Tampa Bay Fans Will Reminisce in LA as the Vipers Head West


Quarterback Josh Johnson has spent the better part of his 12-year professional football career as an insurance player. Gifted with the fastest 40 and highest vertical among quarterbacks at the 2008 NFL Combine, Tampa Bay head coach Jon Gruden would draft the young player out of the University of San Diego.

Since being drafted by Tampa Bay in the fifth round in 2008, Johnson has played with 13 NFL teams. In this, his 13th year as a professional quarterback, he finds himself playing in the XFL for the LA Wildcats. He will lead the 1-3 Wildcats against the visiting 1-3 Tampa Bay Vipers.

What Can the Tampa Bay Vipers Expect

The LA offensive coordinator is none other than Norm Chow. His history includes working as OC under Pete Carrol at USC where he helped developed Heisman Trophy winners Carson Palmer and Matt Lienart. Norm Chow’s offense is a push it down the field, wide-open style that although the Wildcats are 1-3, have started to get more comfortable in over the last couple of weeks.

Rushing seems like an afterthought for the Wildcats. The Vipers and defensive wizard Jerry Glanville will have to dial up once again that pressure they used to so soundly defeat the DC Defenders last weekend in Tampa Bay.

Just Like Old Friends

Buccaneer fans might remember the first time Josh Johnson got onto the field for the Buccaneers in 2009. It was a late September game against the New York Giants. Having only accumulated 35 yards offense and just 1 first down all day, Josh Johnson came in for none other than current Buccaneers offensive coordinator, Byron Leftwich.

Johnson would move the ball a little that afternoon. Completing a pass to Antonio Bryant but also having one zip through the hands of Buccaneers wide receiver Michael Clayton in the end zone. Buccaneers fans never doubted this young kid’s ability. They just never had much of a chance to see it.

So the Tampa Bay Vipers travel out West and fact the Los Angeles Wildcats on Sunday night. The 9:00 start is a little late but the XFL games are quite fast-paced and as of late, very exciting. Can the Vipers return home with a 2-3 record? Will the loser of this game be completely eliminated from the 2020 XFL postseason contention?

Stay tuned Tampa Bay Vipers fans. For the love of football.