XFL Week 1 Odds Preview: Expect the Unexpected?

Football Season Has Just Begun!

Odds Set Conservatively For XFL’s First Week Back

It’s the start of a new XFL season, and if the XFL Week 1 odds are any indication, fans don’t really know what to expect.

There is no team favored by more than 3.5 points and all four games’ totals are set around the 35.5 to the 36.5-point mark. If we’re going by the 2020 season’s five-week sample, there were few close games. It was a blowout city for the most part – an average winning margin of 12.9 points. The average total was also 41 points.

What Do These Early XFL Odds Tell Us?

The relatively tight XFL Week 1 odds are due to the uncertainty of the teams. Most teams have a brand new roster and staff with some even having rather inexperienced coaches. The Houston Roughnecks dominated the 2020 season and went 5-0. But its coach/general manager, June Jones, and its main stars have moved on to other teams or leagues.

The conventional wisdom is that the talent in the XFL, particularly at quarterback, are close to each other. Unless someone stands out and proves to be the next P.J. Walker, most teams won’t have much of an edge from this position. Prior to this week, the XFL outright odds had St. Louis, Seattle, and Arlington as the three best teams to win the title.

St. Louis is the only favored visitor for Week 1. But playing in the same division as Seattle (they play each other twice) could make these teams’ XFL 2023 schedule a bit tougher. Arlington has a slightly “easier” schedule as the clear-cut contender of the South Division. But of course, this is all on paper and the odds could look very different by Week 2.

Vegas Vipers vs Arlington Renegades

Date & Time: Saturday, Feb. 18 (3:00 p.m. ET)
Location: Choctaw Stadium, Arlington, TX
Streaming: ABC

When does the XFL start? The Renegades host the Vipers to kick off the 2023 XFL season. They are 3.5-point favorites. They are one of the favorites on the outright odds thanks to their coach/GM; the legendary Bob Stoops. The NCAA icon will also have Kyle Sloter, who was an All-USFL player with New Orleans in 2022. However, Drew Plitt is the designated Week 1 starter. The Vipers will be coached by NFL Hall of Famer Rod Woodson. Luis Perez starts at QB over Brett Hundley, who had nine starts in the NFL in 2017.

Orlando Guardians vs Houston Roughnecks

Date & Time: Saturday, Feb. 18 (8:30 p.m. ET)
Location: TDECU Stadium, Houston, TX
Streaming: ESPN, FX

Saturday evening pits the Guardians against the other Texan team – the Roughnecks. This team was the uncrowned champion of the 2020 season and has yet to suffer a defeat. Wade Phillips, one of the more experienced NFL coaches, is in charge of the team. The Guardians move to Orlando from East Rutherford and will likely be quarterbacked by Paxton Lynch. With Houston’s QB status still undecided, they are the 3.5-point favorites.

St. Louis Battlehawks vs San Antonio Brahmas

Date & Time: Sunday, Feb. 19 (3:00 p.m. ET)
Location: Alamodome, San Antonio, TX
Streaming: ABC

The Battlehawks, the prohibitive outright favorites, visit the Brahmas as 2.5-point favorites on the XFL Week 1 odds. St. Louis has a few familiar names with the likes of QB A.J. McCarron and wide receiver Austin Proehl, who will be coached by his dad Rick. Anthony Becht lacks coaching experience but he has, arguably, one of the best rosters. As for the Brahmas, their most notable player is running back Kalen Ballage. Hines Ward coaches and manages.

Seattle Sea Dragons vs D.C. Defenders

Date & Time: Sunday, Feb. 19 (8:00 p.m. ET)
Location: Audi Field, Washington, D.C.
Streaming: ESPN

The final game of Week 1 may be the best, an even matchup between the Sea Dragons and Defenders. Cowboys fans will see a familiar face as Ben DiNucci quarterbacks for Seattle opposite Jordan Ta’amu for Washington. This may be the best QB showdown of the weekend as the two could be among the passing leaders of the league. Seattle is coached by the very experienced Jim Haslett while D.C.’s Reggie Barlow brings 14 seasons of head coaching experience from the NCAA.

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