The XFL is a professional American Football League. Though not the first National Football League -NFL- alternative we’ve seen, it is one of the most exciting. The original league was launched in 2001, as a joint venture between the National Broadcasting Company, or NBC, and World Wrestling Entertainment, or WWF.
After a single season, however, that XFL folded amid criticism that it had relied too much on gimmicks similar to the scripted fights seen on WWE. Other charges levelled at the league included several incidences of violence, overcontrolling referees, a slow pace of play and a disregard of player safety.
Then, in 2018, a new and improved XFL was announced and 2020 is its inaugural season. Still owned by WWE mogul Vince McMahon’s Alpha Entertainment, it retained the original’s core principles but eschewed the showbiz angle. These principles were to have all 8 teams owned and centrally operated by the league, to be held after the Super Bowl, and to have simpler gameplay than the NFL.
There are a few XFL rules that make the games distinctly different from NFL matches. First of all, their timing rule keeps every event, including possible overtime, under 3 hours which is the size of an airtime slot on television.
To ensure this, the clock runs continuously outside the 2 minute warning. The only exception is following a change of possession. This might results on better wins just as AFL grand final bets has to offer. Inside the 2-minute warning the clock stops after each play, until the ball is spotted. The play clock after the ball is spotted is also slashed to 25 seconds.
Kick-offs are also different than in other American Football leagues, with the blockers for opposing teams lining up on the 25- and 25-yard lines. In terms of offence, teams will be able to choose between a 1-, 2- or 3-point conversion from scrimmage runs at different lines. A double forward pass is legal on any play that is behind the scrimmage line.
When you’re placing your bets, don’t be fooled by the faster gameplay – it’s different to watch, but the overall scores are similar to the NFL. Crucially, every player has a headset to communicate with their coaches rather than only the quarterback as in NFL games and allows for better strategy.
Is the New XFL Better?
So, have McMahon and his team succeeded? Is XFL 2.0 an improvement on the original? Preliminary reports and evidence suggest that it is. McMahon named former NFL quarterback Oliver Luck as the XFL’s commissioner and Chief Executive Officer, and he brings a wealth of experience in managing and growing leagues. Luck will be playing in the XFL himself, and has also been open to input from current coaches and fellow athletes to craft the game structure.
Play has stayed simple, but it is now much faster. Deals with major television networks and a large social media presence are also in place, so the reiteration of the XFL has certainly generated plenty of hype. The audiences watching the 10 season games, and the 2-week postseason that follows, will have to judge the quality of the action for themselves.