NFL Divisional Championships – Preview And Our Tips To Win All 8 Divisions

By Ian John
July 1, 2022

The NFL Preseason period is well underway and while these games likely won’t have any real influence on how a team performs in the regular season, which starts in September, these games are a chance for mainly second stringers and players seeking to earn a roster spot to shine.

Most team’s first choice stars will either sit out or play limited downs over the pre-season, with many teams seeking to ease the workload on their starters in the face of a 17-game regular season, followed hopefully by the playoffs.

It will also be a chance for a number of NFL Draft rookies to get some game time under their belt.

That said, you can be sure that all 32 NFL teams are already planning for their opening game of the season and the remainder of their Regular Season schedule, with the first aim to be winning enough games to earn a playoff spot.

This season, we start off the new NFL Regular Season with a game that could potentially grace the Super Bowl next February as the Super Bowl holders, the Los Angeles Rams face this year’s Super Bowl favourites in the betting the Buffalo Bills.

That’s just one of a number of intriguing matches set to take place over the course of the season and you can now bet on the first week of games, as well as the final outcome of each of the 8 divisions with Bet365 Sport.

So, what we have done is go through each of the divisions and give you our pick for who will win each one and why.

The odds shown for each team listed below are for them to win their respective division and those odds were correct with bet365 at the time of writing but may have changed since.  

AFC Conference – Who Wins Each Division?

AFC East

  • Buffalo Bills – 1/2
  • New England Patriots – 17/4
  • Miami Dolphins – 4/1
  • New York Jets – 18/1

The AFC East used to be the preserve of the Patriots who have dominated it for close on 25 years now, but they are no longer the force they were and in truth, the Buffalo Bills should win this division easily given the talent that they have in the team.

In fact, the Patriots may struggle this season with the Dolphins making some key signings, I think they could really challenge for a spot in the playoffs and will finish second in the division with the Patriots third just ahead of the improving Jets.

Predicted Final Standings

  1. Buffalo Bills – 14-3 (1st)
  2. Miami Dolphins – 10-7 (7th)
  3. New England Patriots – 7-10
  4. New York Jets – 6-10

AFC North

  • Baltimore Ravens – 2/1
  • Cleveland Browns – 2/1
  • Cincinnati Bengals – 2/1
  • Pittsburgh Steelers – 9/1

A division which will be influenced by whether Deshaun Watson misses the whole season, or just a few games for the Browns. If the QB is out for the season, then those 2/1 odds on the Browns winning the tough North will drift massively.

So to me, this division is between the Ravens and Bengals and I think after an injury ravaged season last time around, the Ravens will be keen to prove they are a much better team than they were last year. I see them and the Bengals making the playoffs, with the Browns and Steelers missing out.

Predicted Final Standings

  1. Baltimore Ravens – 12-5 (3rd)
  2. Cincinnati Bengals – 11-6 (5th)
  3. Cleveland Browns – 6-11
  4. Pittsburgh Steelers – 6-11

AFC West

  • Denver Broncos – 5/2
  • Kansas City Chiefs – 8/5
  • Las Vegas Raiders – 6/1
  • Los Angeles Chargers – 12/5

Perhaps the most talented division in personnel terms in the history of the NFL, with four stellar quarterbacks and plenty of support for all four teams, I think this division will be decided by the games between each teams.

I am backing the Chiefs to do just enough to edge the top spot with the Chargers finishing second just ahead of the Broncos, although if those two places are reversed I would not be unduly surprised. I think the Raiders may struggle a little here compared to the other three teams.

Predicted Final Standings

  1. Kansas City Chiefs – 12-5 (2nd)
  2. Los Angeles Chargers – 10-7 (6th)
  3. Denver Broncos – 9-8
  4. Las Vegas Raiders – 6-11

AFC South

  • Houston Texans – 28/1
  • Jacksonville Jaguars – 7/1
  • Indianapolis Colts – 10/11
  • Tennessee Titans – 7/5

The arrival of Matt Ryan at QB should be enough to propel the Colts back into top spot in the AFC South this season, especially with the Titans trading away key WR A.J.Brown to the Eagles during the draft.

Tennessee will probably finish second in the table, but whether they do enough to make the playoffs I feel is doubtful as I think they have taken a step back from last season. The Jaguars will improve a little and the Houston Texans will probably bring up the rear well off the pace of the other teams.

Predicted Final Standings

  1. Indianapolis Colts – 11-6 (4th)
  2. Tennessee Titans – 9-8
  3. Jacksonville Jaguars – 6-11
  4. Houston Texans – 3-14
NFL History

NFC Conference – Who Wins Each Division?

NFC East

  • Dallas Cowboys – 23/20
  • New York Giants – 8/1
  • Philadelphia Eagles – 9/5
  • Washington Commanders – 5/1

I think this will be one of the closer races for the divisional title and I actually feel the Eagles and Cowboys may finish with the same 11-6 record with perhaps Dallas edging it on their divisional record, or conference head to head.

Both the Eagles and Cowbioys should make the playoffs, and they may even face each other in the Wildcard round, but I think it will be a tough season for both the Giants and Commanders who I think will be well off the pace being set by the top two.

Predicted Final Standings

  1. Dallas Cowboys – 11-6 (4th)
  2. Philadelphia Eagles – 11-6 (5th)
  3. New York Giants – 6-11
  4. Washington Commanders – 4-13

NFC North

  • Chicago Bears – 17/2
  • Detroit Lions – 10/1
  • Green Bay Packers – 5/9
  • Minnesota Vikings – 11/4

Can anybody stop the Packers in the NFC North? Not this season I feel as Aaron Rodgers and his team still look by far and away the strongest of the four teams in the division, despite both the Bears and Lions improving on last season’s showings in my view.

I see this as a division where the Packers win the conference well, but it is a close battle between the. Vikings and Bears with the latter just edging past the former on the final day of the season and with it clinching a spot in the playoffs. The Lions will still be fourth, but will improve once again this season.

Predicted Final Standings

  1. Green Bay Packers – 12-5 (3rd)
  2. Chicago Bears – 9-8 (7th)
  3. Minnesota Vikings 8-9
  4. Detroit Lions 5-12

NFC West

  • Arizona Cardinals – 16/5
  • Los Angeles Rams – 27/20
  • San Francisco 49ers – 7/4
  • Seattle Seahawks – 12/1

Three teams from the NFC West qualified for the playoffs last season and while I don’t think that will happen again this season, I do feel this division will see two make it through. They will be, according to my predictions, the Super Bowl holders, the LA Rams and the San Francisco 49ers.

The Rams should dominate the division and I think they will be pushing hard for top seed in the NFC. The 49ers will also claim a playoff spot easily but I think the Cardinals will miss out with the Seahawks being well off the pace being set by the other teams.

Predicted Final Standings

  1. Los Angeles Rams – 13-4 (2nd)
  2. San Francisco 49ers – 10-7 (6th)
  3. Arizona Cardinals – 7-10
  4. Seattle Seahawks – 4-13

NFC South

  • Atlanta Falcons – 20/1
  • Carolina Panthers – 12/1
  • New Orleans Saints – 4/1
  • Tampa Bay Buccaneers – 2/7

I think this is one of the easier divisions to predict as Tampa Bay, now that Tom Brady has un-retired, are now the quality team in this division and I think they will dominate it to run out comfortable winners and do enough to pick up top seed in the NFC.

Of the others, I feel the Saints are comfortably the best, but I am not sure they will do enough to reach the playoffs, while it looks like being a tough season for the Falcons and Panthers once again.

Predicted Final Standings

  1. Tampa Bay Buccaneers – 13-4 (1st)
  2. New Orleans Saints – 8-9
  3. Carolina Panthers – 5-12
  4. Atlanta Falcons – 3-14

If these predictions prove correct, this would give us the following Playoff Scenarios

AFC Playoffs

Bye  – Buffalo Bills (14-3)

  • Miami Dolphins (7) @ Kansas City Chiefs (2)
  • Los Angeles Chargers (6) @ Baltimore Ravens (3)
  • Cincinnati Bengals (5) @ Indianapolis Colts (4)

NFC Playoffs

Bye – Tampa Bay Buccaneers (13-4)

  • Chicago Bears (7) @ Los Angeles Rams (2)
  • San Francisco 49ers (6) @ Green Bay Packers (3)
  • Philadelphia Eagles (5) @ Dallas Cowboys (4)

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