TOP 5 NFL PLAYER PROPS
The NFL season is almost here! Training camp noise is loud and the hype trains have left the station. This is the best time of year for NFL fans because all 32 teams technically have a chance. Every team is looking at things as “glass half full”, with the hope they all take a step further. But let’s be honest, not every team will. This is the NFL, where we see supposed power houses fall due to a Week 1 ACL tear.
There are a ton of different storylines to get lost in. With Tyreek Hill in Miami, will Mahomes return with great production? Or will Tua benefit from throwing to the fastest man on the field? Could Matt Ryan achieve what Carson Wentz could only dream of: winning the lowly AFC South? We also have another strong rookie class chomping at the bit to be the next Ja’Marr Chase.
There is also a lot of nonsense out there leading up to the beginning of the season. The hardest part is determining what’s real and what’s fluff. Below are five of my favorite season-long player prop bets. With season-long bets I’d rather find a few I love and hammer them, instead of trying to predict too much and ending up in the hole. All of these plays should be wagered at 2 units. Let’s crack the book hard this NFL season!
Michael Pittman O/ 1,025 Receiving Yards (-112)
Michael Pittman Jr looks poised to take a bigger step forward in 2022, after beating this number last year with an arguably worse quarterback. Carson Wentz wasn’t completely awful, but the Colts weren’t happy in the slightest. Indy brings in former Atlanta Falcons quarterback Matt Ryan to hopefully take this offense back to the exciting days of Peyton Manning and Andrew Luck. Keyword “hopefully”. He is the Colts 3rd attempt at bringing in a veteran FA since Andrew Luck suddenly retired. Thankfully they have all the pieces to be solid, and one those key pieces is Michael Pittman Jr. He has shown the ability to win at the line of scrimmage, make tough catches, and so far in camp, he has a connection with Matt Ryan. Since 2014, the leading receiver for Matt Ryan has smashed this number, apart from an abysmal 2021. That could be more due to lack of talent than anything, as Calvin Ridley had the lowest yardage total during that period of time with 1,374 yards. I think it’s completely possible Ryan’s habit to hyper-target the best option, paired with Jonathan Taylor keeping the defense honest, could allow Pittman to put up big numbers. This seems like a smash play.
Mike Williams O/ 905.0 Receiving Yards (-108)
This is another bet where I feel the talent plus the value is just too hard to pass up. For starters, Fanduel has Justin Herbert as the favorite to lead the league in yards, he has better odds at MVP than Aaron Rodgers, and his line is 4,600 yards for the year. How are all of these things possible without the former #7 overall pick surpassing this total? Williams has developed a connection with Herbert. He is coming off a career year of 1,146 yards and 9 touchdowns. It seems like everyone across the country thinks the Chargers are poised to win the AFC West. Their best shot at that happening is Williams exploiting defenses over the top and elevating this offense. Personally, I think next year we see this line jump to 1,100 so let’s take advantage while we still can.
Christian McCaffery Wins Comeback Player of the Year (+800)
Who is more likely to get the credit if the Carolina offense gets back on track? On 31 other teams the answer would be the QB. Yet the NFL nation has heralded McCaffery as the major reason for the successes and failures. Coach Rhule is on the hot seat a little bit here as well. His 10-23 record over the last two years leaves a lot to be desired. The offense has never really taken off like everyone originally thought they would when Rhule was hired. With his back up against the wall, Matt Rhule would be silly not to feed the best player on the team. This award also has a tendency to go to a player with a great story. If CMC can get back up to that 1,800 total yard mark, with 10+ touchdowns. I don’t know someone else that can beat him. Especially if the Panthers can sniff .500 again.
Kirk Cousins O/ 4200.5 Passing Yards
The Cousins slander has got to stop. He isn’t the greatest QB in the league, but he has finished a top 10 quarterback by year’s end for throughout most of his career. This 4,200 number seems a little too low. Kirk has spent his entire Vikings tenure in what was regarded as a “run first” style offense. Despite that, he hit the over on this mark in 3 of his 4 seasons in Minnesota. Now he gets a new head coach with a completely different mindset. Kevin O’Connell has spent the last two seasons with the Los Angeles Rams, and he is hoping to bring that offensive success over to The Purple People Eaters. Last year Stafford threw for 4,800 yards. No one is saying that this Vikings offense is just as good as the 2021 Rams, but it is extremely difficult to see how this offense doesn’t throw for something closer to 4,500 yards. Take Captain Kirk to the cash counter.
Derrick Henry U/ 1350.0 Rushing yards
The whole article couldn’t be totally optimistic. Sadly, not every player is going to hit their season totals, and I think Henry unfortunately has another down year. For starters, 1,300 is an egregious number. Last year only Jonathan Taylor hit that mark. Now, Henry has shown the ability to put the team on his back. His 2,000-yard season just a couple years ago isn’t forgotten, especially when we think about the carries. Henry has four straight seasons with 215+ carries. He is entering his age 28 season and history tells us that running backs begin to show decline right around this age. The Titans themselves have question marks and with one of their best passing options no longer on the team, defenses are more likely to stack the box. No one will forget King Henry, but it looks like someone else is on the throne now.