Stakes Raise in In-State Rivals Rematch
The XFL postseason kicks off on Saturday, starting with the South title game between the Arlington Renegades (4-6) and the Houston Roughnecks (7-3). This is a rematch of Week 10’s clash, which Houston won 25-9.
The sportsbook favors the Roughnecks by 6½ points after they defeated the Renegades by an average margin of 12.5 points in two meetings. Will Arlington pull off a shocking upset, or will Houston roll on to the championship game?
Renegades Relying on Defense
After a 28-26 overtime loss against the D.C. Defenders in Week 9, it seemed the Renegades were headed in the right direction. The offense had one of its best games, as quarterback Luis Perez totaled 335 passing yards. Plus, the Renegades had balance with 113 rushing yards on 4.5 yards per carry. All progress came crashing down last week.
Arlington’s offense returned to its usual form, posting only nine points with 245 yards. The run game was nonexistent on 2.6 yards per carry. This is nothing new, as the Renegades rank last in points per game. They are fortunate to make the playoffs after the San Antonio Brahmas lost 29-28 in Week 10. According to XFL lines, Arlington is +220 to win outright on Saturday.
This has to be a defensive game for the Renegades to have a shot. Houston’s run defense is too strong, ranking third in allowed yards per game. Arlington will be one-dimensional and needs a good performance from Perez. Fortunately, the Roughnecks have shaky quarterback play. If the Renegades can limit the run, they have a good chance of covering XFL picks.
Roughnecks Searching for Balance
Following a three-game losing streak from Week 5 to Week 7, Houston has rebounded. It enters the postseason on a three-game winning streak and just won its first game by double digits since Week 4.
The defense got back to dominating, especially the front seven, which totaled seven tackles for loss. The run game also had perhaps its best performance in Week 10. It totaled 196 yards on 6.3 yards per carry, led by Jeremy Cox’s 120 rushing yards. The Roughnecks proved they can dominate Arlington’s run defense, which ranks second in allowed yards per game.
— Houston Roughnecks (@XFLRoughnecks) April 25, 2023
However, Houston needs more from its passing game. The Renegades will likely sell out on stopping the run after the Roughnecks totaled only 145 passing yards last week. The Roughnecks are still searching for answers since quarterback Brandon Silvers’ play fell off a cliff. Keep an eye on XFL news, as Houston could look to make a change. It could turn to Cole McDonald once again, who beings good mobility.
With the run game’s emergence, the Roughnecks could be a great online gambling pick to win the title (+175). However, the passing attack will ultimately decide Houston’s fate, as it needs balance.
Renegades vs Roughnecks Head-to-Head
Houston has easily handled Arlington this season, winning two games by an average margin of 12.5 points. The Roughnecks’ defensive front dominated in both matchups.
Renegades vs Roughnecks Game Information
- Game: Renegades vs Roughnecks
- Date/time: Saturday, April 29, 7:00 pm ET
- Location: TDECU Stadium, Houston, TX
- Renegades vs Roughnecks Live Stream: fubo.TV
Renegades vs Roughnecks Game Weather Conditions
Following an afternoon of scattered thunderstorms, the weather is expected to clear up before kick-off, with temperatures in the mid-50s. However, the wind could reach over 25 mph, which will be a factor for passing games.
Renegades vs Roughnecks Betting Lines
The odds in this chart are posted on the time of publication of the article. They are subject to change without previous notice.
Renegades vs Roughnecks Picks and Prediction
Predicted Score: Roughnecks 21, Renegades 17
Worth Betting ATS?
Houston comfortably defeated Arlington in Week 10. However, the weather could be a factor on Saturday. The Roughnecks’ passing game has struggled, and windy conditions will not help. Look for the Renegades to sell out on the run, keeping the game close. However, Arlington’s offense will fall short. Take the Renegades to cover the point spread in a close one.
Worth Betting Totals?
Las Vegas XFL odds have the projected total at 41. The under is one of my favorite XFL bets of the week. Neither offense is playing well with one-dimensional units. Plus, these are two of the league’s top defenses and the wind could eliminate down-the-field passes.