DC Defenders (3-2) vs St. Louis Battlehawks (3-2) @ Audi Field
The DC Defenders rode a dominant defensive effort to soundly beat the St. Louis Battlehawks 15-6. Using timely offense, impactful special times, and a stonewall defensive unit, the DC Defenders returned to their placement at the top half of the league. The offense rode it’s strongest effort on the ground of the the season to score just enough. The Defenders relied on the performance of back up QB Tyree Jackson, who replaced a struggling Cardale Jones in the third series of the game. Coach Pep Hamilton shared that this was the plan from the start in the post game Press Conference. Coach Pep also shared that Cardale Jones will remain as the starting Quarterback moving forward. At the very least, you can still count on an increase role for QB Tyree Jackson moving forward. RB Jhurell Pressley had the Defenders first 100 yard rushing game of the season, showing the talent that made him the AAF’s leading rusher. That successful rushing attack is what sealed the game for DC.
“Tyree has the skillset that matched well against what the Battlehawks do”Head Coach Pep Hamilton
The Battlehawks saw success with their run game but could not capitalize when it counted, in the redzone. XFL star QB Jordan Ta’amu was hounded all day by the Defenders pass rush and clearly struggled to put consistent drives together. The Battlehawks defense had an overall solid showing, but would’ve had to virtually hold their opponent scoreless to offset the offensive ineptitude. There was of course some questionable play calling by the Battlehawks, ignoring a fairly successful running attack. Both Christine Michael and Matt Jones averaged over 5 yards for the game but seemed to be abandoned at some of the most important points of the game. The Battlehawks, oddly, seemed to eager to throw the ball on several of their offensive drives.
DC Defenders Key Stats
RB Jhurell Pressley – 15 Rushes / 107 Yards – The Defenders first 100 yard rusher of the season finally showed the flash that made him the AAF’s season long leading rusher.
LB Anthony Johnson: 1 Sack / 2 Tackles For A Loss – After only playing 17 plays in their loss against the Vipers, Johnson got more playing time and made an obvious impact on the field.
DT Siupeli Anau: 1 Sack / 2 Tackles For Losses / 1 Forced Fumble – Anau was an absolute beast on the Defensive Line for the Defenders.
St. Louis Battlehawks Key Stats
WR L’Damian Washington: 5 Rec / 8 Targets / 114 Yards – Washington had some extremely impressive catches, resulting in one of the best WR performances of the XFL season.
S Kenny Robinson: 1 Sack / 1 Tackle For Loss / 1 Interception – Kenny Robinson appears to always be around the ball. Robinson is well on his way to being a top 3 round NFL Draft Pick in April.
Battlehawks Offensive Line: Allowed 4 Sacks on their QB on Sunday. Ta’amu struggled to make plays with the amount of pressure he was consistently facing.
RB Jhurell Pressley
RB Matt Jones
RB Christine Michael
WR L’Damian Washington
QB Jordan Ta’amu
Any Wide Receiver on the Defenders
QB Cardale Jones
“It reminded me of the Senior Bowl, knowing you’d be coming in a different Quarter”QB Tyree Jackson talking about knowing he’d come in on the 3rd series, no matter what
Whatever Coach Pep decides, I trust. He’s been around the game probably long than I’ve been alive”QB Tyree Jackson talking about Coach Pep Hamilton sticking with QB Cardale Jones as the starting Quarterback.
These fans are different. I don’t know if the XFL is paying these dudes to be this loud.S Rahim Moore Sr. talking about how wild the DC Defenders fans are at Audi Field
ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Konnor Fulk excelled in the Sports Management Program at Georgia Southern University. He spent several seasons working with the Washington Redskins in fan engagement, strategy, and sales strategy. Additionally, Mr. Fulk continues consulting services across the sport of NASCAR. Konnor has a longstanding obsession with the concept of Spring Football and is looking forward to sharing his expertise and opinions about the XFL relaunch. Connect with Konnor on LinkedIN
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