XFL: DC Defenders’ QB tandem lighting up XFL through perfect season so far

The DC Defenders have been running rampant through the second season of the XFL as they are the only team to post an undefeated record so far at 5-0. A big part of their success comes from the job that has been under center with Jordan Ta’amu and D’Eriq King splitting time at the helm.

When looking at the success of DC Defenders on offense you can see why they are a run-dominant team. Not only did they use the #1 pick of the 2023 XFL draft on running back Abram Smith, but they also brought in two dual-threat quarterbacks in Ta’amu and King to make sure they can always keep opposing defenses guessing.

Ta’amu, who graduated from the University of Mississippi (NCAA Division I) in 2018 and has spent time on teams in the XFL, USFL and NFL, is more of the passer out of the two quarterbacks. However, he is not necessarily lighting it up through the air. Only having just over 100 pass attempts and completing 57 of them. Ta’amu has thrown for 658 yards and one touchdown with one interception.

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Where Ta’amu makes more of an impact is on the ground. Through the five games played, he finds himself with the fourth most rushing yards in the league at 208 yards with 4.7 yards per carry and two touchdowns.

On the other hand, just when you think you may have Ta’amu figured out, Defenders head coach Reggie Barlow throws his second quarterback D’Eriq king at you just to keep you off balance.

King, who graduated from the University of Miami (NCAA Division I) in 2021, is seeing playing time for the first time since his days in college and is making the absolute most of it.

King has played in all five of the games but has only amounted eight total pass attempts. The good news is he has completed six of those passes and two of his completions have resulted in touchdowns.

King also has 20 total carries on the season with 73 yards. However, this has not stopped him from being the XFL’s leading rushing touchdown leader with five. This means that one out of every four carries from King have resulted in a touchdown.

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Overall, the play from the quarterbacks may not have lit up the XFL through the air but there has been no answer for them so far on the ground.

Between the two dual threat quarterbacks and their leading rusher Abram Smith. It would only make sense why the DC Defenders lead the XFL in team rushing… and it’s not even close.

Through the five games, the Defenders have bolstered 870 yards and 11 touchdowns on the ground.

To put true perspective to their rushing dominance the closest teams are the Seattle Sea Dragons with 466 yards and the Houston Roughnecks with six touchdowns. Additionally, the Defenders lead the league with 188 rushing attempts which is more than any team by 81, yet they still lead the league with yards per carry at 4.6.

The Defenders may only be a one trick pony with their rushing prowess, but will teams be able to stop their dominance? Or will the versatility of their quarterbacks keep them undefeated through the second half of the XFL season?

Noah Costantino is a student and football player at Baldwin Wallace University in Cleveland, Ohio. Fueled by his love for the game he looks to continue his knowledge of football at an international level. He is majoring in Communications with a