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Free USFL Betting Picks - Best Bets, Odds, Predictions for Week 8

USFL DFS lineup picks draftkings daily fantasy football

The 2023 USFL season is officially upon us, and we are finally getting XFL and USFL action together for our viewing pleasure this Spring football season. Sportsbooks are now available on that device in your pocket all over the world, and so this is going to be a Spring Football season like no other. I'll be here every week providing sports betting advice for USFL action, so join me here and pay homage to the original "fun" league. Be sure to also read all our other weekly USFL Fantasy Football articles.

If we ever start expanding into the realms of the European League of Football, Indoor Football League, Fan Controlled Football, and/or (I can only hope) the CPBL of Taiwan come baseball season–I'll be right here to discuss the full happenings across the board.

They might not be the #1...or #2 leagues...but damn it, we've congregated here because we love sports. So, when the powers to be in professional sports decide to supply our hungry demand for more year-round action, it would be fundamentally and morally wrong of us to not take a head-first dive into Spring Football education so that we can continue to enter DFS contests and place anxiety-inducing bets on games that most of our friends and family probably won't even know are being played--and if you're still reading this paragraph, I am fully confident that you share my sentiment on that point. Anyway, let's get to talking about the Spring Football league that started it all with the likes of Steve Young, Jim Kelly, Reggie White, Doug Flutie, and near-Congressman Herschel Walker.

As you can tell from the chaotic reshuffling of my Power Rankings & MVP Ladder and the updated USFL Championship odds that read absolutely bonkers, we've got three regular season matchups remaining in the 2023 campaign, and anything in the world short of the Arlington Renegades hopping leagues and winning their second title of the Spring can happen.

The Maulers or Generals could still win it all; and any combination of Birmingham, Memphis, New Orleans, and Houston could find themselves squaring off in the postseason for the South Division title--but as we saw not long ago in the XFL--be extremely wary of those teams that make it to the championship game by way of taking whatever is hands-down the weaker division. With that, let's get into it folks, because we're mixing a critical week in the USFL with the College Baseball tournament and the NBA Finals this weekend.


Week 8 USFL Power Rankings & Updated Future Odds via FanDuel Sportsbook to Win the 2023 USFL Championship

  1. Birmingham Stallions (+300)
  2. Memphis Showboats (+900)
  3. Houston Gamblers (+650)
  4. Philadelphia Stars (+500)
  5. New Orleans Breakers (+350)
  6. Michigan Panthers (+900)
  7. Pittsburgh Maulers (+1600)
  8. New Jersey Generals (+600)

Week 8 USFL MVP Ladder

  1. Alex McGough (QB, Birmingham Stallions)
  2. Mark Thompson (RB, Houston Gamblers)
  3. Breeland Speaks (DE, Michigan Panthers)/Reggie Corbin (RB, Michigan Panthers)/Frank Ginda (LB, Michigan Panthers)
  4. Greg Reaves (LB, Memphis Showboats)/Luis Aguilar (K, Philadelphia Stars)/C.J. Marable (RB, Birmingham Stallions)
  5. McLeod Bethel-Thompson (QB, New Orleans Breakers)/Wes Hills (RB, New Orleans Breakers)/Sage Surratt (TE, New Orleans Breakers)


Week 8

Houston Gamblers at Pittsburgh Maulers (Saturday, June 3rd, Noon)

HOU (-3), O/U 43.5, HOU (-155), PIT (+130)

Best Bet: Gamblers (-3) & Under 43.5

I've got to give a little more credit to the Gamblers over the Maulers based on their Week 7 losing efforts. Houston got walloped by an elite USFL defense, as the Showboats' Greg Reaves and John Atkins had a field day pressuring Kenji Bahar back into his inaccurate, turnover-prone ways and being the first team to put the stopper on Mark Thompson's ground attack in stark contrast to their first meeting in Week 3. Plus, with the ability to move the ball in a variety of ways, Houston was almost able to capitalize on a Cole Kelley turnover to nab a comeback win, ultimately falling 23-20.

I'd love Pittsburgh's chances of doing something similar to the Gamblers on defense if it wasn't for their 37-31 loss to the in-state rival Stars last week. The most concerning part was that, despite their 24-20 halftime lead and the unusual cover from a Maulers game, the entire offense had to be sustained on the kick and punt return work of Josh Simmons and Isiah Hennie (who were indeed phenomenal on Special Teams). They missed one of two field goals, Philly created an equal number of turnovers as Pittsburgh; and while Troy Williams was accurate in his passing, the damage done with each completion and the 44 rushing yards on 11 tries just wasn't enough when combined with his INT. Bailey Gaither wasn't involved, Garrett Groshek unfortunately still can't gain an inch, and Madre London still can't get more than a few hand-offs per game.

The nail in the coffin here is that the offense has regressed back to where they were to start the season, and this defense ended up looking outmatched against a Stars offense that has struggled to gain footing until very recently--with Case Cookus throwing for high-volume yardage with more TDs than picks, Corey Coleman leaping to second in the league with 409 receiving yards after torching the Pittsburgh secondary, and Matt Colburn II picking up steam with an 82-yard outing.

Even if Kenji Bahar throws an INT or two, something has changed for the worse in Pittsburgh. Even if they keep the QB in check more than they did Cookus, do they have enough left in the tank to limit Justin Hall and Mark Thompson to so few points that they end up scoring more? I don't think so at this point. If you're the Maulers: try anything else on offense. Deploy Hennie and Simmons way more, hand the ball off to Gaither, use Groshek as a true fullback and have Troy Williams run it on every play...just try something else besides what you've been doing these last few weeks. I think the Gamblers end up scoring between 17 and 27 and the Maulers end up with anything from 7-20. Somewhere in that spectrum, lay the three points with Houston and lean towards the under.


Philadelphia Stars at Birmingham Stallions (Saturday, June 3rd, 3 PM)

BHAM (-6), O/U 45.5, BHAM (-230), PHI (+190)

Best Bet: Stars (+6), ***ML (+190)***, & Over 45.5

Wow--what a ride for Philadelphia to this point--and there is still enough time left for either one of these teams to collapse and miss the postseason. It sounds crazy now, but they both looked very capable of it earlier in the campaign. After taking their 24-20 revenge over the New Orleans Breakers last week, the Birmingham Stallions sit atop the South Division standings with the stand-alone best record in the USFL at 5-2, as Alex McGough and C.J. Marable have had what appears at times to be an unstoppable connection. It should not be lost on anyone that this is a rematch of the 2022 USFL Championship, and how fitting it is that each team currently leads their division.

As I talked about at length above, this past week was the first win in Philly's streak that has felt like a fully legitimate victory by a top-tier team with the offense shining in multiple departments against what had been an elite Maulers defense. Plus, the 31 that the Stars have up to Pittsburgh was in large part due to Pittsburgh's incredible work on Special Teams--so I don't know, what are you going to do there? Perhaps it is a factor that Birmingham's Special Teams unit seems maybe a bit more dangerous from play to play, but I think this game is going to be an awesome clash between division-leaders playing their best football of the 2023 season. The Stars looked willing to run the ball and their passing game looked near its end-of-2022 strength, so I think it's way too much to lay six with the Stallions. I think the Stars can win this game, so +190 is a great value, and I also think that this game ends up with a final score range of 24-20 all the way to 38-35, so go over.


Memphis Showboats at New Jersey Generals (Sunday, June 4th, 1 PM)

NJ (-2), O/U 41.5, NJ (-130), MEM (+110)

Best Bet: Showboats (+2), ***ML (+110)***, & Under 41.5

Two teams moving in absolute opposite directions--the Memphis Showboats have now won four in a row, capped off by last week's 23-20 victory where the defense once again shined in handling Mark Thompson and creating tide-turning turnovers, while the offense has finally produced something beyond pedestrian performances by Cole Kelley with two-straight weeks of solid rushing performances from Juwan Washington and Kerrith Whyte. New Jersey now has to be classified as the worst team in the USFL, which seems positively insane considering the weapons that they have in their arsenal for gaining yardage on the ground alone. But last week, they dropped a game to the Michigan Panthers, making Josh Love look like an absolute star and being the first team in many weeks to allow more than 13 points to Michigan.

The wild thing is that together, De'Andre Johnson and Kyle Lauletta didn't have a bad game--but the Generals leading rusher was Darius Victor with 52 yards on eight carries, while Johnson and Trey Williams only saw seven tries combined. That is not going to get it done for New Jersey, and I can't possibly pick them to cover, let alone be the favorite in any game with that kind of head-scratching utilization of resources. If Memphis made Mark Thompson look human and got Kenji Bahar throwing picks again, it is going to be a long day for New Jersey. Now that I've seen enough from HC Todd Haley and the backfield, I can definitively say that the Showboats are going to win this game--hit +2 and the ML hard--and I think the score falls under at a range of 17-10 to 27-14.


Michigan Panthers at New Orleans Breakers (Sunday, June 4th, 4 PM)

NOLA (-3.5), O/U 43.5, NOLA (-165), MICH (+140)

Best Bet: Panthers (+3.5), ***ML (+140)***, & Under 43.5

After planting Michigan at dead-last in my Power Rankings for weeks with the utmost confidence with the Breakers in the top three, it is perfectly symbolic of the 2023 USFL season that I am now picking them to get a critical win in Week 8 towards securing a spot in the postseason. To start with New Orleans, who have now dropped three straight games--they might've only lost last week to Birmingham by four points with a real chance to win at the end, but if you watched that game--it was impossible to believe that the Stallions failed to put it away by the end of the third quarter. It defied all football logic, and it didn't give me any encouragement that the Breakers were working themselves out of their funk moving forward.

Meanwhile, all the Panthers had to do was win last week and they instantly hopped into the second playoff slot from the North Division. Josh Love might not be an accurate passer, but he gets plenty of yardage on the passes that he does complete, and he was finally able to put an end to his horrific stretch of red zone activity in Week 7 with three touchdowns while throwing for just five INT so far this year. The biggest thing about this Michigan team is the defense, which boasts many statistical league-leaders and play-makers (Breeland Speaks, Frank Ginda), and the USFL all-purpose yards leader Reggie Corbin--who has been an absolute offensive rock for short-yardage through the air and workhorse yards on the ground--with the additional solid backup outings from Stevie Scott III.

This Breakers defense has not adjusted through the course of the campaign and their offense has lacked the high-volume punch that it had early on. I still think that New Orleans can be a playoff team with a chance at a title, but that won't happen if something doesn't change. With how these teams are trending, give me Michigan to win this outright by a final score range of 20-14 to 24-21, leaning slightly towards the under.


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