XFL Week 1 Review
BarnBurner Sports Writer
Sunday, February 9, 2020
TORONTO – For the first time in 19 years, the XFL is back. With a 10-week season, the league hopes to capture the attention of football fans during the NFL offseason. The XFL season will conclude with a championship game on April 26. But before we talk about a championship, we have to start with the regular season.
Seattle Dragons vs. DC Defenders
It was a strong showing for DC in the opening game of the 2020 XFL season. They had a stellar second half, rolling to a 31-19 win over Seattle. Defenders quarterback Cardale Jones threw for 291 yards and two touchdowns in the victory. He averaged 11.2 yards per attempt, leading DC to the inaugural victory of the season.
Seattle quarterback Brandon Silvers had a tougher day. Although he threw for three touchdowns, he did throw two interceptions including one that was returned for a touchdown.
The inaugural game also saw different rules being used compared to the NFL. Kickoffs must travel past the 20-yard line in the air, and the players line up against each other on the 30 and 35-yard lines until the ball is caught.
Additionally, instead of kicking an extra point after a touchdown, teams can either try for a single point on a play from the 2-yard line, two points from the 5-yard line, or three points from the 10-yard line.
Los Angeles Wildcats vs. Houston Roughnecks
It was a back-and-forth game early on, as L.A. led 8-6 after the first quarter. They led 17-12 later in the half, but Houston scored 25 unanswered points in a 37-17 victory. Roughnecks quarterback P.J. Walker threw four touchdowns along with an interception with 272 passing yards.
With 1:10 to go in the first half, Walker found wide receiver Sam Mobley for a deep 38-yard touchdown pass to give the Roughnecks the 18-17 lead. They didn’t look back after that, running away with the 20-point victory.
Tampa Bay Vipers vs. New York Guardians
This contest wasn’t very close, as Marc Trestman’s Vipers couldn’t get anything going offensively. Tampa Bay had 394 total yards compared to 226 for New York, but the Guardians won easily by a score of 23-3.
Guardians quarterback Matt McGloin threw for 182 yards and a touchdown in the victory. He also had a 2-yard rush to open the scoring with a touchdown in the first quarter.
The main story of this game was the Guardians defence. They forced three turnovers, as well as compiling five sacks in the win. New York defensive end Bunmi Rotimi Jr. had nine tackles with one sack, two quarterback hits, and one forced fumble.
St. Louis BattleHawks vs. Dallas Renegades
It was the lowest scoring game of the weekend, as the BattleHawks claimed the first road win of the season 15-9. BattleHawks quarterback Jordan Ta’amu completed 20 of 27 passes which included a touchdown in the fourth quarter.
A glaring stat in this game was third-down efficiency. The BattleHawks were 6-for-12, but the Renegades went just 1-for-10.
Offensively, the Renegades were limited to just three field goals while St. Louis scored two touchdowns and a field goal.