News

SHARKS ACTIVATE NARCISSE, RAYFORD, JEAN-BAPTISTE

03/23/2015 5:09 PM -

JACKSONVILLE - The Jacksonville Sharks announced Monday that the team has activated both offensive lineman Antonio Narcisse and defensive lineman Nicolas Jean-Baptiste from Refused to Report. Additionally, defensive lineman Caesar Rayford has been activated from League Suspension.

The 32-year-old Narcisse (6’2”, 340) joined the Sharks via free agency on March 15, and heads to Jacksonville for his eighth season in the Arena Football League. In 2014, Narcisse earned First Team All-Arena honors for his work at center with the Pittsburgh Power. Starting 14 games that season, Narcisse’s blocking proved crucial as Pittsburgh ranked third in the league with an average of 56.4 points scored per game. In addition, the Power yielded just 13 sacks that season, again ranking third-best in the AFL.

Narcisse is no stranger to working with quarterback Tommy Grady, as Narcisse spent three seasons with the Utah Blaze, starting a total of 43 regular-season games from 2011 through 2013. Prior to his time with Utah, Narcisse spent time with the Spokane Shock (2010-11), Cleveland Gladiators (2008) and New Orleans VooDoo (2007). A native of New Orleans, Narcisse finished his collegiate career at Portland State University.

The 29-year-old Rayford (6’7”, 280) competed in training camp with the Sharks before being invited to this past weekend’s NFL Veteran Combine. Rayford originally joined the Sharks via the Offseason Assignment Process in September of 2013, when he was a member of the Dallas Cowboys’ active roster. More recently, Rayford logged stints with both the Calgary Stampeders and Montreal Alouettes of the Canadian Football League during the 2014 season.

Before his time in the NFL and CFL, Rayford spent four seasons in the AFL with the Utah Blaze. A consistent performer throughout his career, Rayford has totaled at least six sacks in each of his campaigns in the league. He enjoyed a breakout season in 2011, earning First-Team All-Arena honors after racking up 10 sacks, 12 tackles for loss, three forced fumbles, four fumble recoveries and seven pass breakups. For his career, Rayford has totaled 29.5 sacks, nine forced fumbles, seven fumble recoveries, two interceptions and 16 pass breakups.

The 26-year-old Jean-Baptiste (6’2”, 330) was acquired by Jacksonville via a trade with the Arizona Rattlers on March 19. He enters his second season in the Arena Football League, having suited up for Arizona in three games during the 2014 season. In that action, Jean-Baptiste recorded four tackles, one sack and one pass breakup.

Before heading to the AFL, Jean-Baptiste enjoyed stints with several National Football League franchises, first signing with the Baltimore Raves as an undrafted free agent following the 2012 NFL Draft. He then spent time with the Indianapolis Colts’ practice squad later in the 2012 season, and competed in training camp with the Cleveland Browns in 2013. A native of Fairfax, Virginia, Jean-Baptiste played at Baylor University.

Following the transactions, the Sharks’ active roster sits at the League maximum of 24 active players.


About the Jacksonville Sharks

The Jacksonville Sharks are members of the Arena Football League (AFL). The ArenaBowl XXIV and four-time 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 2015 season are now available, two tickets as low as $99. 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 a fast-paced and exciting game to millions of fans in a myriad of markets across the country. The ESPN family of networks and CBS Sports Network will nationally broadcast AFL games each week for the entire 2015 season. The AFL schedule culminates with ArenaBowl XXVIII Saturday, August 29, 2015 on ESPN.