Advertisement

UFL: schedule, teams, how to watch and everything to know about the spring football league

 DC Defenders' Jordan Ta'amu.
DC Defenders' Jordan Ta'amu.

The XFL and the USFL, the two latest attempts to create a spring football league, have teamed up and are launching the new United Football League, or UFL for short. This new combined effort brings the best teams and unique rules that have defined the two leagues in the hope to finally make spring football stick.

The XFL, which was originally founded in 2001, relaunched in 2020, and despite multiple starts and stops, completed its first full season in 2023. The USFL, meanwhile, officially began play in 2022 and had two full seasons before the merger. Both leagues drew some headlines and had TV deals, but together they hope they can become even more popular and satisfy fans’ need for football action while the NFL is in its offseason.

Read on to find out everything you need to know about the UFL, including the schedule for its 2024 season, the teams and how you can watch.

UFL schedule

With the inaugural season of the UFL officially underway, check back here each week to see what games are being played and where you can watch them.

Here is the official UFL week 3 schedule:

Saturday, April 13

  • DC Defenders vs Arlington Renegades, 1 pm ET/10 am PT, ESPN/ESPN Plus

  • Memphis Showboats vs Birmingham Stallions, 7 pm ET/4 pm PT, Fox

Sunday, April 14

  • Houston Roughnecks vs Michigan Panthers, Noon ET/9 am PT, ABC/ESPN Plus

  • St. Louis Battlehawks vs San Antonio Brahmas, 3 pm ET/noon PT, ABC/ESPN Plus

See the full UFL season schedule here.

How to watch the UFL

The UFL is going to be readily available for anyone who wants to watch it, as all games are going to air on ABC, ESPN, ESPN2, Fox or FS1.

All of the networks are pretty readily available through traditional pay-TV subscriptions and live TV streaming services; Fubo, Hulu with Live TV, Sling TV and YouTube TV all carry both Fox and ESPN as part of their channel lineups.

UFL teams

There are eight teams that make up the UFL, four from the previous iteration of the USFL and four from the XFL. They are broken into conferences based on their former leagues. Here they are, with links to their official pages so you can check out their full rosters and more:

USFL Conference

XFL Conference

UFL uniforms

Take a look at the new uniforms for all eight UFL teams right here:

Arlington Renegades

Birmingham Stallions

DC Defenders

Houston Roughnecks

Memphis Showboats

Michigan Panthers

San Antonio Brahmas

St. Louis Battlehawks

UFL rules

There are a handful of rules that make the UFL a slightly different game than the NFL. Here is a quick rundown so you can know what's going on as you watch the games.

Kickoffs 

  • Kickoffs take place at the 20-yard line of the kicking team (the NFL does it from the 35-yard line)

  • A kick out of bounds will give possession to the receiving team at the 50-yard line or at the spot where the ball went out of bounds

  • Kicking teams can only recover a kickoff that is untouched by the receiving team within 20 yards of the kick

Touchbacks

  • All touchbacks are placed at the receiving team's 25-yard line

  • Any punt that goes out of bounds within the receiving team's 25-yard line is ruled a touchback

Alternate possession option 

  • In addition to an onside kick, teams have an alternate option to retain possession if they are tied or trailing in the fourth quarter by playing a 4th-and-12 from their own 28-yard line

Two forward passes 

  • Teams can throw two forward passes on a single play, as long as the ball has not crossed the line of scrimmage before the second forward pass is thrown

Points after touchdown 

  • There are three options for points after touchdown (PATs), all of which involve scrimmage plays (no kicks): from the two-yard line is a one point try, the five-yard line is a two point try and from the 10-yard line is a three point try

Overtime 

  • Best-of-three scoring from the opponent’s five-yard line (no kicks). If after the best of three, it continues until one team scores and the other doesn't

Defensive pass interference 

  • Results in a 15-yard penalty or a spot foul if foul occurred less than 15 yards downfield. Intentional defensive pass interference beyond 15 yards will result in a spot foul

Challenges 

  • Official challenges can occur on any reviewable play if deemed necessary, coming from a secure location separate from the game site. Any calls on player safety are reviewable at any time. Any call during the last five minutes of the fourth quarter or overtime is also reviewable

  • Coaches get one challenge on any ruling (including penalties) throughout the game as long as they have at least one timeout