We're back for 2022. After going 50-40 (55.6%) during the first 18-week season in Westgate SuperContest history and finishing 320th out of nearly 2,000 entries, we're trending upward as we chase a third cash in the world's most illustrious NFL betting competition, hosted out of Las Vegas. My 2021 record was my best record by win percentage since I hit 64.2% of my picks to land a top-20 finish in a field of over 2,700 people back in 2017.
Last year I also included my Circa Million picks in our weekly look at my contest cards, and that competition, which enters its fourth year in 2022, has quickly become the biggest ATS competition in Las Vegas, with over 4,000 entries last year. Those picks didn't do as well (53.9%) as the SuperContest plays, as I typically don't use the exact same teams on both cards each week, and the lines for each contest lock at different times and could differ, providing more value in one than the other.
Most weeks, I'll be publishing this column on Fridays with my SuperContest plays, then updating Saturday with my Circa Million plays. This week, we're live early as I want to use the Bills-Rams game on my card. Typically, I avoid the Thursday game in these contests as you have to submit all your plays for the week at the same time, and the benefit to having more info on injuries and practice reports on Thursday and Friday outweighs playing the Thursday Night Football game even if I feel it's my top pick of the week. But with this being the healthiest week of the season, I'm going to be firing on Bills-Rams as part of my contest picks and hope that things don't change much for the other four picks on my card.
I've been SportsLine's No. 1 NFL ATS expert over the last five years, going 445-378-24 against the spread to put me up more than 25 units on those picks at SportsLine. I've also delivered a 56.8 percent hit rate on my SuperContest picks over the last seven seasons, which is exactly what you're getting below. And that run includes two finishes in the money, including finishing 18th out of 2,748 entries back in 2017.
If you're a SportsLine subscriber, you can get all my picks, which in a typical NFL week number in the double digits, at the same time as I make them by downloading the app and signing up for alerts on my expert page. That's crucial, as you might not have access to the same lines from the Las Vegas contests, which don't move after they're posted mid-week. This week, I'm backing a 'dog without high expectations after an awful year against a team that could miss the playoffs after winning the No. 1 seed last year: the New York Giants +5.5 at the Tennessee Titans.
New coaches have done well historically against the spread in Week 1, aside from a brutal stretch in 2018-19, but rather than play that blindly, I pick my spots with the new coaches I believe are the best candidates to be long-term success stories. And I definitely feel that way about Brian Daboll, who engineered one of the league's best offenses in Buffalo and turned a divisive quarterback prospect in Josh Allen into a perennial MVP candidate. I don't think the upside is nearly as high with the offense he's inheriting in New York, but this should be a franchise on the rise after bumbling through front office and coaching mistakes over the last several years.
The team Daboll's up against also happens to be one people are projecting to take a big step back in 2022. Elite wideout A.J. Brown is gone, replaced by the capable Robert Woods as the No. 1 option, reducing the ceiling of the passing game. The offensive line is a question mark as well, and I don't anticipate Ryan Tannehill elevating the cast around him to the heights of 2021, even with a healthy Derrick Henry in tow. And the defense could be in major trouble after losing star edge rusher Harold Landry for the year, as Bud Dupree leaves a lot to be desired as a No. 1 pass rusher. With rain expected in the forecast, this should be a lower-scoring game where the Giants can stay inside the number and potentially walk away with a win.
Get the rest of my SuperContest picks and my Circa Million picks below.
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