After an entertaining Week 1 of XFL action, we head into Week 2 with a better idea of what all eight teams bring to the table. We saw three comfortable victories for the D.C. Defenders, New York Guardians, and the Houston Roughnecks. Meanwhile, the St. Louis BattleHawks managed to do enough to get out of Dallas with the only road victory of the week. Interestingly, Week 2 sees the four 1-0 teams facing off to kick-off and close out the weekend, with the four 0-1 teams matching up in the middle. Week 2 can often be a trap week as bettors overreact to the only action we have seen. However, much like the cautious approach that was taken this week, caution is to be advised when it comes to betting Week 2 of the XFL. Let’s take a look at our handicappers’ analysis of the betting odds for Week 2 of the 2020 XFL season.
Before we dig into the games, we should mention the totals this week. Last week saw all four games kick off with totals over 50 points. After the under went 3-1, with the only over being by just three points, we have seen those totals come down a little this week. At the time of this writing, three of the games have projected totals below 50. Only the clash between the BattleHawks and Roughneck currently sitting at 50 or above.
New York Guardians @ D.C. Defenders (-5.5) O/U: 48 | February 15th, 2 p.m. ET
“The New York Guardians head down 95 south to our nation’s capital, fresh off an upset victory over the Tampa Bay Vipers on Sunday in the Meadowlands. Matt McGloin and the Guardians’ defense will have their hands full here in Week 2 against the DC Defenders, though. Pep Hamilton’s guys are at home and working with an extra day of rest and preparation in this one. The Defenders opened at Circa as two-point favorites earlier this week and are posted as four to five-point favorites in most spots at the time of this article being written. I’d feel comfortable grabbing the Defenders all the way up to 5 points in this one.
I expect Cardale Jones and the DC offense to move the ball with some effectiveness early Saturday. While I think New York presents a stronger defense than the one the Defenders saw last week from the Seattle Dragons, I also suspect the Tampa offense was a major part of making the Guardians look like world-beaters at Met-Life Stadium. The Guardians offense scored a touchdown on their first drive Sunday before puttering along for most of the next three quarters. I don’t think they can necessarily count on another defensive score this time around. I like the DC Defenders to win by about a touchdown.
2u – Defenders -2 | -110
*1u – Defenders -4.5 if that’s the best # you can get
Tampa Bay Vipers @ Seattle Dragons (+3.0) OU: 45 | February 15th, 5 p.m. ET
“This is perhaps the hardest game to put any real call on. There are many factors in play, including the Vipers being on the road for a second week in a row, the injuries to Aaron Murray, and the poor performances of both teams. The Vipers have the more talented roster, but there are so many question marks surrounding them coming out of Week 1 it is hard to lay points with them. However, the Seattle roster was rightly seen as the worst coming into the season, and their mediocre Week 1 performance has not improved their long term outlook. Right now, I have no play on this game, but as the injury situations develop this week surrounding Silvers and Murray, then both the spread and the totals may be more attractive plays in the buildup to this Week 2 XFL matchup.”
Dallas Renegades @ Los Angeles Wildcats (+3.0) O/U: 48.5 | February 16th, 3 p.m. ET
“This game is the conundrum of the two starting quarterbacks. After they lost last week to the St. Louis BattleHawks, the Renegades will turn to Landry Jones for Week 2. Reports leading up to the game last week were that Jones could have played if required. However, the Renegades believed that Philip Nelson could hold down the job for one week, so they chose to sit Jones out for the game. After the way Nelson performed last week, they will have been desperate to get Jones back this week, and it should provide an instant boost to the Renegades offense.
Meanwhile, Josh Johnson remains questionable for the Los Angeles Wildcats. However, the difference here is that Johnson’s backup Chad Kanoff was more than competent for the large part in Week 1. Johnson is an upgrade, but Jones is arguably a bigger upgrade. I also believe that the Renegades are facing a lower standard of defense this week, while the Wildcats are going to find it as hard to break down the Renegades as they did the Roughnecks in Week 1. I will take the Renegades getting anything up to seven points in this one.”
1u – Dallas Renegades -3.5 | -110
“Well, this Dallas team was one of the biggest disappointments of the inaugural weekend. After coming in as favorites to win the XFL championship, they weren’t even able to score a TD in their 15-9 loss to the Battlehawks. Here in Week 2, we should see the return of their starting QB Landry Jones as they head on the road to take on the Wildcats. There is already turmoil brewing in Los Angeles. After just one game, head coach Winston Moss fired his defensive coordinator Pepper Johnson and cut their defensive team captain Anthony Johnson. That is not a good sign when you have what should be an explosive offense with Jones, OC Mumme, and Bob Stoops coming to town. I think this week is a good time to jump back on this Renegade team, and I expect them to pull off the win here.”
1u – Dallas Renegades -3 | -110
“The Dallas Renegades travel to Los Angeles to take on the Wildcats in a matchup of 0-1 teams on Sunday afternoon. Both teams lost last weekend while playing without their respect starting quarterbacks. Renegades coach Bob Stoops has indicated that Landry Jones should get the start for Dallas on the road this weekend, while Josh Johnson is less certain to go for the LA Wildcats. Dallas desperately needs Jones to play to take the pressure off a running game that consistently saw eight men in the box against St. Louis last weekend. The Wildcats won’t be able to dare Landry Jones to beat them like the Battlehawks were able to do against Philip Nelson in Dallas. I’d rather not lay more than a field goal in a game where there is a lack of any real certainty with either team’s quarterback, so instead, I’m going to pair the Renegades with the other Texas team, the Roughnecks in an ML parlay paying out +102 on Sunday.
Houston quarterback PJ Walker looked like an early MVP candidate against the aforementioned Los Angeles Wildcats defense on Saturday night. While I suspect St. Louis can keep this game close for at least the first half, the Roughnecks appear to have the overwhelming talent advantage on both sides of the football. If he remains motivated and healthy, Kony Ealy should have a monster season for the Houston defense. He caused a major disruption against LA last week, and I expect more of the same facing Jordan Ta’amu Sunday evening. The Battlehawks got a vintage performance from RB Matt Jones in Dallas last week but might be without his services this week. If I can get the Roughnecks without having to lay the touchdown, I’m in.”
1u – Dallas Renegades ML & Houston Roughnecks ML | +102
St. Louis BattleHawks @ Houston Roughnecks (-7.5) O/U: 50.5 | February 16th, 6 p.m. ET
“This game should be a fascinating conclusion to the week as the two quarterbacks who received consideration for player of the week in Week 1 go head to head. The Houston Roughnecks performed as expected, as they swept aside the Los Angeles Wildcats with a great performance on both offense and defense. The St. Louis BattleHawks were the only road team to get a victory in Week 1, as they upset the Dallas Renegades off the back of some extremely strong bend but don’t break defense. I am expecting a similar level of toughness from a defense that has flown under the radar somewhat, and while I think the Roughnecks win, I expect the scoring to be reasonably low. Therefore I am going to take the under on the only game with a projected total of 50 or above this week.”
1u – Under 50.5 Total Points | -110
“Two of the surprise teams are meeting up in a must-see game this weekend. The Battle Hawks, led by former Ole Miss quarterback Jordan Ta’amu, looked great in their upset over the Dallas Renegades. The Houston Roughnecks looked unstoppable against Winston Moss and the Los Angeles Wildcats. Houston boasts maybe the biggest early star of the league in P.J. Walker, who looked like a legitimate NFL-caliber QB in a four-touchdown debut. These teams are closer than we had originally thought, so taking the Battlehawks with 8 points seems like the best bet. I like the points and think this will be the highest-scoring game of the weekend.”
1u – St. Louis BattleHawks +8 | -110
1u – Over 49 Total Points | -110
Click to view the running list of our bets for the 2020 XFL season. Be sure to bookmark that page and visit it often throughout the week to stay updated on our latest moves.
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