Freedman’s NFL Wild Card Prop Betting Picks: Back Carson Wentz To Throw for the Most Yards?
Mike Stobe/Getty Images. Pictured: Carson Wentz
I love the NFL playoffs because sportsbooks increase the number and types of props they post, and a lot of them offer value.
While I always bet player props — check out my favorites for Wild Card Weekend as well as the FantasyLabs Player Props Tool — in the postseason I especially am drawn to the props for most passing, rushing and receiving yardage in each round.
Sean Koerner has a great article breaking down his projected odds for all the yardage leader props, and I’ve certainly relied on it while making my bets.
This season, I’m 317-206-10 (+63.1) on NFL player props.
Here are the three yardage leader props I have for Wild Card Weekend.
Find yardage leader props at FanDuel, where Action Network users get a risk-free bet up to $500.
Eagles QB Carson Wentz: Most Passing Yards +700
It’s easy to overlook Wentz because of all the injuries to his pass-catching options.
No. 1 wide receiver Alshon Jeffery (foot, IR) is out, as is No. 2 wide receiver DeSean Jackson (abdomen, IR). No. 3 wide receiver Nelson Agholor (knee) has been out since Week 14 and will once again be inactive this weekend.
No. 1 tight end Zach Ertz (ribs, back) is reportedly dealing with a lacerated kidney. He missed Week 17 and is questionable at best. Even if he plays, he’ll be operating at far less than full capacity.
And No. 1 pass-catching back Darren Sproles (hip, IR) is out.
But Wentz has been without his top wide receivers for almost all of the past month, and over the past four games, he’s averaged 299.8 yards passing.
Playing at home, Wentz is on the positive side of his passing splits (per RotoViz Game Splits App).
- Home (eight games): 39.8 attempts, 264.3 yards
- Away (eight games): 36.1 attempts, 240.6 yards
The Seahawks have allowed 275.4 yards passing per game to opposing quarterbacks this year — the league’s sixth-highest average.
Given Wentz’s recent form and matchup, I’d bet him down to +550.
Texans RB Carlos Hyde: Most Rushing Yards +900
Koerner makes a strong case for Hyde in his article, so there’s little need for me to do so here, but I’ll say this: He is a home favorite with an average of 18.4 carries per game in victory, and the Bills have a funnel defense that ranks No. 5 against the pass but No. 18 against the run (per Football Outsiders’ DVOA metric).
I expect the Texans will attack the Bills on the ground, and Hyde has had 18-plus carries in six games this year. If he hits that threshold, he’ll have a real shot to win this prop.
I’d bet on Hyde down to +500.
Patriots WR Julian Edelman: Most Receiving Yards +1200
The thesis for investing in Edelman is pretty simple: Since wide receiver Josh Gordon’s Week 6 injury, Edelman has averaged 10.2 targets per game. He’s likely to get a lot of targets this weekend.
Since Week 15, Edelman has been significantly hampered by shoulder and knee injuries, but he apparently feels better now than he has over the past few weeks (per NESN’s Doug Kyed). If we remove the limited Weeks 15-17 from the post-Gordon sample, Edelman has averaged 11.8 targets per game as the clear No. 1 wide receiver for the Pats.
Quarterback Tom Brady seems highly likely to rely on Edelman, who has averaged an obscene 12.4 targets per game in the postseason since the 2013-14 playoffs.
Since No. 1 cornerback Malcolm Butler’s season-ending injury in Week 9, the Titans defense has ranked No. 30 in pass success rate allowed (per Sharp Football Stats), so the overall matchup is good.
On top of that, Edelman will be specifically matched up in the slot with cornerback Logan Ryan, who was with the Patriots for the 2013-16 seasons. I think Edelman’s familiarity with Ryan gives him a big edge, and Ryan has struggled this year, allowing a position-high 114 targets, 80 receptions and 940 yards.
With the advantageous matchup and expected boost in volume, Edelman is enticing. I’m pushing this further than Koerner’s projected odds, but I see immense upside in Edelman and would bet on him all the way down to +800.
Freedman is 551-427-22 (56.3%) overall betting on the NFL. To see the rest of the player props he’s betting, follow him in The Action Network App as he’ll continue to fill out his prop card throughout the weekend.