The first game on the NFL calendar is always the Hall of Fame Game in Canton, Ohio. It’s the first preseason game of the year, and the 2022 edition will feature the Jacksonville Jaguars and the Las Vegas Raiders.
While neither team is expected to play their starters much, if at all, it’s good to finally have football back. It’s also been a long time for us football bettors, so of course, we are going to make some bets.
Here are the latest odds for the 2022 Hall of Fame Game and the best bets currently on the board.
Hall of Fame Game 2022: Jaguars vs Raiders Odds
Not surprisingly, the line here is pretty low as even oddsmakers are unsure who will play in this game.
But the most shocking number is the point total of 30.5. This has historically been a low-scoring game, but it’s still eye-opening to see a total of 30.5 points for an NFL game.
Jaguars vs Raiders Implied Score
Raiders 15.75, Jaguars 14.75
The Raiders are one-point favorites in this game and the total is set at 30.5, which gives us the implied score above. That’s probably not too far off as it’s hard to see either team scoring more than two touchdowns. A 17-14 type of game is probably what you should expect here.
Jaguars vs Raiders Matchup
As expected, both teams will sit their starting quarterbacks for precautionary reasons. But also look for both the Raiders and the Jaguars to sit their former first-round running backs.
Josh Jacobs is a proven back that certainly doesn’t need to take any additional hits, while Travis Etienne is coming back from a serious foot injury that he suffered in the preseason last year.
Don’t expect either side to put any high draft pick or valuable player into this game on Thursday.
Jaguars vs Raiders Prediction
Jaguars 17, Raiders 14
Betting on the Hall of Fame Game can be often harder than wagering on the Super Bowl because we just don’t know who is going to play and for how long. Plus, we haven’t seen either of these teams for months and they each have new coaching staffs.
But what we do know about the Hall of Fame Game is that teams also tend to be very conservative when it comes to play-calling as they try to limit injuries and speed up the game. We’ve seen multiple teams this decade fail to score a single touchdown in the Hall of Fame Game, so this certainly shouldn’t be a shootout.
Jaguars vs Raiders Bet Tips
Our lean here is with Jacksonville considering they have the better backup quarterback situation and more depth at key positions such as wide receiver, cornerback, and pass rusher.
Look for them to score multiple touchdowns and ultimately get a close win over the Raiders.
Jaguars vs Raiders Best Bets
Jaguars +2.5 (-110)
WAGER: 1 Unit
Neither team is going to play any of their starters and you can expect that key role players will also sit out. At that point, it’s time to look deep into the rosters to see who could be playing a lot of snaps on Thursday night.
The Raiders have one of the oldest teams in the league and they will be without several young players due to injuries suffered in training camp. Look for Las Vegas to play most of the game with a heavy rotation of undrafted free agents while the Jaguars evaluate some of their more recent draft picks, such as K’Lavon Chaisson, Laviska Shenault, and Andre Cisco.
Another reason why the Jaguars are a smart bet here is that they are getting points. It’s very rare to see a blowout in the Hall of Fame Game, which indicates this should be a close contest. Take the points with the Jaguars and enjoy the return of football.
Over 30.5 Total Points (-110)
WAGER: 0.5 Units
Points aren’t scored very often in the Hall of Fame Game. In fact, teams are usually lucky to score multiple touchdowns in this annual preseason showcase due to the typically poor quarterback play.
However, both the Raiders and the Jaguars have competent backup quarterbacks and we should see a lot of Nick Mullens and C.J. Beathard in this game. Plus, both teams have intriguing young running backs on their rosters, such as Zamir White for the Raiders.
While points are certainly going to be tough to come by, it wouldn’t be a shock if both teams scored multiple touchdowns. And let’s be real, the Over is just a more fun bet for the first game of the year.