The 2023 XFL season had an eventful weekend with exciting games. The DC Defenders defeated the Seattle Sea Dragons 22-18. The Defenders defense was a big reason for that win. While the season has only gone through a week, it was still expected that the Sea Dragons would have a strong offense. With the Defenders getting the win due to a big defensive play, can the Defenders defense keep forcing wins?
DC Defenders Defense Big Game
The game started slow for the Defenders, being down 9-0 in the first quarter. Sea Dragons’ wide receiver Josh Gordon was a difficult player to stop. By the second quarter, DC began fighting back, thanks to strong plays by the DC Defense.
Defenders Defense Notable Plays
There were three plays that stood out the most by the defense. In the third quarter of the game, cornerback Michael Joseph intercepted a pass by quarterback Ben DiNucci and ran it in for a touchdown. This was a big momentum shift for the Defenders and not the only big play by Joseph. In the fourth quarter, he intercepted a second pass and ran for 22 yards, according to the XFL website.
Following the second interception, the DC Defenders offense was able to take advantage and score a touchdown boosting their lead. While DC had a nice advantage, the Sea Dragons got the ball back with just over two minutes left, down by just four points. Seattle has a strong offense and was able to get down the field into the red zone quickly.
The Sea Dragons had the ball on the one-yard line with just 19 seconds left in the game, and the Defenders defense was able to stand their ground. Linebacker Jamal Brooks forced, and recovered a fumble before Seattle could score, sealing the DC Defenders the win.
Can DC Defenders Defense Continue Dominance?
Just as one could expect during the first game of a new league, there was a slow start for the Defenders. The offense took time before gaining the momentum needed, and the defense had to adjust after Seattle got the first score. The Defenders offense played well, but with an injury to their starting center, Mike Maietti, quarterback Jordan Ta’amu was under pressure. There is no update on how Maietti is, but it can put more pressure on the Defenders defense to step up.
There were high expectations for the Defenders defense heading into the XFL season. Based on how they were able to adjust and make big stops, the team should be in safe hands. Next week the Defenders will face the Vegas Vipers, who are coming off a loss. Despite being an away game for the Defenders, their defense can work off of their momentum and step up big.
Vipers’ quarterback, Luis Perez completed 22 passes out of 36 attempts for 249 yards, according to the XFL’s website. While he passed for three touchdowns, he also threw two interceptions. The team also fumbled the ball once. The DC Defenders can take advantage of these turnovers and their momentum to continue to make it easier on their offense.
It is early in the season, especially with brand new teams, but based on the second half, the defense has shown they can push the team far. The DC Defenders will face off against the Vegas Vipers this Saturday at 7 pm Eastern. Be sure to watch to see how the Defenders defense can once again make big plays.
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