XFL Week 3 Best Bets: Fading Orlando Again?

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Paxton Lynch #6 of Orlando Guardians throws a pass in the first half against the Houston Roughnecks. Bob Levey/Getty Images/AFP

XFL Pick: Renegades -8.5 (-110) at Bovada (visit our Bovada Review)

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Renegades -8.5 (-110)
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Teams are starting to separate a little after two weeks in the XFL. The Orlando Guardians are easily the bottom of the barrel in the field of eight, but Sunday’s triple-header has some great matchups that should provide clarity on the best team after Week 3. 

We are looking at the best betting picks in each game. You can find XFL betting markets at many of the top-rated US betting sites.  

San Antonio Brahmas vs. Houston Roughnecks 

Sunday, March 5, 2023 – 08:00 PM EST at TDECU Stadium


We have arguably the game of the week to close things out on Sunday night as Houston is a 4.5-point home favorite against San Antonio with a total of 36.5 points. 

Wade Phillips’ defense has been outstanding so far for Houston, but if we are being honest, the Guardians and Renegades are not the stiffest-looking competition through Week 2 on the offensive side. 

Meanwhile, Hines Ward’s Brahmas have played well in both games and would be 2-0 without giving up that late 12-point comeback to St. Louis in Week 1. 

The Brahmas have some impressive offensive numbers that give you some confidence they will find ways to score on this Houston defense: 

  • San Antonio has the second-highest passing yards per attempt (5.6) and the second-best touchdown-to-interception ratio (4:1) in the XFL. 
  • San Antonio has a league-high 36.7% of its passes going for first downs. 
  • The Brahmas have rushed for a first down on 24.6% of runs compared to 16.7% for Houston. 
  • San Antonio has the best third-down conversion rate (12-of-25) in the XFL. 

This should be the best challenge yet for the Houston offense and defense. Look for the over to hit in the best game of the weekend. 

XFL Pick: Over 36.5 (-110) at Bovada

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Orlando Guardians vs. Arlington Renegades

Sunday, March 5, 2023 – 04:00 PM EST at Choctaw Stadium


In the biggest spread of the XFL season so far, the Renegades are an 8.5-point home favorite over Orlando with a total of 37 points. Is it any surprise when Orlando has lost 33-12 and 30-12 in the last two weeks? Most XFL games have been decided by single digits, but Orlando has been blown out twice, and quarterback Paxton Lynch has been benched both weeks. 

The fact is Orlando has tried three different quarterbacks and each has thrown at least one interception. No offense turns the ball over more or takes more sacks, so you are looking at the worst pass offense in the game. That is a big issue against an Arlington defense that has been solid and was the main reason the team won in Week 1 against Vegas with two pick-sixes. 

The Renegades are not great at passing either, but at least they gain a first down on 25.9% of their passes. The Guardians are way down at 18.6%, the only team under 25%. The Renegades also do a better job of protecting the ball and having fewer negative plays. 

Orlando is likely going to be more competitive in a game soon, but for now, let’s keep the fade rolling and pick the Guardians to get beat decisively for the third week in a row. 

XFL Pick: Renegades -8.5 (-110) at Bovada

St. Louis Battlehawks vs. DC Defenders

Sunday, March 5, 2023 – 01:00 PM EST at Audi Field


The Defenders are a 2-point home favorite with a total of 37 points. The Battlehawks have rallied from 12-point deficits in back-to-back weeks to get to 2-0. The Defenders have much more quietly also started 2-0 after trailing in the fourth quarter, though neither of their comebacks was that late in the game or from big deficits. 

If something has to give this week, we like the Defenders to run the ball well at home and get pressure on an offensive line that has struggled for St. Louis. The Defenders just rushed for over 200 yards against the Vipers, and the Defenders lead the XFL with 313 rushing yards. The next closest team is San Antonio with 199 yards. 

The Battlehawks have AJ McCarron, and his experience has paid off at these comebacks, but his statistics are far from blowing away the rest of the XFL field. He has taken 8 sacks already, a number that would be higher if he was not escaping some pressures, which is usually not a strength of his game. The offensive line is far from dug in for this offense. 

Let’s trust the solid defense of the Defenders to put the crunch on McCarron in crunch time and get the win. 

XFL Pick: Over 36.5 (-110) at Bovada

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Seattle Sea Dragons vs. Vegas Vipers

Saturday, March 4, 2023 – 07:00 PM EST at Cashman Field


Saturday’s game has the Vipers as a 3-point underdog at home, where they lost 18-6 in poor field conditions last week. The game has a total of 37.5 points. 

Both teams are 0-2 but they both mostly have themselves to blame. Vegas gave away the opening game of the XFL season to Arlington with two pick-sixes after halftime, and last week, the field was so set the kicker slipped and fell on a 23-yard field goal attempt in the third quarter. The Vipers never scored again after the first quarter of that 18-6 loss. 

The Sea Dragons have shown a bit more offensive balance and production, but they have blown a fourth-quarter lead in both games so far. Last week was especially tough as St. Louis won on a 44-yard field goal with no time left. Things could have been different if the Sea Dragons did not fail on their point-after attempt following a late touchdown pass from Ben DiNucci on fourth down. 

DiNucci leads all quarterbacks with 83 pass attempts, but he is only averaging 5.8 yards per attempt. But one positive is he has taken just 2 sacks on those plays, so the Sea Dragons have the lowest sack rate in the XFL. 

These are also two of the worst rushing offenses in the XFL, though Seattle has the edge there too: 

  • Sea Dragons: 4.1 yards per carry, 154 rushing yards, 4 runs of 10-plus yards, first down on 26.3% of runs 
  • Vipers: 3.3 yards per carry, 115 rushing yards*, 1 run of 10-plus yards*, first down on 5.7% of runs* 

 *Worst in XFL 

The Sea Dragons either have to find a way to score more than 18 points or just stop blowing leads in the fourth quarter. We think they get the job done here and get their first win for your XFL picks.  

XFL Pick: Sea Dragons -3 (-110) at Bovada

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Sea Dragons -3 (-110)
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*The line and/or odds on picks in this article might have moved since the content was commissioned. For updated line movements, visit BMR’s free betting odds product.