Top 5 Most Popular NFL Win Total Bets: Analyzing the Odds & Picks (2022)

While July represents the NFL’s version of “hibernation,” NFL betting never sleeps. And some team win totals are garnering more attention from the betting public than others.

Let’s look deeper at the win totals getting the most attention from bettors and assess whether the public is right or wrong on these early assumptions.

5. Steelers over 7.5 wins 

Pittsburgh is a tricky team to project heading into 2022. They have a roster built to win right now with an elite defense and exceptional weapons, and the questions lie along the offensive line and at quarterback.

The Steelers will open the season without Ben Roethlisberger under center for the first time in nearly two decades. While Big Ben is an iconic member of Steelers lore, it was clearly time for him to call it quits. Pittsburgh replaced Roethlisberger with free-agent signee Mitch Trubisky and first-round pick Kenny Pickett, and the two will likely duke it out for the starting job during training camp.

Trubisky arrives in Pittsburgh after trying to rehab his career as a backup in Buffalo following a failed stint with the Chicago Bears. He brings starting experience and mobility but has struggled to read the field at an advanced level as a pro. Pickett arrived as a hometown product and was the top prospect in a fragile quarterback class. He’s got the arm and physical tools but needs to be less skittish in the pocket and improve his accuracy. Pittsburgh could urge patience with the 20th overall pick.

Pittsburgh made modest improvements along the offensive line, signing guard James Daniels and center Mason Cole during free agency. The unit has three starters returning from last year but needs to take a step forward in 2022.

Agree or disagree with the public? While Trubisky and Pickett are unknowns, they should serve as upgrades over the decayed Roethlisberger. And let’s not forget Pittsburgh made the playoffs and won nine games despite Roethlisberger’s limitations. The AFC North is good, but the Steelers’ defense is still the best unit in the conference. I agree with the public on this one.

4. Indianapolis Colts over 9.5 wins 

Indianapolis is the clear front runner in the AFC South, and rightfully so. The Colts swapped Carson Wentz with Matt Ryan under center and added cornerback Stephon Gilmore via free agency.

There is a risk with both of Indy’s biggest offseason acquisitions. The difference between Ryan and Wentz might not be that steep, and Gilmore could be declining at 31 years old. But on paper, the Colts should be primed for contention in the AFC.

Offensively, the Colts have one of the league’s best tailbacks in Jonathan Taylor, along with an offensive line still in its prime. A stronger infrastructure could greatly benefit Ryan, who has played at an MVP level when given proper protection and skill weapons.

Defensively, the Colts have a talented front seven that was bolstered by the addition of pass-rusher Yannick Ngakoue. Together, Ngakoue, DeForest Buckner, and Kwity Paye could become a nasty pass-rushing trio.

Indianapolis also benefits from being in the AFC South. The Tennessee Titans had a questionable offseason and traded away star receiver A.J. Brown. The Jacksonville Jaguars are still picking up the pieces from the failed Urban Meyer experiment. And the Houston Texans should be in the cellar as they continue their rebuild.

Agree or disagree with the public? The Colts have a strong roster, and Ryan could end up being this year’s version of Matthew Stafford. In such a weak division, the over seems like the right call.

3. Detroit Lions over 6.5 wins 

This was no doubt the most surprising win total on the list. Are NFL bettors really believing in Dan Campbell’s Lions?

It seems crazy on the surface, as the Lions went 3-13-1 last season. However, Detroit backers might be anticipating some positive regression. While the Lions definitely weren’t a good team, they were pretty unlucky. Detroit lost seven games by single digits last year, and bettors might be banking on better results in close games.

Detroit made many modest signings during free agency to bolster their roster. They also brought in two potential studs via the draft, Aidan Hutchinson and Jameson Williams. However, this roster still has plenty of holes, especially in the secondary, and is quarterbacked by Jared Goff.

Agree or disagree with the public? The Lions were scrappy in Campbell’s first season as they established an identity of playing with maximum effort with minimal talent. The roster still isn’t good, and the quarterback certainly isn’t great. But Detroit plays hard and will benefit from the NFC North taking a step back this season. I understand the Lions love but wouldn’t endorse a wager on them this year.

2. New York Jets over 6 wins 

Here’s another shocker, bettors are buying big on the Jets! When I saw this much love for Gang Green, I immediately saw it as the market trying to identify this year’s version of the Cincinnati Bengals. While I don’t think the comparisons are that straightforward, I understand why bettors believe the Jets could be the next team to defy the odds.

New York had a busy and productive offseason. They made shrewd free agent signings, bolstering the offensive line by adding guard Laken Tomlinson, cornerback D.J. Reed, and safety Jordan Whitehead to aid last year’s horrendous secondary. They also had what’s widely regarded as a great draft, adding cornerback Ahmad Gardner, receiver Garrett Wilson, edge rusher Jermaine Johnson, and tailback Breece Hall.

The Jets made it their mission to surround second-year quarterback Zach Wilson with talent. Throw in returnees Corey Davis, Elijah Moore, Braxton Berrios, and the Jets could have a good group of weapons. If Mekhi Becton can moderate his weight and get back to form, then New York’s offensive line could improve drastically.

On paper, the Jets are a better team than they were when the 2021 season ended. But their success in 2022 hinges upon Wilson’s development.

Agree or disagree with the public? I understand the public’s sentiment, but the Jets might be a year away from exceeding expectations. This is still a young roster with a young coaching staff led by an inexperienced quarterback with question marks. Plus, the front half of the schedule is brutal. New York could close strong in the second half, but it might not be enough to get to seven victories.

1. Chicago Bears under 6.5 wins 

This total is one I actually took early in the offseason after Chicago tore down its roster. Clearly, I have plenty of people who think similarly.

Chicago’s new regime, headed by GM Ryan Poles and coach Matt Eberflus did the right thing in demolishing the roster to undo the damage done by the past regime.

The problem is Chicago left Justin Fields with very little to work with. Darnell Mooney is a starting point, and Cole Kmet still has untapped potential. But the rest of the depth chart features castoffs like Byron Pringle, Equanimeous St. Brown, Dante Pettis, and Tajae Sharpe. Awful. Plus, the offensive line is still in shambles.

Defensively, it doesn’t get much better. Chicago parted with veterans Khalil Mack and Akiem Hicks, and they could still deal Robert Quinn before the season starts. The front seven is barren with talent, aside from linebacker Roquan Smith. Chicago has some intriguing pieces in the secondary in Jaylon Johnson and rookies Kyler Gordon and Jaquan Brisker. But it could take some time for that unit to develop into something formidable.

Agree or disagree with the public? I won’t say the Bears are outright tanking. But the new regime prioritized cleaning up its cap situation and improving its assets for the future. While the schedule isn’t overly difficult, Chicago could be one of the league’s worst teams in 2022.

Matthew Freedman’s Best Bets After the 2022 NFL Draft >>

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Author: Micheal May