- Two unbeaten teams clash in Week 2 of the XFL season as the Houston Roughnecks play host to the St Louis BattleHawks
- Can the BattleHawks improve to 2-0 on the season in Texas?
- Will the favored Roughnecks cover the eight-point spread at home? Read on and find out
Both the Houston Roughnecks and St. Louis BattleHawks won games played in Texas during Week 1 of the XFL season.
The Roughnecks manhandled the Los Angeles Wildcats 37-17 in their season opener as 5.5-point home favorites. The BattleHawks beat the Renegades 15-9 at Dallas as nine-point underdogs.
St Louis comes back to the Lone Star State to face the Roughnecks this week. Again, the BattleHawks will do so as significant road underdogs.
Sportsbooks list the Roughnecks as the eight-point chalk to meet St. Louis and make mince meat out of the BattleHawks.
St. Louis Battlehawks vs Houston Roughnecks Odds
|St. Louis||+8 (-110)||+250||O 49 (-110)|
|Houston||-8 (-110)||-360||U 49 (-110)|
Odds taken Feb. 14th
Houston leads the league in scoring offense. St Louis was one of two defenses to hold their Week 1 opponents without a touchdown.
Smooth Start for Roughnecks
Houston coach June Jones is the mentor of the run and shoot offense. One game into the season, it’s clearly evident that Roughnecks quarterback PJ Walker has mastered the intricacies of this explosive system.
Walker went 23-for-39 through the air for 272 and four touchdowns. He rallied Houston from a 17-12 deficit for the lopsided victory over LA.
Highlight MACHINE @pjwalker_5 ?
— Houston Roughnecks (@XFLRoughnecks) February 8, 2020
Walker spread the ball around, he connected with eight different receivers. He also displayed the required mobility to play QB in this offense. Walker carried the ball four times and gained 26 yards.
The former Temple Owl was named the XFL star of the week.
BattleHawks Outwit Renegades
Dallas was pegged as the preseason favorite to win the XFL championship. In their first game, the Renegades couldn’t even take the ball to the house.
It was St. Louis that brought the Big D to Dallas. The BattleHawks turned in a smothering defensive performance to stifle the Renegades.
St. Louis held the Dallas offense to 267 yards and three field goals on the scoreboard. No Renegades running back gained more than 30 yards. No Dallas receiver went for more than 45 yards.
— St. Louis BattleHawks (@XFLBattleHawks) February 12, 2020
The Renegades were just 1-of-10 on third-down conversions. The BattleHawks sacked Dallas QB Philip Nelson three times.
Quarterback Jordan Ta’amu – a surprise starter – completed 74% of his passes (20 of 27) for 209 yards. He also completed passes to eight different receivers. Ta’amu proved a double threat, as he ran for 77 yards as well.
The balanced St. Louis offense gained 191 yards on the ground and 183 through the air. Matt Jones, a former Washington Redskin, rushed 21 times for 85 yards.
St. Louis Is for Real
The BattleHawks were well down the list of contenders in the season-opening XFL Championship odds but are steadily improving after their solid Week 1 performance.
It should be noted that they faced Nelson and not #1 Dallas QB Landry Jones. Jones was out with a knee injury for the season opener.
Defensive Grades Week 1
•Houston Roughnecks 75.4
•St. Louis Battlehawks 74.2
•DC Defenders 72.6
•Los Angelas Wildcats 61.7
•New York Guardians 61.7
•Seattle Dragons 61.4
•Dallas Renegades 61.2
•Tampa Bay Vipers 59.1#XFL #XFLNews #XFLStats
— XFL Highlights (@XFLPlays) February 12, 2020
Based on his opening-week performance, Walker will give the St Louis defense much more to handle. On the flip side, Walker won’t get a defense in disarray like the Wildcats bunch he faced last week.
Both teams were decisive in the red zone in Week 1. St Louis went 2-for-3, while Houston was 3-for-4.
Roughnecks vs BattleHawks Stats
|315 (3)||Total Offense||374 (2)|
|50 (7)||Rushing Offense||191 (1)|
|265 (2)||Passing Offense||183 (7)|
|291 (3)||Total Defense||267 (2)|
|95 (5)||Rushing Defense||58 (3)|
|196 (3)||Passing Defense||209 (4)|
|+2 (T3)||Takeaways||+2 (T3)|
St. Louis was the only road team to win during Week 1. The duel between the BattleHawks ball-control offense and Houston’s all action style will be intriguing. St. Louis ran the ball an XFL-high 42 times against the Renegades.
According to Pro Football Focus, St. Louis graded out as the XFL’s #1 offense in Week 1 (69.6). Houston was #2 (68.8). The Roughnecks (75.4) and BattleHawks (74.2) are also 1-2 on defense.
St. Louis will want to tone down the penalties. The BattleHawks were flagged eight times for 78 yards .
5️⃣ sacks, 1️⃣6️⃣ QB hits, 8️⃣ tackles-for-loss, & 2️⃣ forced turnovers against LA ?
— Houston Roughnecks (@XFLRoughnecks) February 12, 2020
It’s probably too much to ask the BattleHawks to win consecutive road games. But eight points is a lot to give in such an evenly-matched contest.
Houston will win the game but the Roughnecks won’t cover the spread.
Pick: St. Louis BattleHawks +8 (-110).
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