XFL Week 5 Picks and Analysis: Will the Renegades’ Offense Get Any Better?

Drew Plitt Arlington Renegades Vegas Vipers
Drew Plitt #9 of the Arlington Renegades throws the ball against the Vegas Vipers on February 18, 2023. Sam Hodde/Getty Images/AFP.

Week 5 in the XFL starts with 4-0 Houston taking on perhaps its toughest test yet from Seattle this Thursday. Saturday has a premiere matchup between the Defenders (4-0) and Battlehawks (3-1). Things will conclude Sunday night with the Renegades facing the Brahmas in San Antonio.

We have our top picks for each game, and you can find the best betting odds at our top sportsbooks.

Pick Summary

  • Roughnecks vs. Sea Dragons: Over 42.5 (-110)
  • Defenders vs. Battlehawks: Over 42.5 (-110)
  • Guardians vs. Vipers: Vipers -7 (-110)
  • Renegades vs. Brahmas: Brahmas -2.5 (-110)

Houston Roughnecks vs. Seattle Sea Dragons

Thursday, March 16, 2023 – 10:30 PM EDT at Lumen Field

In the first game this Thursday, the Houston Roughnecks (4-0) are a 3.5-point road favorite against Seattle (2-2) with a total of 42.5 points.

This could be Houston’s toughest test yet on the road against a Seattle team that is better than its 2-2 record. Even in scoring just 15 points in last week’s win over San Antonio, Seattle won first downs (21-11), yards (343-191), and they were 7-of-13 on third down.

Seattle quarterback Ben DiNucci leads the XFL with 1,119 passing yards and he has only taken 4 sacks on 161 throws. Behind him in yards is Houston quarterback Brandon Silvers, who has 962 yards and leads the XFL with 10 touchdown passes.

Houston just scored 44 points last week against Orlando, so it could have hit the over here by itself. However, both teams are more than solid at putting the ball in the air relative to the rest of the league. No teams have thrown more passes than the Sea Dragons (163) and Roughnecks (140). These teams are also No. 2 and No. 3 in rushing yards.

The Roughnecks have done some good things defensively this year, but on the road against a team that is never out of it, this feels like a great value spot for the Over to hit.

XFL Pick: Over 42.5 (-110) at FanDuel

DC Defenders vs. St. Louis Battlehawks

Saturday, March 18, 2023 – 07:00 PM EDT at The Dome at America’s Center

In what could be the game of the week, the DC Defenders will try to go to 5-0 as a 2-point road favorite against the St. Louis Battlehawks, who are 3-1. The game has a total of 42.5 points.

The Defenders continue to run the ball at a pace far and above the rest of the XFL through four games. DC has rushed 153 times for 622 yards while no other team has topped 378 yards on the ground. This means the Defenders throw the ball the least too, but they gain a first down on 33.3% of their passes, the highest rate in the XFL.

This will put a lot of pressure on a St. Louis team that has allowed the third-most points in the XFL, but this team is usually competitive behind quarterback AJ McCarron, who knows how to come back late in games.

The BattleHawks’ 11 offensive touchdowns are second in the XFL, one more than the Defenders (10) at No. 3. Look for both teams to score over 20 points in a game that should hit the over for your XFL picks.

XFL Pick: Over 42.5 (-110) at Bet365

Orlando Guardians vs. Vegas Vipers

Saturday, March 18, 2023 – 10:00 PM EDT at Cashman Field

Can we finally get a win for one of these teams? The 0-4 Guardians travel to the 0-4 Vipers this Saturday evening in Vegas, but the Vipers are still a 7.5-point favorite with a total of 42 points.

While both teams are 0-4, the Vipers have certainly played better football through Week 4. The Vipers have been outscored by 32 points this season compared to 68 for the Guardians, who were again tossed around by the Roughnecks last week in a 44-16 final.

The Guardians have already lost three games by 18-plus points this season. The only close loss was the 10-9 game against Arlington, a terrible offense, in Week 3.

The Vipers are averaging 7.0 yards per pass attempt and have a 33.1% first-down rate on pass plays (both marks rank No. 2 in XFL). This is just a better offense all around than Orlando, which is still trying to score more than 16 points in a game this season for the first time.

We will take the Vipers to cover at home and continue Orlando’s run of bad losses.

XFL Pick: Vipers -7 (-110) at BetMGM

Arlington Renegades vs. San Antonio Brahmas

Sunday, March 19, 2023 – 09:00 PM EDT at Alamodome

To wrap up Week 5 this Sunday night, the San Antonio Brahmas are hosting the Arlington Renegades in a Texas battle. The Brahmas are a 2.5-point home favorite with a total of 36 points, the only game under 41.5 points this week.

The Brahmas are struggling with just 19 points in the last two games, including a second-half shutout last week in a 15-6 loss to fall to 1-3. However, Arlington continues to be offensively inept all season, putting just 4 touchdowns in four games on the board so far this season.

The Renegades have just 4 runs that have gained 10-plus yards, the lowest total in the XFL. Somehow, just 12% of Arlington’s runs gain a first down this year. The Brahmas are No. 4 in that category at 23.3%.

Defensively, the Brahmas have 10 sacks and lead the XFL with 28 tackles for loss. With so many negative plays for the Arlington offense, look for San Antonio to get back on track with a win and cover here at home.

XFL Pick: Brahmas -2.5 (-110) at BetMGM

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