With just one week left until the official midway point of the NFL season, now is the perfect time to examine some of the most underrated NFL teams in 2022.
At this point, it’s hard for any team to fly completely under the radar. However, there are at least a handful of teams that probably aren’t being given the credit they deserve or being taken seriously as a team that can get to the playoffs.
Underrated NFL teams 2022
But who are the most underrated NFL teams right now? Admittedly, every fan has a right to make that determination on their own. But we have our own thoughts on the subject based on what we’ve seen thus far in 2022 and what we project will happen during the rest of the season.
While you are free to disagree, here is a look at our picks for the five most underrated NFL teams in 2022.
Even with how terrible they’ve been offensively this year, the Broncos could still be one of the most underrated NFL teams in 2022. We’re talking about a 3-5 team that has lost three games by three points or less, including two overtime losses.
While it sounds cliche, the Broncos are truly only a few plays away from having a winning record and completely changing the narrative for their season.
More importantly, the Denver defense is undoubtedly one of the best in the NFL. They’ve allowed 17 points or less in six of their eight games and 19 points or less in all but one game. It wouldn’t take that much of an improvement from Russell Wilson and the offense to turn some of those close losses into twins and get the Broncos moving in the right direction.
With a bye in Week 9, if they can figure out a way to make their offense functional during the extra week of practice, the Broncos will become a team to watch during the second half of the season.
As the last-place team in the NFC East, the Commanders have a long road ahead of them. But on the heels of three straight wins, they are 4-4 and still in the playoff conversation. The defense improved in October after a rough September, keeping Washington in games and giving the Commanders a chance.
To be fair, it’s hard to argue that the Commanders aren’t the worst team in their division, which makes them easy to dismiss. But they’re poised to make some noise before all is said and done, so don’t write off the Commanders just yet.
Nobody is claiming the Patriots are serious Super Bowl contenders in the AFC, but it’s clear that people are underestimating Bill Belichick’s team.
That would certainly be a mistake, especially with the Patriots winning three of four games to close out October. Even as the last-place team in the AFC East at the midway point of the season, they shouldn’t be ruled out as a playoff candidate.
Obviously, the play of Mac Jones is the big x-factor for the Pats. But with the way Belichick schemes, New England can run the ball and play good enough defense to stay in every game. If nothing else, the Patriots have proven this season that they can win on the road, and teams that can do that shouldn’t be overlooked or underestimated.
In a weird way, Jimmy Garoppolo starting for San Francisco as opposed to Trey Lance is better for the 49ers in the short term. Fittingly, Garoppolo has had some ups and downs, which is to be expected with him.
That’s part of the reason why the 49ers are a little underrated right now and not being taken seriously as a contender in the NFC.
But the 49ers still have a top-five defense that’s capable of carrying them despite a couple of subpar games this season, one of which was against the Chiefs. A great defense can be a great equalizer late in the season or in the playoffs.
Plus, don’t give up on the San Francisco offense just yet. The 49ers have added Christian McCaffrey and will get Elijah Mitchell back from injury at some point. With Deebo Samuel, Brandon Aiyuk, and George Kittle, the 49ers have some pieces that can make them a viable contender down the stretch.
On the heels of five straight wins, how can the Titans not be the most underrated NFL team currently?
Most people were probably writing them off after the 0-2 start, but Tennessee is back at the top of the standings in an otherwise dismal AFC South. To be fair, Ryan Tannehill has been subpar, even by his standards. Rookie Malik Willis doesn’t exactly look ready to take over for him, so the Titans are stuck in Tannehill.
But Derrick Henry has come back to life and is somehow one of the most underrated NFL players this season after his sluggish start. Plus, the Titans have allowed just 15.2 points per game during their five-game winning streak.
With a solid defense and a good rushing attack, the Titans can still be a team that’s dangerous in the playoffs, which we’ve seen in the past. Even if they don’t stay hot, it doesn’t look like any other team in the AFC South is going to catch them, which means the Titans will almost certainly be in the playoffs. That means somebody will have to find a way to slow down Henry on a cold January afternoon.