The 2012 South Division Champion Jacksonville Sharks announced Tuesday that defensive back Bill Alford has been activated from inactive reserve. In addition, quarterback R.J. Archer has been activated from league suspension.
The 31-year-old Alford (5’9”, 190) started the first seven games of the 2013 season before suffering an injury in the team’s Week 7 loss to the Arizona Rattlers. Making six starts at Jack linebacker and one at defensive back, Alford has totaled 17 tackles (13 solo), 0.5 tackles for loss, three pass breakups and one interception to this point in the year.
Alford is in his fourth year with the Sharks, and is one of four players to suit up for Jacksonville in every season of the franchise’s existence. Alford became one of the first players to join the Sharks’ 2013 squad, agreeing to a two-year contract on October 24, 2012.
Alford finished third on the team with three interceptions in 2012 and was the only Shark to return multiple interceptions for touchdowns last season. Alford also recorded 10 pass breakups and both forced and recovered a fumble in 2012. In 2011, his second year in Jacksonville, Alford notched 40 total tackles, a career-high total of 2.5 tackles for loss, five pass breakups and two interceptions during the regular season. Alford’s biggest play of 2011 came in the American Conference Championship, as he hauled in an interception with under a minute left to seal a Shark victory over the Georgia Force.
In his rookie 2010 season, Alford started each of Jacksonville’s 16 regular-season games, recording eight pass breakups and recovering a pair of fumbles.
Before beginning his professional career, Alford completed his collegiate football career at Vanderbilt. He was signed as an undrafted free agent by the Baltimore Ravens in 2005, and also spent time with the NFL’s Denver Broncos and Atlanta Falcons as well as the Frankfurt Galaxy of NFL Europe.
The 25-year-old Archer (6’2”, 220) had been placed on league suspension on Monday, June 10 in anticipation of an excused personal absence. Archer is in his first year in Jacksonville and has appeared in five games to this point in the 2013 season, starting the team’s Week 9 matchup against the San Jose SaberCats. With Jacksonville, Archer has completed 52 of his 77 pass attempts (67.5%) for 509 yards, nine touchdowns and three interceptions. He has also totaled 25 rushing yards on four attempts.
Archer is in his third AFL season, as he spent the 2012 season with the Georgia Force. In 11 games at the helm of Georgia’s offense, Archer completed 229 of his 382 pass attempts for 2,446 yards and 49 touchdowns against 12 interceptions. Archer also finished the 2012 season as the Force’s third-leading rusher, as he gained 43 yards and a touchdown on seven carries. Archer got his first AFL experience with the Milwaukee Mustangs in 2011. That year, Archer completed just over 59 percent of his passes and threw 27 touchdown passes. Archer also finished third among Mustangs in rushing, gaining 35 yards on the ground to go along with five rushing touchdowns.
To make room for Alford and Archer on the active roster, the team announced that fullback Rendrick Taylor has been placed on injured reserve, and quarterback Lee Chapple has been placed on recallable reassignment. In addition offensive lineman Wondell Rutledge has been placed on refused to report, retroactive to June 15.
The Sharks return to the playing field on Saturday, June 22, hosting the Cleveland Gladiators on Sea Best Field at the Jacksonville Veterans Memorial Arena. Kickoff is set for 7:00 p.m.
About the Jacksonville Sharks
The Jacksonville Sharks are members of the Arena Football League (AFL). The ArenaBowl XXIV and back-to-back-to-back South Division Champions are presented by Sea Best Seafood and play all home games on Sea Best Field at the Jacksonville Veterans Memorial Arena. Season Tickets for the 2013 season are still available, two tickets as low as $105. To reserve your season tickets, or for more information, please call (904) 621-0700. Follow the Sharks on facebook at facebook.com/jaxsharks and on Twitter @jaxsharks, as well as the Attack Dance Team at facebook.com/sharkattackdance and Chum at facebook.com/chumsharks.
About the AFL
Since its inception in 1987, the Arena Football League has showcased its fast-paced and exciting game to millions of fans in a myriad of markets across the country. CBS Sports Network will broadcast an AFL National Game of the Week on Saturday nights for the entire regular season and postseason through the semifinal round. The ArenaBowl XXVI Championship Game will air on the CBS Television Network on August 17, 2013.