Upcoming Match-ups

Opening 2020 XFL Win Totals: Defenders Should Rise Up

Robert Duff

by Robert Duff in XFL

Updated Apr 23, 2020 · 7:45 AM PDT

xfl logo and football helmet
Oddsmakers have established win totals for all eight XFL franchises.
  • Sportsbooks have set the win total bar for each of the XFL’s eight teams
  • The Tampa Bay Vipers are given the highest number at 7.5
  • Both the Seattle Dragons and the St. Louis BattleHawks are at low end with 3.5

Will the XFL prove to be a win this time for Vince McMahon? That answer is yet to be determined but at least this is for certain – sportsbooks are out with win totals for each of the league’s eight franchises.

In this second coming of the XFL, the Tampa Bay Vipers are viewed as the team to beat. Or should that be the team that does the most beating?

Books peg the win total for the Vipers at 7.5 games in the 10-game regular season. At the other end of the spectrum, the Seattle Dragons and St. Louis BattleHawks are forecast to be the XFL’s bottom feeders. The win total for each team is set at 3.5 games.

2020 XFL Team Win Totals

Team Win Total Over Odds Under Odds
Dallas Renegades 6.0 -120 -110
DC Defenders 5.5 -130 +110
Houston Roughnecks 6.0 -105 -125
Los Angeles Wildcats  4.0 -125 -105
New York Guardians 4.0 -120 -110
Seattle Dragons 3.5 -115 -115
St. Louis BattleHawks 3.5 -120 -110
Tampa Bay Vipers 7.5 +100 -130

All odds as of Feb. 4.

The original edition of the XFL lasted just one season in 2001. The new and improved version kicks off its inaugural regular season on Saturday, Feb. 8th.

In Trestman They Trust

Marc Trestman is the head coach of the Vipers. Trestman’s two-year stint as head coach of the NFL’s Chicago Bears wound up with a forgettable 13-19 record. However, he’s been a resounding success in other football leagues.

Trestman coached three Grey Cup winners in the CFL. His teams made the postseason in six of seven seasons and averaged 10. 28 wins per campaign (in 18-game seasons).

On the other hand, he hasn’t coached a pro team to a winning season since 2012. Already, there are issues in Tampa Bay. Wide receiver and former Cleveland Browns problem child Antonio Callaway is lost for the season with a lower leg injury.

The Vipers are going to rely heavily on quarterback Aaron Murray, who played for Atlanta in the ill-fated Alliance of American Football, and running back-slash-quarterback Quinton Flowers. Minus Callaway, one of the few elite skill players in the league, it will be tough to reach eight wins in a ten-game slate.

Pick: Under 7.5 wins (-130)

Will BattleHawks Be Sunk?

St. Louis has twice lost its NFL team – first the Cardinals and then the Rams left town – and already there is speculation that the BattleHawks will prove to be a lost cause.

They do have some interesting pieces in place, though. Running back Matt Jones started seven games for the Washington Redskins in 2016 and averaged 4.6 yards per carry.  Safety Will Hill played 50 NFL games for the New York Giants and Baltimore Ravens. Among his four career interceptions were a pair of pick sixes.

Ex-Mississippi Rebel Jordan Ta’amu beat out Taylor Heinicke for the starting QB position. Heinicke started a game for the Carolina Panthers in 2018.

The BattleHawks might be more battle-hardened than the oddsmakers think.

Pick: Over 3.5 wins (-120)

You Can’t Go Home Again

When it comes to former greats coming back to coach in the same town, the title of that famous Thomas Wolfe tome generally holds true.

You can’t go home again. Whether it was Bart Starr in Green Bay, Pete Rose with the Cincinnati Reds, or Magic Johnson with the Los Angeles Lakers, this formula is generally a recipe for disaster.

That brings us to Seattle Dragons head coach Jim Zorn. True, Zorn didn’t play for the Dragons. He was a Seattle Seahawk, the team’s first big-name star.

With the Dragons, Zorn simply doesn’t have the horses. Brandon Silvers was an average QB with Memphis in the AAF. Kenneth Farrow, the AAF’s third-leading rusher with San Antonio, is a nice piece, but the talent pool quickly thins out beyond that.

Pick: Under 3.5 wins (-115)

Defenders Will  Win Over DC

Let’s start under center, where Defenders QB Cardale Jones is being tabbed as one of the contenders for XFL MVP. He came off the bench as a freshman to lead Ohio State to the 2014-15 National Championship. Jones was Big Ten Championship Game MVP that year.

DC is deep on both sides of the ball. Wideout Eli Rogers caught 48 passes for 549 yards and three touchdowns with the 2016 Pittsburgh Steelers.

Safety Rahim Moore started 54 NFL games for Denver and Houston, picking off nine passes. Safeties Matt Elam (26 starts with Baltimore) and Shamarko Thomas (66 games with Pittsburgh, Buffalo  and Denver) also bring NFL experience to the defensive backfield.

DC moved from +750 to +350 in the 2020 XFL championship odds. The Defenders should be legitimate contenders for the XFL title.

Pick: Over 5.5 wins (-130)

Author Image