XFL gets its first player: Former Steelers backup QB Landry Jones

We’re about six months away from the return of the XFL, and on Thursday, the league announced its first player.

Landry Jones first to sign with XFL

Via a news release sent by the XFL, former Pittsburgh Steelers backup Landry Jones is the first player and first quarterback to sign with the upstart league.

Based on the release, it’s expected Landry will be a starting quarterback, though he doesn’t have a team yet.

“I’m looking forward to joining the XFL and playing the game I love,” Jones said. “I can’t wait to suit up.”

XFL commissioner and CEO Oliver Luck said, “We’re excited to welcome Landry to the XFL as our first player and first quarterback. He’s an accomplished athlete with outstanding college credentials and pro experience, and his heart and desire to play football epitomizes the type of individual we want in the XFL.”

The XFL will sign seven more quarterbacks before its first draft in October, and the league’s eight head coach/general managers will choose their quarterback just before the draft.

18 PHOTOS
Looking back at the original XFL
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Looking back at the original XFL
12 Jul 2000: Vince McMahon smiles during the XFL Press Conference at the House of Blues in Los Angeles, California.Mandatory Credit: Tom Hauck /Allsport
4 Jan 2001: A general view of the official XFL Football during the Los Angeles Extreme Training Camp at the Sam Boyd Stadium in Henderson, Nevada.Mandatory Credit: Jeff Gross /Allsport
385125 01: Kasey Simons, an 8 year old girl from Tampa, Florida screams during a pep rally for the new XFL Orlando Rage February 2, 2001 in Orlando, Florida. The pep rally was held at Universal Studio's Citywalk. (Photo by Preston Mack/Newsmakers)
3 Feb 2001: Haven Fields #52 of the New York/New Jersey Hitmen stands in the team huddleduring the game against the Las Vegas Outlaws at the Sam Boyd Stadium in Las Vegas, Nevada. The Outlaws defeated the Hitmen 19-0.Mandatory Credit: Todd Warshaw /Allsport
3 Feb 2001: Leo Araguz #2 of the New York/New Jersey Hitmen moves in to kick the ball held by Cortez Guffey #11 during the game against the Las Vegas Outlaws at the Sam Boyd Stadium in Las Vegas, Nevada. The Outlaws defeated the Hitmen 19-0.Mandatory Credit: Todd Warshaw /Allsport
03 Feb 2001: Russell Lala of Melbourne, Florida cheers for the Orlando Rage during XFL opening night against the Chicago Enforcers at the Citrus Bowl in Orlando, Florida. DIGITAL IMAGE Mandatory Credit: Andy Lyons/ALLSPORT
ORLANDO, UNITED STATES: Orlando Rage wide receiver Kevin Swayne (4) runs past Chicago Enforcers back Corey Ivy (24) for a touchdown during the first quarter of the new XFL league opening game at the Florida Citrus Bowl in Orlando, 03 February 2001. AFP PHOTO/Tony RANZE (Photo credit should read TONY RANZE/AFP/Getty Images)
4 Feb 2001: A general view of the game between the Los Angeles Xtreme and the San Francisco Demons at the Pac Bell Stadium in San Francisco, California. The Demons defeated the Xtreme 16-15.Mandatory Credit: Tom Hauck /Allsport
4 Feb 2001: Jermaine Copeland #86 of the Los Angeles Extreme carries the ball as he is tackled by Wendell Davis #21 of the San Francisco Demons at Pac Bell Stadium in San Francisco, California. The Demons defeated the Extreme 16-15.Mandatory Credit: Tom Hauck /Allsport
4 Feb 2001: A general view of the field with the Golden Gate Bridge in the background taken during the game between the Los Angeles Extreme and the San Francisco Demons at Pac Bell Stadium in San Francisco, California. The Demons defeated the Extreme 16-15.Mandatory Credit: Tom Hauck /Allsport
10 Feb 2001: Jamal 'Deathblow' Duff #96 of the Los Angeles Xtreme takes a break during the game against the Chicago Enforcers at the L.A. Coliseum in Los Angeles, California. The Xtreme defeated the Enforcers 39-32.Mandatory Credit: Stephen Dunn /Allsport
10 Feb 2001: A general view of an Orlando Rage fan holding a sign during the game against the San Francisco Demons at the Citrus Bowl in Orlando, Florida. The Rage defeated the Demons 26-14.Mandatory Credit: Andy Lyons /Allsport
10 Feb 2001: Dialleo Burks #81 of the Orlando Rage and Brandin Young #23 of the San Francisco Demons scramble for the ball before the start of the game, to see who will receive and who will kick, at the Citrus Bowl in Orlando, Florida. This is the XFL answer to the traditional coin toss. Mandatory Credit: Andy Lyons/ALLSPORT
24 Feb 2001: Wally Richardson #14 of the New York/New Jersey Hitmen runs with the ball during the game against the Chicago Enforcers at Soldier Field in Chicago, Illinois. The Hitmen defeated the Enforcers 13-0.Mandatory Credit: Jonathan Daniel /Allsport
18 Mar 2001: Saladin McCoullough #24 of the Los Angeles Xtreme is tackled by Stephen Fisher #35 and Louis Riddick #33 of Orlando Rage at the Los Angeles Coliseum in Los Angeles, California. The Xtreme defeated the Rage 31-6.Mandatory Credit: Christopher Ruppel /Allsport
15 Apr 2001: Saladin McCullough #24 of the Los Angeles Xtreme runs for a touchdown against the Chicago Enforcers at Memorial Coliseum in Los Angeles, California. DIGITAL IMAGE. Mandatory Credit: Scott Halleran/ALLSPORT
21 Apr 2001: The Los Angeles Xtreme and the San Francisco Demons during the XFL Championship game at the Los Angeles Coliseum in Los Angeles, California. DIGITAL IMAGE. Mandatory Credit: Scott Halleran/Allsport
21 Apr 2001: Tinker Keck #23 of the Los Angeles Xtreme celebrates after defeating the San Francisco Demons 38-6 in the XFL Championship game at the Los Angeles Coliseum in Los Angeles, California. DIGITAL IMAGE. Mandatory Credit: Scott Halleran/Allsport
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Fourth-round pick in 2013

Jones was the 115th pick in the 2013 draft, out of Oklahoma. Now 30 years old, he spent the first five years of his career with the team that drafted him, Pittsburgh.

He started five games for the Steelers over the 2015-17 season, and the team was 3-2 in those games. Jones completed 63.9 percent of his passes with eight touchdowns and seven interceptions with Pittsburgh.

Last year, after drafting Mason Rudolph, the Steelers deemed Jones expendable and he was released in September. He signed briefly with Jacksonville last season and with Oakland in the offseason. The Raiders released Jones on May 22.

NFL Network reported that Jones had recently worked out for the Lions.

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