The 2022 USFL season is about to hit playoff time. Week 7 marked another important moment in the inaugural season as two franchises clinched their playoff spot.
There are now just three weeks remaining in the regular season as Week 8 approaches. This week had a little bit of everything though.
Two one-score games kicked the weekend off right, and then Sunday’s two games had competitive games until the end. We’ll break it all down.
Our full coverage of the 2022 USFL season continues as we’re recapping the results from Week 7 and previewing the point spreads and lines of Week 8.
Everything you need to know about betting on the United States Football League is right here at OddsTrader. Let’s dive into what happened last week first.
USFL Week 7 Results
New Jersey Generals 20, Tampa Bay Bandits 13
Welcome to the USFL playoffs, New Jersey! Their efficient offensive performance against Tampa Bay didn’t produce a huge passing game or a special outbreak on the ground but the Bandits could not get the stops they needed. Generals quarterback Luis Perez and rusher Darius Victor led a solid offensive effort.
Their defense took the cake in this storyline, though. Bandits quarterback Jordan Ta’amu continued to struggle as he completed just 17-of-37 passes and racked up three interceptions.
Bandits Offensive Scheme Season-long Degradation
The Generals keyed in on him all game and knew the Bandits could not effectively run the ball. It’s been a season-long degradation of this offensive scheme that has culminated in this situation.
Generals defensive back Dravon Askew-Henry and Shalom Luani grabbed the interceptions and wreaked havoc as they flew around the field. This was a great defensive performance.
New Orleans Breakers 31, Michigan Panthers 27
We almost saw the quarterback uncertainty in New Orleans culminate in a change, but the second-half play of Kyle Sloter may have saved his job.
The Breakers had dealt with his inconsistency over the last month and finally gave backup Zach Smith a shot.
Both ended with the same completion rate but Sloter started pushing the ball downfield more and averaged 7.6 yards per completion.
Michigan’s Defense Has Broken Down
It almost wasn’t enough in this overtime battle. Michigan, after releasing top overall pick Shea Patterson, rallied in the fourth quarter to get the game into extra downs.
They got a terrible passing performance from Josh Love and his inefficiency lost them the game at the end.
Michigan’s defense has broken down over the last few weeks. The fact they nearly won without a reliable passing game (185 yards on 38 attempts) is impressive but their defense allowed way too many points. Their season is effectively over.
Birmingham Stallions 26, Pittsburgh Maulers 16
This game had a massive 12.5-point line and that is always a concern even if it’s between the best and worst teams in the league.
Birmingham didn’t have their usual sharpness in this one, with quarterback J’Mar Smith shockingly struggling to operate all game long.
Pittsburgh was able to win the trench battle more than they have all season. The one game-breaking play came from fullback Bobby Holly.
He housed a 52-yard fake punt run, and it turned out the Stallions needed that break badly.
With Smith completing just 9-of-24 attempts and rusher Bo Scarbrough averaging only 3.7 yards per carry, the Stallions got desperate.
Birmingham Is Undefeated for Now
A win keeps Birmingham undefeated for now. Meanwhile, Pittsburgh remains a feisty bad team. Their passing attack was atrocious as rusher Madre London out-averaged the quarterback duo of Vad Lee and Roland Rivers.
Why the Maulers even went with Rivers for any amount of time is baffling considering the reasoning.
Head coach Kirby Wilson, while wearing a live microphone for the broadcast, questioned Lee’s body language, then benched him despite being down just one score with less than five minutes left to play.
Wilson was a questionable hire from the start and he’s shown little reason for why he’d be back in 2023.
Philadelphia Stars 35, Houston Gamblers 24
This was a highly competitive game until the fourth quarter brought on a 22-point onslaught by the Philadelphia Stars.
The Stars flipped their switch suddenly after struggling with turnovers and inconsistency on both sides of the ball.
It was as if the Stars realized they were a much better team than the Houston Gamblers and so did the Gamblers.
Stars Can Thank for Their Defense
Stars quarterback Case Cookus averaged just 5.3 yards per completion and had two interceptions. But the Stars can’t thank their offense for much, but rather their defense.
This game changed thanks to two lost Gamblers’ fumbles. Houston wisely benched Clayton Thorson for Kenji Bahar after a season’s worth of ineptitude.
Bahar tossed an interception, though, and that mistake played a big part in their collapse. Houston continues to lose in the fourth quarter and Kevin Sumlin hasn’t shown any reasonable adjustments yet.
USFL Week 8 Betting Preview
Here you’ll find the best point spreads and lines for Week 8 of the USFL’s season. All odds are courtesy of FanDuel!
Pittsburgh Maulers vs. New Jersey Generals
Friday, June 03, 2022 – 08:00 PM EDT at Protective Stadium
- Point Spread: New Jersey Generals – 8.5 (-110)
- Moneyline: Generals (-400)
- Total Over/Under: 42.5 (-110)
New Orleans Breakers vs. Birmingham Stallions
Saturday, June 04, 2022 – 03:00 PM EDT at Protective Stadium
- Point Spread: Birmingham Stallions – 3.5 (-110)
- Moneyline: Stallions (-175)
- Total Over/Under: 44.5 (-115)
Michigan Panthers vs. Philadelphia Stars
Sunday, June 05, 2022 – 12:00 PM EDT at Protective Stadium
- Point Spread: Philadelphia Stars – 6 (-110)
- Moneyline: Stars (-250)
- Total Over/Under: 47.5 (-110)
Houston Gamblers vs. Tampa Bay Bandits
Sunday, June 05, 2022 – 04:00 PM EDT at Protective Stadium
- Point Spread: Tampa Bay Bandits +5.5 (-110)
- Moneyline: Bandits (-230)
- Total Over/Under: 44.5 (-110)