XFL Best Bets: Seattle Sea Dragons V. DC Defenders – Week 1

After a two-year hiatus the Xtreme Football League is back. Things were going well for the league in 2020, but they were shutdown midseason due to the pandemic. Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson has rebooted the league, and the XFL will bridge the gap between the end of the NFL season and the start of the USFL season.

Seattle Sea Dragons

Seattle has rebranded from the Dragons in 2020 to the Sea Dragons this year. Mandatory Credit: Troy Wayrynen-USA TODAY Sports

The Seattle Sea Dragons jump off the page with the amount of NFL talent they have on their roster.

Probably the most notable player in the league is wide receiver Josh Gordon, the All-Pro receiver who couldn’t hold down a job in the NFL due to his relationship with marijuana. So, he’ll look to start the second act of his career in a league that obviously doesn’t test for recreational drugs.

Throwing to Gordon will be former Cowboys quarterback Ben DiNucci. DiNucci started one game for the Cowboys in 2020 and hasn’t seen playing time since.

At the helm of this Seattle squad is another notable NFL name, Jim Haslett. Haslett spent nearly 30 years in the NFL, and while he never received a position higher than an interim head coach in the National Football League, this will not be his first time as the Head Coach in an alternative professional football leagues.

Haslett left the NFL in 2009 to coach the Florida Tuskers in the UFL. He put together an impressive season, going undefeated in the regular season, but lost the championship in overtime.

Given the talent on this roster, it’s understandable why they are a favorite in the league, but bettors shouldn’t count out the well-constructed roster of DC.

DC Defenders

The DC Defenders are one of five teams reviliatized from the 2020 season. Mandatory Credit: Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

While DC may have little name recognition on the offensive side, they have come out and said they are running a college-style offense. It’s a wise move when the head coach and offensive coordinator only have experience at the college level. So while their attack might look different than the teams they are facing, it could be highly effective.

Drafting D’Eriq King, former quarterback for the U, seemed like the perfect move for a team that wanted to run a spread-out offense, but the ended up landing Jordan Ta’amu, former USFL QB. With the time Ta’amu spent in the NFL and the USFL, he has evolved to be more of an NFL-style quarterback.

What sticks out about the DC team is their defense; they are led by Gregg Williams. Williams spent 30 years in the NFL, and after being out of the game for three years, he has returned to help lead the Defenders.

Seattle has the firepower, but DC has constructed something special. While it will be interesting to see what their offense looks like, defense is what matters. So as long as Williams has his boys ready to go, they should be able to pick up the win.

DC Defenders (+105)
Under 35.5 (-105)

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