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PR: USFL Changes Rule for Panthers and Maulers Game for 2023 Draft

The USFL and EVP of Football Operations, Daryl Johnston, announced on Twitter that they were making a last-minute rule change for Sunday’s match-up between the Michigan Panthers and the Pittsburgh Maulers due to a unique situation that has arisen. Both teams are going into the game 1-8, and under normal circumstances per the USFL rule book, the team with the worst record would get the first-round draft pick in the 2023 USFL Draft. This time around, they are changing things up that instead of the loser of this game getting the first-round draft pick, the winner of the game would. But that wasn’t it; the winner would also get the first pick in each round.

The Ultimate Tank Bowl

If this rule change didn’t come at a more odd time, it seems more or less a last-minute change to put the stakes on what could have been one of the worst games we’ve ever seen with each team trying to tank the game to get that first-round draft pick. What is very weird to me is that they are upping the stakes even more and giving the winner of this game every first pick in each round. Now in the 2022 draft, there was a total of 35 rounds broken up by positions. 

How Could the 2023 USFL Draft be different from 2022

It remains on how exactly this 2023 draft will work; I highly doubt they will have 35 rounds again unless the USFL is going to gut all team rosters completely. Sort of like to have them pick players all together to include any new signings and signings that happened throughout the season. It would be taking a rule from the Fan Control Football league where they have a draft every week, and teams can lock in picks weekly to keep certain positions throughout the season and rebuild weekly to try to have the best team possible. 

I feel this would sour many fans, especially ones that made connections to their teams and players and having to scrap all of that and start fresh would be a huge letdown. The most significant part of this theory is the letdown to the players who have built relationships with teammates. I personally, though, wouldn’t put anything past the USFL and change up the rules last minute, as we can see they have tried to make the game better over the season, including this new one.  

What does this mean for the 2023 season with this change?

The question that a lot of fans and critics of the USFL is this situation that has come up that has made the USFL make the rule change isn’t something that could magically happen every single year. Is this rule a one-off? Is this rule a part of the 2023 season, and how would that even work. What many people don’t like about this rule change is that either the Michigan Panthers or the Pittsburgh Maulers will instantly have first-round draft picks in every round. If it was just the first one, perfectly fine, but that’s not what’s happening, yes, this is an advantage for that team possibly next season, but could you imagine if the worst team next year gets the same preference? It would be even more of a reason to tank if you automatically get all these draft picks for tanking. 

Stay tuned to for all your USFL news and who gets this lucky break in the 2023 Draft.

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  1. scott A farley

    June 19, 2022 at 10:11 am

    WHat a negative article to a positive idea.

  2. Joe Public

    June 19, 2022 at 6:02 pm

    This last second change to a rule is garbage. You couldn’t just suddenly say the outcome of an established norm means the opposite could you?


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