Recap: Seattle Dragons 17, Tampa Bay Vipers 9
SEATTLE -- The Seattle Dragons (1-1) had some first-half jitters in their first home game in XFL history, but they came out on top in a frantic second half to topple the Tampa Bay Vipers (0-2) on Saturday, 17-9, at CenturyLink Field.
An XFL-record 29,172 in attendance were rewarded with a duel of big plays after the halftime break, with the Dragons coming through on two big scoring plays.
SEATTLE DRAGONS 17, TAMPA BAY VIPERS 9
- Box Score
- Top Moments
- This is the XFL Show: recap
- Dragons: Queiro seals win with INT
- Vipers: 3 Takeaways from Week 2
The second half started with a boom. With the Seattle Dragons needing a jolt, quarterback Brandon Silvers went deep to find wide receiver Keenan Reynolds for six.
Seattle soon followed that up with a gift of a Pick-6 by Marcell Frazier deep in Vipers territory.
The Tampa Bay Vipers got their first touchdown of the season with a 78-yard pick-6 from cornerback Tarvarus McFadden.
Dragons talk about first win
"I couldn’t be more excited for our players because most of our players, almost all of them, have never experienced the support this stadium could give them and that was kind of exciting for them. I think they saw how the fans created the atmosphere and in that creation, they felt at home as well, not out of place at all. I hope we can continue to improve. We still have a lot to work on and they know it, but they were resilient today and we ended up being fortunate to win the game."
"Quarterback is the hardest position to play. It’s not easy going out there. You just got to fight through it. I didn’t play good at all in the first half and I knew it, didn’t hit throws I usually make. That first big ball added a lot to my confidence."
STAT OF THE GAME
In place of the inactive Aaron Murray (foot), Tampa Bay quarterbacks Taylor Cornelius and Quinton Flowers had trouble maintaining possession, and Cornelius threw a pick on the final play of the game.
The ground combo of Jacques Patrick (73 yards on 14 carries, 5.2 average) and De'Veon Smith (11 carries, 46 yards, 4.2) proved more useful in this tight game than their Week 1 blowout loss. Tampa Bay won the battle in time of possession the pace with 32 runs and had an especially churning drive to close out the game.
McFadden had the highlight with his Pick-6, but safety Marcelis Branch had 12 tackles (five solo) with a sack. His day was marred, however, with a key unnecessary roughness penalty that extended Seattle's final scoring drive.
Reynolds broke loose in the second half, but the run game played a lower-key role in sustaining Dragons drives. After netting 97 ground yards in the opener, Seattle's backfield topped 100 with distribution once again, with Trey Williams and Kenneth Farrow each contributing 45 yards.
Linebacker Steven Johnson racked up another busy week, collecting nine tackles after an eight-tackle Week 1; he'll likely rank among the leaders in that category by weekend's completion.
Vipers discuss defeat
“As far as the Vipers go, I got a locker room full of guys who can’t wait to get home and play at Raymond James [Stadium] this week. I can tell you that. We’re certainly disappointed. Really proud of our defense. They played hard, they tackled and they did everything we could. Offensively, we just haven’t found ourselves. We haven’t had the play at quarterback that we need, and we’re still working through that. And we need to find a way to score.”
“We have to play better ball on offense. The defense went out and played great. They played great at the end of the day, but we keep getting in the red zone. We have to score. We have to find a way to score. The offense, we have to come together and we have to do better. We have to find a way to score.”