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Tampa Bay Vipers: 2020 Season Review

In the 2020 Season Review series, we're recapping the results, highlights, and stats from the first XFL season. 

Read all eight team wrap-ups as we roll them out:

Tampa Bay Vipers XFL 2020 season review recap

1-4 (4th, East)

  • Home: 1-1
  • Away: 0-3
  • vs. East: 1-1
  • Against The Spread: 2-3

 

WEEKW/LOPPSCOREATSOVER/UNDER
1Lat NY23-3LU
2Lat SEA17-9LU
3LHOU34-27WO
4WDC25-0WU
5Lat LA41-34LO

Statement Win

Week 4 Highlights: Tampa Bay Vipers 25, DC Defenders 0

Week 4: Tampa Bay Vipers 25, DC Defenders 0

It should come as no surprise that the win against the Defenders was the statement win for the Vipers, who finished the season 1-4.

The victory couldn't have come at a better time for Tampa Bay. After starting 0-3 -- despite going down to the last drive versus Seattle and Houston -- the Vipers needed to prove they could close out games.

It didn’t take long for them to shut the door on D.C. The team came out humming, with Taylor Cornelius leading an 11-play, 75-yard opening drive that culminated poetically with what looked to be the entire offensive line pushing Jacques Patrick into the end zone.

From there, the Vipers never looked back, all-out dominating the Defenders on both sides of the ball and coming away with a 25-0 victory and the second shutout in XFL history.


Breakout Players

RBs De’Veon Smith & Jacques Patrick

The league’s No. 1 and No. 3 leading rushers, they established themselves as the XFL’s dynamic RB duo, becoming the first backs to rack up 100-plus rushing yards in a single game (Week 4 vs. DC). 

Smith (5-foot-11, 220 pounds) pulverized defensive lines, helping the Vipers offense move swiftly and effectively down the field. The wrecking ball ran for a league-leading 365 yards, averaging 73 ground yards per game. 

His 122-yard performance in Week 4 set the XFL record for the most single-game rush yards. He also made one of the year’s best grabs in Week 3 against the Roughnecks, leaping in the air to bring down and hold onto a Quinton Flowers pass, despite taking a shot that drew a flag for unnecessary roughness.

Patrick rushed for 254 yards and two touchdowns on the season. His touchdown on the opening drive vs. DC delivered what was arguably the year’s most emotional moment.

After crossing the goal line, he knelt down and then pointed up to the sky to honor his late father, who had passed away just weeks earlier. He then followed up that performance the next week with another rushing score against the Wildcats.

Week 4: Jacques Patrick scores first pro TD

Defensive backs Anthoula Kelly & Marcelis Branch

It’s hard to pick out players to spotlight in Jerry Glanville’s notorious run-chase-hit defense, but these two did their best to make their presence known in the secondary.

Kelly proved why he deserves the nickname "Tank." The Fresno State alum was a force in the secondary. His 8 passes defensed led the league, and his 20 solo tackles led the Vipers. 

Branch led the team with 33 combo tackles and added a sack for good measure. The former Pittsburgh Steeler claims to have “evil intentions” on the field and routinely showed off those intentions by delivering some of the biggest hits of the season.


Tarvarus McFadden takes an INT to the house

Week 2: Tarvarus McFadden's Pick-6

McFadden picks off a pass, falls down, gets back up, evades multiple opponents, and records the XFL's longest interception return -- with a touchdown to boot.



OFFENSE: EFFICIENCY

CategoryStat (Rank)
Pts/G19.6 (3)
Pts/Play0.263 (8)
Avg Score Margin-3.4 (7)
Yds/G391.8 (1)
Yds/Play5.25 (3)
Plays/G74.6 (1)
Yds/Play5.25 (3)
Rush Play%50.4% (3)
Pass Play%46.1% (6)

 

PASSING

CategoryStat (Rank)
Pass Yds1195 (4)
Comp%59.3% (4)
Yards/Pass6.9 (4)
Pass TD4 (T7)
Interceptions Thrown9 (7)

 

RUSHING

CategoryStat (Rank)
Rush Yds828 (1)
Yards/Rush4.4 (T3)
Rush TD6 (1)

 

EXTRA POINTS

CategoryStat
1-pt6/8 (75%)
2-pt1/3 (33%)
3-pt--
TOTAL7/11 (64%)

Notable: The Vipers led the XFL in 1-point success and overall success.

 

GAME CONTROL

CategoryStat (Rank)
Takeaways5 (7)
Turnovers11 (7)
TO Margin-6 (7)
3rd Down Conv%44.6% (2)
4th Down Conv%46.2% (6)
Red Zone TD%38.1% (6)
Team Pen Yds348 (8)

 

DEFENSE: EFFICIENCY

CategoryStat (Rank)
Opp Pts/G23.0 (6)
Opp Pts/Play0.464 (8)
Opp Yds/G258.8 (1)
Opp Yds/Play5.32 (4)
Opp Plays/Game48.6 (1)
Opp Rush Yds/G75.8 (1)
Opp Pass Yds/G183 (3)
Opp Yards/Rush3.8 (3)
Opp Yards/Pass6.54 (4)

 

DEFENSE: EVENTS

CategoryStat (Rank)
Sacks5 (8)
QB Hits25 (4)
Interceptions3 (T7)
Passes Defensed28 (3)
Fumble Recoveries2 (T4)
Forced Fumbles1 (7)
Defensive/Special Teams TDs1 (T3)

 

More: TB Team Stats


QUARTERBACKS

NameCOMPATT%YDSAVGTDLGINTATTYDSAVGTDLG
Taylor Cornelius781236385874386171146.7317
Aaron Murray1634472316.80442----------
Quinton Flowers815531067.1037116784.9115

 

RUNNING BACKS

NameRUSHRUSH YDSAVGRUSH TDLGRECREC YDSAVGREC TDLG
De'Veon Smith903654.10227368.9025
Jacques Patrick602544.22245219.8021

Notable: Smith led the XFL in rushing yards and carries. Patrick finished third in rushing yards.

 

WIDE RECEIVERS/TIGHT ENDS

NameTARRECREC YDSAVGREC TDLG
Dan Williams382333814.7142
Jalen Tolliver362129714.1144
Reece Horn36272408.9124
Nick Truesdell1599110.1027
DeAndre Goolsby857615.21

24

Notable: Horn finished second in the XFL in receptions. The Vipers had three in the top 10 for receiving yards: Williams (second), Tolliver (fourth) and Horn (ninth).

 

KICKING

NameFGMFGAFG%LONG
Andrew Franks8117348

 

DEFENSE: TACKLES

 

DEFENSE: SACKS

 

DEFENSE: INTERCEPTIONS

 

PUNTING

NameNOYDSAVGLG
Jake Schum1563442.367

Notable: Schum tied for the longest punt of the season.

More: TB Player Stats

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