XFL Best Bets: Orlando Guardians V. Houston Roughnecks – Week 1

Orlando Guardians

Formerly of New York, the Guardians have relocated to Orlando for the 2023 season.. Mandatory Credit: Billy Hurst-USA TODAY Sports

There was a surprising amount of talent available in the XFL draft, and the Guardians managed to find exactly none of it. Despite having the some options and opportunities as everyone else, the Guardians roster looks like they were given all the leftovers. The only recognizable name from their draft is Cody Latimer, former receiver for the New York Giants.

Luckily for Orlando fans, they were able to sign Memphis standout, Paxton Lynch. While having a QB with NFL experience is a strong start for an XFL team, Lynch has nothing to work with. He’ll be joined in the backfield with Jah-Maine Martin, North Carolina A&T alum who’s has never played a snap of professional football.

Orlando has the longest championship odds (+950), and they will be lucky to win a game this season. While there is always a chance this ragtag team rallies together as a major underdog, they don’t seem to have the talent or leadership to make that happen.

Houston Roughnecks

Houston Roughnecks head coach Wade Phillips will be one of the main attractions of this XFL season. Mandatory Credit: Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports

Houston is a team to watch out for this season (+600), as they are led by Super Bowl Champion Wade Phillips. Phillips was a tremendous pickup, as few people exude Texas football quite like him.

These XFL games will not be the high scoring affairs fans hope to see; games are won on the other side of the ball. Houston has been blessed with one of the best defensive minds in the game, and they are off to the right start with some heavy hitters. C.J. Brewer and Glen Logan are two names of notes and will certainly be a pivotal part of this potent defense. Experience is the best things a team can have to open the season.

Representing the Roughnecks under center is Brandon Silvers. The last time Silvers played professional football was for the Seattle Dragons in the 2020 XFL season. While he may not be the most talented passer in the league, he has some great tools to work with in Max Borghi, Garrett Owens, and Deontay Burnett. While those names don’t jump off the page, they make for a well-balanced offense.

The Houston Roughnecks have never lost a game in the history of the XFL, and they should continue that streak at least tough the first week of play.

Houston -3.5 (-110)
Under 35.5 (-115)

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