The 2022 NFL season is set to kick off on Thursday, September 8, when the defending Super Bowl champion Los Angeles Rams host the Buffalo Bills on NBC. The Rams are once again in the thick of the race as far as preseason favorites go, but the Bills have opened as the prohibitive chalk to hoist the Lombardi Trophy next February.
The rest of the Week 1 slate gets underway Sunday, September 11, and Monday, September 12, highlighted by Chiefs-Cardinals, Raiders-Chargers, and Buccaneers-Cowboys matchups. What do all of those games have in common? They each feature a quarterback listed near the top of the NFL MVP betting odds sheets.
Let’s break down those odds, divided into three categories: the favorites, 2nd-3rd tier guys, and the longshots.Jump to
As noted, this has become a quarterback award. The last non-QB to win was Adrian Peterson in 2012, and since 2000, there have been four instances, all of whom were running backs. Josh Allen (+700) is the betting favorite heading in 2022, which makes sense considering the Bills are the heavy chalk to win the Super Bowl.
Tom Brady’s unretirement slots him in as the second favorite (+800), with Patrick Mahomes (+900) as the only other player to boast single-digit odds. Each of them has lost a key offensive weapon this offseason, as Brady (a three-time MVP) will be without Rob Gronkowski (retired again) while the Chiefs traded away Tyreek Hill.
Other favorites include reigning back-to-back MVP Aaron Rodgers (+1000; four-time winner in all), rising young stars in Justin Herbert (+1000) and Joe Burrow (+1200), and Super Bowl MVP Matthew Stafford (+1500).
The Next Tier
Kyler Murray (+2000) leads the next group, and although there was some offseason contention in Arizona along with a suspension handed down to DeAndre Hopkins, the Cardinals traded for Marquise Brown, a close friend and former college roommate of Murray’s.
Derek Carr (+2800) also got a boost in the form of a former college teammate in his own right, as Davante Adams gives Carr the best threat he’s ever played with since entering the NFL. Derrick Henry and Jonathan Taylor (+5000) are the first running backs on the board, while Cooper Kupp (+6000) had an incredible 2021, only to finish third in the voting.
Longshots Worth a Look
Kupp and Henry both put up transcendent seasons the last two years and only walked away with NFL Offensive Player of the Year honors. That should show you it’s a quarterback race, so that’s where to look if you’re thinking of throwing a few bucks on someone with long odds.
By that logic, a couple of options worth considering include Trey Lance and Tua Tagovailoa (+5000), Trevor Lawrence (+8000), and Ryan Tannehill (+10000).
Yes, we’re holding our nose too, but Tannehill helped lead the Titans to the AFC’s top seed last year and is under pressure to perform after the team drafted Malik Willis this spring.
Lance steps in for Jimmy G after the 49ers went all the way to the NFC Championship Game, while the Jags and Dolphins upgraded on offense to give their young quarterbacks as much support as possible.