St. Louis BattleHawks at Dallas Renegades
- Spread: Renegades -9
- Total: 52.5
- Kickoff: 5 p.m. ET on Sunday
- TV: ESPN
Odds as of Sunday and via FanDuel, where Action Network users get a risk-free bet up to $500.
Week 1 of the XFL is here!
Find our betting preview for Sunday’s BattleHawks-Renegades matchup, complete with matchup analysis and our experts’ projected spread below.
BattleHawks vs. Renegades Injury Report
The Battlehawks come into Week 1 relatively healthy, but the Renegades are already dealing with injury issues.
After suffering an injury in early January, QB Landry Jones (knee) was given a timeline of 4-6 weeks to return, so when he practiced this week, there was some hope that he would be able to suit up for the game. But he is still yet to practice in full, and he is expected to miss Week 1.
Additionally, WR Jazz Ferguson (hand/thigh) is dealing with some injury issues. He missed practice on Wednesday but got in a limited session on Thursday, so his status is up in the air. Although Ferguson is currently listed as a second-string receiver, he’s probably one of the team’s most dynamic playmakers, and his absence would be felt. — Mike Vitanza
Renegades Secondary vs. BattleHawks Wide Receivers
Dallas boasts one of the best defenses in the XFL, and the secondary in particular has an advantageous matchup for Week 1.
The BattleHawks wide receivers are rather unimpressive: They have no big-time playmakers to speak of and are led by L’Damian Washington and De’Mornay Pierson-El. Both underwhelm when compared to the other Nos. 1-2 receiver around the league.
Outside of one big game, Washington failed to impress last season in the AAF, and he has a tough matchup against cornerback Josh Thornton, who spent multiple years on NFL practice squads.
Pierson-El is a smaller receiver best suited for special teams, but he has been pushed into the WR2 role and will likely man the slot. While he might be able to accumulate receptions, it’s unlikely that he will efficiently turn his catches into yards thanks to a strong middle-of-the-field defense led by safety Deron Smith.
And if Washington and Pierson-El are unable to create production on their own for quarterback Jordan Ta’amu, the Battlehawks will have a hard time scoring enough points to win as nearly double-digit road underdogs. — Vitanza
Our Projected BattleHawks-Renegades Odds
You’ll find our experts’ consensus spread as well as Sean Koerner’s total below. Find their projections for every Week 1 game here.
- Our Experts’ Consensus Spread: Renegades -7
- Koerner’s Projected Total: 47.7
Sean Koerner: BattleHawks +9.5 (-110)
I bet this at +10, and Week 1 of a league featuring eight new teams is way too early to have any team a double-digit favorite.
The market isn’t necessarily wrong that the Renegades could be one of the top teams this season — they are led by head coach Bob Stoops and have one of the most complete rosters in the league. Jones could very well be the top quarterback in the league this year, but it seems likely that he will sit Week 1 in place of backup Philip Nelson.
Jones to Nelson figures to be a bit of a drop-off for Dallas that the market is ignoring. In the face of uncertainty, getting +9.5 seems like a no-brainer bet for me. It’s important to tread lightly in Week 1 and let at least each team play a game before we can take harder stances.