XFL Preview 2020

In XFL by Mikemiz23Leave a Comment

(picture via xfl.com)

Football Lives On! The XFL starts February 8th, and we will be covering it here at DailyFantasySolutions. I can say that I’m extremely excited to have football continue for another 10 weeks. As of this writing, Draftkings is the best place to play because they will have 4 game slates (2 games on Saturday, 2 on Sundays) and they’ll be of the traditional nature with a couple slight variations. Instead of a TE, there will be an additional flex position, giving us 2 total, and that will hopefully lead to some very unique lineups. In this article we are going to go over the rules that differ from the NFL, the teams, coaches, and a few players that stand out from each team. 

Rules 

(via xfl.com)

Kickoffs
  • The kicker kicks from the 30-yard line and must kick the ball in the air and in play between the opponent’s 20-yard line and the end zone.
  • The coverage team lines up on the return side 35-yard line and the return team lines up on the 30-yard line. Each team must have exactly 3 players outside the hash marks on both sides of the ball and cannot move until the ball is caught by the returner.
  • Out of bounds kicks and kicks that fall short of the 20-yard line will result in an illegal procedure penalty, taking the ball all the way out to the kicking team’s 45 yard line.
  • Players can move when the ball is touched by the returner or 3 seconds after the ball touches the ground (when the official waves his hand down).
  • If the ball is kicked into the end zone and is downed it is a “Major” touchback and the ball is placed at the return side 35-yard line.
  • If the ball bounces in bounds and then out of the end zone or is downed in the end zone, the ball is placed at the return side 15-yard line.
  • If a player on the return team touches the ball and it goes out of bounds, the ball is spotted where it went out of bounds.
  • If a team wishes to run an onside kick, it must indicate this to the official before the play and the two teams will be permitted to line up using traditional NFL rules (i.e. 10 yards apart from the kicking team). There will be no surprise onside kicks.
Why have Kickoffs this way?

With a goal to eliminate safety issues with kickoffs, the NCAA and NFL created more opportunities for touchbacks. The increase in touchbacks naturally leads to fewer returns which means fewer meaningful plays. The XFL’s proposed rule change will encourage more kick returns while making the play less dangerous by eliminating the 30-yard sprint to collision.

Point-After Touchdowns
  • After a touchdown, the team has the option of running a play from the 2, 5, or 10-yard line, worth 1, 2, or 3 points respectively. The team must run an offensive play and no kicking plays are allowed.
  • If the defense is able to cause a turnover and return the ball to the opponent’s end zone, the resulting score is equal to the number of points the offense was attempting to score on its PAT.
Why have Point-After Touchdowns this way?
  • The NFL has a near automatic play with its extra-point kick. The XFL has created excitement by replacing a kick with a play from scrimmage. To provide even more excitement, we have added the opportunity for a 3-point play, which means that an 18-point deficit is still a two-possession game. Fans have told the XFL that the 3-point play creates more strategy and innovation for the coaches.
Double-Forward Pass
  • If a forward pass is behind the line of scrimmage, the ball can be thrown forward again. This was added to bring more excitement to the trick play
One Foot Catch Rule

To catch a ball means that a player:

  1. Secures control of a live ball in flight before the ball touches the ground.
  2. Touches the ground in bounds with any part of his body, and then
  3. Maintains control of the ball long enough to enable him to perform an act common to the game, i.e., long enough to pitch or hand the ball, advance it, avoid or ward off an opponent, etc.
Why build the Catch Rule this way?

Catches in the NFL are often up to debate because of timing and control of the football. By simplifying the rules that establish control of the football, we are creating easier ways for officials to determine when a catch is made. When interviewing over 100 players on their opinion, players often said “A catch is made with your hands, not your feet.”

Click here to check out the XFL Youtube Channel for more clarity on the new rules

Divisions (with Champion odds via Fanduel Sportsbook)

Western Conference
  • Dallas Renegades (+300)
  • Houston Roughnecks (+900)
  • Los Angeles Wildcats (+500)
  • Seattle Dragons (+1000)
Eastern Conference
  • DC Defenders (+700)
  • New York Guardians (+375)
  • St. Louis Battlehawks (+1000)
  • Tampa Bay Vipers (+500)

Team Highlights

  • Dallas Renegades
    • Head Coach: Bob Stoops – you can remember him from his days coaching Oklahoma. Solid pick for a coach, that can get the most out of his players
    • Offensive Coordinator: Hal Mumme – pass heavy scheme with a lot of passes to rbs. Expect a lot of checkdowns and dump-offs 
    • Notable Players
      • Landry Jones: former Steelers QB with plenty of experience and was coached by Stoops in college.
      • Cameron Artis-Payne: former Panthers RB
      • Lance Dunbar: former Cowboys RB
      • Jeff Badet: former Oklahoma WR
      • Jazz Ferguson: former Seahawk, I expect him to be one of the best WRs in the XFL
      • Freddie Martino – they traded for him, so he’s worth noting
      • Donald Parham – big bodied red zone option
  • Houston Roughnecks
    • Head Coach: June Jones – former Hawaii HC and had NFL experience
    • Offensive Coordinator: Chris Miller – former QB coach for the Cardinals 09-11 where the teams weren’t great
    • Notable Players
    • Connor Cook: former 4th round pick by the Raiders. He was great at Michigan State and won a bunch of awards. Never panned out in the NFL
    • Phillip Walker – competing with Cook for the QB Job, former Temple QB
    • Andre Williams – former Giants RB that gave us headaches
    • Sammie Coates – former Steelers WR with experience
    • Jalen Saunders – former Jets WR
  • Los Angeles Wildcats
    • Head Coach: Winston Moss – former NFL player and Packers Assistant HC in 2018
    • Norm Chow – once popular name working with Qbs and taking their game to the next level, expect a pass heavy approach
    • Notable Players
      • Josh Johnson: former NFL player that has been around to a lot of teams. He can run too, so he will be a very popular player
      • Elijah Hood: big bodied RB from UNC
      • KD Cannon: former Baylor standout WR with elite speed
      • Tre McBride: former NFL WR with elite speed
      • Nelson Spruce: former AAF WR that was productive via the slot
  • Seattle Dragons
    • Head Coach: Jim Zorn – former Seahawks QB and has been an OC and/or QB coach in the NFL
    • Offensive Coordinator: Mike Riley – College, NFL, and AAF experience, with inside zone running
    • Notable Players
      • Kenneth Farrow: former Charger RB, AAF RB and played for Riley
      • Trey Williams: former AAF RB under Riley, elite speed and agility
      • Keenan Reynolds: former late rounder from the Ravens, former Navy QB. Will be asked to do a ton of things, running/catching/passing
      • John Santiago: converted RB now playing in the slot, could have huge catch totals
      • Evan Rodrigez: former Bears TE that will have a role in this offense
  • DC Defenders
    • Head Coach: Pep Hamilton – former Stanford HC and coached Andrew Luck there and was his OC in Indy.
    • Offensive Coordinator: Tanner Engstrand – Hamilton will likely be running the show for the most part, but expect a ton of passing and fast pace
    • Notable Players
      • Cardale Jones: former Ohio St QB and Bills draft pick. He’ll be one of the league’s best players
      • Tyree Jackson – former University of Buffalo QB that the draft community loved. He can run, but it’s Jones’ show
      • Jhurell Pressley: former AAF RB and led the league in rushing. Elite speed
      • Donnel Pumphrey: former Eagles RB that is a pass catching RB
      • Rashad Ross: former NFL and AAF WR – should be in the NFL, and will probably be the best WR in this league
      • Eli Rodgers: former Steelers WR and will be very good in this league
  • New York Guardians
    • Head Coach: Kevin Gillbride – former NFL coach and coached the Giants offenses in their recent super bowl runs
    • Notable Players
      • Matt McGloin: former NFL QB, but wasn’t very good at all
      • Marquis Williams: former UNC QB that played in front of Mitch Trubisky
      • Tim Cook: former AAF Rb, decent
      • Justin Stockton – former Texas Tech RB that played with Mahomes
      • Deangelo Yancey: former Prudue and Packers WR, good size
      • Mekale McKay: big 6 foot 4 WR with down-field ability
  • St. Louis Battlehawks
    • Head Coach: Johnathan Hayes – former NFL TE, and has coached positionally in college and the NFL for 20 years
    • Offensive Coordinator: Chuck Long – was the Heisman runner up to Bo Jackson, but has no pro-level coaching experience
    • Notable Players
      • Taylor Heinicke and Jordan Ta’Amu: this will be a Qb battle to watch. Heinicke can run so hopefully that’s the tie breaker. He also was drafted by the Vikings. Ta’Amu played at Ole Miss and started his last 5 games that he was eligible
      • Christine Michael – a DFS darling for many years. He will be a popular player and will have success in this league
      • Matt Jones: former 3rd round RB with the Redskins with starting experience. Will be a great pairing with Michael
      • Keith Mumphery: former Michigan State and Texans WR. Has NFL playing experience
  • Tampa Bay Vipers
    • Head Coach: Marc Trestman – a name you should know. He has been coaching for a long time and when he coached the Bears in 2013 they had an awesome offense. He’s also won the Grey Cup in the CFL, and multiple offensive coordinator stints in the NFL. He loves to pass and loves to pass to his RBs
    • Offensive Coordinator: Jamie Elizondo – former OC of the Ottawa Redbacks. He was able to get the most out of his guys including Trevor Harris to 5000 yards passing
    • Notable Players
      • Aaron Murray: Never played a NFL snap but was on the Chiefs, but was a stud at Georgia
      • DeVeon Smith: north south pounder, but scored a ton in the AAF
      • Quinton Flowers: the “backup” RB here but is a former college QB, so he can be used in a bunch of ways
      • Antonio Callaway: would have been a stud in this league, but is now on IR

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