DC Defenders at Vegas Vipers 2/25/23 - XFL Picks & Predictions

Last Updated: 02/20/2023 at 10:37 PM ET

DC Defenders at Vegas Vipers 2/25/23 - XFL Picks & Predictions

Cashman Field will play host to a Saturday afternoon XFL matchup between the DC Defenders and the Vegas Vipers. The Defenders (1-0) selected RB Abram Smith from Baylor with the first overall pick of the draft and plan to rely heavily on the ground game for head coach Reggie Barlow. On Sunday, DC rallied from a ten-point deficit to earn a 22-18 home victory. 

CB Michael Joseph sparked the second-half rally with two interceptions, including one that was returned 15 yards for a score. Jordan Ta’amu threw for 89 yards and Deriq King came off the bench to rush for a touchdown. The Defenders were outgained by a 331-177 margin, but only turned the ball over once.

The Vegas Vipers feature a roster with plenty of former NFL players, including WR Martavis Bryant and LB Vic Bealsey. In their season opener, Vegas raced out to a 14-3 lead before falling at Arlington by a 22-20 final score. QB Luis Perez had two interceptions that were returned for touchdowns in the second half and finished with 249 passing yards. 

Perez threw a 20-yard touchdown pass to Cinque Sweeting with 14 seconds remaining, but was sacked on the ensuing two-point conversion attempt. Jeff Badet caught six passes for 81 yards and two scores for the Vipers.

DC was outplayed for most of their home opener, before Gregg Williams’ defense generated a spark and brought the home crowd to life. Vegas looked like the better team in their opener, but fell victim to two poor decisions by their quarterback. Look for the Vipers to rebound at home with a victory. Final Score Prediction, Vegas Vipers win 22-15.

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