Jacksonville Jaguars at Detroit Lions: 2022 Week 13 NFL Pick

Jacksonville Jaguars (4-7) at Detroit Lions (4-7)

This is another one of my lowest confidence picks of the week. My calculated line has the Lions just slightly favored to win this game, but it also has the Jaguars covering this 1-point spread, which is how close this one is for me. Making it even tougher, there also aren’t any situational trends affecting either side. I’m taking the Jaguars for pick ‘em purposes because we’re technically getting some line value with them, but this 1-point spread doesn’t give us much room to work with and the most likely outcome of this game might be a push.

Detroit Lions 34 Jacksonville Jaguars 33

Pick against the spread: Jacksonville +1

Confidence: None

Baltimore Ravens at Jacksonville Jaguars: 2022 Week 12 NFL Pick

Baltimore Ravens (7-3) at Jacksonville Jaguars (3-7)

The Ravens have three losses, but all came by four points or fewer and all came after blowing 4th quarter leads, with the Ravens leading the league in percentage of time leading per game. In terms of point differential, the Ravens rank 7th at +49 and in schedule adjusted efficiency they rank 3rd, about seven points above average. Also healthier now than they were earlier in the year, I consider the Ravens among the best teams in the league and a true Super Bowl contender, which isn’t the consensus opinion of them, so I think they’re a little underrated, even at 7-3.

The Jaguars have been competitive in most of their games this season, but all of their losses have come by more than four points, which would have covered this spread. They have a positive point differential at +11 and a positive schedule adjusted efficiency, about a point above average (13th in the NFL), but they are five points below average in my roster rankings, suggesting they’ve overachieved their talent level and could easily regress going forward. The Ravens should be able to win this game with relative ease and my calculated line has them favored by a full touchdown, so they’re worth a bet here at 3.5.

Update: This line has dropped to 3, so I am increasing the confidence of this bet.

Baltimore Ravens 27 Jacksonville Jaguars 20

Pick against the spread: Baltimore -3

Confidence: Medium

Jacksonville Jaguars at Kansas City Chiefs: 2022 Week 10 NFL Pick

Jacksonville Jaguars (3-6) at Kansas City Chiefs (6-2)

Despite their 3-6 record, the Jaguars have a positive point differential at +21 and rank 9th in schedule adjusted efficiency, about three points above average. That’s in large part due to all six of their losses being decided by eight points or fewer. The Jaguars are 9.5-point underdogs this week in Kansas City, which might seem high, given that the Jaguars have yet to be blown out, but the Jaguars rank four points below average in my roster rankings, suggesting they’ve overperformed their talent level and are likely to regress going forward, and the Jaguars also haven’t played a game this tough yet.

Even after an underwhelming performance against the Titans last week, the Chiefs are still among the best teams in the league. In terms of schedule adjusted efficiency, the Chiefs rank 3rd, about eight points above average, led by an offense that leads the league in schedule adjusted efficiency by a wide margin, and my roster rankings support that, with the Chiefs about ten points above average. Overall, my calculated line has the Chiefs favored by 12, suggesting that we’re getting a little bit of line value with them as 9.5-point favorites. That’s not enough to bet on them though, especially with the Chiefs in a potential look ahead spot, with a matchup against the Chargers on deck after facing a 3-6 Jaguars team this week. I’m still taking the Chiefs, but for pick ‘em purposes only.

Kansas City Chiefs 31 Jacksonville Jaguars 20

Pick against the spread: Kansas City -9.5

Confidence: Low

Las Vegas Raiders at Jacksonville Jaguars: 2022 Week 9 NFL Pick

Las Vegas Raiders (2-5) at Jacksonville Jaguars (2-6)

The Jaguars are just 2-6, but they actually have a positive point differential at +14, as all six of their losses have come by eight points or fewer, with an average margin of 6.3 points per game, while their two wins have come by margins of 24 and 28. In terms of schedule adjusted efficiency, the Jaguars rank 7th in the NFL, about 3.5 points about average and, while my roster rankings have them 5.5 points below average, they’re still significantly better than their record would suggest, overachieving their talent level by a significant amount.

The Raiders also have just two wins and have also played better than that, with four of their five losses coming by six points or fewer, but their -11 point differential is still significantly behind the Jaguars, while their 18th ranked schedule adjusted efficiency is 4 points behind the Jaguars. The Raiders have the 3.5 point edge in my roster rankings, as they are underachieving their talent level and the Jaguars are overachieving, but, overall, I have the Jaguars as the slightly better of these two teams. Given that this game is in Jacksonville, my calculated line has them favored by a field goal, so we’re getting good line value with them as 2-point home underdogs. I wish we were getting a full field goal with them, but they’re still bettable at +2, and on the money line.

Jacksonville Jaguars 27 Las Vegas Raiders 24 Upset Pick +115

Pick against the spread: Jacksonville +2

Confidence: Medium

Denver Broncos vs. Jacksonville Jaguars: 2022 Week 8 NFL Pick

Denver Broncos (2-5) vs. Jacksonville Jaguars (2-5) in London

Normally the rule of thumb in London games is to pick the favorite, as the better team tends to be better suited to play in a weird situation in a London game, covering the spread at a 63.4% rate all-time. In this case, that would be the Jaguars, who are favored by 2.5 points, but we aren’t getting much line value with them, as my calculated line is Jacksonville -2. I am still taking the Jaguars for pick ‘em purposes because they are slight favorites and have familiarity with playing in London more than any franchise, but there’s not nearly enough here for the Jaguars to be worth betting.

Jacksonville Jaguars 20 Denver Broncos 17

Pick against the spread: Jacksonville -2.5

Confidence: Low

New York Giants at Jacksonville Jaguars: 2022 Week 7 NFL Pick

New York Giants (5-1) at Jacksonville Jaguars (2-4)

The Giants have a 5-1 record, while the Jaguars are just 2-4, but the Jaguars actually have the better point differential between these two teams (+24 vs. +14). While all of the Giants’ wins have come by just one score, the Jaguars’ wins have come by 24 and 28, while their losses have all come by one score. Big blowout wins tend to be much more predictive of future success than close wins and the gap between these two teams is even more pronounced if you look at schedule adjusted efficiency, where the 9th ranked Jaguars have a 5.5-point edge over the 23rd ranked Giants. My roster rankings have these two teams closer together than schedule adjusted efficiency, but, any way you look at it, the Jaguars are the slightly better team, despite not having nearly as good of a record.

Unfortunately, the odds makers are still not giving the Giants any respect, despite their record, so we’re not getting any line value with the Jaguars, who are favored by a full field goal at home, even being three games worse than the Giants in the standings. The Jaguars are in a better spot, as the Giants are coming off of a big home upset win over the Ravens last week, which tends to be a situation in which teams are flat the following week, covering the spread at just a 41.3% rate after a home upset win as underdogs of 5 points or more. However, that isn’t enough for the Jaguars to be worth betting without getting any real line value, so this is only a low confidence pick.

Jacksonville Jaguars 24 New York Giants 20

Pick against the spread: Jacksonville -3

Confidence: Low

Jacksonville Jaguars at Indianapolis Colts: 2022 Week 6 NFL Pick

Jacksonville Jaguars (2-3) at Indianapolis Colts (2-2-1)

The Jaguars have a significantly better point differential than the Colts (+31 vs. -25) and won the first matchup between these two teams earlier this season in convincing fashion (24-0), but a lot of the gap between these two teams has been because of turnovers, which are not that predictive week-to-week. On the season, the Colts are -6 in turnover margin, as opposed to +1 for the Jaguars, and the Jaguars won the turnover battle in the first matchup by 3. That game was also in Jacksonville and the Colts were missing their two best wide receivers Michael Pittman and Alec Pierce, who will be active for this rematch in Indianapolis.

My roster rankings have these two teams about even, which unfortunately doesn’t give us any line value, with the Colts being favored by 2 points at home, about where my calculated line would be. I am taking the Colts for pick ‘em purposes for now, just because I think the home team winning by a field goal is the most likely outcome, but there is some uncertainty over the status of Colts star running back Jonathan Taylor, who missed last week and was limited in practice this week. I am expecting him to play, but, if he doesn’t, I would change this pick to the Jaguars, for a no confidence pick either way.

Update: Taylor is out, so I am changing to a no confidence pick on the Jaguars instead.

Indianapolis Colts 17 Jacksonville Jaguars 16

Pick against the spread: Jacksonville +2

Confidence: None

Houston Texans at Jacksonville Jaguars: 2022 Week 5 NFL Pick

Houston Texans (0-3-1) at Jacksonville Jaguars (2-2)

Last week, I said the Jaguars were overrated as 6.5-point underdogs in Philadelphia and this week I think they are overrated as 7-point home favorites against the Texans. The Jaguars jumped out to a 2-1 start to this season, but they caught the Chargers and Colts when they were missing key players with injuries and lost to the Commanders, who are otherwise winless. They also have a roster that, while not as bad as a year ago, is still middling at best and, as a result, they don’t deserve to be favored by this many points against a Texans team that is also more competitive than a year ago, even if they don’t have their first win yet. My calculated line has the Jaguars favored by just 4.5, so we’re getting good line value with the visitors. There isn’t quite enough here for the Texans to be worth betting, but they should be the right side for pick ‘em purposes.

Jacksonville Jaguars 24 Houston Texans 20

Pick against the spread: Houston +7

Confidence: Low

Jacksonville Jaguars at Philadelphia Eagles: 2022 Week 4 NFL Pick

Jacksonville Jaguars (2-1) at Philadelphia Eagles (3-0)

Coming into the season, I expected the Eagles to be one of the best teams in the league, projecting them to win 12 games and tie for the best record in the NFC. The Eagles were coming off of a playoff appearance a season ago, finishing 9th in overall efficiency, and got significantly better on both sides of the ball this off-season due to additions like AJ Brown, Haason Reddick, and James Bradberry, which seemed likely to vault them into the top tier of the NFL. So far, that has been the case as the Eagles are the NFL’s last unbeaten team, while ranking 10th, 2nd, and 4th in offensive, defensive, and overall schedule adjusted efficiency. 

The Jaguars have also gotten out to an impressive start, sitting at 2-1 with a pair of multi-score wins and a schedule adjusted efficiency that ranks 6th in the NFL, but they’re still a couple points behind the Eagles in overall efficiency and I think they have much less staying power, with a roster that is not as good as their impressive to start to the season. While the Eagles are among the best teams in my roster rankings, the Jaguars rank nine points behind them as more of a middle of the road team. This line is decently high, favoring the Eagles by 6.5 at home, but, with the Eagles being one of the best teams in the league and the Jaguars being more middle of the road, I have the Eagles calculated as 10-point home favorites in this game, giving us good line value with them. This isn’t a big play, but the Eagles are worth betting in this game.

Philadelphia Eagles 30 Jacksonville Jaguars 20

Pick against the spread: Philadelphia -6.5

Confidence: Medium

Jacksonville Jaguars at Los Angeles Chargers: 2022 Week 3 NFL Pick

Jacksonville Jaguars (1-1) at Los Angeles Chargers (1-1)

This game is tough to predict because even as of Sunday morning we don’t know the status of Chargers quarterback Justin Herbert, who is dealing with a rib injury suffered in last week’s game. Herbert stayed in the game last week and practiced in a limited fashion earlier this week, so most assumed he would play, but then he didn’t throw in Friday’s practice, making him legitimately questionable and reportedly a gametime decision. As a result, this line plummeted from favoring the Chargers by 9 down to 3, with veteran backup Chase Daniel starting now being a legitimate possibility. With some optimism on Sunday morning that Herbert will play, this line moved back up to 3.5, but it’s hard to make any sort of definitive pick without knowing Herbert’s status and where this line will settle when his status is confirmed.

Early in the week, I liked the Jaguars as 9-point underdogs. While they have gotten off to an impressive start, ranking 6th in overall efficiency, the Chargers rank just 28th and, though it’s only been two games, my roster rankings suggest this line would be too high at 9 even if Herbert plays, especially since he’s unlikely to be 100% even in a best case scenario. Part of that is because, even if Herbert plays, the Chargers have significant injury concerns, down their top cornerback JC Jackson, stud center Corey Linsley, and possibly talented wide receiver Keenan Allen, who is questionable to return from a hamstring injury that cost him last week’s game. The Chargers also typically struggle at home, frequently playing in front of crowds who prefer the visitor and going just 16-24 ATS at home since moving to Los Angeles in 2017.

Unfortunately, it’s much harder to take the Jaguars with any certainty at 3.5. If Herbert doesn’t play, the Jaguars have a good chance to pull the upset, but if Herbert does play, this line would obviously be too low. I’m tentatively taking the Jaguars for now, especially since the line has moved up to 3.5, a key number given that 1 in 4 games are decided by 3 points or fewer, but I will almost definitely have an update to this pick before gametime once we learn Herbert’s status and where this line will ultimately settle.

Update: Herbert is starting and the line has subsequently jumped to 6.5. I don’t like the Jaguars at that number as much as I liked them at 9 earlier this week, but Herbert figures to be limited and he’ll be without Keenan Allen, on top of Linsley and Jackson being out, so the Jaguars should still be the right side for pick ’em purposes.

Los Angeles Chargers 26 Jacksonville Jaguars 20

Pick against the spread: Jacksonville +6.5

Confidence: None