Vipers come up short in XFL season opener
The Las Vegas Vipers lost to the Arlington Renegades, 22-20, on Saturday at Choctaw Stadium. Las Vegas jumped out to a quick 14-3 lead.
The Vipers started the game with a 12-play, 69-yard possession that resulted in a 5-yard touchdown pass from quarterback Luis Perez to wide receiver Jeff Badet. The Renegades ended their first possession with a 38-yard field goal by Taylor Russolino, which would be his first of many on the day. The next scoring drive wouldn’t come until late in the second quarter when Perez threw a 39-yard touchdown pass to Badet and converted on the two-point conversion.
Despite losing the game, the Vipers’ defense did not allow the Arlington offense to score a touchdown and limited the Renegades to 246 total yards. But Vipers quarterback Perez threw to pick sixes. The first was a 22-yard interception for a touchdown by defensive lineman Tomasi Laulile. The second was by defensive back De’Vante Bausby which extended the Renegades’ lead to 22-14.
Perez threw for 249 yards and three touchdowns, but his two interceptions were costly. The Vipers had no running game, rushing for 25 yards on 15 attempts.
Las Vegas’ defense was strong; they had three quarterback sacks, three tackles for a loss, and forced a turnover.
In the future, Perez has to take care of the ball better, he is known for putting up substantial numbers, but at times he turns the ball over a lot. The Viper defense will be special; they just have to not turn the ball over to win games.