Analyzing All the 2020 XFL Starting Quarterbacks – Ranked From Best to Worst
The XFL hopes to be the destination for sports fans everywhere in 2020. With a league focused on offensive upside and a faster brand of football, there’s a good chance that happens.
Setting up a DFS partnership and being readily accessible for sports bettors won’t hurt, either.
However, fans are only going to be so enthused. In order to really get amped for the coming season — whether it’s just as a fan or wagering at the top XFL sportsbooks online — familiarizing yourself with the best XFL players may make good sense.
The quarterback position is the most scrutinized and is often attached to winning and losing.
Just look at the impact of the position in Super Bowl 54, where Patrick Mahomes lifted his team to a title, and Jimmy Garoppolo crumbled under the pressure.
Anyone looking to bet on the XFL should want to know who the top signal callers are, how good they are, and how they may help or hurt their teams. To do that, let’s take a quick look at all eight starting XFL quarterbacks from 2020 and rank them from best to worst going into the XFL season.
1. Landry Jones – Dallas Renegades
Jones never translated his prolific game to the NFL, but he was a star with the Oklahoma Sooners, where he piled up over 16,000 passing yards and 123 passing touchdowns.
It’s arguable Jones benefited from a loaded Sooners offense (as well as the team’s offensive system), but he also offered the total package as a big, strong-armed passer who could threaten defenses on the move.
While all true, Jones had issues with game management and decision-making. Those popped up during his time in the NFL with the Steelers, but the overall appeal of Jones in the XFL is obvious.
2. Cardale Jones – DC Defenders
Blessed with a cannon arm and solid overall athleticism, Jones was an elite prospect coming out of Ohio State.
His upside never materialized in his final season with the Buckeyes — nor in the NFL — but Jones has the size, arm strength, and natural throwing ability to tear up defenses.
Not the most accurate or consistent passer, Jones needs to iron out the wrinkles to reach stardom in the XFL. Fortunately, he may have the system and weapons to make that happen.
3. Josh Johnson – Los Angeles Wildcats
Possibly the most athletic starting quarterback in the XFL as things stand, the well-traveled Josh Johnson hopes to finally find a football home in 2020.
The former San Diego star thrived under Jim Harbaugh, putting up video game numbers throughout college, ending his career with 113 passing touchdowns and 19 more scores on the ground.
Truly dynamic and surprisingly accurate in college, Johnson really hasn’t had the chance to prove himself in the pros. The XFL may offer the 33-year-old a chance to finally prove just how good he really is.
4. Aaron Murray – Tampa Bay Vipers
Murray wasn’t a monster at Georgia, but he was always productive, twice topping 35 passing touchdowns. He’s another smaller quarterback who arguably got overlooked due to his size and lack of elite arm strength.
Seen as more of a game manager, Murray was still highly productive, accurate, and successful at a big school against top competition. He also offers some mobility and a quick release.
Murray could end up crushing in Marc Trestman’s offensive system, especially since it often utilized short, quick passes to help generate offense.
5. Matt McGloin – New York Guardians
Former Penn State quarterback Matt McGloin had some brief flashes of brilliance in the pros but is best known for his 2012 season where he put up 24 touchdowns for the Nittany Lions.
Accuracy has never been McGloin’s strong suit, which could be a problem in Kevin Gilbride’s balanced system in New York. That said, McGloin has great pocket presence and can impress with his ball placement and aggressiveness.
I’m not sold that that’s a perfect fit for the Guardians, but New York may look to run the ball and utilize McGloin’s ability to hit difficult throws to their advantage.
6. Brandon Silvers – Seattle Dragons
One of the least inspiring XFL passers from a sheer measurables perspective, Silvers is actually pretty rock-solid. The Troy product didn’t light the world afire in college, but he was accurate and took care of the football.
Silvers further showcased his command of an offense with decent results in the AAF last year, where he amassed 777 passing yards and four touchdowns.
Solid composure in the pocket and a quick release give Silvers a chance at being one of the steadier XFL quarterbacks.
7. Phillip Walker – Houston Roughnecks
Walker unseats Connor Cook as the starter for June Jones in Houston. He doesn’t have the Michigan State pedigree Cook offers, but the former Temple product is a more dynamic player.
Known best for his ability to lead a team, Walker probably didn’t get a long look from the NFL due to his stature (5’11”). That’s a shame, as he proved he was a true gamer that throws a beautiful deep ball and also gives you a threat on the ground.
If Walker can hit the ground running (no pun intended), he could be an absolute monster in June Jones’ high-flying offense.
8. Jordan Ta’amu – St. Louis BattleHawks
Lastly, we come to Jordan Ta’amu, who is certainly talented and offers some upside for the BattleHawks. It’s worth noting he posted pedestrian numbers despite having a full cupboard of weapons at Ole Miss, but he did still rack up nearly 4,000 passing yards in 2018.
Ta’amu has the major passing strengths you look for; big arm, aggressiveness, and ability to make every throw. He’s even a plus athlete, and his deep ball is undeniably pretty.
However, erratic behavior in the pocket and a lack of awareness has hindered his ceiling. It remains to be seen if St. Louis can maximize his upside, but I have my doubts.
The XFL doesn’t have huge names like Johnny Manziel or Colin Kaepernick on their 2020 rosters, but these eight guys collectively give them some massive names.
The notoriety mostly comes from flash they offered in the college game, but a lot of these quarterbacks also haven’t been given a proper shot to show they can click at a higher level.
Cardale Jones and Josh Johnson offer more overall talent and upside, but the XFL as a whole has a lot of interesting quarterback talent. Just be careful how you allow that to sway you when looking to bet on the new league.