Arizona Rattlers: Gearing Up for the 2011 AFL Post-Season

Tyson AbaroaContributor IMay 26, 2011

PHOENIX - JUNE 30:  Head coach Kevin Guy of the Arizona Rattlers talks during a game against the Grand Rapids Rampage at the US Airways Center in Phoenix, Arizona on June 30, 2008.  (Photo by Gene Lower/Getty Images)
Gene Lower/Getty Images

The Arizona Rattlers sit comfortably on top of the NC West with a three game lead and have the second most wins in the AFL. The only team that can beat the Rattlers are the Rattlers.

Mistakes and lack of discipline almost cost them in New Orleans and could be detrimental as they face the best team from the AC East, the Cleveland Gladiators.

The Gladiators will be able to take advantage of mistakes in a way the Voodoo could not. The Gladiators are ranked on as the best defense against the pass and could slow down Arizona QB Nick Davila.

With eight games left in the Rattlers’ season—and being on the cusp of a playoff berth—they can’t afford to let any teams trip them up on the way.  With Arena Bowl XXIV being hosted by the highest remaining seed in the post season, the Rattlers need to keep working no matter how far ahead they are in their division.

Looking at the rest of the Rattlers season, it seems they can still conquer the first seed. Although there are no pushovers, the hardest part of their season will be over after they face the Gladiators.

The race for the first seed is between the Rattlers and the Jacksonville Sharks. The Sharks currently have the most victories with a nine-game winning streak since they lost the season opener to the Rattlers.

That matchup kicked off the AFL's 2011 season, and it may end it.