Last weekend, the XFL began its revival campaign and seemed to impress most fans. The innovations of the league has provided for conversations across the media and fans. With a peak audience of four million viewers during the Week 1 matchup between the Seattle Dragons and DC Defenders, there is promise in the early stages of the XFL season.
However, without elite talent under center across all eight teams, how does Vince McMahon and company keep the audience interested? There have been rumors circulating around ex-NFL quarterbacks who may be interested in playing in the XFL once it’s solidified as a credible league.
However, here are four names that will never put on an XFL uniform:
The extended history between Kaepernick and the NFL is something most of us are familiar with by now. To date, it seems unlikely a franchise will give an opportunity in the upcoming season, regardless of the season.
When asked about playing in the XFL, commissioner Oliver Luck explained that Kaepernick’s desired salary was too much. The former San Francisco 49ers quarterback was seeking roughly $20M, when the highest-paid players are earning just north of $500,000 in the current season.
“I think his salary demands are way out of our ballpark,” Luck said. “He was never really a viable option.”
This doesn’t include the fact that the XFL requires players to stand for the National Anthem. The talks between Kaepernick and the XFL never got past the financial barrier.
Back in January of 2019, Sports Illustrated asked whether McMahon would invite Tebow to play in the XFL. In response, he stated, “If Tim Tebow wants to play, he could very well play.”
Tebow later commented, noting “that’s very nice of him, but 2020 is a long way from now. I’m focused on today, I’m focused on spring training and a lot of things before that. I’m not even close to thinking about that right now.”
Tebow, who is widely regarded as one of the best college football quarterbacks of all time, would be a major draw for the XFL. However, he hasn’t played football since 2012, where he served as a utility player for the New York Jets in 12 games.
At first sight, fans love the idea of Luck returning from retirement and becoming the face of the XFL. His father happens to be the current commissioner, so everything seems lined up.
Since retiring, the NFL’s standard player contract allows teams to block players from playing football for any other league, even at an executive level. The Indianapolis Colts will retain Luck’s contract rights even in retirement.
Considering Manziel was apart of the short-tenured AAF, one would think the XFL would be a perfect fit for both sides. After an indirect message assuming that his retirement from football was looming, Manziel shot back at those who supported a route in which he would consider joining the XFL.
In two games with the Memphis Express, Manziel totaled 61 passing yards and one interception. He was able to contribute with 38 yards on five carries, but his team lost both games.
Photo Credit- New York Post