USFL will hold a 35-round player draft next week, with a position-specific approach

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They have team names. They have coaches. They have stadiums. They have uniforms. Now, they need players.

Next week, the eight teams of USFL 2.0 will conduct a 35-round draft aimed at filling up the rosters. The format will unfold by position, with quarterbacks being selected in round one, edge rushers and defensive ends chosen in rounds two through four, offensive tackles taken in rounds five through seven, cornerbacks picked in rounds eight through 11, and quarterbacks again coming off the board in round 12.

The league will use a modified snake system, with the Michigan Panthers (coached by Jeff Fisher) holding the first overall pick.

It starts on Tuesday night at 6:00 p.m. CT, with the first 12 rounds. Teams will have two minutes to choose. Day Two begins the next morning, at 9:00 a.m. CT, with 90 seconds for rounds 13 through 23.

Rounds 13 through 17 will focus on receivers, rounds 18 and 19 will be devoted to safeties. Round 20 is the center round. Inside linebackers will be selected in round 21, and guards will go in rounds 22 and 23.

The window shrinks to 60 seconds for rounds 24-26 (nose tackle/defensive tackle), rounds 27-28 (running back/fullback), rounds 29-31 (outside linebacker), round 32 (kicker), round 33 (punter), round 34 (tight end/H-back), and round 35 (long snapper).

On March 10, the USFL will conduct a 10-round supplemental draft, adding 80 more players to the eight rosters.

The draft pool consists of more than 450 players who have signed contracts to play in the USFL. After the supplemental draft, teams will have 45 players each. At the start of the season, the franchises will have 38 active players and a seven-man practice squad.

15 responses to “USFL will hold a 35-round player draft next week, with a position-specific approach

  1. I know the name “USFL” and team names are a branding thing, but I really hope they try to tie in the old USFL with the new one. Steve Spurrier should have some type of relationship with the Bandits. I’d love to see Jim Mora, Chuck Fusina, Kelvin Bryant et al have some kind of relationship with the new Philadelphia Stars.

  2. This sounds like a bad fantasy football league format. How can you honestly build a team when you have 60 seconds to make decisions?

  3. It’s actually pretty easy/intelligent for this league to do their initial draft this way. You’ve got a round or 2 in a row devoted ONLY to a certain position and you know all of the players available to draft. Just rate them 1-10 or whatever and pick the highest rated player on your board for that position.

  4. Dictating what position is to be selected in a certain round is an aweful format…I would have been interesing in watching this draft but not now. Teams should be rewarded for finding the gems in the late rounds, so now someone they have pegged as a third round pick might have to go in the first round??? No thanks bad start to another league that will fold.

  5. If they miss a pick does it auto draft for them? I mean if we’re going modified fantasy draft rules why not go all in?

  6. I feel like it makes sense this way. Instead of going for position over talent, you can simply draft for talent. Simplifies the system considering they won’t have as much information on the players as they might want considering they have less resources and time devoted to scouting as the NFL does (and still drafting is difficult in NFL).

    So, Jeff Fisher will get first choice of QB. In these leagues (like AAF and XFL) getting the right QB is key. More so than in NFL, being able to scramble is the most important thing for success. See: Marquise Williams, PJ Walker, Jordan Ta’amu, Quinton Flowers, BJ Daniels, Josh Johnson, John Wolford as QBs with most success in those two leagues.

    Garrett Gilbert is an outlier. Perez too.

  7. I don’t see how making teams pick the same position in the same rounds is a good way to differentiate strengths of teams. Theoretically, the last team picking the QB in round 1 should have the least talented. Rosters should be built on variance & timing of positional choices. If one team has the best QB, another team should be able to have the best DL or OL if preferred. It also seems the middle teams will never have the best player at any position (although proof on the field will balance choices out some). It doesn’t seem their method will incorporate varied roster strengths.

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