The 2022/23 NFL season gets underway this week when the Super Bowl 56 champions Los Angeles Rams take on the excellent Buffalo Bills in the opening game of the season.
After a fantastic season last year both sides, they've been paired up for an exciting curtain raiser and will go head-to-head to immediately hand a rival a poor result this time around.
We'll take a look at both teams and break down their chances of success in this game, before providing our best free NFL betting picks for the game to see if we can earn you some extra cash for the weekend.
|NFL Week 1|
|Los Angeles Rams||+117||+120||+110|
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Buffalo Bills vs Los Angeles Rams NFL information
- Thursday, September 8, 2022
- SoFi Stadium, Inglewood, California
- Live on NBC
- 20:20 EST start
- AFC East vs NFC West
Buffalo Bills betting analysis
Buffalo was up-and-down throughout the early parts of last season, as the Bills posted a relatively lackluster 7-6 record through the first 14 weeks of the season. However, as the offensive lineup really gathered momentum and clicked, they finished up the season with a 4-0 record to claim the AFC East title.
For most of the year, Buffalo rode the coattail of its defense as the Bills’ defense kept them afloat by ranking first in the league in both scoring and total yardage throughout last season (18.3 DPPG, 289 YPG).
However, their offense turned things around down in the back half and ended up finishing third in scoring and fifth in total yardage (29.8 OPPG, 389 YPG), which was nearly a Super Bowl caliber formula.
Buffalo played excellent in the postseason, too, as Josh Allen and the Bills’ offense secured 41.5 OPPG on 452 YPG across both playoff games against the Patriots and the Chiefs.
However, the Bills campaign came to an abrupt and surprising halt in the Divisional Round against Kansas City, as the Chiefs won the coin toss prior to overtime and cashed in for six on the ensuing drive.
After a heartbreaking end to the season, they'll be hungry to step in against the reigning champions and show them they're of the required level to be a real challenger this season.
Los Angeles Rams betting analysis
The Rams won the NFC West with a record of 12-5 last season, and were crowned Super Bowl champions with an exhillarating win over the Cincinnati Bengals.
However, Los Angeles didn’t dominate throughout the year, as the Rams’ offense finished the year ranked sixth in scoring and seventh in total yardage (27 OPPG, 373 YPG). Defensively they were worse, as they ranked ninth in scoring and 13th in total yardage (21.3 DPPG, 333 YPG).
Winning the chip with those numbers is almost unheard of, but shows the team spirit they had to overcome adversity was a huge reason for their success rather than just their performances on the field.
Their playoff run wasn't particularly impressive either, beating all of the Buccaneers, Niners and Bengals but three points each with 24.3 OPPG and allowing 21.3 DPPG across those games.
When healthy, Los Angeles is the cream of the crop in the NFC. Quarterback Matthew Stafford’s lingering elbow injury isn't too concerning in the long-term but in matchups against offensive powerhouses like Buffalo, the Rams can’t afford to be significantly handicapped in that position. That should give Buffalo big encouragement of being successful on Thursday.
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- The Bills are 4-1-1 ATS in their last six games.
- The Rams are 2-4 ATS in their last six games.
- The total has gone OVER in five of Buffalo's last seven games.
- The total has gone UNDER in four of the Rams' last six games.
- The Bills are 4-1 ATS in their last five games against the Rams.
- The total has gone OVER in eight of the Rams' last nine games against Buffalo.
- The total has gone OVER in four of Buffalo's last five road games.
- The total has gone UNDER in six of the Rams' last seven home games.
- The Rams are 5-0 ATS in their last five games played in Week 1.
- The Bills are 12-5 ATS in their last 17 games played in Week 1.
It’s hard to believe, but the Rams are +120 to win outright here in Week 1.
The home team has won seven of the last nine NFL Kickoff games, and the Bills have historically been slow starters under Sean McDermott when they aren’t facing divisional opponents, never mind the reigning champions.
Meanwhile, Sean McVay‘s teams have always started the season off hot as they’ve covered the spread in each of their last five games in Week 1. Taking the Rams on the moneyline is just too good of value to pass on early in the season.
With good business in the off-season, they're no weaker than previously, and despite Stafford's injury, they should still have enough defensively to see off Buffalo and claim an opening day victory.
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