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Analyzing Every Quarterback Selected During the 2023 XFL Draft

Image Credit: (Rich Schultz/USA Today Sports)

Written by: Nicholas Mullick Linkedin:

Twitter: @nicholasmullick

The XFL Draft is here and I am very excited to see how this league does. I was very high when the XFL returned in 2020, but it really got screwed when the Covid-19 Pandemic hit. So in the first part of the draft, it was revealed who the quarterbacks of each team would be. I think that it would be a good idea to go through each team's selection and analyze the QB’s on the roster.

Arlington Renegades

Kyle Sloter

Sloter is a journeyman QB who has played for multiple teams. Sloter played with Southern Miss and Northern Colorado in the NCAA. Sloter went undrafted in the 2017 NFL Draft, however he has played with the Denver Broncos, Minnesota Vikings, Arizona Cardinals, Detroit Lions, Chicago Bears, Las Vegas Raiders, and Jacksonville Jaguars in the NFL. Sloter did play in the USFL with the New Orleans Breakers. While Sloter had more interceptions than touchdowns he was statistically the 2nd best Quarterback in the USFL and even played in a USFL playoff game.

Drew Plitt

I will be honest, I have not heard of Drew Plitt before. So, when I heard his name during the revelation of the QB Selections I was a bit perplexed. He did play for Ball State University and had some good seasons with the team. His best season was in 2019 where he threw for 2,918 yards, 24 touchdowns, and 7 interceptions. He even rushed for 171 yards and had 5 touchdowns. He went undrafted in the 2022 NFL Draft, but did spend time with the Cincinnati Bengals, but he was cut at the end of the preseason.

D.C. Defenders

Now before we get into Eric Dungy I saw many complaining on social media about why the Defenders are the only team to select one team. Well I believe I have the answer. Apparently D’Eriq King was going to be their next selection for QB as there were reports awhile ago that the Defenders had an agreement for King to play with them. However, not 24 hours ago D’Eriq King would sign a contract with the Carolina Panthers and of course had to back out of the deal. Nobody should blame King as just playing on an NFL team is an opportunity of a lifetime. I would not be shocked if King does become a Defender if his contract with the Panthers does not get extended or he gets released. I would not keep my eye off of King being a part of the XFL yet.

Eric Dungy

Eric Dungy played QB with Syracuse University during his time in College and he was solid there. He even holds a few records during his time playing in Syracuse. Dungy has played football professionally since 2019. He went undrafted in the 2019 NFL Draft, but luckily signed as an undrafted free agent with the New York Giants. He did not last long and was released a few months later. The Browns decided to give him a shot mid-season and signed Dungy to the practice squad. The XFL return in 2020 was an opportunity for Dungy as he played for the Dallas Renegades, but the pandemic ended the league and his tenure prematurely. Luckily the Bengals gave him a chance in 2021, but got waived during the preseason.

As for the pick itself, I am a bit stunned that Arlington did not retain him. Especially as Bob Stoops is still the head coach of the Renegades and Dungy would have more knowledge on the playbook, but I guess both parties wanted to go in a different direction. Dungy will likely be the starter for the Defenders as he was the only QB the teams drafted, but I wonder who the Defenders will bring in to back up Dungy.

Houston Roughnecks

Kaleb Eleby

Eleby played in the NCAA with Western Michigan. Eleby was someone I was a bit surprised never got drafted as he played well in 2020 along with 2021. In 2020 he threw for 1,715 passing yards, 18 touchdowns, and 2 interceptions. Eleby even ran for 4 touchdowns in that year which was very great. In 2021 Eleby threw for 3,277 yards, 23 touchdowns, and 6 interceptions. Eleby even had 6 rushing touchdowns that year too. Eleby performed well, but went undrafted during the 2022 NFL Draft, but did sign with the Seattle Seahawks as an undrafted free agent. Unfortunately, Eleby did not make the roster. He now has an opportunity at a starting role with the Houston Roughnecks.

Brandon Silvers

Is a notable name as he is another journeyman quarterback. In the NCAA he played with Troy University, but when going professional he went undrafted in the 2018 NFL Draft. He had tryouts with the New Orleans Saints, but he never signed a contract. In the Alliance of American Football (AAF) he was drafted by the Memphis Express. Silvers played in 5 games (Started 2) where he threw for 799 passing yards, 4 touchdowns, and 2 interceptions. When the AAF folded he got an opportunity with the New York Jets, but only lasted one month. So the XFL 2.0 came and he was drafted by the Seattle Dragons where he threw for 539 yards, 6 touchdowns, and 4 interceptions. Now he is the QB for the Houston Roughnecks, which kind of surprises me as I thought the Seattle Sea Dragons would bring him back as Haslett is still the head coach, but I guess they wanted to go in a different direction. Lets see if Silvers can get the starting role with Houston.

Orlando Guardians

Quinten Dormady

Dormady is most known for his time in the NCAA. He played at the University of Tennessee where during his time there he threw 1,282 yards, 7 Touchdowns, and 6 Interceptions. He had a brief tenure with the University of Houston where he barley played. His best season came with Central Michigan where he threw for 2,312 yards, 14 touchdowns, and 9 interceptions. He was decent, but the film I have seen from him did not really impress me and he went undrafted in 2020. Maybe he can impress in the XFL.

Deondre Francois

This is a very intriguing choice as Francois played very well during his time with the Fan Controlled Football league. Once his time in the NCAA with Florida State and Hampton was over Francois immediately went to the FCF. In 2021 he played with the Glacier Boyz he played in 5 games and threw for 392 yards, 13 touchdowns, and 2 interceptions. He even rushed for 146 yards and 4 touchdowns. Francois also played for Bored Ape FC where he played for 9 games and threw for 375 yards, 6 touchdowns, and an interception. He rushed for 226 yards and 6 touchdowns. Francois also was a part of The Spring League’s Blues team. Francois gets an opportunity in the XFL with the Guardians.

San Antonio Brahmas

Jawon Pass

I remembered the hype that Pass had once Lamar Jackson left for the NFL. It did not turn out well as Pass was terrible as the QB with University of Louisville. He did transfer and play with Prairie View A&M and did perform better, but was not great either. He went undrafted in the 2022 NFL Draft which many thought ended Pass’s career in Football. Pass is getting another opportunity to impress with the XFL San Antonio Brahmas. The Job is going to be a close battle though.

Anthony Russo

Russo is another out of the box pick as well. I find it interesting how the Brahmas are handling the QB position and are seemingly rolling the dice here. Russo's most notable tenure was when he was with Temple and Michigan State. Russo was never drafted or signed with a team once the draft was over, but did get invitations to try out with the Detroit Lions, Carolina Panthers, and New York Giants. Now he has an opportunity in the XFL to shine, the question is if he will or not.

Seattle Sea Dragons

Ben DiNucci

I remember Ben DiNucci as he started with the Dallas Cowboys during Mike McCarthey 1st season as the Cowboys head coach. In fact he was drafted in the 7th Round 231st overall. He was awful as the starting QB there as he played in 3 games (Started one) threw for 219 yards, No touchdowns, and no interceptions. DiNucci impressed me in how poorly he played, however in the XFL he could showcase how he has improved and if he plays well could return to the NFL.

Steven Montez

Montez was a guy I was intrigued with during the 2020 NFL Draft as he showed moments during his time in the NCAA with the University of Colorado. It did not shock me when he went undrafted during the 2020 NFL Draft, but he got an opportunity with the Washington Football Team. He mainly was on and off the practice squad/active roster and was then released in 2021. He would then sign with the Detroit Lions but was on there practice squad. Now he is a part of the XFL’s Seattle Sea Dragons and If he can play as he did in college along with being more consistent, he could pull an upset by winning the starting job over Ben DiNucci.

St. Louis BattleHawks

AJ McCarron

Easily the best brand named quarterback in the XFL. I would not label him as the best QB as his tenure in the NFL has been a flop and we will see how he performs in a new environment and league. McCarron in the NCAA of course played with Alabama and with the way he played he was once considered to be a2nd/3rd round prospect. McCarron would fall as he was drafted in the 5th round 164th overall in the 2014 NFL Draft by the Cincinnati Bengals.

McCarron showed flashes during the 2015 season and even played in a playoff game. McCarron just has not shined since and was almost traded to the Cleveland Browns, but they failed to submit paperwork on time. McCarron would sign with the Bills, but with Josh Allen winning the job and the Bills wanting to keep Nathan Peterman as the QB, McCarron was the odd man out and was traded to the Raiders. He only spent one season with the Raiders and eventually signed with the Houston Texans. He did not do much with them and only started one game. In 2021 he signed with the Atlanta Falcons, but suffered a Torn ACL, which I thought was it for McCarron as he never got another contract. Well now he has a new opportunity with the XFL BattleHawks and I wish him well.

Ryan Willis

Ryan Willis in college played quarterback with Kansas and Virginia Tech. He went undrafted in the 2020 NFL Draft and his first journey in professional sports was playing in The Spring League. He was the QB of the Lineman for the entire 2021 season. He got an opportunity to play with the Chicago Bears, but was on and off the practice squad. Now he is a part of the BattleHawks, but it is going to be tough to beat McCarron for the starting role. Like I said, McCarron is the best brand named QB in the league, but crazy things have happened the past few years and anything can happen.

Vegas Vipers

Luis Perez

Perez has been a journeyman throughout his career. Playing for multiple teams and leagues. While going undrafted in the 2018 NFL Draft he spent time with the Los Angeles Rams, Philadelphia Eagles, and Detroit Lions. However he just could not stay on a roster.

You want to know something crazy, Luis Perez has been on roster when a major Spring Football league starts up. In the Alliance of American Football (AAF) Perez was the QB of the Birmingham Iron. While he was not great Perez threw for 1,460 passing yards, 5 touchdowns, and 6 interceptions. In the XFL (2.0) Perez was the QB for the New York Guardians.and was solid behind Matt McGloin. In the 3 games he played Perez had 418 passing yards, 3 Touchdowns, and an interception. The peak of Perez’s career was his time with the USFL’s New Jersey Generals where he threw for 1,200 receiving yards, 9 touchdowns, and 1 interception. The Generals even were in the USFL playoffs, but were eliminated by the Philadelphia Stars Now he can add to the list being the QB of the Vegas Vipers with the XFL (3.0) starting up.

Jalen McClendon

McClendon became their next choice and he is a bit of out of the box choice. McClendon spent time in the NCAA with both Baylor and NC State, McClendon did not spend a lot of time in the NFL and had brief tenures with both the Baltimore Ravens along with the Washington Redskins in 2019. He was mainly a camp arm for both teams. Many forgot that McClendon was a part of the LA Wildcats when the XFL returned in 2020 and did nothing during that season. This is another big opportunity for McClendon and lets see if he can perform well during his time with the Vipers.

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