WASHINGTON, DC - FEBRUARY 15: DeAndre Thompkins #1 of the DC Defenders catches a pass for a touchdown against the NY Guardians during the first half of the XFL game at Audi Field on February 15, 2020 in Washington, DC.
(Photo by Scott Taetsch/Getty Images)

Offensive struggles led to a quarterback switch in DC, as the New York Guardians were the victims of the first shutout in XFL history.

The New York Guardians made the wrong kind of history at Audi Field on Saturday afternoon.

Cardale Jones threw for 276 yards and two touchdowns against the Guardians en route to a 27-0 win for the DC Defenders. New York (1-1) was thus on the wrong end of the first shutout in XFL history.

Saturday’s game was a struggle for the New York offense, which mustered only 118 yards and four first downs. While their effort was enough for a home win over Tampa Bay last week, DC took an early lead to ensure dominance.

Forcing the Guardians into a three-and-out on their first drive, the Defenders (2-0) went 80 yards in four plays to take a lead they’d never relinquish. Jones found DeAndre Thompkins for a 13-yard scoring pass, but the Guardians stopped the one-point try to keep it at 6-0.

The Defenders kept using explosive plays from Jones to keep their hold on the lead, but the Guardians’ defense was able to limit damage on the scoreboard to Tyler Rausa field goals. Offensively, the Guardians sputtered with starting linemen Ian Silberman and Garrett Brumfield out. Matt McGloin‘s struggles were most well documented, as he gave a frustrated halftime interview to ESPN’s Dianna Russini on his way to the visitor’s locker room.

Disappointment only continued in the second half. The offense had something going on their first second-half drive, with DC leading 12-0, after Tim Cook totaled 15 yards on two opening carries. But a McGloin interception, this one to linebacker Jameer Thurman, was taken back 46 yards for a touchdown.

DC would earn their final points on another Rausa field goal and Jones’ second touchdown pass to Derrick Hayward. They tried the XFL’s first three-point attempt from the ten-yard line after the score, but the Guardians’ defense was able to keep it at the final margin of 27-0.

McGloin was pulled from the game in the fourth quarter, posing a final line of 8-for-19 for 44 yards and two interceptions. Marquise Williams went 4-of-8 for 51 yards. New York had other fleeting positive developments, including a D’Juan Hines interception in their own territory and a 60-yard punt from Justin Vogel. Williams also converted a fake punt from the personal protector spot, one of two successful tries on the day.

The Guardians will get back on the road next Sunday, taking on the St. Louis BattleHawks (3 p.m. ET, ESPN).

Geoff Magliocchetti is on Twitter @GeoffMags5490

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