Welcome back to another season of the NFL Underdog Picks column. For those who are new, I am tasked with only picking underdog teams against the spread on a weekly basis. Last season, I finished with a 30-24 record. Things can be tricky the first week as we see how teams look after making offseason changes, but there is still money to be won! With that in mind, here are three underdogs to consider on the DraftKings Sportsbook.
Dallas Cowboys vs. Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Cowboys +2.5
The Buccaneers certainly had an interesting offseason. Tom Brady retired, then decided he wanted to play again. Rob Gronkowski also retired, but he has remained steadfast in his decision. They brought in Russell Gage and Julio Jones to add depth at wide receiver, and they could be needed more early on with Chris Godwin (knee) still working his way back from injury.
The Cowboys underwent changes of their own, losing Amari Cooper to the Browns. Michael Gallup (knee) will be out for Week 1, but their running game could be improved with Ezekiel Elliott healthy again. Brady being away from the team for part of the preseason could cause Tampa to have a slow start, and with the Cowboys being the home team, it wouldn’t be a surprise to see them put the Buccaneers in a 0-1 hole out of the gate.
Jacksonville Jaguars at Washington Commanders: Jaguars +2.5
The Jaguars are coming off of an abysmal 3-14 record last year, which included them going 0-8 on the road. With the Urban Meyer coaching regime firmly in the rearview mirror, the team has higher hopes this season with Doug Pederson at the helm. Their offense should be much more dangerous in Trevor Lawrence’s second season in the league, with Travis Etienne finally healthy and the addition of Christian Kirk at wide receiver.
After a 7-10 record last season, it was clear the Commanders needed to make a change at quarterback. They brought in Carson Wentz, who had plenty of experience playing the Jaguars last season while a member of the Colts. In two games against them, he threw for a combined 365 yards and just one touchdown pass. It’s difficult to have much faith in Wentz considering how he’s played the last couple of seasons. With a much-improved coaching staff and improved talent around Lawrence, the Jaguars could finally snap their road losing streak.
Detroit Lions vs. Philadelphia Eagles: Lions +4
The Lions found themselves as underdogs going into every one of their games last season. Their overall record was only 3-13-1, but they were a remarkable 10-7 against the spread. That included them going 5-3 against the spread at home, which is where they will begin their 2022 campaign.
Things are shaping up for the Lions to be a more dangerous team during head coach Dan Campbell’s second season. Wide receiver Amon-Ra St. Brown came on during the second half last year, and they further bolstered their wide receiver group by signing DJ Chark. On the defensive side of the ball, their biggest addition is likely to be defensive end Aidan Hutchinson, who was selected with the second overall pick in the draft. As good as the Eagles look on paper, they are likely only going to go as far as the inconsistent Jalen Hurts can take them. If they overlook the Lions coming into this matchup, this could end up being a close game.
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