Publish Date: 04/19/2022
Fact checked by: Simon Briffa
The USFL kicked off, and as to be expected, the defenses were way ahead of the offenses. The Saturday night opener between Birmingham and New Jersey was a great game, but overall the quarterback play in the USFL seems to be the biggest obstacle on the field to overcome. Find the best sportsbooks to bet on sports!
I think this headed into week one was expected as the Maulers are a one-dimensional run team that struggles to throw the ball. They didn’t attempt a pass until late in the first quarter. Josh Love and Kyle Lauletta combined for 129 passing yards, and the run game was terrible, averaging less than three yards per carry. This looked like a poorly coached team, and the way it’s headed, a winless season is possible unless some drastic changes occur.
Bryan Scott had 202 passing yards on 26 attempts, but the Stars never could get the ground game going, and they let an easily winnable game get away. The Stars lost this game because of two costly turnovers that they could not overcome. Josh Banderas led the defense; he had an incredible 17 tackles in the loss. The Stars get Pittsburgh next, and they must win that game or face a very long season.
Quarterback Shea Patterson struggled early but got better as the game went on, finishing 17 of 25 for 192 yards and a TD. Stevie Scott III (72 rushing yards) and Cameron Scarlett (66 rushing yards) are a legit tag team in the backfield, and linebacker Frank Ginda led the defense with ten tackles. The Panthers are a solid team and will be in the hunt at the end of the season.
The Generals lost the game of the week 28-24 to the Birmingham Stallions in a back and forth game. Two missed field goals were costly for the Generals. That spoiled a solid dual-quarterback effort from Luis Perez, who finished 13 of 18 for 143 yards and two TDs, and De’Andre Johnson, who had 98 yards rushing. Expect the dual quarterback threat to continue for the Generals and expect this team only to get better.
The Gamblers jumped out to a 17-0 lead and held on to win 17-12 over the Michigan Panthers. The defense is what won the game for the Gamblers, as the offense was terrible. Mark Thompson rushed for 71 yards, and the offense favored a low-risk passing game with Clayton Thorson, who finished 9 of 17 for 73 yards, a TD and an interception. Reggie Northup’s scoop and score touchdown was the difference in this game. Check out the top new sportsbooks!
Kyle Sloter (17 of 27, 150 yards, INT) was efficient in the passing game, and he added 30 rushing yards to an effective rushing attack that also featured Jordan Ellis (18 carries, 89 yards, TD) and T.J. Logan Jr. (15 carries, 56 yards, TD). Offensively the Breakers look like as close to a complete offense as any team in this league, and the defense played well.
J’Mar Smith scored the game-winning touchdown with 23 seconds left in a thriller with the Generals, the Stallions run game was not great, and the passing game was not stellar, but they did enough to win the game. Osirus Mitchell had five catches for 96 yards. Cornerback Tae Hayes led the defense with ten tackles. The big takeaway here is the crowd showed up for the Stallions, and if that continues, it could give Birmingham an excellent advantage during the season.
Jordan Ta’amu controlled the offense with 185 passing yards and a TD, but he did throw two interceptions. The defense was excellent, and overall, Coach Todd Haley’s team was the most impressive team during week 1. The Bandits have the best quarterback in the league, and the defense is not bad either.