24 hours after the re-birth of Vince McMahon’s initial vision from 2001, the XFL Week 1 games proved that this isn’t your older siblings’ football league. Not only did both games prove to be heavy in action as well as nuances that kept the audience guessing like an Oscar nominated movie, but the four teams who played yesterday also proved that there is something powerful about second chances.
And in many cases, third, fourth and fifth chances.
The XFL re-kicked-off yesterday when the DC Defenders hosted the Seattle Dragons. The home team held their field and earned the first win in this new version of XFL football. Coached by Pep Hamilton, the Defenders did just that at home and defeated Jim Zorn’s Seattle Dragon’s team 31-19.
The game itself introduced a number of facets to the sport that truly amplify the action and throw the book out, in terms of your standard time management for football games.
Basically… there is no good time in-game to hit the fridge. Wait until a commercial break, because this league was built for speed and scoring. Just ask the LA Wildcats and Houston Roughnecks, who dueled to a 37-17 high-scoring affair that saw Nelson Spruce earn the prestigious honor of becoming the league’s first-ever 100-yard receiver in a single game.
With two exciting games yet to play, action at every second of the national broadcasts, as well as innovative ways to keep fans at the edge of their armchairs, Sunday’s pair of contests look to keep the positive momentum going.
New York Guardians vs. Tampa Bay Vipers
The NY Guardians play host to the Tampa Bay Vipers, who, rumor has it, travel extremely well as a fanbase.
The home team, coached by former New York Giants offensive coordinator Kevin Gilbride, faces off against a tough challenge in the Vipers, led by former NFL and CFL Head Coach, Mark Trestman. Gilbride is very familiar with his home turf, and Trestman is no stranger to the spotlight as a former Chicago Bears headman.
Trestman leads a road team that could very well be the lone traveling victor in the XFL’s opening Week 1. Trestman has a running back in De’Veon Smith who could be utilized a lot like running back Matt Forte, whom Trestman coached in Chicago and ironically played his final two seasons with in New York as a Jet. The Vipers and quarterback Aaron Murray will keep the pressure on the Guardians defense, which could be susceptible to an offense that could dominate the time of possession battle.
The Guardians signal-caller, Matt McGloin, is used to cold weather being a former Penn State quarterback. His top potential target is a big one in Mekale McKay, who is 6’5’’ and probably playing with a bigger chip on his shoulder pads, as he was a part of six different NFL teams before getting his opportunity in the XFL.
With these familiar faces from both college football as well as the National Football League, football fans can rejoice that even after the Super Bowl a mere seven days ago, there is still a full 10-week regular season the XFL has in store for a nation of football-obsessed fans.
Get in on the action over at DraftKings
Whether you are looking for a new team to root for, or simply still need your weekly fill of daily fantasy sports, head over to www.DraftKings.com, as the DFS site recently became the official partner of the XFL, and they are basically now like the Mega Powers.
Remember that, WWE Fans?
If it’s those daily players you are looking to lean on today, keep on eye on Tampa Bay’s Quinton Flowers. While Flowers is listed on the official Tamp Bay depth chart as their third quarterback, Coach Trestman has indicated he will use Flowers a multitude of ways. He is a prime suspect to make a top play tonight with the league’s new double-forward-pass rule.
The new rule allows two forward passes, so keep that famous Patrick Mahomes-to-Tyreek Hill-like hike and drop toss to a sweeping wideout in a shotgun formation. Imagine if a player of Hill’s skillset, with a quarterback arm, could decide to throw?
Get your popcorn ready, indeed.
MetLife Stadium, which plays host to the NFL’s Giants and Jets, now adds a new tenant, and this one could have a number of “Rowdy” guests chanting the names of their new gridiron heroes.
And when the smoke clears, there very well could be a new league that is here to stay, with millions of fans each week continuing to smell what the XFL is cooking.