Despite losing at Tampa Bay last week, Arena Football League coaches granted the Orlando Predators enough votes this week to move the Preds up to No. 3 in the latest AFL poll.
The Predators suffered a tough 44-46 loss to the division-rival Storm last Friday. The loss was Orlando’s second in a row. The Preds look to get back on track as hosts against the Georgia Force (8-6) on Saturday at 7:30 p.m. The winner will hold the third spot in the American Conference playoff picture.
The Jacksonville Sharks (12-1) remain in the top spot of the Week 15 Coaches’ Poll for the eighth consecutive week, receiving 13 first-place votes following a 62-47 playoff-clinching victory over the Milwaukee Mustangs (4-9). Jacksonville earned its 12th-straight victory and is now tied with the 2002 San Jose SaberCats team for the AFL single-season win streak record. The Sharks host the Tampa Bay Storm (6-7) on Saturday at 7 p.m. A win will give Jacksonville the number one seed in the American Conference.
The Arizona Rattlers (12-2) tallied five first-place votes and remained in second place following their 64-57 home win over the San Jose SaberCats (5-8). Arizona has won five consecutive games and holds a two-and-a-half game lead over the Chicago Rush (9-4) in the National Conference. Arizona travels to play the Philadelphia Soul (5-9) on Saturday at 7:05 p.m.
Chicago fell to fourth in the poll following a 63-60 road loss to the Spokane Shock (6-7). Rush quarterback Russ Michna was placed on Injured Reserve Tuesday after suffering an ankle injury at the end of the first half against the Shock. Newly acquired JJ Raterink and the Rush look to bounce back in Week 16 as they face the Iowa Barnstormers (3-10) on Sunday at 4:00 p.m.
WEEK 15 COACHES’ POLL
RK Team (1st place votes) W-L Pts LW
1 Jacksonville Sharks (13) 12-1 166 1
2 Arizona Rattlers (5) 12-2 149 2
3 Orlando Predators 8-5 126 4
4 Chicago Rush 9-4 125 3
5 Dallas Vigilantes 8-5 100 5
6 Georgia Force 8-6 80 8
7 Cleveland Gladiators 7-6 68 6
8 Pittsburgh Power 7-6 56 7
9 Utah Blaze 6-7 32 9
10 Tampa Bay Storm 6-7 30 —