Welcome to the first picks post of 2022. It’s a brand new year with the same old principles: be as selective as possible and bet with conviction. And here’s hoping that Mac Jones finishes strong over the last two weeks to cash our 10-to-1 Offensive Rookie of the Year ticket.
If you’re new around these parts, this is not a place where you’ll find a million betting picks. I isolate the ones I really, really like and roll with those. Nothing more, nothing less. Don’t expect to see any five-team parlays or “locks” on primetime games, either.
Let’s go to work.
Kansas City Chiefs (-3.5, O/U 51) at Cincinnati Bengals
The Joe Burrow lovefest is getting ridiculous. Burrow gashed the Ravens through the air for 525 yards — the Bengals’ single-game passing record — and somebody just compared him to a young Tom Brady. Let’s totally ignore that Cincy carved up a Baltimore secondary that was down four starters. That seems important. Kansas City is the hottest team in football right now with eight straight wins and six straight covers. I love the Chiefs’ ability to pressure Burrow in the pocket and force him into a crucial mistake or two. This point spread should be -5 or -5.5 and I’ll continue to buy low on KC.
Los Angeles Rams (-6.5, O/U 46.5) at Baltimore Ravens
I just have to bet the Ravens in this spot. Everybody and their mother is betting the Rams, who opened as a 3-point favorite and are now laying almost a touchdown in this cross-country spot. The betting line tells that you that Lamar Jackson likely isn’t playing, but I feel like the over adjustment is too big. Baltimore is still fighting for a postseason berth and the aforementioned secondary has two starters back this week. And I’ll always trust John Harbaugh in January much more than Matthew Stafford. Take the points.
Miami Dolphins at Tennessee Titans (-3, O/U 41)
The Dolphins are almost too sexy at this point. That’s what happens when a team wins seven straight football games and catapults itself into the last Wild Card spot with two weeks to go. I’m still super skeptical of the Fish and don’t exactly think we should be dancing in the streets for victories over the Texans, Jets, Panthers, Giants, Jets (again) and Ian Book-led Saints. Tennessee’s offense is a little banged up without Derrick Henry and Julio Jones, but I’ll happily short Tua Tagovailoa and Co. at this number.
RECORD: (86-77, +15.0)