Los Angeles Wildcats receiver Tre McBride continued his hot streak with a big outing in the first game of XFL Week 4 Saturday, only he did it in a losing cause thanks to a poor throw at the worst time by his teammate, Josh Johnson.
As usual, some players shined, while others struggled. On that note, let’s check in on the biggest studs and duds from Saturday’s XFL Week 4 action.
Stud: Tre McBride, wide receiver, Los Angeles Wildcats
The Wildcats were without star receiver Nelson Spruce (knee injury) on Saturday. Picking up the slack in a big way, Tre McBride, who was amazing last weekend as well, had a banner day catching the ball.
McBride would finish Saturday’s game with eight receptions on 12 targets for 127 yards and a touchdown. The past two weekends, he’s hauled in an absurd 13 catches for 236 yards and three scores. Dude is working his way back into the NFL, to be sure.
Dud: Josh Johnson, quarterback, Los Angeles Wildcats
From a fantasy standpoint, Josh Johnson had a pretty decent day. The 33-year-old veteran racked up 330 yards and two touchdowns through the air, averaging a tidy 8.3 yards per attempt, after all.
Unfortunately, it was the one big mistake that landed him on the “dud” portion of this list, and it likely cost the Wildcats a chance to win the game.
Johnson threw this interception as his offense had just gotten into scoring range near the end of the third quarter. It killed a potential scoring drive in a tie game (14-14), and after the pick, New York went on to kick what turned out to be the game-winning field goal on its next offensive possession.
Stud: Darius Victor, running back, New York Guardians
The Guardians have had their fair share of quarterback problems throughout the first month of the XFL season, and in Week 4 they trotted out former AAF starter Luis Perez. He wasn’t asked to do too much, though, and didn’t need to thanks to the play of running back Darius Victor.
Victor, a former undrafted free agent out of Towson, had his best game as a pro. He toted the rock 18 times for 82 yards, spearheading a winning offensive formula that we predict head coach Kevin Gilbride will look to replicate in the weeks to come.
Dud: Brandon Silvers, quarterback, Seattle Dragons
We’ve said it for a couple of weeks now. Brandon Silvers has been holding the Dragons back in a big way. He’s not a consistent passer under center (52% completion rate) and entered XFL Week 4 with four interceptions on the season.
On Saturday, Silvers was brutal. He completed just 4-of-10 passes for 40 yards before finally being benched in favor of B.J. Daniels, who immediately sparked the offense. Barring an emergency situation, Seattle has to keep him on the bench going forward.
Stud: Jordan Ta’amu, quarterback, St. Louis BattleHawks
There are three legitimately exciting quarterbacks to watch right now in the XFL, and Jordan Ta’amu is one of them. He’s been making electrifying plays on a weekly basis, and on Saturday he showcased his arm in a big way.
Ta’amu engineered an extremely efficient offense for the BattleHawks in Week 4. He completed 20-of-27 passes for 264 yards and a touchdown, adding another 63 yards on 16 carries. He’s getting better by the week and appears to be a player the NFL will be interested in this summer.
Dud: Jim Zorn, head coach, Seattle Dragons
There are a couple of reasons for highlighting Jim Zorn as a big dud in XFL Week 4. The first reason is pretty obvious: He took way too long to finally turn his offense over to Daniels, who immediately provided a spark — engineering two straight touchdown-scoring drives in the second half.
The second reason has more to do with game management. After Daniels threw a touchdown to tight end Evan Rodriguez early in the fourth quarter to pull the Dragons within four points, 20-16, Zorn called for a 3-point conversion from the 10-yard line. In no way would three points have served Seattle better than one (setting up game-tying field goal) or two extra points (setting up potential game-winner) at this point in the game. Seattle did not convert.
So, down by four points later in the fourth quarter, needing a touchdown rather than a field goal to win, Daniels threw a back-breaking interception trying to pull his team to victory. Brutal game management from Zorn, whose team fell to 1-3 on the season.