2022 NFL preview: Atlanta Falcons futures, Super Bowl odds, predictions and best bets
The Matt Ryan era is finally over for the Atlanta Falcons. It looked like it might continue for at least one more season, but then they got involved in the Deshaun Watson sweepstakes. That was the end of the road for Ryan, who was quickly shipped off to what is a much better situation with the Indianapolis Colts. The Falcons are left to rebuild (they would have been rebuilding even with Ryan) with veteran QB Marcus Mariota, although rookie Desmond Ridder could be in the mix for some playing time.
How long will the rebuilding process take in Atlanta? Well, it’s certainly not expected to turn around for this franchise in 2022. The Falcons are projected to be one of the worst teams in the league, but let’s take a look and see if they can prove their myriad of doubters wrong.
Atlanta Falcons breakdown
2021 record: 7-10
2021 ATS record: 6-10-1
2021 O/U record: 7-10
Key players in: Marcus Mariota (QB), Casey Hayward (CB), Nick Kwiatkoski (LB)
Key players out: Matt Ryan (QB), Dante Fowler (LB), Hayden Hurst (TE), Mike Davis (RB)
2022 NFL Draft class: Drake London (WR), Arnold Ebeketie (DE), Troy Anderson (LB), Desmond Ridder (QB), DeAngelo Malone (LB), Tyler Allgeier (RB), Justin Shaffer (G), John FitzPatrick (TE)
Atlanta Falcons 2022 NFL season odds
Odds provided by DraftKings Sportsbook
Atlanta Falcons Super Bowl odds
The Falcons are +20000 to win Super Bowl LVII, which has them only ahead of the Houston Texans (+25000).
Atlanta Falcons NFC Championship odds
Atlanta is +10000 to capture the NFC title, which is the longest odds of any team. The Seattle Seahawks are second-to-last at +8000.
Atlanta Falcons NFC South odds
At +3500, the Falcons are the absolute longshot in the NFC South. The Bucs are -250 favorites.
Atlanta Falcons win total odds
The Falcons’ win quota is 5 games. Under 5 is a considerable -150 favorite, while the over comes with +125 odds. If you are willing to risk a bet on the Falcons to make the playoffs, that would pay out at bloated +800 odds.
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Atlanta Falcons Schedule 2022
vs New Orleans Saints, September 11
at Los Angeles Rams, September 18
at Seattle Seahawks, September 25
vs Cleveland Browns, October 2
at Tampa Bay Buccaneers, October 9
vs San Francisco 49ers, October 16
at Cincinnati Bengals, October 23
vs Carolina Panthers, October 30
vs Los Angeles Chargers, November 6
at Carolina Panthers, November 10
vs Chicago Bears, November 20
at Washington Commanders, November 27
vs Pittsburgh Steelers, December 4
at New Orleans, December 18
at Baltimore Ravens, December 24
vs Arizona Cardinals, January 1
vs Tampa Bay Buccaneers, January 8
We’ll have NFL picks for EVERY matchup of the 2022 season
Atlanta Falcons 2021 season recap
Although a 7-10 record is nothing to write home about, the Falcons actually overachieved. They were never more than two games under .500 until the regular season ended with a Week 18 loss to New Orleans. Heading into Week 17 they were still in distant playoff contention. That is not terrible for a team that had a bad roster to begin with and then lost Calvin Ridley for the last 12 games because of personal reasons.
Cordarrelle Patterson stepped up in a major way both running the ball and catching it, and tight end Kyle Pitts was as good as advertised. So there were still plenty of weapons at Ryan’s disposal, but Atlanta could not overcome futility in the trenches. The offensive line was mediocre at best and this team finished dead last in sacks by a country mile. All things considered, it’s a miracle the Falcons won seven games.
Read our Super Bowl 57 predictions and best bets, including a +4500 longshot
Atlanta Falcons 2022 NFL season predictions
According to the odds, this could be one of the two worst clubs in football. Ridley is suspended for the entire season, so Atlanta felt the need to use its first-round draft pick on a receiver (Drake London out of USC) even though there were holes pretty much everywhere on the field except at tight end. Mike Davis is out at running back and the Dante Fowler experiment failed without improving the pass rush one bit.
The Falcons did little outside of the draft to address those pass-rushing woes, so the defense figures to struggle again even though A.J. Terrell is an elite cornerback. There just isn’t anything to suggest that Atlanta will contend, which means head coach Arthur Smith could see what he has at QB with Ridder sooner rather than later.
Best bet: Atlanta Falcons Over 5 wins (+125)
When you can get the over on a minuscule number well into plus money, it’s a chance that should be taken. This team by no means is good on paper, but it’s probably not as bad as the odds suggest. An offensive core of Mariota, Patterson, Pitts and London isn’t the worst around and it looks like the Falcons did some nice things defensively in the draft. They get to play the Panthers and Saints twice each, visit the Seahawks and face the Browns before Deshaun Watson returns. One of their games against the Bucs isn’t until Week 18, when Tampa Bay may have already clinched their playoff placement and could be resting guys.
Atlanta Falcons season record predictions
I think the above bet will likely be pushed, but the over has just as good of a chance at cashing as the under and you can get it at +125. Give me 5-12, but don’t be surprised if the Falcons get to 6-11.
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