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D.C. Defenders win lottery for first pick in XFL draft

A court fight is underway over Eastern Junior Vikings Football, a youth sports organization in Voorhees.

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Credit: Jim Walsh / USA TODAY NETWORK

The D.C. Defenders won the virtual lottery and will select first in the XFL Draft, which begins Wednesday.

The event continues Thursday at the UFC Apex in Las Vegas.

The eight teams in the upstart league, which opens play Feb. 18, will draft an offensive skill player — wide receivers, tight ends, running backs and fullbacks — with the first pick. Quarterbacks already have been assigned to teams.

Following the Defenders in the opening round are the St. Louis Battlehawks, San Antonio Brahmas, Orlando Guardians, Vegas Vipers, Seattle Sea Dragons, Arlington Renegades and Houston Roughnecks.

The draft will be conducted “snake style,” with the pick order reversing in each round. While the Defenders have the No. 1 overall pick, they will not select again until the No. 16 spot.

Each of the four positional groupings selected on the first day will have 11 rounds. Offensive skill positions will be followed by defensive backs, defensive front seven and offensive line.

The second day of the draft will feature three rounds to allow teams to select the specialists — the kicker, punter and long snapper — followed by as many as 11 rounds of open drafting.

The XFL previously announced the coaches of each team.

Longtime Oklahoma coach Bob Stoops will take over the team in Arlington. Wade Phillips, former coach of the Dallas Cowboys and defensive coordinator of the Houston Texans, will lead the team in Houston.

Former NFL cornerbacks Rod Woodson and Terrell Buckley will coach the teams in Las Vegas and Orlando, respectively. Longtime Pittsburgh Steelers wideout Hines Ward will coach San Antonio.

Former New Orleans Saints coach Jim Haslett will lead Seattle, former New York Jets tight end Anthony Becht has the job in St. Louis and former Alabama State and Virginia State coach Reggie Barlow will coach in Washington.

–Field Level Media

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