Week 7 of the United States Football League (USFL) has officially wrapped up. This week was very interesting as all the games ended up being one score. As playoffs are on the horizon, how did your team perform this week and see the teams who are pretenders or contenders. Well let’s find out.
Game 1: Birmingham Stallions vs New Orleans Breakers
Score: Stallions 24 – 20 Breakers
Birmingham Stallions Grade: B+
The Stallions got a very crucial win on Saturday showing that they are still the team to beat in a very competitive USFL South Division. It was at first a slow start in the first half on offense, but the Stallions defense bend and did not break. The second half brought a resurgence on offense especially with RB CJ Marable going through the Breakers defense. New Orleans did nearly come back at the with some confusion of ball placement from the referees, but the Stallions did prevail. Stallions are back on top of the division and are looking like they are geared up for a back-to-back championship run in the modern USFL Era.
Next Week: VS Philadelphia Stars Saturday June 3, 2023, 3PM ET/2PM CT (NBC/Peacock)
New Orleans Breakers Grade: C+
The Breakers have not looked like the same dominant team that we thought they were when they were 4-0. There were plenty of mistakes in that first half like costly fumbles or coaching. They were able to move effectively at times, but the Stallions defense were able to get them to score only field goals for about three quarters of the game until the fourth quarter. Then they were able to get it to a one score game. At the end it was close, but no cigar. The Breakers still control their own destiny for the playoffs, but are they able to regain their weeks 1-4 form? We will have to wait and see.
Next Week: VS Michigan Panthers Sunday June 4, 2023, 4PM ET/3PM CT (Fox)
Game 2: Philadelphia Stars vs Pittsburgh Maulers
Score: Stars 37 -31 Maulers
Philadelphia Stars Grade: B+
The Stars are the victors in the second Battle of the Keystone State this season. This matchup was very back and forth for the most part and both teams showed their best. The Stars did have a very solid game overall despite having a few turnovers that could have changed momentum at any point but did not affect them at all. The second half did slowdown in scoring until a touchdown by Corey Coleman late in the third quarter. Finally, in the fourth quarter, Philadelphia solidified their win with another touchdown and a field goal as well. Philadelphia now won three straight games and top of the division, will they be back in the championship for the fifth time? Time will tell.
Next Week: At Birmingham Stallions Saturday June 3, 2023, 3PM/2PM CT (NBC/Peacock)
Pittsburgh Maulers Grade: B-
After last week’s shutout to the Memphis Showboats, the Maulers needed a to start off hot against a Philadelphia team with championship aspirations. In the entire first half they looked dominant, scoring three touchdowns and one of them thanks to Maulers KR Josh Simmons. The second half was the opposite, Philadelphia’s defense was able to stop Mauler’s offense and only scored one more touchdown in that half and failed to convert on their 4th and 12 and eventually lost the game. There is at least good news for the Maulers, they can still make the playoffs.
Next Week: VS Houston Gamblers Saturday June 3, 2023, 12PM ET/11AM CT (USA Network)
Game 3: Houston Gamblers vs Memphis Showboats
Score: Showboats 23-20 Gamblers
Houston Gamblers Grade: D+
Some team’s winning streak was going to snap, and it happens to be the Houston Gamblers. The Gamblers offense did not have a great performance this past weekend, but what did shine was their defense. Their defense overall was the reason that Houston still had a shot of winning this game and only letting the Showing to scoring field goals, punts, and got a couple of turnovers along with it. Houston had one more final drive to at least time the game but, ended in an interception sealing their third loss of the season. Having that third loss may not be the worse thing, but since everyone in the USFL South Division has a record over .500 and they all still have a shot for the playoffs, these losses are a harder pill to swallow.
Next Week: At Pittsburgh Maulers Saturday June 3, 2023, 12PM ET/ 11AM CT (USA Network)
Memphis Showboats Grade: B-
The BOAT is now going “full steam ahead” after a rough 0-3 start to the season. This team has looked more confident, and Todd Haley has finally got this team where they needed to be. Sure, it was not their best game, but they did enough on offense where they were able to score the points that they could get. The Showboats defense showed up big time today as they were able hold down Houston’s offense and make them struggle. Even the special teams had a moment to shine, by blocking the Gambler’s field goal attempt. This team is finally sinking their opponents instead of them sinking theirs. Let us see if this can continue in the next three weeks.
Next Week: At New Jersey Generals Sunday June 4, 2023, 1PM ET/12PM CT (Fox)
Game 4: Michigan Panthers vs New Jersey Generals
Score: Panthers 25 – 22 Generals
Michigan Panthers Grade: C+
Does it take for the Panthers just to be on the road to win games or not? Anyways, the entire first half was a “PUNT Fest” asides from the three field goals from both teams. The second half finally got cooking with a touchdown pass from Josh Love. Then finally scored two more touchdowns in the fourth. Not really much offense to produce until that second half, but it felt like this team was moving the ball inch by inch throughout the game. Michigan finally snapped their four-game losing streak and are second in the division. If the season ended today, the Michigan Panthers would be playing a playoff in Detroit, but as a road team. At least it will be the first football playoff game in Detroit since the 1993-94 Detroit Lions Season if the season ended. So, there is hope for the Panthers.
Next Week: At New Orleans Breakers Sunday June 4, 2023, 4PM ET/3PM CT (Fox)
New Jersey Generals Grade: C-
The Generals performed very similar to Michigan on Sunday by giving the Punter some love and only able to get a Field Goal within the first half of play. Then the second half is where we got the Touchdowns, but at the end of the game it all came down to execution and the Panthers Defense executed when needed to on the 3 Point Conversion Attempt and the 4th and 12 Attempt. Even though the Generals are still in the playoff race, this team has not been impressive this season at all. Hopefully they can still turn their season around.
Next Week: VS Memphis Showboats Sunday June 4, 2023, 1PM ET/12PM CT (Fox)
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