Week 1 of the 2022 NFL season is in the books — and it’s officially overreaction season. This happens every year, top NFL betting sites and bettors themselves put too much stock into one game. However, this reaction only creates betting opportunities and we’ve picked three underdogs that will cover in Week 2.
Against The Spread: Atlanta Falcons at Los Angeles Rams
Both these teams lost in gut-wrenching fashion the opening week but in completely opposite ways. The Rams were blown out at home to start its Super Bowl defense. The Falcons, in typical fashion, blew a multi-score lead in the fourth quarter again. But despite bad starts for each, bookies are overwhelming favoring Los Angeles, as seen below:
|LA Rams spread (-10.5)||-110||-110|
|Atlanta spread (+10.5)||-110||-110|
On the one hand, we get why the Rams are double-digit favorites. They had a mini-bye week since they played on Thursday. That’s not a small advantage. However, how anyone can be comfortable giving them a -10.5 spread after getting smoked in Week 1 is beyond me. And we know we said not to overreact, but the Rams have lingering issues — namely the health of Matt Stafford.
The quarterback is not 100 percent or seemingly even close to it. An elbow injury has limited his throwing all offseason and training camp. Yes, he’s under center, but he’s not slinging it like his usual self. And Stafford isn’t the same without his rocket arm that’s capable of making every NFL throw in the book.
His stat line didn’t look all that off, aside from turnovers: 29-of-41 for 240 yards with one touchdown and three interceptions. But it’s the tape that’s the true tell on Stafford. There were hardly any vertical throws, as Stafford kept most passes under 10 yards downfield. The short passing game was reminiscent of the Jared Goff days, and that’s not good at all.
A limited Stafford is good for the Falcons to cover. Forgotten in the Atlanta choke job is how much heat its defense was applying in Week 1. They got to the quarterback with four sacks and many more pressures. That might just be the exact formula to rattle Stafford even more. Atlanta covers on the road, though. That’s not saying much, given the anemic fan base of the Rams.
Against The Spread: Arizona Cardinals at Las Vegas Raiders
These two are also coming off losses. Las Vegas lost a close one down the stretch, while Arizona was blown out at home by 23 points. Given that ugly result — c’mon, it was to Patrick Mahomes and the Chiefs — bookies have soured on the Cards. Look at how large of underdogs Arizona is on the spread:
|Las Vegas spread (-6)||-110||-110|
|Arizona spread (+6)||-110||-110|
We mentioned pressures in our first pick, and it’s worth repeating again. Derek Carr was running for his life most of Sunday. He was sacked six different times and threw three interceptions while at it too. Most expected the Raiders to be woeful up front, but its offensive line might be even worse than most bargained for.
Moreover, Arizona should bounce back offensively. Last week’s game got away from them too first — down 14-0 by the end of the first quarter and 23-7 at halftime — which hindered the play-calling. But make no mistake about it, quarterback Kyler Murray is as dynamic as they come under center. He won’t let the Cards lose by a touchdown or, more so, take the underdogs’ spread here.
Against The Spread: Tennessee Titans at Buffalo Bills
All aboard the Bills bandwagon after they dismantled the Rams. Buffalo opened the season as Super Bowl betting favorites and looked every bit the part in its opening game. Bookies have rejoiced by making the Bills multi-possession favorites in the Monday Night Football game over the Titans:
|Buffalo spread (-10)||-110||-110|
|Tennessee spread (+10)||-110||-110|
Generally speaking, we do agree with most of the sentiment in this one. Buffalo is on a steep incline, and Tennessee is on the decline. The latter lost on a two-point conversion at home and just looked slower and older. The days of endlessly feeding Derrick Henry to supercharge the offense appear to be over. Henry’s a step slower, and it’s not like he has an elite quarterback to bail him out.
Regardless, we’re taking the Titans' spread. Ten-plus points is a lot in the NFL — especially when it’s going against a playoff team from a year ago that happened to beat Buffalo at one point. Tennessee can’t afford another massive letdown and will, at the very least, keep the game within one score.
How To Bet On NFL Week 2?
NFL Week 2 is littered with bets — far beyond the three we covered above. To get a full list of the wagers available, head to one of the bookmakers listed in the underneath table. We’ve included unbiased sportsbook reviews in the table to make your choice of a sportsbook easier.
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