Rattlers DB Virgil Gray collected a franchise record 15 interceptions in 2013.
Aug. 7, 2013
CHICAGO – Eighteen players earned 2013 First and Second Team All-Arena Defensive honors, the AFL Office announced today. The San Antonio Talons garnered a League-high three First Team selections and tied the San Jose SaberCats for the most overall All-Arena defenders with four.
For the second consecutive year, San Antonio Talons DE Joe Sykes was named First Team All-Arena after leading the League in sacks. Sykes has tallied 30 sacks over the last two seasons, including 14 in 2013. Sykes’ San Antonio teammate NG Tim McGill was named First Team All-Arena as well for his impressive work on the interior defensive line. Philadelphia Soul DE Bryan Robinson snagged the other defensive end spot after setting a single-season franchise record with 11 sacks to go along with six blocked kicks.
At linebacker, San Jose SaberCats MLB Francis Maka earned First Team recognition at the Mac position and San Antonio Talons JLB Jamar Ransom garnered First Team recognition as a Jack. Maka was a Second Team selection a year ago while Ransom earned Second Team honors in 2010.
Headlining the First Team All-Arena secondary was San Jose SaberCats DB Clevan Thomas, who set a the single-season AFL record for interceptions returned for touchdowns with six in 2013. Thomas and Arizona Rattlers DB Virgil Gray, who also garnered First Team recognition, tied for the League lead with 15 interceptions on the year. Jacksonville Sharks DB Terrance Smith earned the final First Team defensive back spot after setting a single-season franchise-record with 12 interceptions in 2013, while Spokane Shock DB Terrance Sanders was named First Team All-Arena as a kick return specialist. Sanders set a new AFL record with 2,265 kickoff return yards in 2013.
Nine more players earned Second Team All-Arena honors, including: Iowa Barnstormers DE Mike Lewis
; Jacksonville Sharks DE JERRY TURNER
; San Jose SaberCats NG Jason Stewart
; Jacksonville Sharks MLB Aaron Robbins
; San Jose SaberCats JLB Huey Whittaker
; Philadelphia Soul DB Rayshaun Kizer
; Arizona Rattlers DB Arkeith Brown
; San Antonio Talons DB Fred Shaw
; and Orlando Predators KR Dominic Jones
First Team All-Arena Defense
DE Joe Sykes, San Antonio
DE Bryan Robinson, Philadelphia
NG Tim McGill, San Antonio
MLB Francis Maka, San Jose
JLB Jamar Ransom, San Antonio
DB Clevan Thomas, San Jose
DB Virgil Gray, Arizona
DB Terrance Smith, Jacksonville
KR Terrance Sanders, Spokane
Second Team All-Arena Defense
DE Mike Lewis, Iowa
DE Jerry Turner, Jacksonville
NG Jason Stewart, San Jose
MLB Aaron Robbins, Jacksonville
JLB Huey Whittaker, San Jose
DB Rayshaun Kizer, Philadelphia
DB Arkeith Brown, Arizona
DB Fred Shaw, San Antonio
KR Dominic Jones, Orlando