The AFC North is commonly referred to as the hardest-hitting division in football. It seems as though almost every season, they have two to even, at times, three teams representing the AFC in the playoffs. The division contains the current AFC champions in the Cincinnati Bengals, the six-time Super Bowl champion Pittsburgh Steelers, the under-the-radar Baltimore Ravens, and the controversial yet possible contenders, Cleveland Browns.
Nearly every outcome is plausible in the AFC North. The Cincinnati Bengals could easily win the division once again or place last, this is such a tooth-and-nail division, and these are some of the bets to look at this season. Let’s jump right into action so you can plan your bets against the NFL AFC Championship Odds.
AFC North Favorites to Win, Upsets, and Surprises for the 2022 Season | NFL Betting
AFC North Favorites
Surprisingly, the AFC North’s favorite to win the division is the Baltimore Ravens. The Ravens are currently at +139 to win the division, just slightly higher than the Cincinnati Bengals at +168. Baltimore was undoubtedly one of the biggest winners of the NFL draft, and they faced so many injuries last season, that they surely will be a better and more healthy team this year.
Another surprising betting favorite is Myles Garrett as the favorite to win Defensive Player of the Year. It’s surprising as TJ Watt on the Pittsburgh Steelers in his own division won last season. Garrett currently sits at +600, while Watt is at +800. These are the two best edge rushers in the NFL, but Garrett is still the slightly favored player.
AFC North Upsets
It is odd to call the Cincinnati Bengals winning the AFC North an upset, but it would be based on the betting odds currently. The Bengals are the second favorite to win the AFC North at +168. The Bengals are coming off of a Super Bowl runner-up season and having breakout seasons from the likes of quarterback Joe Burrow and rookie wide receiver Ja’Marr Chase. Another season under their belt, and not only would the Bengals have a chance at winning the division, but they also have a chance at winning the Super Bowl.
Baltimore Ravens running back J. K. Dobbins has a great chance to end up winning the NFL Comeback Player of the Year award. Dobbins currently has the 12th highest odds to win the award, with betting odds currently at +2000. The Baltimore running back was picked by many to have an incredible sophomore season in the NFL, after gaining over 800 yards while only starting one game in the 2020 season, but Dobbins was injured before the start of the regular season, sitting out all of the 2021 season. Dobbins was an incredible running back at the Ohio State University, and as long as he is healthy, he can bring that to the Ravens. If Dobbins becomes all that he has the potential to be, he will end up as not only the comeback player of the year but one of the best running backs in the entire league.
AFC North Surprises
The Pittsburgh Steelers are a fantastic go-all-out bet to win the division. The Pittsburgh Steelers currently sit last in betting odds to win the division at +880. The Steelers are coming off of a playoff campaign and may have become better if the quarterback situation with Mitch Trubisky and Kenny Pickett is an improvement on Ben Roethlisberger. The Steelers had one of the best drafts and looked to be an overall better team than what they were last year, and as long as the quarterback situation is figured out, they are one of the sneaky best bets in all of the NFL.
The Cleveland Browns are not expected to do much this season as it was announced that quarterback DeShaun Watson was suspended for the first 11 games of the Cleveland Browns season. The Browns currently have Jacoby Brissett at quarterback and it looks as though this will be a thrown-away season. However, with the Browns playing four of the worst starting quarterbacks in the league in their first four games, Cleveland has a shot at winning all of those games.
If the Browns can be a .500 team by the time DeShaun Watson gets back, they have a chance at going to the playoffs. The Browns’ playoff betting odds currently sit at +176, but if everything goes their way in the first four games, expect the Browns to reach the playoffs this season. They have the roster outside of quarterback to do it, and if Brissett can be a game manager, many fans can make a lot of money on the Browns.