In its earlier inception, the XFL was an alternative league that started its season after the NFL wrapped up theirs.
Unfortunately, the first two editions of the upstart league folded.
But there’s much optimism about the league’s prospects now that it has a marquee frontman in movie actor and professional wrestler Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson.
With the XFL’s third offering happening in 2023, the league partnered with the NFL to become the “petri dish” for landmark innovation in the sport.
The advancements include protecting players’ welfare and prospect development.
However, ESPN’s Kevin Seifert made some clarifications regarding the impending partnership.
NEWS: The XFL and NFL have reached a collaboration agreement to innovate together on game rules, officiating and health & safety, among other areas. XFL chairwoman/owner Dany Garcia made clear this deal is not a precursor to becoming an NFL developmental league. Full story soon.
— Kevin Seifert (@SeifertESPN) February 21, 2022
Seifert said, “The XFL and NFL have reached a collaboration agreement to innovate together on game rules, officiating, and health & safety, among other areas. XFL chairwoman/owner Dany Garcia made clear this deal is not a precursor to becoming an NFL developmental league.”
XFL’s Expectations And Timeline
Johnson, Garcia, and RedBird’s Gerry Cardinale met with NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell and executive vice president of football operations Troy Vincent to discuss the partnership
Perhaps Johnson’s appearance during Super Bowl LVI was a subtle announcement of a done deal.
However, it is clear that the XFL won’t become a tier-two league under the NFL.
Instead, it will be a different entity that plays its season during spring, much like the USFL.
There will be no sharing agreements regarding players like what happened with the NFL and NFL Europe.
Aside from Johnson, Dany Garcia, and RedBird Capital Partners, XFL president Russ Brandon is also a key figure in the league’s revival.
Brandon worked with the Buffalo Bills for two decades and he is one of the executives who yearned for another training ground since NFL Europe ended in 2007.
He also announced that the XFL plans to conduct regional combines this fall and introduce new ways to evaluate players.
The league also expects to open a training camp by January 2023.