Shea Patterson, first overall pick in USFL draft, released by Michigan Panthers

Michigan football fans who adopted the Michigan Panthers because of their well-known quarterback Shea Patterson will have a new interest this week: Patterson has been released by the Panthers and is being claimed on waivers by the New Orleans Breakers.
Of course, if you stay with the Panthers, you won't have to wait long to see Patterson in his new clothes: The Panthers and Breakers play at 9 p.m. on FS1. ET Saturday in Birmingham, Alabama.
After starting the USFL 1-5 season with an intermittent passing game, the Panthers apparently felt they needed a change down the middle Wednesday. The team, which is led by longtime NFL head coach Jeff Fisher, announced on Twitter that the former Wolverines quarterback would be removed, as well as the release of safety Orion Stewart.
DISPLAY
Patterson was the #1 pick in the USFL draft earlier this year. Before his release, Patterson had passed 973 yards, the third-most in the league. He also rushed for 171 yards on the Panthers' occasionally run-heavy offense.
The USFL has a 'Jeff Fisher Rule': it's an example of how the Spring Football League adapts on the fly.
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Just two weeks ago, Patterson completed 27 of 34 passes for 304 yards in a Panthers loss. On Saturday, however, Patterson struggled in the first quarter, going 3-for-7 for 13 yards before a flash alert halted the game. After play resumed, Patterson went 21-for-28 for 186 yards and a touchdown. But Patterson also had a costly interception that was deflected off a defender into the hands of a Birmingham Stallions defensive end in the fourth quarter.
Shea Patterson was claimed by the New Orleans Breakers after being sacked by the Michigan Panthers.
Patterson entered the season with competition in the QB from Paxton Lynch, the former Memphis star who was previously selected from the NFL in the first round by the Denver Broncos. But Lynch was injured early in the USFL season, leaving Patterson with little competition. The Panthers called off quarterback Josh Love, another one-win team in the USFL, from the Pittsburgh Maulers' waivers ahead of Week 5 games. He threw for 440 yards and two touchdowns with the Maulers but has yet to see any action with the Panthers.
Contact Ryan Ford at rford@freepress.com. Follow him on Twitter @theford.
This article originally appeared in Detroit Free Press: USFL News: No. 1 pick Shea Patterson released by Michigan Panthers
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