Break up the Vipers.
It took until Week 4, but Tampa Bay pulled out its first win of the season, upending the Defenders in a 25-0 rout at home. The Vipers, marred with some QB issues, turned to Taylor Cornelius to head up the offense and it proved to be the right move. The Vipers ground game was unstoppable, producing 266 yards on the ground.
Cornelius threw a TD and rushed for another, and the Vipers D held Cardale Jones and the Defenders to 107 total yards.
The early Sunday game proved to live up to the hype. The Texas Throwdown resulted in a 27-20 Houston win, with the win coming on a game-sealing tipped interception at the goal line.
Sporting News provided live updates, scores and highlights from Sunday’s XFL games:
DC Defenders at Tampa Bay Vipers: Score, highlights
Final: Tampa Bay 22, DC 0
9:37 p.m. FINAL: Vipers rout the Defenders 25-0 for their first win.
9:29 p.m.: 3:35 left in the game and DC has the ball. Cardale Jones is out of this game.
9:19 p.m.: First sack of the night for Tampa Bay. Reggie Northrup takes down Cardale Jones. Clock is ticking at just over 7 minutes left.
9:13 p.m. TAMPA BAY FIELD GOAL: Vipers boot it through for three more points. They lead the Defender 25-0 in the fourth quarter.
9:10 p.m.: Vipers are threatening again. Inside the red zone at the start of the fourth quarter.
Third quarter: Tampa Bay 22, DC 0
9:03 p.m.: Tampa Bay is driving again and DC has no answers for the ground game. End of third quarter. All Vipers.
8:51 p.m. TAMPA BAY TOUCHDOWN: Taylor Cornelius pulls the ball down and takes the ball in himself for six. Conversion attempt fails. Tampa Bay up 22-0 in the third quarter.
8:49 p.m. TAMPA BAY TURNOVER: Tavaris McFadden takes to the skies to pick off Cardale Jones, giving the Vipers back the ball. A 15-yard penalty following the play leads the Vipers just outside of the red zone.
8:46 p.m. DC TURNOVER: Rahim Moore picks off Cornelius at the goal line and the Defenders have life in the third quarter.
8:39 p.m.: Vipers have stifled the defenders offense all game. DC is punting once again. Vipers on their way to their first win, just over midway through the third quarter.
8:33 p.m.: Tampa Bay misses a field goal after a good looking drive.
8:26 p.m.: Daniel Williams making moves, making things happen for the Vipers:
Second quarter: Tampa Bay 16, DC 0
7:58 p.m.: FIELD GOAL, TAMPA BAY. Andrew Franks nails a 40-yard kick. 16-0, Vipers.
7:48 p.m.: BLOCKED. The Vipers get a hand to a field goal attempt, and DC’s day gets even worse.
7:37 p.m.: TOUCHDOWN, TAMPA BAY. Taylor Cornelius extends the lead, and the Defenders are in danger of two straight blowout losses if they aren’t careful. 1-point attempt is no good. 13-0, Vipers.
First quarter: Tampa Bay 7, DC 0
7:30 p.m.: On fourth-and-1 from the 19, the Vipers pick up a first down. They want more than a field goal here.
7:26 p.m.: The Vipers already have 87 rushing yards. They’re in DC territory for the second time in the first quarter.
7:22 p.m.: DC falls victim to another stalled drive and has to punt again.
7:13 p.m.: TOUCHDOWN, TAMPA BAY. The Vipers strike first, finishing a 75-yard drive with a 7-yard rush by Jaques Patrick. Their 1-point attempt is successful. 7-0, Vipers.
7:08 p.m.: The Defenders go three-and-out on their first drive.
7:05 p.m.: DC starts with the ball in the final XFL game of the weekend.
Houston Roughnecks at Dallas Renegades: Score, highlights
Final: Houston 27, Dallas 20
6:56 p.m.: INTERCEPTION. Nelson is picked off near the goal line.
6:52 p.m.: Two-minute warning.
6:50 p.m.: First-and-goal for Dallas after a scramble by backup Philip Nelson.
6:47 p.m.: Jones is out of the game.
6:43 p.m.: Dallas is past the 50 with just under six minutes remaining. Despite some terrible turnovers, the Renegades are still in this game.
6:28 p.m.: TOUCHDOWN, HOUSTON. A strip sack of Jones is returned 12 yards to the end zone. 2-point attempt is no good. 27-20, Roughnecks.
6:23 p.m.: Houston punts, and Dallas can now take the lead on this drive.
Third quarter: Houston 21, Dallas 20
6:12 p.m.: TOUCHDOWN, DALLAS. An immediate response from the Renegades. Dunbar finishes the drive with a rushing score. 3-point attempt is successful. 21-20, Roughnecks.
6:10 p.m.: Landry Jones completes a 33-yard strike. Big scoring chance here for Dallas.
6:02 p.m.: TOUCHDOWN, HOUSTON. Walker connects with Blake Jackson to extend the Roughnecks’ lead. 3-point attempt is no good. 21-11, Roughnecks.
5:58 p.m.: Walker runs up the middle for 15 yards, and the Roughnecks are on the move.
5:45 p.m.: The second half begins with a quick three-and-out for Dallas.
Second quarter: Houston 15, Dallas 11
5:22 p.m.: FIELD GOAL, DALLAS. The Renegades control the ball for 2:12 of game clock and get 21 yards to make a 46-yard field goal. That makes it 15-11 Houston right before halftime. Not a bad score, all things considered.
5:11 p.m.: And now Dallas forces a three-and-out. The Renegades will get the ball with roughly 3 minutes remaining in the half.
5:09 p.m.: They don’t build them like they used to:
5:04 p.m.: Houston responds by forcing a three-and-out. Roughnecks will take over at their 22.
5 p.m.: Houston only manages 23 yards on its ensuing drive; the Roughnecks punt the ball 32 yards down to Dallas’ 17, where the Renegades will take over. A touchown and conversion here and we’ve got ourselves a game.
4:58 p.m.: Controversy brewing? A closer look at Dallas’ touchdown (and officials’ decision not to review it):
4:51 p.m.: TOUCHDOWN, DALLAS. Sure enough, two plays later Jones hits tight end Donald Parham for a 12-yard touchdown. The two connect again for a successful 2-point conversion to make it 15-8 Houston.
4:50 p.m.: Dallas goes for it on fourth-and-1 from Houston’s 35; running back Lance Dunbar gets 20 yards off the end around, and now Dallas could get right back in it.
4:49 p.m.: Landry Jones is back in at quarterback. Stoops is sticking with his guy — for now.
4:45 p.m.: TOUCHDOWN, HOUSTON. Three plays later, the Roughnecks finally find the end zone off a 6-yard touchdown connection between Walker and Holley. A successful 3-point attempt (a 10-yard rush by Walker) makes it 15-0 Houston.
First quarter: Houston 6, Dallas 0
4:40 p.m.: Walker gets a couple of 9-yard passes to get Houston down to the Dallas 22. That’ll do it for a rough first quarter for the Renegades.
4:36 p.m.: INTERCEPTION, DALLAS. Wow. Nichols pulls down his second interception of the game and third for Jones — all in the first quarter. He returns it 3 yards to Dallas’ 40. Stoops should really consider tweaking his game plan now.
4:32 p.m.: “You were working as a substitute teacher at one point.” A nice story for Houston’s Brown:
4:30 p.m.: FIELD GOAL, HOUSTON. Roughnecks get some big plays to get all the way down to the Dallas 12, but end up settling for another Castillo field goal, this one from 30 yards.
4:27 p.m.: Nice little connection between Walker and Nick Holley. Roughnecks are right outside the red zone.
4:25 p.m.: INTERCEPTION, DALLAS. Uh-oh. That’s Jones’ second interception in as many drives. This one goes to Deatrick Nichols, who nabs it at Houston’s 27 and returns it 23 yards to midfield. Coach Bob Stoops might have to make an uncomfortable decision here shortly.
4:23 p.m.: Renegades are still riding Artis-Payne a lot early. He has three straight rushes of 7, 4 and 6 yards. Dallas is driving at its 46-yard line.
4:18 p.m.: FIELD GOAL, HOUSTON. Dallas bends but doesn’t break, allowing a 37-yard field goal from Sergio Castillo to make it it 3-0 Houston.
4:17 p.m.: Also, no love lost between these two teams:
4:17 p.m.: Two plays into Houston’s offensive drive, Walker hits Kahlil Walker for a 28-yard gain down to the Renegades’ 20-yard line.
4:15 p.m.: INTERCEPTION, DALLAS. Two plays later, Landry Jones’ attempt to hit Joshua Crockett is intercepted by Cody Brown, who returns it 37 yards to Dallas’ 48-yard line. Big swing early.
4:12 p.m.: Dallas having some success running the ball early. Cameron Artis-Payne gets Dallas a first down with runs of 6 and 5 yards, followed by an 11-yard gain from Lance Dunbar. Renegades are already at midfield.
4:08 p.m.: Dallas holds tough on its first defensive drive of the game, forcing a three-and-out.
4 p.m.: About that time. …