Three NFL Week 12 Upset Picks To Consider (2022)
These NFL Week 12 upset picks stand out as moneyline value plays based on our algorithmic prediction models, data angles, and/or recent news.
November 23, 2022 - by Jason Lisk
We are going to try to bring a little sunshine to your upset picks (Scott Winters/Icon Sportswire)
Everybody loves an NFL upset pick, especially when it turns into a winning bet.
In this article, we pick three NFL Week 12 underdogs to win outright. We also keep track of our overall season performance, using the moneyline odds for each pick at publication time.
Last season, upset picks we highlighted in this column went 22-25-1 straight up, good for +17.0 units of profit if you had flat-bet one unit on each pick.
(To see our favorite NFL betting picks each week, including point spread, over/under, props, and other picks, check out our Staff Betting Picks.)
Upset Picks Results to Date
Last Week: 0-3 for -3.0 units
2022 Season: 12-21 for +1.3 units
Last week was a case of “hand grenades and horseshoes,” as all three upset picks were in the game but lost it in the second half.
- Chicago (+150) lost another close one to Atlanta, 27-24, after jumping out to a 17-7 lead.
- Pittsburgh (+177) played a higher-scoring shootout against Cincinnati but lost 37-30.
- Cleveland (+293) got to face the Bills at a neutral site and got a lead, but lost 31-23.
Week 12 NFL Upset Picks
Jacksonville Jaguars (vs. Baltimore Ravens)
Point Spread: +3.5
This is our top-rated moneyline value pick for Week 12, according to our Ensemble Forecast Model.
The Jacksonville Jaguars are 3-7, but they have scored more points than they have allowed on the season. They are 1-6 in games decided by one score.
Baltimore is coming off a poor offensive performance against Carolina. The Ravens managed only 13 points in the win, and their passing game and overall offense has been mediocre since a hot start.
Ravens QB Lamar Jackson started the year with 10 passing touchdowns and only two interceptions over his first three games. But over his last seven starts, he has only six touchdown passes and has averaged fewer than 7.0 yards per pass attempt in six of those seven games.
A lot of that has to do with injuries. Baltimore has major running back injuries again, leading speed receiver Rashod Bateman is out for the year, and star tight end Mark Andrews has been battling through knee and shoulder injuries that have impacted his effectiveness.
Given those issues and a young Jacksonville team fresh off a bye, we see some value on the Jaguars in an upset here.
Tennessee Titans (vs. Cincinnati Bengals)
Point Spread: +1.5
This is another playable moneyline value pick this week, according to our Ensemble Forecast model. It’s also a rematch of last year’s Divisional Round game, which Cincinnati won en route to the Super Bowl (despite nine sacks of QB Joe Burrow), as Titans QB Ryan Tannehill threw three interceptions.
The Bengals’ season-long run defense stats look solid, but a really good start is influencing those averages. They’ve surrendered big games more frequently in the last seven contests, and they struggled against the Saints and Browns. The Titans’ rushing attack will test that defense.
Meanwhile, Bengals RB Joe Mixon’s status is up in the air following a concussion. The Titans also have a big advantage with their defensive line versus the Bengals’ offensive line.
If the Titans can control the line of scrimmage in this game, they should have a good chance of pulling the upset. It’s a spot that the Titans thrive in, as they are 12-7 SU and 13-6 ATS as an underdog over the last three years, including winning four straight as a home dog.
Pittsburgh Steelers (at Indianapolis Colts)
Point Spread: +2.5
The Colts have played more competitively in the two games since firing head coach Frank Reich and bringing in Jeff Saturday as interim coach. However, the Indianapolis offense could not salt away a win with the lead against the Eagles, and it still has issues up front.
Pittsburgh fell to 3-7 with a 37-30 loss to Cincinnati last week, but there have recently been a few positive signs. One is that the defense is now close to full strength with the return of both T.J. Watt and Minkah Fitzpatrick.
Another is that second-year RB Najee Harris finally looks like himself again after playing through a foot injury to start the year. He’s had 20 carries and at least 90 yards in each of the last two games.
The Colts caught the Las Vegas Raiders flat-footed in Saturday’s debut with the surprise insertion of veteran QB Matt Ryan back in the lineup, and they’ve done better with low expectations. But they have struggled in the favorite role, going 1-4 ATS when favored so far this year (1-3-1 SU).
2022 Upset Pick History
Below is a full list of the picks we’ve made in this column so far in 2022. We list the moneyline odds at the time we made the pick (“WED ML”), the closing line (“CLOSING ML”), and result.
So far this season, 21 of the picks we’ve made have gotten positive closing-line value (CLV), where the moneyline odds moved in favor of our Wednesday pick by kickoff time. In comparison, 12 picks had negative CLV.
|WEEK||PICK||OPPONENT||WED ML||CLOSING ML||CLOSE VALUE||RESULT|
|1||Minnesota||Green Bay||105||-130||Yes||W, 23-7|
|1||NY Giants||Tennessee||210||200||Yes||W, 21-20|
|2||New Orleans||Tampa Bay||125||124||Yes||L, 20-10|
|2||NY Jets||Cleveland||215||220||No||W, 31-30|
|2||Atlanta||LA Rams||400||372||Yes||L, 31-27|
|3||Carolina||New Orleans||135||115||Yes||W, 22-14|
|3||Indianapolis||Kansas City||228||190||Yes||W, 20-17|
|4||New York Jets||Pittsburgh||150||140||Yes||W, 24-20|
|5||Dallas||LA Rams||180||198||No||W, 22-10|
|6||New Orleans||Cincinnati||113||148||No||L, 30-26|
|6||Denver||LA Chargers||203||165||Yes||L, 19-16|
|6||Carolina||LA Rams||380||345||Yes||L, 24-10|
|7||San Francisco||Kansas City||131||-103||Yes||L, 44-23|
|8||NY Giants||Seattle||135||145||No||L, 27-13|
|8||Carolina||Atlanta||182||177||Yes||L, 34-31 (OT)|
|9||New Orleans||Baltimore||125||112||Yes||L, 27-13|
|10||Arizona||LA Rams||154||163||No||W, 27-17|
|10||Houston||NY Giants||190||199||No||L, 24-16|
Upset Pick Expectations
Whenever you read about upset picks from a betting perspective, it’s important to understand the implications. Individually, neither the betting markets nor our models give any of these three teams better than a 50-50 chance to win.
If you bet an underdog on the point spread, that isn’t such a big deal to you. You’re just hoping for the pick to at least keep it close and cover the number.
If you bet an underdog on the moneyline, though, you need them to win the game outright. When that happens, you get an outsized return on your bet. Given that context, we expect to get most of these picks wrong, and we also expect to see big swings in results from week to week—including losing all three picks in some weeks.
Depending on the payout odds, you can still turn a profit by winning, say, 30 or 35 out of every 100 moneyline bets that you make on underdogs. However, you need to manage your bankroll carefully to weather what could be long losing streaks along the way.
Week 12 Betting Picks & Models
If you’d like to find your own trends and angles for NFL betting, check out our custom NFL betting trends tool.
If you’d like to see all of our model-based picks for this week (game winner, point spread, over/under, and moneyline value), you can visit our NFL picks page on TeamRankings.
And if you’d like to see a curated list of some of our favorite betting picks that this week, along with the rationale behind each pick, check out our Staff Betting Picks.