It appears Ryan Willis’ career in St. Louis is over. Per XFL News Hub and XFL Analyst, assigned Quarterback Ryan Willis has been released. Sources close to the team disclose that Willis and the team mutually parted ways after he was informed, he would not be starting. Willis a veteran of the Spring League where he won MVP and the Megabowl, now is a free agent during the XFL’s crucial cut week in which teams need to get their roster down to 51 by February 10th.
Willis was first rumored to be joining the Battlehawks in September by XFL Insider Mike Mitchell as the first wave of assigned Quarterbacks. Willis was assigned by the Battlehawks on November 15th along with AJ McCarron during the Quarterback Assignment period by the XFL with Nick Tiano being assigned on November 17th. For Willis with the beginning of XFL cuts there is still an opportunity to be picked up by another XFL team or even the USFL.
For the Battlehawks it now appears that AJ McCarron is now the QB1 for the franchise going into 2023. With Willis now a free agent again, it not only shows the team is all in on McCarron but also Nick Tiano who was the teams most inexperienced Quarterback.
For the Battlehawks with the season starting on February 19th vs San Antonio Brahmas, Coach Becht will turn to A.J. McCarron to bring the city of St. Louis a championship for a fan base that has been waiting for football for the last three years.
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A couple of months back I commented that I did not think what the XFL was doing was good for alt-league quarterbacks as they were hoarding all the alt-league quarterbacks. If they were taking a 26-28 year old that has NFL aspirations and might have the credentials, it would make sense to sign only one as the only reason they are risking injury is for the opportunity to show they can lead a team. It sounded like they had wishes to tack on more and so they have with Brett Hundley and Paxton Lynch. I imagine there still may be signings to come. Mark Perry commented that he felt the XFL would let the quarterbacks out of their contracts to follow their dreams. At first we saw this with a couple of players signing with USFL after being drafted by the XFL. But now we have seen this with two quarterbacks. I take back my concerns and compliment you on truly being a league for players. Though I still feel I would rather play in the USFL due to coaching experience, I think any player would be happy to sign back based on your ability to see what best for players in specific situations. In some ways this may provide players a real good feeling towards the league knowing that, in the cases of Bryan Scott and Ryan Willis, the XFL looked at what these players stood to lose vs what the XFL stood to lose. The XFL would lose valuable backup, but the two quarterbacks in question would lose their best opportunity to showcase themselves in a team game setting with an opportunity to chase a championship. It was great XFL saw that and provided them a chance to follow their dreams while they are still in their prime.