The XFL. While the name hasn't changed, Vince McMahon's reboot of his football league will be much different. McMahon hosted a Q&A on YouTube in order to explain the circumstances around the XFL's return, and although we don't know a lot of the specifics (broadcast distribution, cities, camera angles), we have learned quite a bit in a short period time.
The picture McMahon is painting is a very different one from the league that aired in 2001. Here are 10 things that McMahon said about the XFL thatregarding the league's future.
1. The games will be faster
McMahon said that "sitting and watching a three, three and a half hour game is laborious sometimes" (a statement that was met with raised eyebrows from anyone that's ever watched "RAW"), and he promised that the XFL would not be so trying. It's unknown how he's going to cut games to two hours, but he did say that halftime may be eliminated, for starters.
.@VinceMcMahon says the XFL may not have a half time so that it can be a much faster game. They want two hour games, that is there goal. It’s enough time to make it enjoyable without taking up too much time (insert #RAW is 3+ hours joke - @WZRebel)— WrestleZone.com (@WRESTLEZONEcom) January 25, 2018
2. No politics whatsoever
There are two sides to this coin. "People don't want social and political issues coming into play when they are trying to be entertained," McMahon said. "We want someone who wants to take a knee to do their version of that on their personal time." On the flip side, McMahon added that he doesn't know "whether President Trump will support this." McMahon, of course, is friends with Trump.
Vince McMahon emphasizes that the XFL will have "nothing to do with politics" ... the fans "want good football"— Ryan Glasspiegel (@sportsrapport) January 25, 2018
3. No criminal records allowed
Part of the allure of the original XFL was the weird testosterone rush and the excessive violence of it, but that won't be perpetrated by violent people in XFL 2.0. McMahon said during his Q&A that "We are evaluating a player based on many things, including the quality of human being they are. If you have any sort of criminal record or commit a crime."
We'll see if that holds true if Johnny Manziel comes knocking, but for now it's a hardline stance.
RULES OF NEW XFL— Jason O. Gilbert (@gilbertjasono) January 25, 2018
- National Anthem plays for entire game
- Referees replaced by off-duty cops
- The only penalty is Disrespecting the Troops
- Every team is called the Heterosexual American Patriots
4. The league has two years to prepare
Part of the reason that McMahon says the first go-around for the XFL failed was that the league had only one year to get up and running. This way, they can treat the formation of the league with some more care. Teams will supposedly be formed in 2019, and games won't be played until 2020.
5. All cities are on the league's radar
Whether you live in New York or Mobile, Ala., NFL teams, citing Pittsburgh as an example. McMahon never was scared of a little competition.as of now. Obviously teams will go where the money is, but McMahon didn't rule out cities that have
6. Every team will be owned by the XFL
Vince McMahon will, at least in name, have unilateral control over every team in the league. Since it's not a franchise model, the league will sport a uniform salary cap and punishment system, among other factors.
7. The league will have a 40-man roster
This is slightly fewer than the NFL's 53-man roster, but it's still a good number of players.
8. There will be eight teams
Again, the location is unknown as of now, but this tells us 320 players will be in the XFL come its start in January 2020.
9. A 10-week regular season schedule and a four-team playoff
All things told, it appears it will be a 12-week season. With only four teams in each "conference," it makes sense to only have two teams from each play in the postseason for a championship bout.
10. McMahon won't be the face of the league
McMahon may have been the face of the announcement, butwhen the league plays. That's certainly not McMahon's M.O., but it appears that he wants to manage things a bit more hands-off this time. You can already see a difference in comparing the ads for the league's first stint to the ad that was released for this one.
McMahon seems set on this being a "football league," and not the sideshow that the XFL was the first time around. Obviously people have become more disillusioned with the NFL for reasons that McMahon is trying to directly counteract. The character clauses, no politics rule and shortened games are all things that people have complained about in the NFL. However, if the XFL is going to work this time, it will need to be handled extremely deftly. Subtlety may not be McMahon's strong suit, but he was uncharacteristically understated for announcing an entirely new league.