The NFL season has come to an end, but professional football is still being played. Former Rice football running back Austin Walter made his XFL debut on Sunday.
Austin Walter’s professional football journey entered its next chapter on Sunday. After being released by the New York Giants midseason, the free agent running back had been looking for his next opportunity to play professional football. He found that chance with the Dallas Renegades of the newly rebirthed XFL.
Walter made it through training camp and earned a spot on the active roster. His first action came Sunday in the league’s final game of their inaugural weekend. The Renegades, coached by former Oklahoma headman Bob Stoops, took on the Saint Louis Battlehawks led by Jonathan Hayes.
— Dallas Renegades (@XFLRenegades) February 10, 2020
Initially listed as a kick returner on the Dallas depth chart, Walter saw limited action until the fourth quarter of Sunday’s game. He returned the opening kickoff 16 yards on the Renegades’ first possession of the fourth quarter. On that drive, he caught a pass for eight yards and carried the ball once for 13 yards. He ended the day with 37 all-purpose yards, a decent total considering the Renegades had one player register more than 50 yards from scrimmage (Lance Dunbar).
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Midway through his senior season at Rice, Walter led the nation in all-purpose yards. Special teams will always afford him a role on whatever team he plays for. He has a knack for generating explosive plays, something Dallas could use more of next weekend. The Renegades were one of two XFL teams which failed to find the endzone during opening weekend.