The NFL Season is far away, but we already see value
The 2022 NFL Draft concluded a month ago. Though the draft really lacked in notoriety at key positions, it was a fairly deep draft and capped an offseason full of excitement. Trades in the NFL have typically been rare, but some big names moved in the offseason, making predictions for the upcoming season even more challenging.
Every year, a plethora of NFL futures bets and props are released early in the summer. The risk is obviously the time between now and the start of the season. The reward is the early value. A lot CAN happen, but not a lot usually does happen. When it comes to player props, a lot can change, but team props are usually a lot safer. In today’s props discussion, we’ll go over some team props for the 2022/2023 season.
Notes to be aware of
When you’re looking at team win totals, it’s best to just ignore the lines ending on whole numbers. Those lines are always very appealing in one direction or another, but it leaves the house with more room to profit. If a team lands exactly on that total, there’s no winning bet to be had. It’s important to keep your eyes on the half game totals. They’re trickier to gauge, but so much better for value.
Player props are my favorite each season. It’s still early for those, but a lot of the player props are already out for the bigger name rookie receivers. As the season draws closer, we will have picks for the season player props. For now, the focus is on the team wins and divisional wins.
Divisional Wins Props
Las Vegas Raiders under 2.5 Divisional wins -110
A lot of people think the Raiders will be pretty good this season. On paper, the acquisition of Devante Adams was huge. In reality, the team looks a little worse everywhere else. With the Chargers and Broncos making huge strides in the offseason, the likelihood the Raiders winning three games in the division isn’t strong. I could see them nabbing the Chiefs at home and possibly the Broncos, but the Chargers this season? You can be sure they haven’t forgotten about Week 18 last season.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers under 4.5 Divisional wins -130
People just assume any team with Tom Brady is automatically set. After two years of the Bucs feasting on a bad division, the division really hasn’t improved, but the NFL is still wild. Each year, we see teams winning games no one expects them to, even when it’s ultimately a bad idea (draft position purposes) for the team who pulls-off the upset. The Bucs have some new faces on the offensive line and still some issues on defense. Expect a little more chaos, even with the Falcons and Panthers likely being putrid.
Philadelphia Eagles over 3.5 Divisional Wins +110
If you want plus odds at a slightly higher risk level, take the Eagles here. The Giants have improved, the Cowboys didn’t, and the Commanders really improved their mascot, but not much else. The Eagles quietly had a great offseason and a solid draft. Jalen Hurts has more weapons, a better line, and a much better defense. With the most complete team of anyone in the division, expect the Eagles to break through this season.
Division Finishing Position Props
New York Jets Division Finishing Position: 4 (-200)
At -200 odds, this one might be the easiest bet to make for the offseason. Everyone is gassing-up the Jets because of their coach and some flashy weapons they’ve added, but the real questions still linger about their offensive line. It doesn’t matter who you have at receiver or running back when your QB is an erratic, second-year guy and the line just flat-out isn’t good.
Consider the Bills, Patriots, and Dolphins as well. All three of those teams should be very solid this season. To me, this division will come down to the Dolphins and Bills, as both got even better in the offseason, while the Patriots still look like a very solid team, overall. Picking the Jets to finish anywhere outside of 4th in this division would be terrifying. Fade the hype on the Jets.
New Orleans Saints Division Finishing Position: 2 (+130)
This appears to be the most cut and dry 1 and 2 finishing order for the upcoming season. We did say the Bucs won’t win over 4 games in the division, but they should be better outside the division than the Saints. The Panthers and Falcons both have very low win totals (projections) for the season, so it appears the Saints should have another clear path to finishing in the two spot once again.
Even with coaching turnover and the prospect of both Michael Thomas and Alvin Kamara missing some time, the Saints have a solid roster and more offensive weapons this season. We don’t have any faith the Falcons and Panthers will make much noise, especially with their QB room crowded and cloudy.
Indianapolis Colts Division Finishing Position: 1 (-125)
We know the most stable team in the AFC South the past few years has been the Titans. Much of this is due to their chemistry, conservative playcalling, and a well-established run/play action offense. This season, the time has finally come for the Colts. I know everyone has hyped the last three QBs to come in after Andrew Luck’s retirement, but Matt Ryan is coming into the best Offensive line situation he’s had since his MVP season.
The defense of the Colts had some issues from time to time last season, but the offensive efficiency should be up, as should the offensive ceiling. Meanwhile, the Titans certainly didn’t improve much. The loss of AJ Brown limits them offensively. With Robert Woods coming back from major injury and a young Treylon Burks needing time to acclimate, the Titans will need an adjustment period on offense.
Los Angeles Rams Division Finishing Position: 1 (+120)
Last season, we had the Rams to make the playoffs. All the ingredients were there and they far exceeded our expectations. This season, the Rams are still loaded on both sides of the ball. The Super Bowl hangover might be real, but that division just isn’t close to what it was. The Cardinals’ QB is holding-out, their best WR is suspended six games, the Seahawks will be terrible, and the 49ers are trying to transition to a new QB.
Considering the adjustments the 49ers will have to make on offense, Trey Lance in the mix, and the loss of their OC (and the Deebo Situation), the 49ers have an adjustment period upcoming. All this player movement and coach movement only makes the Rams look that much more appealing. The addition of Allen Robinson to the Rams also does a lot to fill the Robert Woods void on offense.
Carolina Panthers Division Finishing Position: 3 (+130)
This NFC South Division (as we stated earlier) appears very cut and dry. Now, we understand injuries happen and there’s some variance overall with the level of competitiveness in the NFL, but this division is spaced-out so well. The Falcons are outright awful. They have a plethora of holes on offense and defense, disguised by a few standout talents on both sides of the ball (Terrell and Pitts, notably). Atlanta is now plugging Marcus Mariota into a team in-need of plugs everywhere.
The Bucs are really solid, the Saints have a great roster but probably don’t have a real high ceiling with Jameis at QB, and the Panthers’ entire staff is now under the gun. Remember how solid the Panthers were last season before a multitude of injuries cut them down.
Atlanta Falcons Division Finishing Position: 4 (-110)
We’ve already stated this division is easy money. Now, you can cash-in on the most predictable division in the league. The Falcons are bad. They have holes on the offensive line, holes on the defensive line, an injury-prone/average QB (at best), and a lack of good skill players. There’s also a good chance star linebacker Deion Jones misses time or ends up being traded or released.
The primary concern with this bet is whether the Carolina Panthers can actually be worse. Prior to some major injuries last season, the Panthers were off to a hot 3-0 start. Since losing Christian McCaffrey and their best corner (Jaycee Horn), the Panthers failed to establish any offensive rhythm and went on to lose 12 of their final 14 games. Now, Matt Rhule is on the hot seat and the Panthers have to put together a good season.