CLEVELAND – The Cleveland Gladiators have agreed to terms with two-time ArenaBowl champion quarterback JOHN DUTTON, the team announced. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.
Dutton (6-4, 220, Nevada) is one of the most celebrated quarterbacks in Arena Football League history and brings nine-years of AFL experience, two ArenaBowl championships and was named MVP of ArenaBowl XVI.
Dutton’s AFL career began in 2000 with the San Jose SaberCats where he played for three seasons. In 2002, he replaced starter Mark Grieb after a season-ending injury, leading the SaberCats to a 52-14 ArenaBowl XVI victory. He was named MVP for his performance, completing 20-of-26 passes for 236 yards and five touchdowns.
Dutton was signed by the Colorado Crush in 2003, playing there until 2008. In six seasons with the Crush, he amassed 94 career regular season games, 25,613 yards passing, 515 touchdown passes and a quarterback rating of 110.4. He is the Crush’s franchise leader in all quarterback statistical categories.
While in Colorado, Dutton led the Crush to the postseason for five-straight years (2004-08). In 2005, the Crush claimed ArenaBowl XIX with a 51-48 victory over the Georgia Force, making him the first quarterback in AFL history to lead two different teams to ArenaBowl championships. From 2004-08, he passed for over 4,100 yards five times, becoming the only quarterback in AFL history to accomplish that feat. Dutton has also started in 80 consecutive games, the longest streak of any quarterback in AFL history.
Currently, Dutton ranks seventh in AFL history among quarterbacks in four categories, with 2,442 completions, 3,873 pass attempts, 28,183 passing yards and 563 touchdowns. In 2006, he was the cover-athlete for the EA Sports Arena Football video game.
“We simply have one of the best quarterbacks in the history of the game,” Gladiators head coach STEVE THONN said. “John has won two championships, won MVP awards and has the respect of many people in this league. The support the Gladiators had from the community in 2008 made this a very attractive offer for him. We are looking forward to him bringing his leadership and winning edge to the Gladiators.”
Off the field, Dutton and his wife Terina have started the Dutton Foundation (www.duttonfoundation.org), whose mission statement is “To lead, nurture, and inspire the faith, integrity, and service of both our present and future generations.” The Dutton Foundation has worked in Ethiopia with an orphanage outside of the capital city of Addis Ababa since 2006. The Dutton’s have three children, Miki (adopted from Ethiopia), Zachary and Drew.
“As a former quarterback myself, I have tremendous respect for what John has done in our league over the past nine years,” said Gladiators special advisor BERNIE KOSAR. “He is a gifted player who has an understanding of the position, but also is a well-rounded guy off the field. His charitable foundation and what he gives to the community is just as important as winning football games.”
The Gladiators kickoff the 2010 season on April 3 when they host the Arizona Rattlers at Quicken Loans Arena. Group and Season Tickets are on sale now! To be a part of all the hard-hitting action of arena football, call 216.685.9000 or visit http://www.clevelandgladiators.com. Get ready to Rock the Q and Roll with the Gladiators!