The XFL is happening. It seems like just yesterday it was defunct and enough of a relic it merited an ESPN documentary about its rise and fall. But no, on August 21, 2019, Vince McMahon and his Alpha Entertainment LLC released the XFL's team names and named a league commissioner, Oliver Luck.
This is after the August 15th announcement that Landry Jones, the former Pittsburgh Steelers second fiddle QB to Ben Roethlisberger, had signed the first XFL player contract.
Check out the 8 teams that will make up the new league and larger versions of their logos below. We're not sure what Seattle has to do with Dragons or what a Battlehawk is, but the names mostly sound pretty cool.
Los Angeles Wildcats
New York Guardians
St. Louis BattleHawks
Tampa Bay Vipers
Vince McMahon also announced the XFL's first—or second, depending on how you look at it—season schedule.
Gameplay begins in February, the same weekend as Super Bowl 54. The league then plays for 10 weeks, ending April 12. Playoffs follow on April 18-19, and the league championship happens April 26.
How will the XFL experience differ from the NFL? Sporting News gave a breakdown which included the following:
- More than one forward pass. The XFL could allow more than one forward pass on a play, as long as those passes come from behind the line of scrimmage. So, in essence, double forward passes would be allowed on some level. Offensive linemen would not be allowed to advance downfield before a forward pass crosses the line of scrimmage.
- No fair catches (like the first time). The kicking team would have to give a returner at least five yards of space to catch the ball.
- Closer kickoffs. Teams would be separated by five yards on kickoffs instead of 10 yards, and no surprise onside kicks would be allowed.
- No extra points, but you can go for one, two or three. Teams would be able to go for one from the 2-yard line, go for two from the 5-yard line or go for three from the 10-yard line after touchdowns. This would have the potential to be one of the most exciting rule changes.
The XFL wants the game to be safer as well and published a video in 2018 describing how that might work.
As to whether the XFL has more than one new season in it, we'll have to find out when the first game kicks off on Feb. 8, 2020, at 2 p.m. ET.