How about those New York Jets? They made our Week 2 Upset Warning picks profitable with one of the more ridiculous comebacks in recent memory, beating the Cleveland Browns 31-30 and cashing in as +220 moneyline dogs at the close.
Then again, we had the Washington Commanders all lined up as small underdogs versus the Detroit Lions, but they flipped to favorite status before we went to press. Sometimes the best NFL bets you make are the ones you don’t; Detroit beat the Commies 36-27.
We’re pretty sure at least two of the three puppies we have in our Week 3 moneyline NFL picks will stay that way. The third probably will, too, but don’t be too surprised if you only see two picks down below.
Houston Texans vs. Chicago Bears
Sunday, September 25, 2022 – 01:00 PM EDT at Soldier Field
The team in question is Houston, who also happens to be one of our three best bets for Week 3. We hope you were one of the many who bought in early because the Texans have already moved down from +146 to +136 at SBK since we made yesterday’s football picks.
Why the Texans?
They’re still the best dogs on the NFL odds at that price. And we’d probably stick with them all the way down to around +125, where the majority of our recommended online sportsbooks have them at press time.
This does, however, make it more likely we’d recommend avoiding the moneyline and taking Houston as 2.5-point road dogs on the spread (Wizards of Odds says +2.5 is the “fair” equivalent of +143). But that doesn’t stop the Texans from being this week’s best underdog pick – at least at these odds.
NFL Pick: Texans (+136) at SBK
Jacksonville Jaguars vs. Los Angeles Chargers
Sunday, September 25, 2022 – 04:05 PM EDT at SoFi Stadium
We’re giving the Jaguars another chance after they spoiled what would have been a perfect Week 1 for our NFL underdog picks by losing to Washington. They’re just too tasty to pass up as +265 dogs at SugarHouse.
Why the Jaguars?
Jacksonville may be 1-1 SU and ATS, but that’s good enough for first place in the AFC South. More importantly for our purposes, the Jags are No. 2 on the DVOA charts at Football Outsiders. That’s Defense-adjusted Value Above Average, in case you’re not hip yet to these newfangled analytics.
The Chargers (1-1 SU, 2-0 ATS) have had their moments with Justin Herbert at the controls. He’s No. 6 in passing DVOA among qualifying quarterbacks – one spot behind Jacksonville QB Trevor Lawrence. We’re as surprised as you are.
Jacksonville’s No. 3-ranked defense also beats L.A. at No. 7 overall. To be fair, Herbert and the Chargers have faced much stiffer competition than Lawrence and the Jags. But we’ll recommend Jacksonville at this price. It isn’t rocket surgery.
NFL Pick: Jaguars (+265) at SugarHouse
Buffalo Bills vs. Miami Dolphins
Sunday, September 25, 2022 – 01:00 PM EDT at Hard Rock Stadium
Our last pick is so tasty, we just have to dip back into this week’s overall best bets. The Dolphins (2-0 SU and ATS) have moved from +160 to +225 since they opened at SBK.
That puts them in line with their status as 5.5-point home dogs – you can bet either the spread or the ML with roughly the same confidence, and the same bet size.
Why the Dolphins?
This is a “fade the public” play, although the circumstances aren’t quite ideal. The Bills (2-0 SU and ATS) are No. 1 on the DVOA charts, and deservedly so – but the Dolphins are a respectable No. 14, with the league’s No. 2-ranked offense. That’s the good part.
The bad part is everything else. Miami ranks No. 26 on defense and No. 31 on special teams, the two facets of the game that casual bettors tend to overlook. The Bills rank No. 7 on offense, No. 1 on defense, and No. 2 on special teams. They’re going to win the Super Bowl!
Before they do, we’re going to suggest a small wager on Miami. Offense is still the most important of the three facets, and the quarterback is still the most important player on the field. Fins QB Tua Tagovailoa looks like he can be that guy now; he’s still one step behind Bills QB Josh Allen, but only a small step.
It’s also a small sample size of two games we’re working with, data-wise. Watch the highlights, though: You can see Tua is growing into his role. He might be the league MVP before you know it. Bet on him while he’s healthy.
NFL Pick: Dolphins (+225) at SBK