Best NFL bets for 5 key players on new teams
Russell Wilson should accumulate solid stats in his first year with the Denver Broncos. Photo by Jack Dempsey/AP.

The NFL offseason is always full of player movement, but the run-up to the 2022 season has felt especially chaotic with a number of franchise quarterbacks and top-flight receivers changing addresses.

Some bettors get gun-shy as they wait to see how stars will look in new uniforms. But for those who believe they have a handle on the next step of a player's career, a unique opportunity emerges.

Check out our best NFL bets for five players who changed teams this offseason, including stars Russell Wilson and A.J. Brown.

Best NFL bets overview

Best NFL betsOddsBet now
Best bet: Russell Wilson over 4,100.5 passing yards-118Add to betslip
Best bet: A.J. Brown over 1,000.5 receiving yards-106Add to betslip
Best bet: Christian Kirk over 68.5 receptions-112Add to betslip
Long shot: Carson Wentz to lead NFL in INTs+1,500Add to betslip
Fade: Julio Jones under 4.5 TDs-112Add to betslip

Best NFL bets

Wilson over 4,100.5 passing yards (-118)

Although Wilson isn't known for accumulating massive raw yardage totals, this line isn't too much to ask. This over only demands Wilson pass for 241.2 yards per game — a total he's eclipsed in five of the last seven seasons.

Despite the injury issues he dealt with last year, the 33-year-old has been durable in his career. He didn't miss a start in his first nine NFL seasons and it seems fair to project another complete year from him.

That's especially likely because he's running the ball significantly less than he did in his 20s and the Denver Broncos' offensive line is superior to most of the groups he had in Seattle.

Wilson is arguably downgrading when it comes to his receivers by trading DK Metcalf and Tyler Lockett for Courtland Sutton and Jerry Jeudy, but he still has solid targets. Perhaps more importantly, he should enjoy a more QB-friendly offence.

After years of toiling under the run-heavy schemes of Pete Carroll and his various offensive coordinators, Wilson will be empowered to throw more by new Broncos coach Nathaniel Hackett.

Hackett coordinated a Green Bay Packers offence that averaged 34.7 passing attempts per game from 2019-21 — significantly more than what Wilson averaged in Seattle (32.0) in the same span.

Even in that low-volume attack, Wilson cleared this bar in two of three seasons, and we expect him to do it again in 2022.

A.J. Brown over 1,000.5 receiving yards (-106)

This number seems low for a player of Brown's talents.

The understandable concern here is that the explosive wide receiver, who has cleared this number in two of three seasons, is joining a Philadelphia team that had the highest rushing play percentage in the NFL last season (49.9%).

That said, Brown just spent three seasons with the Tennessee Titans, who've deployed one of the least prolific passing offences in the league. He averaged 69.7 yards/game during those years and would need just 58.9 yards/game over a full season to clear this line.

Here's a look at Tennessee's recent passing tendencies, as well as Brown's role within the offence:

SeasonPass attempts/gameNFL rankBrown's yards/game
Stats via

Brown has proven that he's efficient enough to produce without massive target volume, and the Philadelphia Eagles didn't trade first- and third-round picks — plus give him an extension with $57 million guaranteed — not to throw him the ball.

The real concern here is health. Brown has missed six games over the past two seasons, but he's still young (25) and his stout frame (6-foot-1, 226 pounds) has us hopeful he can withstand the wear and tear of a 17-game season.

Christian Kirk over 68.5 receptions (-112)

Much of the NFL world was baffled by the Jacksonville Jaguars' decision to hand Kirk a $72 million deal. While that contract is borderline indefensible, we can use it to help justify this prop's value.

Kirk is the undisputed top receiver in an offence where his primary competition for targets are Zay Jones, Evan Engram and Marvin Jones Jr. He also plays for a Jaguars team that will likely play from behind often. That combination of factors should result in plenty of volume.

Second-year quarterback Trevor Lawrence is also widely expected to take a step forward this season after escaping the yoke of Urban Meyer's horrendous coaching. If that comes to pass, Kirk stands to be the primary beneficiary.

The best part about this over is that it doesn't require much projection. Kirk blew past it in 2021 (77 receptions) despite starting just 11 games.

If he hits his career average in receptions per game (4.2), he would hit this over in a 17-game season. Working as a primary option for the first time, he should produce far above his career averages.

Best NFL bets: The long shot

Carson Wentz to lead the NFL in interceptions (+1,500)

This doesn't feel like as much of a long shot as these odds indicate considering Wentz led the NFL in interceptions just two seasons ago as a 12-game starter.

The 29-year-old threw just seven picks last year, but he hasn't transformed into a new quarterback.

Instead, he spent 2021 at the helm of an Indianapolis Colts team with an elite running game and an outstanding offensive line that was often playing from ahead.

Wentz didn't have to gamble much last season, but he still flashed questionable decision making at times — like on this left-handed interception:

There's a reason the Colts wanted to move on after one year of the Wentz experience.

The worst side of the veteran is likely to come out as he takes the reigns of a Washington Commanders offence that lacks proven playmakers outside of Terry McLaurin.

Wentz is also unlikely to get benched considering the Commanders traded three draft picks for him in the offseason and their backup QB is journeyman Taylor Heinicke.

Bet to fade

Julio Jones under 4.5 touchdowns (-112)

It's indisputable that Jones is one of the best receivers in the history of the NFL. Unfortunately, it's also looking more clear that he's deep into the decline phase of his career.

Jones was a non-factor in the Titans' offence last season, producing just 43.4 yards per game and a single touchdown.

A move to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers could result in a minor resurgence, but when everyone is healthy he looks like the fourth receiver on the team behind Mike Evans, Chris Godwin and Russell Gage.

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Godwin and Gage are dealing with ailments that could open the door for Jones early in the year, but we don't expect him to have much of a role later on. The fact he's missed seven games in each of the last two seasons also indicates that he's likely to either miss time or wear down as the 2022 campaign marches on.

Our favourite aspect of this bet is that, even at his best, Jones never piled up massive touchdown totals. That means it's possible that he could be surprisingly productive, but still not score five or more times. For example, in 2017 he caught 88 balls for 1,444 yards and only hauled in three scores.

Holding a relatively minor role in a new offence means he's unlikely to become one of Tom Brady's favourite red-zone targets. And Jones hasn't been a significant yards-after-catch threat in recent years.

Odds as of 12:34 p.m. on 08/29/2022.

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