In the end, Arena Football always comes down to quarterback play. And over the last decade, the best in the league has been San Jose’s Mark Grieb. But this year, the league’s most consistent quarterback has been remarkably inconsistent. Whether its age, the new jack linebacker rules, injuries to his receivers, his 21 interceptions in the regular season and playoffs are the most of his career. He’s gone through stretches of absolutely locked in play, games completing over 80%, and the defense has been good enough most of the year to make up for said inconsistencies. But against Philadelphia today, will he be locked in enough, without his safety valve in James Roe?
To make matters more difficult, while dealing with a top 3 secondary, he’s going to have to use a brand new receiver in Samora Goodson for at the very least spot receiving duty. Of all the ArenaBowls the SaberCats have played in, the Soul has the toughest defense of the four opponents. This very well could be a defensive struggle, one in which the quarterback who makes the fewest mistakes will be holding the Foster Trophy tonight. Grieb was near perfect in Arena Bowl XXI, and almost as impressive in ArenaBowl XVIII, with 12 touchdowns and 0 picks in the two games. He may need just as impressive a performance to hang a 4th banner in San Jose.