Roughnecks vs. Dragons: Preview and Prediction

Location: TDECU Stadium, Houston, TX

Kickoff: Saturday March 7th

TV: ABC

Series Record: First meeting.

Last Meeting: See above.

Betting Line: HOU, -13, 46 o/u


It’s been a rough inaugural season for the Seattle Dragons so far. Sitting at 1-3 and with a potential quarterback controversy on their hands, it’s now or never. Houston meanwhile is riding high, undefeated and equipped with an offense sexier than Kelly Hu in the Scorpion King. Their defense as well has been smothering opposing teams like a heir with a pillow on their parent’s deathbed.

Seattle is in a precarious position: teetering on the verge of falling out of any playoff contention (no matter how miraculous it may seem) while Houston is hoping to gain more distance from their Western foes.

Dragons

Seattle quarterback Brandon Silvers was given the reigns as the starter and even though his numbers compared to the rest of the XFL are not the worst his output and winning ability have been stagnate.

Now Silver is a solid quarterback. I had the chance to cover him at Troy when he played the Texas State Bobcats, and he burned them like a bad perm at my alma mater. He’s got talent but here in Seattle he’s floundered. He’s a run and shoot quarterback in a league where the scrambling signal-caller is flourishing. He’s recorded more touchdowns than interceptions, but the fact is Seattle is sputtering and consistently failing to develop drives. So what’s Seattle to do?

Enter B.J. Daniels.

After a spectacular career at South Florida and a pro career that included a seven season stint in the NFL, CFL and AAF B.J. has emerged as a fan favorite with his named being chanted a few times by the Dragon fans. Daniels entered last week against St. Louis after the Dragons only mustered a field goal in the first half. He would engineer three second half scoring drives, sparking a stale Seattle offense.

If Daniels starts, will it be enough for Seattle to beat Houston? Maybe. The Roughnecks have struggled against scrambling quarterbacks this year allowing 4.79 yards a carry to quarterbacks.

Roughnecks

XFL fans have been praising the Roughneck offense but last week in the Texas Throwdown against cross-state rival, the Dallas Renegades, it was the opposite.

Houston’s defense already led the league in the turnover margin with a robust +5.
But in the battle for Texas’ soul the Roughnecks turned it up in their 27-20 victory. The Houston defense forced five turnovers (four interceptions and a fumble recovery), five tackles for losses, a sack and allowed 3.4 yards a play.

Their performance against Dallas proved their defense can over compensate for a struggling offense.

The XFL’s leading receiver Cam Phillips only had one catch for nine yards and was targeted three times. It also broke his three game streak of three or more touchdowns. Imagine if they get the offense a-rolling Saturday and their defense doesn’t want to be shown up.

Fun Facts

*Houston football teams, both professional and college are 8-15 versus teams from Seattle. The Oilers and Texans went a combined 8-13 against the Seattle Seahawks and the University of Houston has lost twice to U of Washington.

* Apparently a Seattle Dragons vendor tested positive for the Coronavirus. He worked at a Seattle game a couple of weeks ago. I know it’s a Houston home game but just thought I’d throw this in there since it’s the hot button issue.

Conclusion

Houston is just too powerful. They’ve played a few games where the opposing teams have been in it until the last minute but the Roughnecks are due for another blowout. Unless Houston implodes and Seattle forces 5 turnovers I don’t think the Dragons can keep up. Gimme the 40-22, Houston win.


Follow me on Twitter for more great content @vidal_espinoza.

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Vidal Espinoza
An Austin native covering the Tennessee Titans for Overtime Heroics and Texas State Bobcats football for Underdog Dynasty. Texas State alumni, Oilers/TItans fan since '86, former punter and former cartoonist.

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