NFL Week 3 Picks: Best Bets, Underdog Moneyline, and Teaser of the Week
It’s been a fantastic (and profitable) start to the 2022-23 NFL season, and that might be an understatement. In Week 1, I went 6-0 and nailed the New York Giants at +198 to upset the Tennessee Titans. I followed that up with a 5-1 Week 2 highlighted by a +180 winner on the Arizona Cardinals over the Las Vegas Raiders.
If you bet $100 on all of my picks so far, you’d be up nearly $1,200 in two weeks. Not too shabby!
Now, sports betting is a fickle game. I can’t expect to cash 91% of my bets for the entire season. Hell, I’d be thrilled with 60%. Odds are this hot streak cools down sooner than later, but let’s try to put that off for at least one more week.
Best bets for Week 3, let’s go!
NFL Week 3 best bets
2022 Best Bets Record: 9-1 (+9.68 units)
Favorite Favorite: Los Angeles Rams -3.5 at Arizona Cardinals
We cashed in on the Cardinals last week as +180 underdogs, but we really didn’t deserve it. Arizona was outplayed for most of the game before exploding for a 16-0 fourth quarter and returning a Hunter Renfrow fumble for a touchdown in overtime to steal the victory.
I don’t see that magic carrying over to Week 3.
Arizona’s biggest weaknesses just happen to be LA’s biggest strengths. The Cardinals have struggled to protect Kyler Murray early in the season. This brutal offensive line has allowed the most QB hurries (22) in the NFL through two weeks, which doesn’t bode well with Aaron Donald and Leonard Floyd coming to town. Arizona has also allowed the second-most passing yards in the league through two weeks. Cooper Kupp is going to have a field day against this secondary.
Oh, and Sean McVay owns Kliff Kingbury. McVay is 6-1 straight up and 5-1-1 against the spread versus Kingbury in seven matchups, and the Rams have outscored the Cardinals by more than 14 points per game over that span.
Favorite Underdog: New England Patriots +3 vs. Baltimore Ravens
I’m surprised this number is still +3, so I’d advise getting this in early before it drops on Sunday morning. The Ravens are dealing with numerous injuries in the secondary, as four cornerbacks (including Marcus Peters and Marlon Humphrey) are listed as questionable to suit up. Star tackle Ronnie Stanley is also doubtful, and J.K. Dobbins may not be ready to return just yet.
I expect Mac Jones and this Patriots offense to have their best game of the season against this battered secondary, and Bill Belichick will have a game plan to slow down Lamar Jackson in the run game. Give me the points, but I wouldn’t be surprised if New England wins outright.
Favorite Over: New York Jets vs. Cincinnati Bengals over 44.5
Cincinnati’s offense has looked uncharacteristically sluggish to start the season. The Bengals have scored just 37 points through two games while averaging only 4.3 yards per play. That’s the second-worst mark in the league through two weeks.
But I think this slow start is a bit of a fluke. The Bengals completely rebuilt their offensive line in the offseason, and the new group understandably struggled against T.J. Watt and Micah Parsons. The Jets don’t have any pass-rushers even close to that level of talent, so I think Cincy’s offensive line will give Joe Burrow plenty of time to sit in the pocket and air it out to his “horses” on the outside.
I’m expecting this to be a breakout offensive game for the reigning AFC champs, and I think the Jets can get to 20 points considering Mitch Trubisky and Cooper Rush did the same against this Bengals defense.
Favorite Under: Denver Broncos vs. San Francisco 49ers under 43.5
I targeted the 49ers for my under last week, and I’m going back to the well again in Week 3.
San Francisco wants to run the ball and control the clock, but the team is without two of its top three RBs in Elijah Mitchell and Tyrion Davis-Price. The 49ers will still keep the ball on the ground Sunday night, but they won’t be effective against a strong Broncos front.
On the other side, Denver’s offense hasn’t clicked yet with Russell Wilson in charge. The Broncos have reached the red zone six times in two games, and they didn’t score a single touchdown in any of those trips. New head coach Nathaniel Hackett has also been ultra-conservative to start his tenure, and I don’t see that changing overnight.
These teams both rank inside the top five in defensive DVOA through two weeks, and I don’t trust either offense to create explosive plays. Take the under.
Favorite Underdog ML: Carolina Panthers +126 vs. New Orleans Saints
It’s desperation time for Matt Rhule and the Panthers. Rhule will be firmly on the hot seat if he starts the season 0-3, so he must pull out all the stops to leave Sunday with a victory.
Carolina isn’t a bad team by any stretch. The Panthers lost their first two games by a combined five points, and they could realistically be 2-0 if a few bounces went their way.
Meanwhile, Jameis Winston and Alvin Kamara are both listed as questionable for the game. Even if Winston plays, he looked terrible last week with his three interceptions, which is understandable considering he’s playing through four fractures in his back.
Give me Carolina.
Teaser of the Week
2022 Teaser of the Week Record: 2-0 (+2 units)
Cincinnati Bengals pk/Carolina Panthers +8.5
I’ve already explained why I like the Bengals offense to rebound in Week 3, and I think they take care of business against the Jets with an 0-3 start looming.
As for the Panthers, I like them to win the game outright. Either way, I’m expecting this to be a close game in the end, so pushing Carolina through +3 and +7 to get to +8.5 makes a ton of sense here.
Let’s stay hot!
All betting odds courtesy of FanDuel as of 9/24.
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