and eight TDs in the previous two meetings against the Rattlers…FB Jeramie Richardson had 103 rushing attempts for 320 yards and 20 TDs in 2016…The All-Arena Selection has three TDs on 14 attempts and 52 yards in the playoffs…The Soul defense is led by the 2016 Defensive Back of the Year DB Tracy Belton and 2016 Defensive Lineman of the Year DE Jake Metz….Belton tallied 90.0 total tackles, 20 pass-breakups, 29 passes defended, one forced fumble, two fumble recoveries, and a League-leading nine INTs…Metz tallied 29.5 total tackles, two forced fumbles, was No. 2 in tackles-for-loss with 10.0, and lead the League with 8.0 sacks… RATTLERS: QB Nick Davila is looking to guide the Rattlers to win their fourth ArenaBowl …The 2014 MVP continues to add to an already impressive resume completing 32-of-44 passes for 431 yards, a 13 TDs, and one INT in the 2016 postseason…Davila went 43-of-69 passes for 517 yards, 15 TDs, and two INTs in his last two meetings against the Soul…FB Mykel Benson is a force in the rushing game with 75 attempts for 199 yards and 20 TDs in 2016…In two games this postseason, the two-time All-Arena Selection has 11 carries for 55 yards and three TDs…Davila will look to target the receiving duo of WR Rod Windsor and WR Maurice Purify...Windsor, a five-time All-Arena Selection, has hauled in 13 receptions for 135 yards and seven TDs this postseason…In two playoff games, Purify has caught 13 passes for 22 yards and six TDs…The Rattlers defense is led by DB Arkeith Brown and DB Jeremy Kellem…Brown tallied 49.5 total tackles, 62 pass break-ups, 32 passes defended, and six INTs for 2016…Kellem contributed 47.0 total tackles, 10 pass break-ups, 14 passes defended, and four INT…Brown and Kellem have intercepted the ball for a TD return this postseason.
ABOUT THE AFL
The Arena Football League is in its 29th Season in 2016. 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 nationally broadcast AFL games each week, culminating with the ArenaBowl XXIX on on ESPN. For all the latest news and discussion on the Arena Football League, follow the AFL on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram (@aflarenaball).