The first weekend of the XFL started fast. The new football league showed a lot of potential of what this league can become. The D.C-Seattle game was thrilling, fun football. It was the perfect start for a league looking to put its best foot forward. And the show put on by Houston quarterback P.J. Walker gave this league a lot of reason for optimism.
New York’s 23-3 thumping of Tampa Bay had some poor quarterback play and then the nightcap of St. Louis and Dallas was a defensive struggle to the tune of 15-9. That low-scoring, sluggish play was by design, though. Renegades coach Bob Stoops is a defensive mind and BattleHawks coach Jonathan Hayes, who’s known Stoops for years, said after the game he had an inkling Stoops would try to grind things out a bit. That’s good coaching.
There were mistakes. Turnovers, penalties, negative plays and general miscues are the type of things that make casual fans lose interest quickly. But every team deserves a few weeks to work out the kinks. Understanding those things are prerequisites to enjoying this league. And give the XFL this: the product is further ahead in Week 1 than what many expected it would be.
So the XFL provided fans with some of the type of excitement they were hoping to get from the league, and the start-up league will face some uphill battles. Overall, a good beginning.