XFL 2020: The 50 Best Players Not Yet Signed to NFL Teams

by Eric Galko

Up until it's suspension of operations, Eric Galko and the Optimum Scouting team led Player Personnel for the XFL. I take great pride in the talent our rosters possessed and the work our teams did in assembling them. Unfortunately, with the uncertainty of the NFL off-season, we saw fewer players signed to the NFL from XFL rosters than we would have had the COV-19 not impacted the football ecosystem.

Below are my personal top 50 players that, as of April 17th, had not signed with an NFL team. I expect many of these players to receive NFL opportunities after the NFL Draft and in the build up to the NFL off-season. I can and have spoken to NFL personnel with additional information on any and all of these players. 

Players are listed alphabetically by last name at their position.

Taylor Heinicke, St. Louis Battlehawks
Josh Johnson, Los Angeles Wildcats
Luis Perez, New York Guardians

Notes: Luis Perez was highly impressive in the last two games that he played, and his leadership, mental makeup and improvisation ability fits modern football offenses...Josh Johnson could start and make his NFL team competitive if he played, and he's earned another serious NFL opportunity.

Running Backs
Cameron Artis-Payne, Dallas Renegades
James Butler, Houston Roughnecks
Lance Dunbar, Dallas Renegades
Matt Jones, St. Louis Battlehawks
Jacques Patrick, Tampa Bay Vipers
Darius Victor, New York Guardins

Notes: Matt Jones and Lance Dunbar may be a bit older with history pasts, but they proved to be NFL-quality three-down backs and played with great patience and efficiency...Jacques Patrick was arguably the most talented running back in the league from a talent and explosiveness perspective.

Wide Receivers/Tight Ends
Jeff Badet, Dallas Renegades
Jazz Ferguson, Dallas Renegades
Tre McBride, Los Angeles Wildcats
McKale McKay, New York Guardians
Cam Phillips, Houston Roughnecks
De'Mornay Pierson-El, St. Louis Battlehawks
Rashad Ross, DC Defenders
Wes Saxton, St. Louis Battlehawks
DeAndre Thompkins, WR, DC Defenders
Jalen Tolliver, Tampa Bay Vipers
L'Damian Washington, Missouri
Dan Williams, Tampa Bay Vipers

Notes: Cam Phillips and Dan Williams were two of the breakout XFL receivers, and I expect both to be signed shortly after the NFL Draft...Jalen Tolliver and Jeff Badet were impressive two years ago coming out of college, and have even more talent than the what they were able to show in the Tampa and Dallas offenses, respectively.

Offensive Line
Dillon Day, OC, Seattle Dragons
Jordan McCray, OC, Tampa Bay Vipers
Kahlil McKenzie, OG, Los Angeles Wildcats
Martez Ivey, OT, Tampa Bay Vipers
Demetrius Rhaney, OC, Houston Roughnecks
Andrew Tiller, OG, Tampa Bay Vipers
Sebastian Tretola, OG, Houston Roughnecks

Notes: Martez Ivey started for the Florida Gators a year and a half before this, and after not getting a great NFL chance, he proved to be one of the league's best offensive tackles. He deserves teams to adjust their college evaluation of him in an NFL training camp....Kahlil McKenzie got injured early in the XFL season and was unable to finish the season, which is unfortunate considering his immense, future NFL starting talent.

Defensive Line
TJ Barnes, DT, New York Guardians
Obum Gwacham, DE, Tampa Bay Vipers
Boogie Roberts, DT, Los Angeles Wildcats
Bunmi Rotimi, DE, New York Guardians
Richard Walker, DT, Tampa Bay Vipers

Notes: Obum Gwacham was the first pick in the "Defensive Front Seven" draft, but his injury prohibited him from playing until Week 4. He still possesses the unbelievable talent he flashed with the Colts in the pre-season early in his NFL career....Bunmi Rotimi offered consistent pressure for the New York Guardians defense and it's thoroughly surprising he hasn't received an NFL training cap chance. He improved greatly over the course of the off-season and in-season.

Kaelin Burnett, Houston Roughnecks
Steven Johnson, Seattle Dragons
LaTroy Lewis, Houston Roughnecks
Greer Martini, Dallas Renegades

Notes: Both Houston linebackers Lewis and Burnett were highly productive and versatile pass rushers. Lewis in particular is still young and has plenty of room to grow....Steven Johnson was an outstanding leader and in-the-box tackler, leading the league in tackles and spearheading an aggressive Seattle Dragons defense.

Defensive Backs
Elijah Campbell, DC Defendres
Jeremy Clark, Seattle Dragons
Ajene Harris, Houston Roughnecks
Josh Hawkins, Dallas Renegades
Will Hill, St. Louis Battlehawks
Dexter McCoil, St. Louis Battlehawks
Tarvarus McFadden, Tampa Bay Vipers
Kenny Robinson, St. Louis Battlehawks
Derron Smith, Dallas Renegades
Jamar Summers, New York Guardians

Notes: Kenny Robinson will be selected in the 2020 NFL Draft, and potentially as early as the third round...His teammate, Will Hill, may have had multiple NFL chances in the past, but he's proved to still be an NFL-quality safety...Josh Hawkins and Jamar Summers were expectedly two of the best defensive backs in the XFL and both could be top-four cornerbacks on an NFL roster.