Connect with us

DC Defenders

XFL 2023 Draft: D.C. Defenders’ Rookie Draft Recap – Breakdown of Positions and Talent Added

The D.C. Defenders made a slew of important additions to their roster during the XFL 2023 Rookie Draft. From the punting position to offensive line reinforcements and promising wide receivers, let’s break down who was picked and how they could contribute to the Defenders’ ambitions in the upcoming XFL season.

Special Teams

  • Paxton Brooks (Punter, Tennessee) – The Defenders made a special teams addition by picking up Paxton Brooks. With a punt average of 42.33 yards, Brooks is known for his leg strength and accuracy. Having 50% of his kickoffs going for touchbacks, he can be a game-changer when it comes to field positioning.

Offensive Line

  • Matt Carrick (OL, Michigan State) – A versatile offensive lineman, Carrick comes with ample experience having played in 47 career games. His sturdiness at the right guard position will be crucial in creating running lanes and protecting the quarterback.
  • Alex Jensen (OL, South Dakota) – Jensen is an intriguing pick, having started as a tight end before converting to an offensive tackle. His agility and blocking skills will be a valuable asset to the Defenders’ offensive line.
  • Jack Plumb (OL, Iowa) – Plumb, having seen action in 46 games, has displayed proficiency at the right tackle position. His presence will bolster the Defenders’ offensive line.

Wide Receivers

  • C.J. Johnson (WR, East Carolina) – Johnson brings explosiveness to the Defenders’ receiving corps. With 175 career catches for 2,849 yards and notable performances like a 283-yard game against Cincinnati, Johnson is a threat that defenses will have to account for.
  • Ty Scott (WR, Missouri State) – Scott, known for his exceptional hands and route running, set school records for receptions, receiving yards, and receiving touchdowns at Missouri State. He is expected to be a key target for the Defenders’ passing attack.
  • Trea Shropshire (WR, UAB) – Shropshire, with an impressive 22.5 yards per catch, adds a deep threat element to the Defenders’ offense. He ranks fifth all-time at UAB in career receiving yards and receiving touchdowns.


  • Kaleb Oliver (LB, Western Kentucky) – Oliver brings a balance of aggression and intelligence to the linebacker position. With 81 tackles for loss, 3.5 tackles for loss, two sacks, and four interceptions, he’s shown that he can do it all.
  • Mohamed Sanogo (LB, Louisville) – “MoMo” Sanogo is a tackling machine. Leading Louisville in tackles with 89, his addition will strengthen the Defenders’ run defense and add depth to their linebacker core.

Defensive Back

  • Bentlee Sanders (DB, Nevada) – An All-Mountain West First Team member, Sanders brings athleticism and a nose for the ball. His ability to contribute in tackles, interceptions, and special teams returns adds versatility to the Defenders’ roster.

The D.C. Defenders have made substantial additions to both sides of the ball. With a strengthened offensive line, explosive receivers, and additions to the defense and special teams, the Defenders are well-positioned to make a splash in the upcoming XFL season. Fans will be eager to see how these rookies blend with the existing roster and contribute to the team’s success.

Players who were drafted in the XFL Rookie Draft will be placed on XFL rosters with players who finished the 2023 season on active and reserve lists. XFL teams will hold exclusive rights with the players they select in the draft.

For undrafted players, the XFL will host a series of player showcases across the United States in June and July. These showcases will give prospective football players a chance to exhibit their skills in front of XFL coaches and personnel directors.

Players will be evaluated based on performance for inclusion in the XFL Draft player pool for the upcoming 2024 season. The top performers will be invited to the XFL Combine, which will be held July 25-27 in Arlington, Texas.

Additional showcases will be held throughout the summer in Atlanta (June 18), St. Louis (July 7), Washington DC (July 9), Houston (July 14) and Arizona (July 16). Additional information on each of the showcases can be found below. 

The XFL Combine, which will be held July 25-27 in Arlington, TX, will be an invite only. Invitations will be sent to the top performers from the showcases earlier in the summer.

Registration is now open for the XFL showcases. If you are interested in attending, please register here.

📢 Attention XFL News Hub community! We've got a quick 30-second survey and we need your thoughts. Your feedback will help us to bring you the XFL content you love even better. Just click the link in the description below to get started. Thanks for being a part of our team!
Unleash the Action: Sign up for XFL Insider and Fuel Your Passion for Football!

Mark Perry, a passionate sports journalist and the founder and editor of XFL News Hub, has been at the forefront of covering the XFL since its revival in 2018. Within days of the XFL's announced return, Mark initiated XFL News Hub to keep the fans abreast of every detail, game, and development of the league. Mark's extensive knowledge of the sport, combined with his unwavering dedication to providing comprehensive and accurate reporting, has made XFL News Hub the go-to platform for all things related to the XFL. His work over the years has brought him recognition in the world of sports journalism, solidifying his place as a leading voice in XFL coverage. Beyond just reporting, Mark believes in fostering a community around the XFL, engaging fans through his innovative content and discussions. If you have any inquiries, comments, or insights you'd like to share, Mark welcomes you to contact him directly at

Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

XFL News Alerts

XFL 2023 Season Attendance Recap: The Ups and Downs

Latest Podcast

Subscribe XFL Podcast

Get Alerts & Stay Connected

More in DC Defenders