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The XFL Officially Announces QB Assignment Of D’Eriq King To D.C. Defenders

The XFL announced two more quarterback assignments on Monday. As expected, former Miami Hurricanes dual-threat D’Eriq King lands with the D.C. Defenders. Kurt Benkert, who has been in talks with the XFL since the summer, has landed in Houston with Wade Phillips Roughnecks.

XFL 2023 Quarterback Assignments

As reported here at XFL Newshub back in September. The XFL and their teams have scouted and earmarked specific quarterbacks for several months.

Many of those quarterbacks are currently on the league’s rosters. The league and team’s football ops teams have been in discussions with players like King during an extensive recruiting process. King to D.C. was seen as a foregone conclusion, provided that an NFL opportunity didn’t come calling before the 12/26 deadline for players who have signed Letters of Intent to play in the XFL in 2023. King did latch on with an NFL team before the XFL was set to announce his assignment back in November.

D.C. Defenders Land Dynamic Dual-Threat QB D’Eriq King

Former Miami Hurricane D’Eriq King will be a fascinating weapon for Reggie Barlow, offensive coordinator Fred Kaiss, and the Defenders’ offensive staff in D.C.

The 5’9, 196lb King, defies convention as a prototypical passer, and it’s likely why he has been overlooked in the NFL and was initially treated as a weapon more than a passer in college. 

King was a superstar high school player in Manvel, Texas, and he broke the Texas 6A passing touchdowns record set by another diminutive superstar Kyler Murray. Despite that, college universities recruited him with the idea of playing receiver instead. 

D’Eriq King started as a WR/QB at the University of Houston before finally getting his shot to shine behind center. The dual-threat playmaker had 78 total touchdowns with the Cougars’. 4,925 passing yards, and 1,421 yards rushing, despite starting only 22 games.

A knee injury derailed his ascent in Houston, and King wound up transferring to the U. He also played like a star at Miami before injuries halted his rise there. 

 At Miami, King accounted for thirty touchdowns in 14 games, amassing over 4,000 yards of total offense.

D’Eriq King would finish his collegiate career with a 63% completion percentage, 76 passing touchdowns to 19 interceptions, with 8,378 yards passing. King also amassed 2,005 yards on the ground with 32 scores. King also registered receiving stats early on in college. Sixty-one receptions for 520 yards and three touchdowns in that category.

Coming out of college this year, King, the pro rookie, has spent time with the New England Patriots and Carolina Panthers in 2022. Most recently, D’Eriq had a brief stint with the Panthers on their practice squad in November. Ironically enough, Carolina signed King as insurance when former XFL 2020 superstar P.J. Walker was injured. With Walker healthy, the Panthers parted ways with King.

The combination of D’Eriq King with former Syracuse standout Eric Dungey in D.C. should make for one of the XFL’s most unique quarterback tandems during the 2023 season.

The XFL will conduct a supplemental draft in January before training camp begins in Arlington. The Defenders’ will likely add another QB to their room. Maybe two of them. The league and their teams are still in talks with prospective quarterbacks.

But based on who Von Hutchins and Reggie Barlow have selected thus far. You get a sense of the style of offense D.C. will be running in the District when the 2023 XFL season begins Saturday, February 18th, on ESPN, ABC, and FX.

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I am a pro football writer who has extensively covered and reported on multiple leagues over the years. I started covering the XFL back in 2001. You can follow me on Twitter @byMikeMitchell

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