Around the XFL: Week 2

Story posted February 17, 2020 in Sports, CommRadio by Logan Bourandas

Another week in the XFL has passed by, as teams begin to stand out from the rest of the league. All four undefeated teams remaining faced off against each other this weekend, with one matchup remaining close and the other turning into a mess very fast.

This week in the XFL started out with that said blowout, as the New York Guardians traveled to DC to take on the Defenders. The two teams cruised last week, giving up a combined 22 points. Shockingly, the Guardians offense forgot to show up, as quarterback Matt McGlion, who played well last week, threw two interceptions in the game. McGloin called out head coach Kevin Gilbride during halftime, saying that they needed to change the entire game plan being down 12-0. McGloin was promptly benched later in the second half for former North Carolina quarterback Marquise Williams. The Defenders lived up to their name, as they didn’t allow a single point. Quarterback Cardale Jones was a solid contributor once again with almost 300 yards and two touchdowns. The Defenders cruised to a 27-0 shutout.

The second game Saturday featured the Tampa Bay Vipers traveling to Seattle to take on the Dragons. Both teams came off losses a week ago and brought another tight defensive battle. The Vipers made a quarterback change, benching Aaron Murray following a pair of interceptions last week in New York. Former Ohio State quarterback Taylor Cornelius got the start, and ironically also threw two picks as the Dragons beat the Vipers 17-9. Seattle quarterback Brandon Silvers also struggled throwing less than 100 yards for the Dragons, but the defense picked up the slack with three total interceptions.

Sunday’s slate of games started out in Los Angeles, as the Dallas Renegades came to town to face the Wildcats. The game marked the anticipated debut for one of the biggest names in the XFL in Landry Jones, who formerly played for the NFL’s Pittsburgh Steelers. Now a Renegade, Jones made his mark, throwing for over 300 yards but also threw two interceptions. Running back Cameron Artis-Payne stepped up with almost 100 rushing yards and two touchdowns in the Renegades 25-18 victory. Former NFL quarterback Josh Johnson also made his debut for the Wildcats, playing turnover free football with two touchdowns in a losing effort.

The final game of the week was arguably the best game, as the undefeated Houston Roughnecks played host to the also 1-0 St. Louis Battlehawks.  P.J. Walker made his case to be the early XFL MVP frontrunner with another dominant performance. Walker threw for another three touchdowns in a Roughnecks victory. Two interceptions from Battlehawks’ quarterback Jordan Ta’amu proved to be the difference maker in the game. Houston led by 15 at halftime, but St. Louis marged a furious comeback, which included a 12 point third quarter. The magic ran out in the fourth, as Houston’s defense stepped up when it mattered most, holding onto a 28-24 victory.

Logan Bourandas is a freshman majoring in broadcast journalism. To contact him, email lxb5412@psu.edu.