Yesterday, fans worldwide watched the XFL in anticipation to see the newest football product to hit the market. The fun isn’t over just yet though. Sunday is also host of two more XFL games. The first game of the second day has the Tampa Bay Vipers heading north to MetLife Stadium to take on the New York Guardians.
New York came out strong, scoring in their opening drive. The Guardians drove the ball 44-yards over 8 plays with QB Matt McGloin ultimately running it in on short yards. The team was also successful with the their 1-point conversion, putting them up 7-0 with a little over 9 minutes left in the 1st.
Aaron Murray and The Vipers now had their chance to respond. Murray convincingly moved it down the field, only to throw the interception in their own end-zone giving the Guardians control once again.
Fortunately for Tampa Bay, New York was unable to produce on the drive. Ultimately punting the ball back to the Vipers, giving them another chance to get into the game. Luck was not turning their way just yet, Trusdell fumbled the Ball with New York recovering. After a booth review the call was reversed, giving Tampa Bay another chance. Starting out the 2nd, the Vipers were forced to punt back to New York.
The Guardians came back strong, showing that they mean business. McGloin ultimately passed left to Colby Pierson for the extra six. New York was also successful on the 1-Point conversion making the game 14-0 in favor of the Guardians.
.@colbyp04 putting DBs in the dirt with that footwork! 👌
Tampa Bay, determined to get on the board seemed to be moving the ball well. McGloin tossed a long ball to Tolliver to put them in scoring position. Ultimate, the Vipers were forced to go for the field goal, but unfortunately the kick was wide to the left, keeping the Vipers scoreless.
During the 2nd quarter we also saw the first ejection in league history. DT Ricky Walker threw a punch at Matt McGLoin, which led to him being kicked out of the game. This is something that we never like to see.
Both teams struggled to make anything happen for the rest of the quarter. The Vipers tried to get into the action in the last minute of the half, but unfortunately Murray ultimately threw the ball away, with New York securing the interception. With 29 seconds left in the half The Guardians didn’t let off the gas, moving the ball down the field to allow the team to get three-extra points via a successful 49-yard field goal from Matthew McCrain. Going into the half the Guardians held a commanding 17-0 lead.
Tampa Bay received the ball to kickoff the second half of the game. The team made some adjustments during the break, bringing Quentin Flowers in to serve as QB with Murray’s lack of production in the first. Murray and Flowers traded QB role throughout the second half. But, the Guardians defense was too much for Tampa Bay to handle. Time after time, New York would shut down the Vipers run and passing game. Between the two QB’s they were able to bring the Vipers within 10-yards of the goal line, ultimately settling for the field goal to put them on the board.
New York started out the 4th just as strong as they’ve been the entire game. After a quick look from the replay booth, The Guardians had secured another touchdown widening the margin even further. After an unsuccessful 1-Point conversion New York held a commanding 20-point lead — 23-3.
With less than two minutes left in the game, Quinten Flowers threw a long ball to Daniel Williams to put the Vipers at the 2-yard line. Flowers ran one in for the touchdown, but was reversed due to movement before the snap. Tampa Bay elected to take a time out to avoid losing 10-seconds on the game clock. The Vipers went for it on 4th-down, but their luck was no different. Flowers was sacked, giving the Guardians the ball again with just a little over a minute left in the game.
Overall the Guardians looked just as strong as they did in their pre-season match-up with the Vipers. Tampa Bay will look to rebound next week when they travel to Seattle to battle the Dragons. New York on the other hand is hoping to keep this momentum as they head to DC to take on the Defenders.