The 2022 NFL playoffs are advancing to the Divisional round this weekend. There are four thrilling matchups on tap, with the Titans vs. Bengals and Chiefs vs. Bills in the AFC and the Packers vs. 49ers and Rams vs. Buccaneers in the NFC.
Here’s how the 2022 NFL playoff bracket stands after the Wild Card round:
NFL Playoff Bracket 2022
While many of the Wild Card round results were lopsided, the upcoming slate figures to be more evenly matched. No team is favored by more than six points, a welcome sight after multiple games ended in blowouts this past weekend.
Take a closer look at complete Divisional round schedule, including the start times, TV channels and live stream sites. You can also find the odds—including the point spread and over-under total—for each of the four upcoming NFL playoff games courtesy of FanDuel.
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Divisional Round Schedule, Viewing Guide, Odds
Saturday, Jan. 22
Bengals at Titans (-3.5, o/u 47), 4:30 p.m. ET (CBS, Paramount+).
49ers at Packers (-6, o/u 47), 8:15 p.m. ET (Fox, Fox Sports GO)
Sunday, Jan. 23
Rams at Buccaneers (-3, o/u 48.5), 3:05 p.m. ET (NBC, NBC Sports Live)
Bills at Chiefs (KC -2, o/u 54.5), 6:30 p.m. ET (CBS, Paramount+)
All eight remaining clubs are viable Super Bowl contenders, but some stand out as a cut above the rest. Here’s a peek at the updated championship odds for every remaining team in the 2022 NFL playoffs:
Super Bowl LVI Odds
- Green Bay Packers: +350
- Kansas City Chiefs: +400
- Buffalo Bills: +500
- Tampa Bay Buccaneers: +550
- Los Angeles Rams: +700
- Tennessee Titans: +850
- San Francisco 49ers: +1200
- Cincinnati Bengals: +1500
The reigning champion Bucs are surprisingly not the favorite to repeat this year, getting +550 odds to successfully defend their title. Tampa has been dealing with significant injuries amongst its cornerback and receiving corps all season.
The team was already down star wideout Chris Godwin after his season-ending knee injury, plus parted ways with Antonio Brown following his now-infamous exit against the Jets last month. Several other key players—including defensive back Sean Murphy-Bunting and offensive linemen Tristan Wirfs and Ryan Jensen—have thus far not been able to practice leading up to Tampa’s impending clash with the Rams.
Despite Tampa’s injury woes, Los Angeles is still an underdog to reach the NFC Championship Game. The Rams secured a convincing win in the Wild Card and have twice bested the Bucs in the regular season since Tom Brady came aboard, but are getting three-points for Sunday’s showdown.
While the Rams are one of the most star-studded teams in the NFL, they are a bit top-heavy and have to prove their defense—which ranked in the bottom half of the league this year—can stymie Brady in the playoffs. LA’s Super Bowl odds are only +700, but should skyrocket if the club can get past the defending champs.
The 49ers are facing the NFC’s longest odds of winning Super Bowl LVI at +1200. While San Francisco survived it’s first test during a Wild Card trip to Dallas, the team is now tasked with beating the top-seeded Packers at Lambeau Field.
Green Bay will be a tough out at home, having lost just one game at Lambeau in the team’s last five postseason trips. The club hasn’t faltered at the venue prior to the conference championship since the 2014 playoffs, when the Niners eliminated the Packers in the Wild Card round. San Francisco also toppled Green Bay at Lambeau in the Divisional round the previous year.
Despite their historical failures against the 49ers, the Packers are a good bet to get past them this year. Green Bay is the largest favorite on the board this weekend, laying six points to a San Francisco squad that narrowly slipped into the postseason.
After a 13-4 campaign earned them the NFC’s top seed and a first-round bye, the Packers are well-rested for this contest. That break has helped them become the league’s leading candidate to win the Super Bowl with +350 odds.
The Chiefs are only slightly behind the Packers on the odds table at +400, however, a line that is hardly a surprise after the back-to-back AFC Champions dominated in their postseason opener.
Kansas City blew the doors off the Steelers this weekend, showing out in its first Wild Card appearance in four years. The Chiefs had earned a bye in each of their last three postseason trips, but fell just short of the AFC’s top seed this year.
Credit the Titans for fending off Kansas City’s run at the No. 1 spot on the AFC portion of the 2022 NFL playoff bracket. Tennessee maintained a high quality of play all year, even after losing superstar running back Derrick Henry for half of the regular season.
The Titans stepped up defensively and did enough on offense to win 12 games this year. They should only get better in the Divisional round thanks to the projected return of Henry. The back successfully practiced this week and is poised to suit up after missing nearly three months with a foot injury.
Tennessee is still a relative long-shot to win the Super Bowl at +850 due to the uncertainty surrounding Henry’s health. If Henry can guide the Titans to a convincing win over the Bengals on Saturday, the squad should see its betting line drastically improve.
Cincinnati has been one of the Cinderella stories of the 2021 NFL seasons and just punctuated a resurgent campaign with its first playoff victory in 31 years. While the Bengals looked solid against the Raiders in the Wild Card, they now face a much tougher foe in the Divisional round.
Bookmakers believe Cincy can hang with the Titans, however, installing the Bengals as only a 3.5-point ‘dog for their trip to Nashville. Most aren’t buying the club as a realistic championship contender though, evidenced by +1500 Super Bowl odds that are the longest on the board.
The Bills are arguably the most intriguing Super Bowl candidate this year at +500. The team bounced back from a disappointing showing in the AFC Championship Game last year to win the AFC East again and dominated the rival Patriots in the Wild Card.
Buffalo will now square off with a familiar foe on Sunday, meeting the Chiefs for the fourth time since the start of the 2020 campaign. Kansas City handily won the initial two matchups, but the Bills finally earned revenge back in October.
If Buffalo can play as well as it did in that 38-20 win—which came at Arrowhead Stadium, the site of the impending Divisional game—the Bills will become the odds-on favorite to represent the AFC in the Super Bowl.
Source: Forbes – Business