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Top 2022 NFL Division Longshots

By Hank Blaine

NFL handicappers can make money backing favorites to win NFL divisions, but the risk doesn’t always equal the reward, which is why it makes sense to consider which longshots can win their respective divisions. To find true longshots we should stick to rule. No underdog qualifies as a longshot unless they offer odds of +300 or higher. See below for the team in each division that can beat the favorite at much better odds.

8 Live Longshots to Win their NFL Division in 2022

READ MORE: Early 2022 NFL Division Odds and Picks

AFC East – Miami Dolphins

  • 2022 NFL Divisional Odds: +400

When NFL odds first posted in late May, the New England Patriots were second choice behind the Buffalo Bills to win the AFC East. Miami is now second choice. The Dolphins almost made the playoffs last season. Miami has gotten much better on offense, hired a head coach Mike McDaniel, who is a fantastic play caller, and still have a good defense.

AFC North – Pittsburgh Steelers

  • 2022 NFL Divisional Odds: +850

Cleveland, Cincinnati, and Baltimore offer odds of +210 or lower. The Steelers are the lone play that qualifies under our +300 rule. Can Pittsburgh win the AFC North? The Steelers made Minkah Fitzpatrick the highest paid safety in history. Teams looking to rebuild don’t pay defensive players that kind of money.

If first round draft pick quarterback Kenny Pickett hits the ground running, the Steelers will challenge their rivals for the North title. +850 odds are more than fair.

AFC South – Jacksonville Jaguars

  • 2022 NFL Divisional Odds: +600

Indianapolis and Tennessee aren’t much better than the Jaguars. Jacksonville improved their offense and defense and hired a Super Bowl winning coach in Doug Pederson. All Trevor Lawrence must do is listen to Pederson to improve off his rookie season. Jacksonville can win the South because they got much better while their rivals didn’t improve enough.

AFC West – Las Vegas Raiders

  • 2022 NFL Divisional Odds: +700

The AFC West is the deepest division in football. So why are the Raiders, who hired Josh McDaniels, one of the most creative play callers in the league, and traded for the best wide receiver in the NFL in Davante Adams at 7-to-1 odds? Las Vegas has a good defense and will have one of the best offenses in the NFL. Vegas can beat Kansas City, Los Angeles, and Denver and win the West.

NFC East – Washington Commanders

  • 2022 NFL Divisional Odds: +500

Carson Wentz is a major upgrade at quarterback. Wentz can throw to a decent group of wide receivers led by burgeoning star Terry McLaurin. Rookie running back Brian Robinson Jr. and Antonio Gibson will take pressure off Wentz. The defense should be one of the best in the conference.

NFC North – Detroit Lions

  • 2022 NFL Divisional Odds: +1200

The Lions have a shot to be better than Chicago. No team is better than the Packers while Minnesota offers +200 odds, missing the +300 cut off. Detroit drafted a difference maker in right defensive end Aidan Hutchinson. If corner Jeff Okudah can become the lock down corner the Lions envision, the defense will be much better than it was in 2021.

The offense should be better as well if rookie wide receiver Jameson Williams is one-hundred percent healthy. Jared Goff is a good enough quarterback to pilot the Lions and Williams is one of the best receivers from this April’s draft.

NFC South – New Orleans Saints
  • 2022 NFL Divisional Odds: +325

The Saints should field one of the top five defenses in the NFL. The offense will be much better now that New Orleans will surround Jameis Winston with wide receivers like Jarvis Landry and rookie Chris Olave.

Also, top wide out Michael Thomas is returning from his injury. Almost as important? Carolina and Atlanta shouldn’t come close to winning the division and Tampa is an underlay.

NFC West – Seattle Seahawks

  • 2022 NFL Divisional Odds: +1200

San Francisco doesn’t qualify under the +300 rule. The Arizona Cardinals do, but the Cards aren’t good enough to beat the Rams or the 49ers. So when it comes to picking a longshot to win the NFC West, the only choice is Seattle. On paper, it doesn’t look like Seattle has any shot. But the defense should be decent. Also, coach Pete Carroll wants to run the football.

So Carroll will hand the ball off to Rashaad Penny, Chris Carson, and Kenneth Walker III fifty times a game, wear down defenses, and steal wins this season. Maybe, Seattle steal enough wins.

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*All stated odds are subject to change without prior notice.