USFL DFS Picks Week 1: Top Lineup Includes Reggie Corbin, McLeod Bethel-Thompson, and Jonathan Adams

Are you setting a DFS lineup for a 50/50 or tournament competition? Here are our top Week 1 USFL DFS picks.

If you’re looking for Week 1 USFL DFS picks, then you’ve come to the right place. Focusing on both Sunday contests, we’ve analyzed each team’s highest-probability game scripts to assess the most likely outcomes, including which players are in line to thrive more than anticipated or fall short of expectations.

The following recommended DraftKings lineup (for tournaments, 50/50, or head-to-head competitions) aims to lock in a relatively high floor while maximizing upside. Whatever you decide, good luck.

USFL DFS Considerations

There are too many X factors to count in this opening week of the 2023 USFL season. Approximately 100 fantasy-relevant players will compete alongside and against linemen, linebackers, and secondaries in ways we simply haven’t seen before.

There are a few former NFL and CFL players and a litany of rookies mixed in with 2022 USFL starters and contributors. Except many USFL players from last year have departed, which opens doors for some former backups. Which ones will shine?

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In the NFL, we know who the stars are. Sure, every season has its fair share of surprising breakouts and busts. But we can comfortably predict that, barring injuries, most of the top NFL QBs, RBs, WRs, and TEs will do just fine in 2023. For example, we’re not wondering if Patrick Mahomes will exceed 200 passing yards per game or if Justin Jefferson can surpass 1,000 receiving yards.

But Week 1 of the USFL introduces an entirely different calculus. Whatever 90%+ certainty we might have about Jalen Hurts averaging x DFS points per game cannot be transposed onto the Stallions’ J’Mar Smith.

So the following recommendations include leaps of judgment based on an array of unknowns, as well as dozens of hours of research and analysis governing the two Week 1 Sunday contests. We’ll see how it all comes together.

Top DraftKings DFS Picks for USFL Week 1

Today, we’re playing DraftKings’ “XFL Classic,” which includes one QB, one RB, two WRs, two RB/WR/TEs, and one D/ST.

QB McLeod Bethel-Thompson, Breakers ($8,300)

New Orleans (a 2022 playoff team) is facing Pittsburgh (1-9 last season). On paper, there’s a lot to like about the Breakers’ chances in this one. While the other Sunday contest between Michigan and Houston features two QBs with questionable upside, the Breakers’ McLeod Bethel-Thompson appears to be the most reliable of the bunch.

“Appears to be” is my way of saying, “It’s Week 1, and anything can happen.” But candidly, I’m shocked that the other three teams’ presumed starting QBs are more expensive in DFS. It doesn’t entirely make sense. Bethel-Thompson is a proven and experienced talent. Based on my research, I’m making the assumption that he’s the best Sunday QB.

RB Reggie Corbin, Panthers ($8,300)

This is a lot to pay for a running back, but it’s probably worth it. Reggie Corbin looked terrific last season, and this year he’ll remain an offensive centerpiece for the improving Panthers. While every other backfield playing on Sunday theoretically has a No. 1 RB, Corbin is the most reliable 14+ touch option.

WR Johnnie Dixon, Breakers ($9,000)

You’ll see a trend here. Since I’m big on New Orleans’ QB, I’m bullish about what his receiving corps can do, especially against a Maulers defense that does more crawling than mauling. Johnnie Dixon played very well last year. Assuming he adjusts quickly to his new quarterback, he should have a solid-to-massive outing.

WR Jonathan Adams, Breakers ($7,700)

Sort of a hedge, and sort of not. I wrote a few days ago that Jonathan Adams is my preseason No. 1 WR. Perhaps Dixon will be better. Again, there’s a lot we can’t yet know.

However, if we believe Bethel-Thompson has the skills to carve up Pittsburgh’s defense, and if we believe New Orleans’ receiving corps is among the league’s best, then pairing Dixon with Adams is absolutely necessary.

WR Joe Walker, Panthers ($6,300)

USFL depth charts are tough to gauge at most skill positions. That’s especially true for wideouts. As alluded to above, I’m assuming Dixon and Adams will lead the Breakers in targets. For Michigan, there are three or four guys with legitimate shots at serving as the No. 1 WR.

Joe Walker played fairly well last year, and he earned 8+ targets in three of Michigan’s final five games. Devin Ross is $1,800 more expensive. I’d rather go cheaper with Walker to leave room for another solid Flex option.

RB Stevie Scott III, Panthers ($5,300)

While I don’t love taking two RBs in this DFS format — especially in Week 1 — there’s a method to the madness of snagging Corbin and his backfield teammate Stevie Scott III. While Corbin should be a pseudo bell cow, Scott caught more than 50 balls in three years at Indiana.

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Applying DFS scoring, if Scott can be a passing-down back earning six to eight carries and three or four targets, then he could generate 8+ points. And since I like Michigan’s scoring potential against Houston, it’s a strong RB hedge.

D/ST Breakers ($4,600)

No surprise here. New Orleans gets its best matchup of the season right out of the gate. We need to seize on it in DFS. A 14+ point outing is entirely possible.

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