SAN JOSE -- The San Jose SaberCats erased any lingering doubts from the previous week's home fiasco by playing a sharp, nearly mistake-free contest Saturday.
Russ Michna threw five touchdown passes, Clevan Thomas returned a pair of interceptions for touchdowns, and the SaberCats beat the Chicago Rush 65-40 to head into the playoffs feeling good.
"We had 18 shots to get ready for this," San Jose coach Darren Arbet said. "We were ready to play, and we did what we had to do. We took care of business."
Jason Willis caught eight passes for 134 yards and two touchdowns as the SaberCats rebounded from a 65-43 home loss to the Philadelphia Soul a week earlier.
San Jose (13-5) travels to the Arizona Rattlers for its playoff opener Saturday while the Rush goes to Spokane.
"Everything is starting to come together," Thomas said. "The season doesn't matter anymore. We're getting ready for a single-elimination tournament."
Michna threw for 257 yards on 19-of-24 passing. He did not throw an interception.
James Roe also caught two touchdown passes and Huey Whittaker caught a touchdown pass for the seventh straight contest. Whittaker added seven tackles, and has at least two tackles in each of his last 13 games. Dennis Godfrey rushed for 19 yards on five carries, including an 11-yard scoring run.
Chicago's Reggie Gray returned the opening kickoff 57 yards for a touchdown to give the Rush the early advantage.
Francis Maka blocked the ensuing PAT, with Steve Octavien turning running back as he wove his way into the end zone for two points.
Jabar Fletcher scored on a 5-yard run to make 16-12 San Jose with five minutes left in the first quarter. Thomas returned an interception 51 yards for a touchdown a few minutes, later and the SaberCats never looked back.
Thomas has 15 interceptions on the season, returning six for touchdowns. Both lead the league.