It has been the season of unders through the first three weeks of the 2022-23 NFL campaign, as point totals have finished under at an impressive rate. So does that mean it is time to start betting overs or should we follow the theme of unders instead?
Before I get into why these total picks stood out, remember to place your bets at Caesars Sportsbook this week. Sign up with our friends today to take advantage of their new-user offer before placing that first bet.
Baltimore Ravens vs. Buffalo Bills
It is a travesty that a showdown between Lamar Jackson and Josh Allen won’t take place during primetime. A Sunday afternoon slot on CBS doesn’t do this game justice, especially since I’ll be taking the over for the highest total on the slate at 51.5.
As I mentioned earlier in the week, Jackson would be the MVP frontrunner through three weeks. He is putting the team on his back, leading the league in passing touchdowns (10), total touchdowns (12) and passer rating (119) so far this season. He not only leads the league with an average of 9.3 yards per carry, but he is also third with an average of 8.5 yards per attempt.
Jackson’s video-game numbers have been necessary, because the Ravens are still learning a new scheme on the defensive end. They have given up 34 plays over 10 yards, which ranks fourth in the league. That doesn’t bode well against the Bills, who are a big play waiting to happen and have the ability to run up the score against anyone.
Pick: Over 51.5
Detroit Lions vs. Seattle Seahawks
If it isn’t broken, don’t fix it.
The Lions might be 1-2, but they have covered the spread in all three games to start the season and the over has cashed in all three outings as well. The market seems to be fading the former, with Lions now laying 4.5 points after opening as a 6-point favorite. But I’m more interested in continuing to cash tickets on the latter trend.
This week’s total of 48 is a few points lower than last week’s Lions-Vikings matchup, which doesn’t make much sense considering the Seahawks rank 30th in defensive DVOA (via Football Outsiders) through three weeks. The Lions are second in the league in scoring with an average of 31.7 points per game, and should be able to score more than enough points on their end to help get us to the over for a fourth week in a row.
Pick: Over 48
Kansas City Chiefs at Tampa Bay Buccaneers
As of this writing, this Sunday Night Football matchup is still slated to take place in Florida even though Hurricane Ian is storming through. My under pick here is less about mother nature, however, and more about how these two teams are playing right now.
The Chiefs failed to get much going offensively in a loss to the Colts last week. While that was a game they probably should have won, it was concerning given Patrick Mahomes’ recent history against a Gus Bradley defense. Now he faces a Bucs defense that ranks No. 1 in defensive DVOA, which probably helps explain the significance of a low total.
Yet I think this total is more to do with what the Buccaneers are doing (or lack thereof) on the offensive end. The Bucs have only recorded three offensive touchdowns all year and have yet to score more than 20 points in a game. I’m going to consider a team total play in this one, but I like the overall under for a lot of the same reasons.
Pick: Under 45