Phoenix, Ariz – The Arizona Rattlers go into the second week of the season looking to rebound from the close loss last Friday to the Sioux Fall Storm (1-0) 40-29. They look to do so against the Iowa Barnstormers, a team in which they have some history against while in the Arena Football League (AFL).
This will be the fifteenth time the two teams have met and their first time since 2013. Arizona has won the last three meetings between the two teams, and most famously, a 55-33 victory against a Kurt Warner led Barnstormers in the 1997 Arena Bowl.
Iowa is also coming off a week one loss and will be hungry for their first win of the season this weekend. With both teams searching a victory on Sunday, there will be a lot of focus on taking care of the ball and not giving the other team any extra opportunities to score. The Rattlers were able to force one turnover last weekend vs. the Storm while the Barnstormers did not force any in their 68-53 loss versus the Wichita Falls Nighthawks (1-0).
The Rattlers were impressive defensively for most of the game last week against Sioux Falls. Through three and a half quarters the Rattlers defense held the Storm to 28 points combining for three tackles for loss and one big pass break up by Defensive Back Arkeith Brown that denied a first play touchdown by the Storm. The Rattlers defense will look to remain stout against a Barnstormers offense who is ranked first overall and third in scoring.
The Rattlers first time starters showed promise during their opening week of the 2017 IFL season. Quarterback Darron Thomas threw for 156 yards and three touchdowns on 14 of 28 passing. He did have one interception which was returned for a touchdown. Running Back Darrell Monroe led the team in rushing with 15 attempts for 47 yards and a touchdown in his first game with the Rattlers. Thomas and Monroe look to continue build upon their week one performances against an Iowa defense who struggles last week giving up 68 points. The Rattlers offense will be looking to exploit the weaknesses in the Barnstormers defense and light up the scoreboard.
The Rattlers will face the Barnstormers in Phoenix at the Talking Stick Resort Arena this Sunday at 3:00 p.m. PDT. The game will be broadcasted on Fox Sports Arizona Plus and streamed on the Fox Sports Go App and YouTube Live on a tablet, smartphone, or streaming device.