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Firebirds sign QB Turman

February 12, 2004 - Arena Football League (1987-2008) (AFL I) - Albany/Indiana Firebirds News Release

INDIANAPOLIS – The Indiana Firebirds announced today that they have signed free-agent QB John Turman to a contract. Head Coach Steve DeBerg also announced that Tony Zimmerman will get his first AFL start, with Turman serving as his number two this week, when the team travels to encounter the New Orleans VooDoo Saturday on NBC. Kickoff is at 3:00 PM (EST), local Indiana time, and can be seen on WTHR-13.

Turman (6’5, 220) was signed after DeBerg found out that starting QB Kevin Daft would be out of action and placed on injured reserve. Daft was injured during Indiana’s week one loss to Columbus. In his first career start, Daft threw three touchdowns before being hit in the head by a defensive lineman as he was falling to the ground in the third quarter. Team doctors are still awaiting further test results to determine the extent of the injury.

“It’s a very unfortunate incident”, commented DeBerg. “Kevin looked good while he was in there and just took a freak shot to the head and back, giving him some numbness in his hand. Anytime you hear something like that you can’t take any chances. We want Kevin to be able to play for a long time to come, not just this week, so we won’t push anything when it comes to his injury”.

DeBerg didn’t go far from he AFL family tree to find Daft’s replacement. In 2003, Turman was the back-up quarterback for the San Jose Sabercats. When San Jose signed Kevin Daft, Turman was released. He would go on to be named the arenafootball2 Rookie of the Year, throwing for 3,183 yards and 63 touchdowns in just 13 games.

Turman entered the AFL after spending time in the Pittsburgh Steelers training camp in 2002. He was released after they signed Tommy Maddox. Turman put together a fine career playing quarterback for University of Pittsburgh, sharing starting duties, but managing to put up 3,290 passing yards and 28 touchdowns, while finishing his senior season as the nation’s number seven rated passer.

Firebirds’ season tickets and mini-plans for the 2004 season are on sale now and can be purchased by calling a team ticket representative at 317.472.8080. Firebirds merchandise is also available at Home Court Gift Shop, located inside Conseco Fieldhouse. For merchandise information, please call 317.917.2755.

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