While football fans were gearing up for Super Bowl Sunday, the XFL was going against what Vince McMahon had promised late last month when he announced the league will be returning nearly two decades after it originally shut down. Indeed, McMahon had been quoted as saying that he didn’t want to compete directly with the NFL, like the first XFL infamously tried to do back in 2001. But he and XFL parent Alpha Entertainment weren’t able to resist the temptation to stick it to the NFL ahead of the big game, as they released a series of crudely-animated videos ridiculing some of the established league’s perceived pain points.
The three videos were posted on Sunday on the XFL’s Facebook and Twitter accounts, and the first and most popular of the clips dealt with the NFL’s oftentimes confusing rules and decisions when it comes to what counts as a catch. The clip featured a referee announcing that a player’s catch was being contested due to “accusations of bobbling, or hobbling, or sobbing,” before rattling off a series of hard-to-answer rhetorical questions that included references to Bitcoin, and the mysterious murders of hip-hop icons Tupac Shakur and The Notorious B.I.G.
The “a catch is a catch” video was then followed up by a clip captioned “less stall, more ball,” which poked fun at the excessive timeouts and commercials viewers have to go through while watching NFL games, even to the point where the commentators call for a commercial break following touchbacks and interceptions. The end of the video showed a group of people at a live game, with most of them having fallen asleep, and the Grim Reaper on standby for anyone who may have been bored to death by all those timeouts.
Lastly, the “simpler rules” clip dealt with a longtime pet peeve of McMahon’s as a football executive — the NFL’s rulebook and the myriad penalties referees hand out to players. The referee in this video called out players for silly violations such as "improper use of grammar," "going 57 in a 35 [mph zone]," "passing the buck," and "tearing the label off the mattress."
I'll have to admit that some portions of the clips made me chuckle. But the videos are proof positive that even when he's trying to reboot his failed pro football league, Vince McMahon is as petty as ever, and still prone to trolling the NFL despite his statements implying that he won't engage in such unnecessary tactics. That said, we still wish McMahon the best of luck with his XFL reboot, which, as previously reported, is due to kick off early in 2020.