NFL season may be over, but XFL season is here!
The Seattle Dragons (0-1) evidently have the longest odds to win the XFL title and were big underdogs against the DC Defenders (1-0) at Audi Field. At halftime, Brandon Silvers and company were ahead 13-12, but critical turnovers and poor defense cost them in the 2nd half, as the Defenders prevailed 31-19.
Former Seattle Seahawks receiver Keenan Reynolds had the inaugural kickoff return, as well as the first catch. He would finish the game with just two catches for five yards on seven targets, including a 4th quarter drop.
Seattle’s star was undoubtedly WR Austin Proehl, as he hauled in a pair of touchdowns on five catches for 88 yards.
First XFL touchdown goes to the @AustinProehl11— XFL (@xfl2020) February 8, 2020
.@AustinProehl11 is a:— XFL (@xfl2020) February 8, 2020
and he is good at:
⚪️ dropping passes
⚪️ going out of bounds
️ https://t.co/Y3eyIb9PfX pic.twitter.com/9HQqePmkdU
Silvers struggled otherwise, going 21/40 for 217 yards, three touchdowns, two interceptions (one of them a pick-six). A botched handoff exchange with running back Trei Williams late in the 4th resulted in a lost fumble that killed off Seattle’s hopes of a comeback win. He also left the game injured with an ankle sprain, so he was replaced for all of one play by former Seahawks QB/WR B.J. Daniels, who threw an incomplete pass on 4th and 15.
Head coach Jim Zorn proved to be extremely foulmouthed and unbearably vulgar when mic’ed up. Just listen to him call for a punt on 4th and 1 from midfield!
February 8, 2020
We even got a “gosh darn it” on that fateful fumble at the end.
On the DC side, they scored on a blocked punt touchdown, that aforementioned pick-six, but their trick play was genuinely awesome. Cardale Jones had Khari Lee wide open for a touchdown, and it was thanks to all of this razzle dazzle.
TRICK PLAY ALERT @xfl2020— ESPN (@espn) February 8, 2020
Cardale Jones ➡️ Donnel Pumphrey ➡️ Eli Rogers ➡️ Cardale Jones ➡️ Khari Lee pic.twitter.com/FtV2egjmin
The go-ahead score for the Defenders came on 4th and 6 in the 3rd quarter, with Jones finding Rashad Ross in part because of this pretty poor secondary play by Johnathan Alston.
That @CJ1two and @RocketRoss_19 chemistry is looking— XFL (@xfl2020) February 8, 2020
️ https://t.co/Y3eyIb9PfX pic.twitter.com/qFGoLilAv5
All in all, for bad football, this was actually kinda fun! In the meantime, the Dragons have to fire Jim Zorn, the special teams coordinator, and the defensive coordinator. Those are the rules, ladies and gentlemen. Time to overreact!
Next week, Seattle makes its home debut at CenturyLink Field against the Tampa Bay Vipers. Kickoff time is 2 PM PT on February 15th, with FOX broadcasting the game.