Week 1 of the 2022 NFL season has mercifully arrived and Swinger begins his season-long voyage through the treacherous waters of the year’s most popular betting season. Each week Swinger will reveal his top three NFL picks and will keep a running and transparent record for all to see.
- Swinger’s 2021 NFL Record: 30-25 ATS (+7.95 units using a 1-to-5-unit system)
Welcome Back, Ladies and Gents!
After seven months in pigskin hibernation, I can’t wait to crawl out from under and get back at it. Entering last season, we were flying high after a 2020 campaign that saw us go an astounding 38-22-2 ATS (+38.95 units) or 63.3%!
However, last year we came back to earth but still ended with a profit (+7.85 units), as we always seem to do here at Swinger’s Picks, and went 30-25 or 54.5%. Using our 1-to-5-unit rating system, where a 5-unit pick is used about as often as a politician tells the truth, we beat the top-rated sportsbooks and came out on the other side with a few bucks in our pockets.
After researching the Week 1 NFL odds, I am treading lightly because preseason isn’t much more than a glorified audition for the second-stringers and roster clingers, giving us little insight into what teams will be when the games go for real. So, with that, let’s dive in and start the season off by fattening our bankroll!
Baltimore Ravens vs. New York Jets
Sunday, September 11, 2022 – 01:00 PM EDT at MetLife Stadium
This line has moved from Baltimore -5 to -7 as of this Tuesday afternoon writing which isn’t surprising in the least. The Great Unwashed Masses are already betting the road chalk hand-over-fist and this line could likely move beyond the magic 7 by the time this game kicks off. You’d be a sucker to follow the sheeple into the great abyss, right?
Well, call me Joe Q. Public because I’m on the Ravens like white on rice and I make no apologies. The Jets will likely go to battle with Joe Flacco chucking, although Zach Wilson is still a possibility.
Either way, the Ravens' secondary should stick to the Jets’ receivers like duck sauce on a fat guy’s chin. Flacco isn’t as mobile as he was back in the late 80s while Zach Wilson’s ailing knee will prevent him from scrambling effectively enough to elude the oncoming freight train that is the Ravens’ pass rush.
Ravens vs. Jets: Best Bet and Prediction
These teams haven’t met since 2019 when the Ravens doubled up the Jets, 42-21, and covered as 17-point favorites.
But if you’re a trend kinda guy or gal, know that Baltimore has won and covered in four of their last five meetings with the Jets while Jim Harbaugh is 10-4 ATS in Week 1 during his tenure with Baltimore.
Predicted Score: Ravens 31 - Jets 17
New Orleans Saints vs. Atlanta Falcons
Sunday, September 11, 2022 - 01:00 PM EDT at Mercedes-Benz Stadium
I used to be a Jameis Winston critic, all of that talent with zero discipline. For every surgical strike he’d throw, there was a head-scratching interception, and that’s a big reason why the Bucs failed to re-sign him. Perhaps the opportunity to sign Tom Brady had a bit of a hand in that decision as well. Ya think?!
But we all mature, some of us more than others, and from what I saw last season Jameis Winston has figured out that turnovers are taboo in the NFL as evidenced by his 14 touchdown passes to only 3 interceptions over his seven games.
He looked sharp in his limited time in the preseason and he’s playing a defense on Sunday that has been specifically crafted to make their fans grimace, much like a bottle of Mad Dog 20/20.
Saints vs. Falcons: Best Bet and Prediction
I know, I’m following the Great Unwashed but the public is not always wrong and if someone can explain how Marcus Mariota is going to scramble his way to covering the spread in this one then consider me a cornfield – I’m all ears.
Predicted Score: Saints 26 - Falcons 14
New York Giants vs. Tennessee Titans
Sunday, September 11, 2022 - 04:25 PM EDT at Nissan Stadium
The Titans will take a few steps back this season and it will be on display in the first week of the season against a team that should take a few steps forward.
Tennessee is not equipped with an offense that scores in buckets but now they will be without their best pass-catching weapon, AJ Brown, having dealt him to the Eagles for Philadelphia’s first-round pick which became Arkansas’s Treylon Burks.
If you have seen Burks in the preseason then this financially cheaper version of AJ Brown could turn out to be a very costly move for the Titans. Let’s also note that the veteran presence of a former superstar in Julio Jones is no longer with the club and is replaced by Robert Woods, coming off of a major ACL tear. Then again, is there any other kind of ACL tear?
Giants vs. Titans: Best Bet and Prediction
The Giants have made several upgrades and that includes the offensive line which should give Daniel Jones more time in the pocket and bigger lanes for Saquon Barkley (remember him?) to blow through.
The line on this game is far too generous and I look for Big Blue to keep this one within the margins.
Predicted Score: Titans 23 - Giants 20
The Woodman’s Corner
- Woodman’s 2021 NFL Record: 13-9, +3.23 units
For those new to this column, the Woodman is not my alter ego but rather a long-in-the-tooth handicapper with a penchant for underdogs – and canines in general – who has a historical track record for making money.
Last year, he still eked out a profit even though it was not one of his finest performances. This season he vows to do better and advises a wager on the Patriots as they invade South Beach as a 3-point road hound.
Woodman's Pick: Patriots +3 (-108) at Heritage Sports
*The line and/or odds on picks in this article might have moved since the content was commissioned. For updated line movements, visit BMR’s free betting odds product.