Smith, Capozzoli Recognized by AFL on TuesdayJuly 31, 2012 - Arena Football League (AFL) Jacksonville Sharks
In his second AFL season, the 25-year-old Smith started all 18 of Jacksonville's regular-season games in addition to last Saturday's playoff opener against the Georgia Force. Smith began the season as the team's top playmaking threat, starting the Sharks' first 16 regular-season games at wide receiver and emerging as one of the top kick returners in the league. Over the last three weeks, Smith has switched to defense and excelled at that position as well.
Overall, Smith led the Sharks with 1,158 receiving yards and 29 touchdown receptions in 2012, finishing second on the team with 99 receptions. In Week 6 against the Utah Blaze, Smith set the team's individual season highs with 154 receiving yards and five touchdown receptions.
Serving as the team's primary kick returner, Smith established new franchise records with 1,707 kickoff return yards, 77 missed field goal return yards, 2,984 all-purpose yards and three kickoff return touchdowns. In the first quarter of the team's Week 4 game against Tampa Bay, Smith returned back-to-back kickoffs for touchdowns. He also established a single-game franchise record with 196 kickoff return yards against Philadelphia in Week 15.
Smith finished the regular season fourth among all AFL players with an average of 165.8 all-purpose yards per game and tied for fifth in the league with an average of 20.3 yards per kickoff return.
After spending the entire season on offense, Smith executed his switch to defensive back when Micheaux Robinson sustained an injury during the team's Week 18 win against the Milwaukee Mustangs. After Robinson was placed on injured reserve prior to the next same, Smith has started each of the team's last three games at defensive back and recorded an interception in each of those contests.
After playing collegiately at South Carolina State and spending time with the Green Bay Packers during the 2010 NFL season, Smith began his AFL career with the Sharks in 2011. Splitting time between Jack linebacker and defensive back that year, Smith ranked third on the team with 65.5 total tackles and tied for second among Shark defenders with six interceptions.
Smith is one of six players selected to the All-Ironman team. He joins Pittsburgh WR/KR P.J. Berry, Spokane DB/KR Terrance Sanders, Philadelphia WR/KR Jeff Hughley, Milwaukee WR/LB Marcus Everett and Kansas City WR/KR Jackie Chambers on the squad.
SHARKS' CAPOZZOLI EARNS SPALDING HIGHLIGHT OF THE WEEK
JACKSONVILLE - The ArenaBowl XXIV Champion Jacksonville Sharks and the Arena Football League announced Tuesday that Sharks K Marco Capozzoli has been awarded the Spalding Highlight of the Week for Week 21 of the 2012 Arena Football League Season. Capozzoli is being recognized for his game-winning, 51-yard field goal as time expired in Jacksonville's 58-56 victory over the Georgia Force last Saturday night.
With six seconds remaining in the game, the Sharks trailed by a score of 56-55 and faced a fourth-and-long from inside their own territory. Following a timeout, Capozzoli entered the game. With holder LaRoche Jackson lined up at the Sharks' seven-yard line, Capozzoli drilled a perfect kick that sailed through the uprights as the clock struck zero, allowing Jacksonville to advance to the American Conference Championship game against the Philadelphia Soul.
The kick was the longest in franchise history, surpassing the 37-yarder that Capozzoli kicked in a regular-season game against the Orlando Predators earlier this year. The longest postseason field goal in franchise history had also been kicked by Capozzoli, a 36-yarder that extended the Sharks' lead in the final minute of the team's 64-55 victory over the Force in the 2011 American Conference Championship game.
Capozzoli becomes the seventh Shark to win a weekly league award this season. WR/DB Terrance Smith was named AFL Playmaker of the Week for both Week 4 and Week 6, later earning the Spalding Highlight of the Week for Week 7. Fullback Rendrick Taylor earned the Highlight of the Week for Week 11, while Jackson was named the Riddell Defensive Player of the Week for Week 16 and quarterback Bernard Morris earned a selection as the Russell Athletic Offensive Player of the Week following the team's Week 20 victory over the Pittsburgh Power.
Arena Football League Stories from July 31, 2012
- Smith, Capozzoli Recognized by AFL on Tuesday - Jacksonville Sharks
- Trio of SaberCats Bring Home Weekly AFL Awards - San Jose SaberCats
- Josh Bush Named AFL Playmaker of the Week - New Orleans VooDoo
- Purify, Jones and Williams Earn Weekly Honors - AFL
- Chambers Selected to AFL All-Ironman Team - Kansas City Command
- Milwaukee WR/LB Marcus Everett Named to 2012 All-Ironman Team - Milwaukee Mustangs
- AFL Names Jeff Hughley to All-Ironman Team - Philadelphia Soul
- Terrance Sanders Named to All-Ironman Team - Spokane Shock
- Terrance Smith Selected to All-Ironman Team - Jacksonville Sharks
- AFL Names Six to All-Ironman Team - AFL
- WR Rodriguez Named National Guard Community MVP Finalist - Tampa Bay Storm
- Blaze Head to Phoenix for Rubber Match with ArenaBowl on the Line - Utah Blaze
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