Week 1 – Saturday, February 8th, 2 PM – AUDI FIELD – ABC vs. Seattle Dragons: DC Defenders get the nod to host the first XFL game in history on ABC. This is a clear indication from the XFL that they have confidence that the DC market is going to be a strong one. TV Viewers and attendees will be able to enjoy the state-of-the-art Soccer specific stadium, Audi Field. This is also intriguing because it is Jim Zorn’s homecoming after leaving an impression on local sports fans, likely bad, as the Redskins Head Coach. Additionally, you have a good Quarterback match up with league favorite Cardale Jones and AAF success story, Brandon Silvers.
Week 2 – Saturday, February 15th, 2 PM – AUDI FIELD – ABC vs. New York Guardians: DC Defenders start the season with two straight home games. Kevin Gilbride, Guardians Head Coach, has ample experience coaching against a Washington, DC team, having been with the New York Giants across 9 seasons. The Guardians bring a roster of AAF stars and experienced NFL veteran QB, Matt McGloin, that should intrigue fans for this match up.
Week 3 – February 23rd, 6 PM @ LA – FS1 vs. LA Wildcats: The Defenders make their first away trip in week 3 of the season. The West Coast trip brings them head to head with a Norm Chow spread offense. Expect a ton of passing in this match up.
Week 4 – March 1st, 7 PM @ Tampa Bay – ESPN 2 vs, Tampa Bay Vipers: The Defenders make a trip back to the East Coast for this ESPN 2 match up. The Vipers are coached by an accomplished veteran in Marc Trestman. However, as you’ll see in my Quarterback rankings, to be posted at a later date, I think this is a clear match up where the Defenders should be favorited.
Week 5 – March 8th, 3 PM – AUDI Field – FS1 vs. St. Louis Battlehawks: The Defenders will be hosting what I expect to be a tough matchup. The Battlehawks have, what is on paper, a killer running attack with two NFL runners in Matt Jones and Christine Michael. They also have a young SEC molded passer in Jordan Ta’amu. The Battlehawks on the defensive side brings a strong defensive secondary to the table and my AAF defensive MVP pick, Terrance Garvin.
Week 6 – March 15th, 4 PM – AUDI Field – FS1 vs. Dallas Renegades: Can the Defenders and Renegades bring some of that Washington Redskins vs. Dallas Cowboys NFL rivalry hatred to the XFL? They’ll certainly try, as the Defenders face a very strong Bob Stoops led offense with his collegiate star QB, Landry Jones. Mark this one on your calendar, folks.
Week 7 – March 22nd, 6 PM – @ Houston – FS1 vs. Houston Roughnecks: Will Phillip Walker or Connor Cook be the Roughnecks starting QB? Tune in to find out!
Week 8 – March 28th, 2 PM – AUDI Field – ABC vs. Tampa Bay Vipers: Here we have the final home game of the Defenders regular season! The Vipers rematch will close out the Audi Fields’ first attempt at hosting American Football.
Week 9 – April 4th, 2 PM – @ New York – ABC vs. New York Guardians: A Kevin Gilbride led rematch here.
Week 10 – April 12th, 3 PM or 6 PM @ St. Louis – FS1 or ABC vs. St. Louis Battlehawks: The Defenders close out the season against a top 3 team in my analysis. Will this have playoff ramifications?
Overall review: The Defenders get a well balanced and exciting schedule for Washington, DC sports fans to enjoy! While we may lack true primetime games, it’s nice to see the Defenders get so many games on the ABC flagship station. Whether you’re a local Defenders fan or watching from afar, you shouldn’t have too much trouble finding the games.
What game are you most looking forward too? Share in the comments!
ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Konnor Fulk excelled in the Sports Management Program at Georgia Southern University. He spent several seasons working with the Washington Redskins in fan engagement, strategy, and sales strategy. Additionally, Mr. Fulk continues consulting services across the sport of NASCAR. Konnor has a longstanding obsession with the concept of Spring Football and is looking forward to sharing his expertise and opinions about the XFL relaunch. Connect with Konnor on LinkedIN or give him a follow on Twitter @XFLKonnor
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