NFL Playoff Predictions: Best bets to make the playoffs in 2022

Baltimore Ravens quarterback Lamar Jackson (8) runs with the ball as Indianapolis Colts middle linebacker Bobby Okereke (58) defends during the third quarter at M&T Bank Stadium
Photo of Caleb Wilfinger

Caleb Wilfinger

NFL · 3 weeks ago

Show Bio

Deputy Editor for Pickswise. Lover of all US sports and Southampton FC.

The 2022 NFL season is finally on the horizon. The marathon battle for the Lombardi Trophy begins on September 8 with a matchup between the Buffalo Bills and Los Angeles Rams. As well as projecting which teams are going to regress this fall, we can also make our predictions for which teams will improve.

With most of the offseason moves in the rearview mirror, it’s time to discuss a few teams that could make the playoffs in 2022. Looking at the odds, there were a few teams that looked a bit undervalued by the market. Let’s take a look at the best bets to target before the season starts.

Check out our picks to win Super Bowl 57, including a +4500 longshot

Baltimore Ravens to make the playoffs (-150)

Odds available at DraftKings Sportsbook at time of publishing. 

This line has been steadily ticking up in recent weeks, and it’s easy to understand why. To put it simply, the oddsmakers are disrespecting the Ravens at this price. Historically, this is a winning organization with talent and good coaching across the board, and they’re a good bet to make the playoffs every year. One injury-plagued season doesn’t change that. Coming off a missed playoff appearance, Lamar Jackson and the Ravens are clearly undervalued heading into this campaign. Baltimore upgraded its offensive line and key positions on defense, meaning that it’ll be able to control games as they did in 2019 and 2020.

Despite not playing with a full complement of NFL personnel, Baltimore was still above average in EPA per play, offensive success rate and red zone efficiency in 2021. Now with a healthy offensive line and a stable of running backs to compliment Jackson, the Ravens should function like a well-oiled machine this fall. As long as the main contributors stay healthy, backing Baltimore to make the playoffs is a safe bet.

Don’t miss our NFL MVP best bets for the 2022 season

Minnesota Vikings to make the playoffs (-110)

Odds available at DraftKings Sportsbook at time of publishing. 

The NFC is pretty wide open this season, and no team may benefit from that more than Minnesota. In typical Vikings fashion, they lost a number of close games in 2021 en route to missing the playoffs. However, this is a talented bunch and the exit of Mike Zimmer may prove to be exactly what Minnesota needed. The Vikings offense still has blue-chip talent in Dalvin Cook and Justin Jefferson, and Kirk Cousins has proven himself to be a reliable regular-season quarterback. In fact, Cousins ranked top 10 in EPA per pass in a clean pocket and when blitzed in 2021.

Minnesota dealt with injuries on defense a season ago, but that unit should be improved if healthy this fall. Additionally, the Vikings’ schedule is pretty favorable. For starters, they get non-divisional games against the Dolphins, Commanders, Jets and Giants. Minnesota also hosts the Patriots, Colts and Cardinals, which are all winnable games. As long as Cook and Jefferson stay healthy, the Vikings should be in the mix for a wild card spot down the stretch.

Las Vegas Raiders to make the playoffs (+170)

Odds available at FanDuel Sportsbook at time of publishing. 

In a loaded AFC West, the Raiders are projected to be the odd team out of the AFC playoff picture. However, I don’t quite understand why. Las Vegas made the playoffs on the backs of a great season from Derek Carr a year ago, and all the Raiders did was get better this offseason. Adding Davante Adams should immediately boost their already solid receiving corps and make life difficult for opposing defenses. Darren Waller should be fully healthy and Adams’ addition should take the pressure off Waller and Hunter Renfrow.

There’s a lot to like about the Raiders offense, and Las Vegas should have another solid pass rush led by Maxx Crosby. But what I like most about backing the Raiders is their schedule. While the schedule is difficult on paper, as it will be for all AFC West teams, Las Vegas still closes with 4 of its last 6 games at home. The Raiders also get to host the Colts, 49ers, Patriots and Cardinals, which accounts for nearly all of their toughest non-divisional games. At a plus-money price, I think you’re getting much better value on the Raiders to make the playoffs than a team like Denver.

Could this +7500 bet on Defensive Player of the Year have value?

Pickswise is the home of free expert NFL Picks and NFL Odds. Be sure to check out all of our season previews and NFL Futures Bets leading up to the 2022 NFL season.

Virginia Bonuses

See All
PointsBet

$500

Get 5x $100 Risk-Free Bets!

Sign up for a new PointsBet account

Make a bet of up to $100 and receive a refund if you lose

Get this offer once a day for the first 5 days you sign up

Must be 21+. Full terms are available at PointsBet.

BetMGM

$200

Get $200 in Free Bets & a PICKSWISE HAT!

Sign up for a new account with BetMGM, and make a deposit of $10+.

Place a $10 moneyline wager on any team

Win $200 in free bets and a FREE Pickswise hat

21+ and new players only. Full terms available at BetMGM Sportsbook.

FanDuel Sportsbook

$250

Bet One, Get One: FanDuel will match your first bet placed up to $250 in free bets

Sign up for a new account with FanDuel Sportsbook

Deposit at least $10 into your account

FanDuel will match your first bet up to $250 in Free Bets!

Must be 21+ in CO. First deposit of at least $10 required. Bonus issued as non-withdrawable free bets that expire 14 days after receipt. See full terms at fanduel.com/sportsbook.

DraftKings

$100

Bet $5+ on MLB and get $100 in Free Bets Instantly!

Sign up for a new account with DraftKings Sportsbook and make your first deposit

Bet $5+ on any MLB team to win their next game

Win $100 no matter what!

Offer valid for new players only. Must be 21 years or older to play. Reward paid in site credit. Full terms available at DraftKings Sportsbook.

PointsBet

$2,000

Get $2,000 in Risk-Free Bets!

Register for a new PointsBet account & deposit

Receive a free bet refund up to $500 if your first fixed odds bet loses

& a free bet refund up to $1,500 if your first two PointsBetting Wager loses

Must be 21+. Full terms are available at PointsBet.

Caesars Sportsbook

$1,500

Get up to $1,500 Risk-Free First Bet!

Sign up for a new Caesars Sportsbook account

Make your first deposit of $50+

If your first bet is not a winner, get it all back as a free bet (up to $1,100) if you lose!

21+. Terms and conditions apply.

Monkey Knife Fight

$100

Claim Instant Deposit Match up to $100 + Free $5 game

Register for a Monkey Knife Fight account & deposit using promo code PICKSWISE100

Monkey Knife Fight will match your first deposit up to $100

Deposit $100 and you'll get $100 bonus + a free $5 game

18+. Terms and conditions apply. You must live in one of the states where real money DFS is legal.

BetRivers

$250

Get a $250 Deposit Bonus!

Sign up for a new BetRivers account using promo code PICKSWISE

Make a deposit & get it doubled up to $250 total

To get a $100 bonus, deposit $100

Must be 21+. Play in IA Only. Gambling Problem? Call 1-800-BETS OFF

Unibet

$500

Get a $500 Risk-Free Bet!

Register for a new Unibet account & make a deposit

Place your first bet up to $500 risk-free!

Get refunded up if you lose up to $500

New players only. Terms & conditions apply. 21+. VA only.

BetMGM

$1,000

Get a $1,000 Risk Free Bet!

Register for a new BetMGM & deposit

Place your first bet up to $1,000 risk-free!

Get refunded up if you lose up to $1,000

21+. Terms & conditions apply.

FanDuel Sportsbook

$1,000

Get a $1,000 Risk Free Bet!

Register for a new FanDuel Sportsbook account & deposit

Place your first bet up to $1,000 risk-free!

Get refunded up if you lose up to $1,000

21+. Terms & conditions apply.

DraftKings

$1,000

Get a $1,000 Deposit Bonus!

Register for a new DraftKings Sportsbook account & deposit

DraftKings will match 20% of your deposit up to $1,000 total

To get a $100 bonus, deposit $500

21+. Terms & conditions apply.

Monkey Knife Fight

$100

Claim 100% Instant Deposit Match up to $100!

Register for a Monkey Knife Fight account & deposit using promo code PICKSWISE100

Monkey Knife Fight will match your first deposit up to $100

Deposit $100 and you'll get $100 bonus + a free $5 game

18+. Terms and conditions apply. You must live in one of the states where real money DFS is legal.

Yahoo DFS

$25

Get $25 in Site Credit With Yahoo DFS When You Deposit $5!

Register for a new account with Yahoo DFS and deposit $5+

Enter a $5 DFS contest

Upon entry, you will receive a bonus $25 in credit into your account!

21+ and new players only. Full terms available from Yahoo DFS.

TVG

$200

Get Your First Single-Horse Win Wager Back Up to $200 if you don't win

Register for a new TVG account and make a deposit

Place your first single horse win-type bet up to $200

If your horse doesn't win you'll get a refund up to $300

21+. T&C's apply. Please gamble responsibly.

TwinSpires

$200

Get a $200 Sign-Up Bonus with Twinspires Racebook!

Open your TwinSpires.com account using offer code BET200

$200 bonus cash will be credited in increments of $100 for every $400 wagered

To earn the full $200 bonus players must wager $800 within 30 days

21+. Terms and conditions apply.