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XFL 2020 Results: Matt McGloin, Guardians Cruise, BattleHawks Pull Week 1 Upset

Joseph Zucker@@JosephZuckerFeatured ColumnistFebruary 9, 2020

EAST RUTHERFORD, NEW JERSEY - FEBRUARY 09: Matt McGloin #14 of the NY Guardians celebrates after scoring a touchdown against the Tampa Bay Vipers during the first half of their XFL game at MetLife Stadium on February 09, 2020 in East Rutherford, New Jersey. (Photo by Michael Owens/Getty Images)
Michael Owens/Getty Images

The XFL concluded its opening weekend Sunday following an encouraging return with Saturday's two games.

The New York Guardians hosted the Tampa Bay Vipers in the first of two matchups, and the Dallas Renegades brought the day to a close against the St. Louis BattleHawks.

Here are some of the highlights from the action.

           

New York Guardians def. Tampa Bay Vipers 23-3

The Guardians coasted to a 23-3 win over the Vipers thanks in large part to their defense, which forced three turnovers.

Jamar Summers dealt the final blow to Tampa Bay in the fourth quarter. He recovered a fumble and returned for a touchdown, effectively sealing the victory.

XFL @xfl2020

.@jsum Took it allllllllll the way back and put his body on the line to finish the TD 📺 @XFLonFOX 🖥https://t.co/h9WDUzCIae https://t.co/fELVL7OSTS

XFL @xfl2020

We promised immediate sideline interviews after big plays. We didn't promise they'd always be long ones 😂 📺 @XFLonFOX 🖥https://t.co/h9WDUzCIae https://t.co/IB8v4afKhY

Matt McGloin only threw for 182 yards but had one touchdown pass and avoided making any big mistakes. He also scored on a one-yard touchdown run in the first quarter.

New York Guardians @XFLGuardians

QB1 (@McGloinQB11) with the FIRST-EVER Guardians touchdown! 📺 @FOXTV 🖥 https://t.co/udq2TNuTQ8 #OnDuty | #ForTheLoveOfFootball https://t.co/3I5TBEnKbm

FOX Sports @FOXSports

Colby Pearson for 6! The @XFLGuardians bump the lead to 14-0. https://t.co/LoLfkuG3QO

The Guardians gave up 394 yards yet held the Vipers scoreless on four trips inside the red zone, which largely told the story. Tampa Bay's offense was out of sorts for most of the afternoon.

Rich Cimini @RichCimini

The #Vipers look like a team that has been together for only two months; no cohesion. The #Guardians playing a good game of complementary football. They've been relatively sharp and opportunistic on defense.

The Vipers opened the second half with Quinton Flowers at quarterback following a shaky first half from Aaron Murray. The former Georgia star went 11-of-25 for 156 yards and two interceptions.

The second interception was particularly costly as Tampa Bay was poised to get on the board to end the second quarter.

FOX Sports @FOXSports

ANOTHER ONE The @XFLGuardians pick up their second interception of the first half 😤🔒 https://t.co/Cp8OQ5sLHO

Although Murray re-entered the game, Flowers made a positive impact by bringing a different dimension to the Vipers offense with his mobility. He ran for 34 yards on five carries.

Drawing any firm conclusions after only one game is rarely a good idea, but the Vipers might be better off by leaning on Flowers more when they face off with the BattleHawks in Week 2. Marc Trestman and his staff have some things to iron out in the coming days.

           

St. Louis BattleHawks def. Dallas Renegades 15-9

If Week 1 is any indication, the BattleHawks defense will be a factor all season.

St. Louis set the tone on that side of the ball, keeping Bob Stoops' Renegades out of the end zone and spearheading a 15-9 victory Sunday. While Dallas quarterback Philip Nelson was a solid 33-of-42 passing for 209 yards, St. Louis sacked him four times and forced him into shorter underneath routes that ultimately didn't do much damage.

It was only fitting Will Hill notched an interception to clinch the win.

BattleHawks quarterback Jordan Ta'amu was 20-of-27 passing for 209 yards, one touchdown and zero interceptions with 77 rushing yards, but it was running back Keith Ford who put the winning side on the board first with a touchdown on a pitch play that saw him break through multiple arm tackles.

XFL @xfl2020

Keith Ford BARRELS his way into the end zone for the first tuddy of the game 📺 @espn 🖥 https://t.co/8ZLP59ONRO https://t.co/tQgFj5K32j

That, along with a touchdown pass from Ta'amu to Alonzo Russell in the fourth quarter, was enough to outlast three field goals from Dallas kicker Austin MacGinnis.

Field position also proved important in the defensive slugfest, and former Oakland Raiders and Denver Broncos punter Marquette King impressed for the BattleHawks:

XFL @xfl2020

.@MarquetteKing has an absolute ROCKET for a leg. 🤯🤯🤯 https://t.co/9U02NMNQ1l

XFL @xfl2020

.@MarquetteKing just had...maybe the greatest punt ever?* *It ended up being a touchback 😔 https://t.co/KDeocnuEeo

St. Louis will face the Houston Roughnecks in Week 2, while the Renegades will play the Los Angeles Wildcats.

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