Football is not over yet as the XFL officially launched this weekend. For obvious reasons, here at Heartland Sports we will be cheering on the Dallas Renegades.
The Renegades kicked off their season by hosting the St. Louis Battlehawks on Sunday evening. Despite not having starting quarterback Landry Jones in the lineup, the Renegades were favored by 9.5 points.
We saw during the games on Saturday that offense is going to come at a premium in this league. This game was an absolute defensive battle as the first points weren’t scored until the 9:46 mark of the second quarter.
The Battlehawks scored the first touchdown of the game in the second quarter with a 16 yard rushing touchdown from Keith Ford. This gave St. Louis a 6-3 advantage just before the end of the first half. However, with not long before halftime remaining, the Renegades were able to put together decent drive that led to a field goal to tie things up at 6-6
Dallas opened up the second half with another solid drive on offense that led to a field goal. The offense was able to move the ball at times during this game, but struggled greatly to finish off drives.
The fourth quarter was all about the Battlehawks as they outscored the Renegades 9-0 to win by a score of 15-9. Dallas was able to use their timeouts down the stretch to get the ball back for one last possession. However, Philip Nelson threw an interception which sealed the deal for St. Louis.
Dallas was able to move the ball a lot today, but without being able to establish a running game they could never finish off drives. They converted only 1-10 third down attempts. The Renegades rushed for only 58 yards on 12 attempts.
Even with starting quarterback Landry Jones out, the offensive game plan was clearly to move the ball through the air. Philip Nelson completed 33-42 attempts for 209 yards. Unfortunately, none of those attempts led to a score. The offensive line also has plenty room for improvement. They allowed 4 sacks on the day.
After week one is over with and in the books, it looks as if the defensive side of the ball will be the strong point of this team. The Renegades only gave up 374 total yards. Out of the 374 yards, 191 came from the ground, and the other 183 came through the air.
The Battlehawks went with a very balanced offense, which made it hard for the Renegades to get stops in the end zone. Dallas allowed St. Louis to convert on 2/3 of their trips to the red zone.
Moving forward, this teams number one priority should be to get everyone healthy. There’s no doubt that if Landry Jones plays in this game the offense puts up a few more points.
The Dallas Renegades will take on the LA Wildcats next Sunday at 2:00 PM CST. You’ll be able to catch the game televised on ABC. Here at Heartland Sports, we will have plenty of Dallas Renegades post-game coverage for you all season long!