2023 USFL Week 2 predictions, expert picks by Chris 'The Bear' Fallica

By Chris Fallica
FOX Sports Wagering Expert

"Bear Bets" are real wagers that Chris "The Bear" Fallica is actually making.

Week 1 of the second USFL season started hot for both the Birmingham Stallions and us. We went 3-1 in this space while the Stallions galloped all over the Generals. After last week's performance, it seems this is still a Stallions' world, and we're all just living in it. There's a reason the team is currently favored to win it all at FOX Bet.

We now turn our attention to the second week on FOX Sports and the FOX Sports App. I'll give you my best USFL bets every week, so if you are looking to throw a few bucks down on the games, I have you covered. So let's jump into my favorite bets for this week's slate and see if I can achieve perfection in Week 2.

Houston Gamblers vs. New Orleans Breakers at Birmingham, 12:30 p.m., USA

Houston’s offense was a mess in the opener, turning it over four times and gaining just 85 yards after halftime. While it was the Maulers who New Orleans shut down in the opener, the Breakers were one of the best defenses in the league last year, and the addition of QB McLeod Bethel-Thompson appears to be a very good thing after a 302-yard effort in the opener. 

I like New Orleans to move to 2-0 here in a somewhat comfortable fashion. 

PICK: Breakers (-5.5) to win by more than 5.5 points

Memphis Showboats at Birmingham Stallions, 7 p.m., FOX and FOX Sports App

Despite injuries to Scooby Wright and a season-ending injury to WR Marlon Williams, it's hard to bet against the Stallions winning here. Birmingham has been the class of the league, winning 12 of 13 games since the start of last year. The team appears to have plenty of depth to overcome those injuries. But I’m not comfortable laying north of a TD in this spot. 

Memphis’ defense created a lot of havoc in the opener with five sacks and punted just once on offense, but the kicking game did them in against what could be the second-best team in the league in Philadelphia. If Memphis cleans things up some and Birmingham struggles more than expected with the injuries, this could be closer than most think.

PICK: Showboats (+7.5) to lose by fewer than 5.5 points or win outright

New Jersey Generals vs. Pittsburgh Maulers at Canton, Ohio, 1 p.m., NBC

The Generals had their chances against Birmingham — the best team in the league — in the opener, but were done in by six penalties, two turnovers, 4-13 on third down and poor red zone execution (one score in four trips). While they do have some QB issues to work out, the running game with Darius Victor — who ran for 197 last week — can be relied on here against what will likely be the worst team in the league. 

Pittsburgh's QB completed just 10-27 for 81 yards last week, and you have to wonder if the Maulers defense can keep them in games as the offense continues to struggle and they are constantly on the field. 

I also like Under 37 here as well as I would expect the Generals, whose 361 yards last week were the most in the league, to control the game on the ground, see the clock tick away and a poor Pittsburgh offense not to put up many points. 

PICK: Generals (-3) to win by more than 3 points
PICK: Under 37 points scored by both teams combined at FOX Bet

Michigan Panthers (1-0) vs. Philadelphia Stars (1-0) at Canton, Ohio, 7 p.m., FS1 and the FOX Sports App

Both offenses here are pass-heavy, which presents the opportunity for a ton of big plays. We saw Josh Love and the Panthers use a lot of tempo last week when they put up a league-high 29 points. On the flip side, Case Cookus connected on 20-29 passes last week, including a 35-yarder to Corey Coleman in the Stars' 27-23 win over the Showboats. 

The Stars defense could have allowed even more points last week if it wasn't for a red zone turnover by Memphis, so this unit could have some holes. 

Both teams again should reach the 20s. Give me the Over.

PICK: Over 43 points scored by both teams combined at FOX Bet

Chris "The Bear" Fallica has covered sports for nearly three decades. While college football has been his focus, he also enjoys the NFL, Soccer, Golf, Tennis, MLB, NHL and Horse Racing, with an "occasional" wager on such events. Chris recently won the inaugural Circa Football Invitational and finished in the Top 10 of the Golden Nugget Football Contest. He’s a multiple-time qualifier for the NHC Handicapping Championship. Remember, "The less you bet, the more you lose when you win!" Follow him on Twitter @chrisfallica.

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