Sunday’s NFL action saw a battle between two teams looking for their first victory of the 2020 XFL season.
The Dallas Renegades would emerge as the squad with one in the win column thanks to a solid performance from former Oklahoma Sooners quarterback Landry Jones.
Cameron Artis-Payne also racked up the rushing yards as the Renegades took the game 25-18 over the Los Angeles Wildcats, giving former Sooners’ head coach Bob Stoops his first XFL win.
Renegades, Wildcats battle for first win of season
The Week 2 XFL game would get off to a slow start with neither team scoring in the first quarter and both teams recording just a field goal before halftime.
In the third quarter, Dallas added a 45-yard field goal, and it was looking like a lackluster game at 6-3.
The Wildcats woke up early in the fourth quarter when Josh Johnson connected on a short six-yard TD pass to Nelson Spruce. That put Los Angeles ahead 9-6.
However, several minutes later, the Renegades struck back when running back Cameron-Artis Payne took it up the middle for 21 yards and a Dallas TD.
It was a nifty bit of running too as Artis-Payne found the holes, eluded the defense, and got up the field for the score.
After stopping the Wildcats on the next series, the Renegades had another scoring drive behind Landry Jones. Ultimately it resulted in a short TD pass to Donald Parham Jr., and Dallas was up 19-9.
— Dallas Renegades (@XFLRenegades) February 16, 2020
The Wildcats wouldn’t go down without a fight, though. Johnson found his favorite WR Spruce for a 44-yard score shortly after Jones’ first TD pass of the season.
The Wildcats would also achieve the historic first three-point conversion of the season. That made it just a one-point game with a bit over four minutes to go.
— ESPN (@espn) February 16, 2020
But, the Renegades countered and delivered a knockout punch with just over a minute to go when Artis-Payne achieved a second rushing TD and made it 25-18.
That would hold up as the final score in a game that became a second-half thriller.
Landry Jones, Cameron Artis-Payne fuel the Renegades win
Jones would finish 28-for-40 with 305 yards and a touchdown. He was also picked off twice and sacked twice for a loss of 15 yards, but still gave a solid performance in the win.
The ground game was especially strong for the Renegades on Sunday, thanks to Artis-Payne. On just 14 carries, the former Carolina Panthers running back had 99 yards and two touchdowns.
On the losing side, Josh Johnson was 19-for-35 with 201 yards and two touchdowns in his debut. Nelson Spruce had nine targets and six receptions with 89 yards and two touchdowns.
In terms of rushing, Dallas held the Wildcats to just 57 yards on the ground for the game, per XFL stats.
What’s next for Renegades, Wildcats?
The Dallas Renegades (1-1) can now try to build on the momentum of their season’s first win. It was a spectacular showing for two offensive stars.
Artis-Payne showed his potential to continue to have strong performances on the ground, and Landry Jones may be able to shake off the issues he had today to continue putting up big numbers.
For Week 3, Dallas will visit the Seattle Dragons, another team that picked up their first XFL 2020 win this season.
Game time is set for Saturday, February 22, at 5 p.m. Eastern Time.
The Los Angeles Wildcats (0-2) are looking like one of the XFL’s basement dwellers, but with a total of 10 weeks of games, there’s plenty of time to get it together.
They’ll try to regroup and find a way to win in Week 3 at home. Unfortunately, they’re hosting the red hot DC Defenders (2-0).
Game time is Sunday, February 23, at 6 p.m. Eastern Time.