Bookmakers released their first XFL odds for the 2020 season this week, allowing fans to try their hand at prognosticating a league in which none of the eight teams has yet to play a game.
The Dallas Renegades emerged as the consensus favorite to win the first championship in the XFL’s latest incarnation, though there is little agreement on most of the other teams in the league.
Stoops, Jones Make Renegades Team to Beat
William Hill, DraftKings, and FanDuel each list Dallas as a 3/1 favorite to win the 2020 XFL Championship. The Renegades earned respect across the board, likely due to their combination of a formidable head coach in Bob Stoops, along with surprising depth at the quarterback position.
Dallas plans to start former Oklahoma star Landry Jones in its opener against the St. Louis Battlehawks on Feb. 9. However, Jones suffered a left knee injury on Jan. 7 and didn’t practice this Monday, raising concerns that he might not be available for the team’s first game. Jones still hopes he’ll be able to take the ball on opening day.
“That’s what I’m shooting for,” Jones told reporters this week. “Shooting for Week 1, and then I think the worst-case scenario is Week 2.”
Dallas appears to have a ready-made backup in former Syracuse quarterback Eric Dungey, who failed to stick in the NFL after an excellent, but injury-plagued career for the Orange as a dual-threat QB. Dungey missed significant time in training camp with a hamstring injury, meaning the job might go to third-string signal caller Philip Nelson, formerly of East Carolina.
“In our last mock game there against St. Louis, he had a really good day throwing the football, so we’re excited,” Stoops said of Nelson.
Uncertainty Reigns in Brand New League
After Dallas, sportsbooks are split on who the top contenders in the league will be.
The Tampa Bay Vipers look to be a strong second choice. William Hill lists the Vipers as +300 co-favorites, while DraftKings (+400) has them as the second choice, and FanDuel (+500) has them in the third position. Mac Trestman coaches the Vipers, while Aaron Murray and Taylor Cornelius might fight for the starting quarterback position. Former Florida receiver Antonio Callaway gives the Vipers a legitimate threat to throw the ball to as well.
XFL Title Odds
- Dallas Renegades (+300)
- Tampa Bay Vipers (+300)
- DC Defenders (+450)
- St. Louis Battlehawks (+650)
- Seattle Dragons (+800)
- Houston Roughnecks (+850)
- Los Angeles Wildcats (+850)
- New York Guardians (+1200)
Odds via William Hill
The New York Guardians confounded oddsmakers most of all. FanDuel sees New York as a +375 second choice to win the XFL championship, and DraftKings lists the Guardians third, at +450. But William Hill pegs New York as the worst team in the league, giving them +1200 odds to win a title.
William Hill has also released XFL odds for the league’s first week of games. Dallas is a 7-point favorite at home against St. Louis, while Tampa Bay is a 5.5-point road favorite over the Guardians. In other Week 1 action, the Seattle Dragons (+7) will visit the DC Defenders, while the Houston Roughnecks (-5) are favored at home over the Los Angeles Wildcats.