St. Louis BattleHawks (2-1) vs New York Guardians (1-2) @ The Dome at America’s Center
The BattleHawks brought home a defining win in their Home Opener, and the city of St. Louis proved ravenous for more football, as 29,554 fans turned out at the Dome.
St Louis continues to crush their opponents on the ground, as Matt Jones (95 Yards, 1 TD) and Christine Michael (44 Yards, 1 TD) carried the offense to victory. With these two establishing the pace, Jordan Ta’amu wasn’t asked to do much today, but he protected the football and make key plays when he had to.
Safety Kenny Robinson had a big day, making his first interception in the pros. While their D struggled a bit against the run late in the game, they dominated the trenches most of the day, and had 3 sacks (Clarke, Ankrah, Sayles).
Their special teams popped off, and scored the XFL’s first ever kickoff return TD. In a crazy trick play, L’Damian Washington lateralled it to Joe Powell on a Reverse, who took it 84 yards to the house.
Key Stat 1: 95 Rush Yards, 6.3 YPC, 1 TD (Matt Jones-RB)
Key Stat 2: 4 Tackles, 1 Int, 1 PD (Kenny Robinson-FS)
Key Stat 3: 3/3 Field Goals, Long of 58 (Taylor Russolino-Kicker)
New York Guardians
The Guardians continued a fall from grace after a big week one showing, and move to 1-2. Matt McGloin struggled to push the ball downfield at all, and the offense had little life with him under center. He was benched for Marquise Williams, who was ultimately benched for Luis Perez. Perez breathed some life into his squad, going 4 of 5 for 39 yards and a score late in garbage time.
Tim Cook and Darius Victor found some footing in the run game late, and finished with 50 yards each. That momentum helped Perez, but he could be their best option at QB going forward.
Their Defensive unit struggled to apply pressure today, and while they didn’t let up much in the pass game, STL ran all over them. Valiant performances by Bunmi Rotimi and Ben Heeney (2 tackles for loss each) weren’t enough to slow things down, and this unit has given up 56 points in the past two weeks.
Key Stat 1: 8/11 Passing, 84 yards, 1 INT (Matt McGloin-QB)
Key Stat 2: 7/15 Passing, 94 Yards (Marquise Williams-QB)
Key Stat 3: 4/5 Passing, 39 Yards, 1 TD (Luis Perez-QB)
Jordan Ta’amu had a slower day, but is still a top QB1, while Matt Jones could be the XFL’s best fantasy RB. Alonzo Russell and De’Mornay Pierson-El continued to see targets, despite a limited passing game, and L’Damian Washington only caught one ball on the day.
Owners who drafted McGloin might want to start looking elsewhere after a 1.6 point performance, and Luis Perez could be a solid pickup this week. Darius Victor and Tim Cook continue to put up decent production in a shared role, and it’s hard to rely on any of the NY receivers at this point.
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