Justin Fields Favored to Throw Most Interceptions

Justin Fields is the betting favorite to throw the most interceptions according to one sportsbook. However, Matthew Stafford is portrayed as the true favorite.

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Justin Fields was one of eighteen quarterbacks to throw at least one interception in Week 1 of the 2022 NFL season. Taken alone, that should not make him the favorite to throw the most INTs during the whole season. However, at least one major sportsbook has Fields as the outright leader to lead the NFL from that unflattering perspective this season (source: bet365).

Fields, Chicago’s top quarterback, is 9 to 1 in the category (+900; 9/1) and the market leader, just ahead of Matthew Stafford, Baker Mayfield, and Joe Burrow. The latter is the player that leads the league in INTs thus far. Burrow threw four interceptions in Week 1, a performance that contributed to a loss to the Pittsburgh Steelers.

Why Would Justin Fields Have This Reputation?

What exactly would make Fields the favorite? To lead the league in interceptions, you need to achieve the perfect blend of two polarizing factors: you have to have a penchant for throwing INTs, of course, but you also need to take a lot of snaps.

The more INTs you throw, the less likely you are to win favor with the coaching staff that determines whether or not you play. Last year, Sam Darnold was one of the favorites to throw the most INTs, however, throwing INTs was part of the reason that he ended up benched. Once benched, you’re not throwing for anything. The “Most Interceptions” market is truly a tricky one to assess.

Fields, a work-in-progress quarterback, can expect loads of snap as Chicago looks to develop him. Yet, despite this playing time that he should receive he’s not exactly a refined QB yet. You could see why someone might think he’s likely to throw some picks this season.

Chicago’s QB Should Not be the Favorite to Lead the NFL in INTs

But Fields only threw 10 INTs last season in 12 games. The league leaders last year, both Trevor Lawrence and Matthew Stafford, had 17 in 17 games. It seems that the oddsmakers and the bettors that affect the odds have been a little cruel to Fields, someone who should be a peripheral favorite in this market.

Matthew Stafford the True Favorite

The true favorite actually looks like Stafford. He’s a threat to throw an INT even when he is having a good game. He had two in the league championship last season, one that his side won.

The 34-year-old Stafford started the season all wrong in Week 1, throwing three INTs against the Buffalo Bills. Furthermore, the Super Bowl-winning quarterback from last season probably won’t be benched — even if he keeps throwing too many picks. Such a move, even if smart from a football perspective, would not sit well with the fanbase. Besides that, there’s not much of anything in the depth chart to replace Stafford.

That Stafford threw 3 INTs to start the season doesn’t mean he will throw 51 (ie. 17 games x 3 INTs per game) during the whole season. However, if 17 INTs leads the league again, then Stafford is well on his way. 10 to 1 looks like a good value bet for anyone opening in this market (+1000; 10/1).

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