XFL Playoffs – Players of the Week – “Fan’s Choice” by XFLBoard.com

Welcome to our XFL Playoffs – Players of the Week – “Fan’s Choice” results. Voting began immediately at the completion of the final game on Sunday. We gathered over 2200 votes before the closing of polls at 12:00PM Eastern on Tuesday May 2, 2023. We thank all who voted!

Fans were asked to nominate any player they deemed worthy of the honor, in three categories: Offensive, Defensive, and Special Teams. Winners below are based on the number of votes received for each player.

XFL Offensive Player of the Week:
#12 Luis Perez, Quarterback, Arlington Renegades

Arlington Renegades quarterback Luis Perez lines up a pass in the XFL South Division Championship game against the Houston Roughnecks at TDECU Stadium on April 29th, 2023 in Houston, TX. (© Thomas Campbell/XFL)

In a win over South Division leading Houston, Perez completed 19 of 27 passes for 289 yards and three touchdowns. He added 13 yards rushing in the Renegades’ unexpected 26-11 upset victory over the Roughnecks. This win was largely because of Perez, who orchestrated a touchdown producing drive on the Renegades’ first possession and never let his foot off the gas pedal until the win was recorded.

The fans said:

  • Luis Perez was the reason the Renegades upset the Roughnecks. (Treena)
  • Scored on the opening drive and never looked back. (Anonymous)
  • Perez is like a mercenary and every team he ends up with is a better team as a result. (Anonymous)

Honorable Mentions

Briley Moore-McKinney, Wide Receiver, DC Defenders

  • Had the game of his season with four catches for 80 yards in the Defenders’ win. (DefendersFan)
  • After the Defenders beat the Sea Dragons everyone knows his name. (Anonymous)

XFL Defensive Player of the Week:
#18 Donald Payne, Linebacker, Arlington Renegades

XFL Arlington Renegades #18 Donald Payne tips a Cole McDonald pass in the Renegades victory over the Roughnecks (ESPN)
XFL Arlington Renegades #18 Donald Payne tips a Cole McDonald pass in the Renegades victory over the Roughnecks (ESPN)

With Arlington Renegades linebacker Donald Payne on the injury list, it was a surprise when it was announced he would play in the South Division championship game. Not only was Payne healthy enough to play, he turned out to be a key member of the Arlington defense, leading the squad with 10 tackles and many more passes tipped and swatted down.

The fans said:

  • Payne came off the injury list to help hold the Houston offense to the lowest scoring of the season. (NY)
  • Key part of a Renegades defense that was all over the Roughnecks. (Bagman)
  • 10 total tackles makes him the top performer of the Arlington defense in the Championship game. (Anonymous)

Honorable Mentions:

Emmanuel Ellerbee, Linebacker, Houston Roughnecks

  • Emmanuel Ellerbee was the best defender for the Roughnecks with 10 tackles including 2 tackles for loss. (Sam)
  • Ellerbee was excellent, the top defender on his team, making 10 tackles. (Anonymous)

Santos Ramirez, Defensive Back, DC Defenders

  • Seven total tackles and two passes defended. Key part of the Defenders shutdown of Seattle. (4.4 – 40)
  • Kept the Sea Dragons passing offense off the scoreboard enough to ensure his team won. (Anonymous)

XFL Special Teams Player of the Week:
#13 Pooka Williams, Returner, D.C. Defenders

XFL DC Defenders #13 Pooka Williams returns a kick 51 yards in a win over the Seattle Sea Dragons (ESPN)
XFL DC Defenders #13 Pooka Williams returns a kick 51 yards in a win over the Seattle Sea Dragons (ESPN)

Pooka Williams continues to showcase his kick returning savvy with a huge return in one of the most important games in his XFL career thus far. In the second quarter of the game, Pooka broke open a 51-yard kickoff return taking the ball to the Seattle 40-yard line. On top of that enormous run, Williams continued to setup the Defenders with good field position the entire afternoon.

This is the second week in a row that XFL fans have nominated Pooka Williams for this honor.

The fans said:

  • Kept giving the Defenders the field position they needed to score the points. (Jeff)
  • Big return in the 2nd quarter, and so close to breaking it all the way for a touchdown. Next week, look for it to happen. (DC Fan)
  • Pooka is the best XFL returner in the XFL in 2023. No doubt. (Anonymous)

Honorable Mentions:

Cameron Nizialek, Punter, Seattle Sea Dragons

  • Had the best punting numbers in the game with 5 punts for 238 yards and a 47.6 average. (Anonymous)
  • Give the man credit for being one of the best XFL punters this season. (Tyler)

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