2020 XFL Fantasy Football Rankings (Week 2)
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Week 1 is in the books and I don’t know about you, but the XFL exceeded all my expectations. No, it’s not the NFL. And, no, the level of play was nowhere near the NFL level… but it’s not supposed to be. The games were competitive for the most part. The rules that make the XFL different from the NFL weren’t gimmicky and did not distract from the overall product. In fact, I think the NFL could learn from some of the things the XFL are doing, namely the kickoff rules.
As far as fantasy goes, I think I speak for everyone when I say, “We didn’t know anything.” Everyone’s consensus RB1, Christine Michael, had seven carries for zero yards, and apparently Lance Dunbar, who wasn’t even on the final depth chart, is the running back to own in Dallas — not Cameron Artis-Payne. Here are my rankings for Week 2…
- Phillip Walker was far-and-away the best player from this weekend throwing for over 270 yards with four TDs.
- Quarterbacks Josh Johnson and Landry Jones were both severely missed by their respective teams as both teams took an L in Week 1. I ranked them both this week as I expect them both to play, but left their backups ranked just in case.
- Aaron Murray was projected as the worst starting QB and he didn’t disappoint. He was one of only two quarterbacks to not have a touchdown pass this weekend. He also had two interceptions.
- Cardale Jones’ stats weren’t as gaudy as Walker’s, but he was the most efficient quarterback this weekend with a 116.7 passer rating. He also had 28 yards on the ground on nine carries
- Jordan Ta’amu was second in efficiency with a 108.4 passer rating and he is also the league’s third-leading rusher with 77 yards on the ground.
- No one really saw Matt Jones coming. We all assumed Christine Michael would be the workhorse. Those of us that have owned C-Mike in NFL fantasy should have known better. This is his M.O., play well in the preseason, be terrible when it counts. Meanwhile, Matt Jones was the only running back to get more than 20 carries this weekend and currently leads the XFL in rushing with 85 yards.
- Two Seattle running backs are ranked after Week 1. Kenneth Farrow, who wasn’t even listed as a starter going into the game, carried the ball seven times for 41 yards and added four receptions for 14 yards. His teammate, Ja’Quan Gardner, had nine carries for 36 yards.
- Jhurell Pressley, my No. 1 running back coming into Week 1, had a hard time against a better-than-expected Dragons defense. He did get 12 carries, however, good for the third-most of any running back.
- After reports that Lance Dunbar wouldn’t play and then a mistake not even being listed on the official depth chart, Dunbar came out and was the lead back for the Dallas Renegades — not Cameron Artis-Payne as many had assumed.
- I left Christine Michael and Cameron Artis-Payne ranked because I think they still have value and potential to put up fantasy numbers.
Wide Receivers/Tight Ends
|17||Donald Parham Jr.||TE||DAL|
- Nelson Spruce was targeted a whopping 15 times, and despite not having the highest yardage total this weekend, nor scoring, more targets lead to more sustainable fantasy production.
- Austin Proehl was the star from the opening game, scoring two TDs, including a 50-plus yard catch and run in which he just flat outran the Defenders defensive backs.
- Eli Rogers was another one of those guys that didn’t need to be listed as a starter, yet still came out and performed at a high level, catching six for 73 yards.
- Tight End Nick Truesdell had some great plays, including a one-handed catch in traffic despite a big hit, but he also fumbled twice trying to do too much.
- Naturally, when your quarterback throws for four touchdowns, you’re going to have a few guys that benefit. All three of Nick Holley, Cam Phillips, and Kahlil Lewis caught at least four passes and Phillips caught one of those four touchdowns.
|2||New York Guardians|
|4||St. Louis BattleHawks|
|7||Tampa Bay Vipers|
- Defenses were hard to judge with two team’s starting quarterbacks not playing, but one thing that was for certain, the Defenders are aptly named. They were the best fantasy defense from this past weekend.
- It was hard to tell if the Guardians’ defense was a product of them being good or the Vipers being bad. It’s probably somewhere in the middle.
- The Wildcats ran into the buzzsaw that was the Houston Roughnecks, and despite how good their roster looked on paper, when you give up four touchdowns, you’re going to be the cellar dweller.