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AFL’s 2018 Wide Receiver of the Year Joins the Empire for His Second Season

ALBANY, NY– The Albany Empire announce that the 2018 Arena Football League Wide Receiver of the Year, Malachi Jones, has been assigned to the team.  Jones spent his debut season with the Empire and also won Rookie of the Year and was named First Team All-Arena.

“I couldn’t be more excited to head back to the Capital Region to play for the Empire again,” said Jones.  “Special thanks to Coach Keefe, the coaching staff, and the Empire organization for giving me another opportunity to do what I love.  I can’t wait to get started and help this team pursue a championship!”

Jones simply dominated in his first season in the AFL, playing in and scoring in every game for the Empire during the team’s inaugural season.  The wideout led the League in receiving yards (1,156), total touchdowns (34), and receiving yards per game (96.3).  Jones also finished his 2018 campaign second in the League with 29 receiving touchdowns, and fourth in the League in receptions with 77.

Following his stellar season with the Empire, Jones signed with the Chicago Bears of the National Football League and spent the entire preseason on the team’s 90-man roster. Most recently, Jones was a member of the Atlanta Legends of the Alliance of American Football League.  Playing in all eight games for the Legends, Jones complied 312 yards and two touchdowns on 22 catches.

Jones’ return to the Capital Region will allow him to continue to be active within the community.  Last season, Jones was very prevalent in the community, making numerous appearances throughout the year.  From reading to young students at local elementary schools to partner events, Jones was extremely active off the field and looks to continue to do so during his second season with the team.

“Having Malachi back in an Empire uniform is huge for the entire organization and the Capital Region Community,” said Rob Keefe, Head Coach of the Albany Empire.  “On the field, we expect Malachi to pick up where he left off without skipping a beat.  Off the field, he will continue to be extremely active in the community.  He is humble, but hungry, and is a key piece to helping us settle unfinished business this season and bring home a championship.”

Fans can secure season tickets for the Albany Empire by calling 518-533-2200, by going to, or by stopping by the Empire office located in the Times Union Center.  A limited number of great seats are still available!  Want to bring your organization to a game, fundraise, or perform on the field? Group experiences are now on sale. Tickets to individual games are also on sale now! Call 518-533-2200 for additional information.

Albany Empire 2019 Season Presented By CDPHP.

About Albany Empire

Season memberships for the 2019 season are on sale now. For tickets, contact the Albany Empire sales department at (518) 533-2200 or by going to Follow the team on Facebook at and Twitter at

About the Arena Football League

The Arena Football League enters its 32nd season in 2019. Since its inception in 1987, the AFL showcases a fast-paced, exciting game to millions of fans in a myriad of markets. With the addition of two new teams in Atlantic City, N.J., and Columbus, O.H., the League totals six teams for 2019: Albany, Atlantic City, Baltimore, Columbus, Philadelphia and Washington D.C. Each team will play 12 regular-season games in 2019. One can find the League can on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook using the handle @OfficialAFL.

About Times Union Center

Albany’s Times Union Center, formerly Pepsi Arena, continues to have great success. Renamed in January 2007, the Times Union Center is “Upstate New York’s Premier Sports and Entertainment Facility. Owned by Albany County and operated by SMG, the world’s largest private management firm for public assembly facilities, the Times Union Center has an adaptable seating capacity between 6,000 and 17,500. Since Frank Sinatra christened the building on January 30, 1990, more than seven million patrons have walked through the turnstiles. As a multi-purpose facility, the Times Union Center has hosted a variety of events, including concerts, family shows and sporting events, averaging 165 events each year. 

About CDPHP®

Established in 1984, CDPHP is a physician-founded, member-focused and community-based not-for-profit health plan that offers high-quality affordable health insurance plans to members in 26 counties throughout New York. CDPHP is also on FacebookTwitterLinkedInPinterest, and Instagram.

About Transfinder

Founded in 1988 and headquartered in Schenectady, New York, Transfinder is a national leader in intelligent transportation systems, providing transportation management systems and services to school districts, municipalities and adult care facilities. Transfinder, an Inc. magazine “fastest-growing company” for the past eleven straight years, has offices in Austin, Texas, and Shanghai, China. The software company develops and supports routing and scheduling solutions for optimal transportation logistics.

Albany Empire Partners

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