Houston Roughnecks at Tampa Bay Vipers 2/22/20 - XFL Picks & Predictions

Last Updated: 02/17/2020 at 9:42 PM ET

Houston Roughnecks at Tampa Bay Vipers 2/22/20 - XFL Picks & Predictions

On Saturday, the Houston Roughnecks visit Raymond James Stadium in Tampa, Florida for an XFL showdown with the Tampa Bay Vipers. Houston improved to 2-0 on the season following its 28-24 victory on Sunday over the St Louis Battlehawks at TDECU stadium. The win was highlighted by three touchdown passes by PJ Walker to Cam Phillips. Demarcus Gates led all Houston defensive players with nine solo tackles and one quarterback sack.

Although the Houston defense gave up 24 points, big plays by the secondary including a second interception in the fourth quarter led Houston to its final touchdown giving them a 10-point lead they would not relinquish The final interception of the day was by Jeremiah Johnson. PJ Walker threw for  170 yards and three touchdowns, while Cam Phillips caught eight passes for 63 yards and three touchdowns. 

Tampa Bay dropped to 0-2 on the season following it 17-9 loss on Sunday to the Seattle Dragons at CenturyLink Field in Seattle. Tampa Bay continues to have problems at quarterback after just two games three players have played under center and none of the three have led the team to a single touchdown through eight quarters of play. Part of the problem is the red zone for Tampa Bay as the Vipers have been in the red zone six times and have only field goals to show for that effort.

Defensively, the Vipers played well in the first two quarters of their loss to Seattle holding the Dragons to just 12 total yards of offense during the first quarter and 41 total yards of offense in the first half. The Vipers were ahead 9-0 early in the third quarter, but the defense faltered and allowed 17 unanswered points, while the offense generated nothing. The only touchdown on the day for Tampa Bay and its first of the season was a pick-six by Tarvarus McFadden for 78 yards. 

Houston has a solid offense as evidenced by its 28 points scored versus Tampa Bay in Week 2. PJ Walker threw three touchdowns passed to his favorite target Cam Phillips. The Roughnecks however must play on the road at Tampa Bay’s Raymond James Stadium. Tampa Bay will be looking for its first victory after opening with two straight losses, but needs to find an answer at quarterback as that position has become a revolving door with three players sharing time. Expect little to no offense from Tampa Bay and a win and cover for Houston. Final score prediction, Houston Roughnecks win and cover ATS 28-10.

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