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Soul Look to Rebound Opposite Reigning AFL Champion Valor


By Matt Rappa, Sports Talk Philly editor

Looking to rebound from their first loss of the season, the Philadelphia Soul (2-1) will take on the reigning Arena Football League champion Washington Valor (1-2) Saturday afternoon at Capital One Arena. The Soul have scored the second-most points (132, 44.0 points per game), while the Valor have allowed the most points (129) en route to a league-worst 43.0 points allowed per game. Yet, Washington is averaging a AFL-best 300.0 yards per game, while their QB, Arvell Nelson, leads the league with 17 touchdowns (12 passing, 5 rushing).

The Soul fell to the Albany Empire (3-0) last weekend at home, 57-48, despite QB Dan Raudabaugh throwing a season-high 306 yards and six scores — half of which were directed to WR Lonnie Outlaw, whose nine receptions yielded a career-high 191 yards and three scores, along with AFL Offensive Player of the Week honors. The Valor, meanwhile, earned their first win last week, defeating the Atlantic City Blackjacks (1-2) behind Nelson’s five touchdowns (3 passing, 2 rushing).

Soul head coach Clint Dolezel, along with GM and assistant coach Beau Bell, "have full confidence" in the team to bounce back from the loss. “We’ll clean up the mistakes and make sure that we’re fully-prepared to face the defending champs this weekend," Bell said.

The Soul have never lost at Capital One Arena (4-0), and are 6-1 against the Valor all-time, winning by an average of 17.0 points per game (56.3 points scored per game opposed to Valor's 41.9 in seven overall meetings).

Game Notes:


  • Dolezel seeks his 80th career win as Soul coach (79-33); under Dolezel, the Soul are 17-7 in regular season games which follow a loss, including 9-2 over their last 11 such games.
  • The Soul have trailed at halftime in each of their last six games; their last halftime lead (28-14) came on June 10, 2018, against the Valor, a nine-game stretch. The Soul went on to lose, 49-48, their only-ever loss against the team.
  • Raudabaugh is averaging six touchdowns in his four career games opposite Washington.
  • Outlaw's Soul-leading 255 receiving yards this season has already set his career high; fellow Soul WR Darius Prince’s six receiving touchdowns, meanwhile, are tied with the Blackjack's LaMark Brown for the league lead. Both players are coming off three-touchdown outings against the Empire. 
  • The Soul won their last meeting against the Valor last season, also on the road, despite not having Raudabaugh due to injury. The teams were tied 28-28 at the half, before the Soul put up a 35-0 scoring outburst en route to the 63-28 rout.

Soul Transactions:

  • On Tuesday, the Soul were assigned DL Thomas Dover (6'3, 270), replacing rookie DL Darius Rosser, who was placed on the injured reserve a day prior.
  • On Monday, the Soul were assigned rookie OL Fred Lauina, replacing OL Phillip-Keith Manley, who was placed on league suspension.

Soul Injury Report:

  • Questionable: DL Spencer Myers, DL Roosevelt Roberts
  • Probable: WR Jordan Williams
  • Injured Reserve: OL Kyle Avaloy, DB Willie Bailey, FB Brandon Cottom, WR Josh Holderfield, OL Jahlil Mathis-Ellis, WR DJ Myers, WR Darius Reynolds, DL Darius Rosser

Broadcast Information:

  • Kickoff: 3:30 p.m.
  • Radio: 97.5 The Fanatic

What's Next:

  • Sunday, May 26, 2019: at Baltimore Brigade (2-1), 3 p.m.
    • TV: NBCSP+, ESPN3; Radio: 97.5 The Fanatic


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