Now that the opening weekend has concluded, we can all agree there’s a few things that we love about the return of the XFL.
The official opening weekend of the reunited XFL has come to a close, and we’ve see four pretty entertaining games. So let’s take a look at a few things that made the return worth every second of watching the first four games.
1. There’s no extra-point field goals…and that’s awesome.
How many times in the NFL have we seen a game decided by an extra point? How many times has a team lost a game because even with a touchdown, the extra point would STILL leave them one or two points behind? Well the XFL has thrown that idea in the garbage, by completing erasing PAT field goals. Instead, teams get a chance to pick how they want to tack on an extra point.
- Scoring on a play run from the 2-yard line gets one point.
- Scoring on a play from the 5-yard line gets two points.
- Scoring on a play from the 10-yard line gets three points.
Imagine the possibility of putting together a nine-point play. The entire momentum of the game can shift one way or the other, depending on what the coach is thinking. Now, the standard three-point field goal will still be in effect. So you can still at least pick up the three points if you can’t find your way to the end zone.
2. More communication is heard from the sidelines and officials.
This is something that brings a new audio experience to the game. Prior to each play, you’ll notice you hear conversations between the coaches and the quarterback. You get to hear plays being set up, and quarterbacks communicating with their team. It adds a new dimension to the game, getting to hear plays getting set up.
Also, you get to hear the conversations between the XFL officials on the field, and the replay booth. So you get an understanding of penalties and what happens during play reviews. It’s definitely something you don’t get to hear on Sundays during the NFL season.
3. Each XFL game has their own female official
In a day and age where equality is a huge issue between men and women, each XFL game will have its own female official on the field. According to FootballZebras.com, there will be seven women in stripes. One of those females, Amanda Sauer-Cook, worked the Dallas/St. Louis game on Sunday night. She worked last year in the now-defunct Alliance of American Football, and also is a regular official for Big 10 games in college football.
The XFL has kicked the door wide open to the LGBTQ community, as she is also the first openly gay individual to work on a major televised football game. It gives literally EVERYONE a chance to live out their dreams, and that is beyond awesome.
4. The game is faster, but still packed full of action.
Everybody’s complaint with any other standard professional sporting event is the time it takes to play every game. In the NFL, there is a 40-second play clock in between plays. It gives teams a chance to get their next play set up, get lined up at the line of scrimmage, and make changes based on how the opposing side lines up. Not in the XFL.
You get 25 seconds. This isn’t a 9-5 job, so you better have your act together and quick. And while it shaves a little bit of time off each game, this weekend proved that there is PLENTY of action to go around without worrying about 15 measly seconds being taken off the clock.
Along those same lines, each team only gets two timeouts per half, unlike the traditional three in the big leagues. It’s all done in an effort to streamline the game a little bit and move things along. And it’s a welcome change all the way around.
5. Fewer teams guarantees no overkill, but still provides the football fix.
When the NFL preseason games start in August, you know you’re in for a long season. Because you know there’s football every Sunday through January. It makes for a long season. But there’s also 32 teams that the league has to shuffle through 17 grueling weeks of the season, plus four weeks of preseason.
With the XFL, there’s only eight teams in its inaugural run. With that, you get a shortened 10-week season, with no preseason to deal with. You get four games each week, until the season ends on Easter Sunday. After that, the playoffs will consist of just the East and West Division Championship games, and then the XFL Championship.