NFL Week 5 Player Props: Pick for Cooper Rush in Cowboys vs Rams
Cooper Neill/Getty Images. Pictured: Cooper Rush.
- Sean Koerner is back for Week 5 in the NFL player props market.
- The Oddsmaker has made seven picks for Sunday, which he breaks down below.
Under 23.5 Receiving Yards (-115, BetMGM)
Bellinger had been splitting time with Tanner Hudson over the first 3 games, but in Week 4, Bellinger’s routes run rate dropped to 36%, while Hudson jumped up to 82%.
I’m not expecting that big of a game in playing time again this week, but it’s clear that Bellinger is operating as the No. 2 TE in a low-volume passing offense. He has needed to generate 78% of his yardage after the catch, thanks to a very short aDot of 2.2.
There is a chance he could be held under this number even if he hauls in three passes. I’m projecting his median closer to 18.5 and would bet this down to 22.5.
Over 25.5 Receiving Yards (-115)
After missing practice again on Friday, it looks like Brevin Jordan could miss his third straight game. The Texans also cut Pharaoh Brown earlier this week, so it’ll likely be O.J. Howard and Jordan Akins at TE against the Jags.
Howard had a season-high 67% routes run rate in Week 4 and I’m expecting similar usage this week. We have to remember that he joined Houston during Week 1, so it was always going to take him a few weeks to learn the playbook.
This is also a great matchup as the Jaguars rank 28th in DVOA against opposing TEs. They also use zone coverage at the 12th highest rate — Howard has 3.35 yards per route run against zone this season and has yet to catch a pass against man coverage. I’m projecting him closer to 33.5 and would bet this up to 27.5.
Over 18.5 Rushing Yards (-110, DraftKings)
Pickett is making his first career start in a tough spot as the Steelers are 14-point underdogs on the road against the Bills. He is a pretty savvy rusher and was responsible for the “fake slide” touchdown run in his collegiate days:
KENNY PICKETT FAKED THE SLIDE AND RAN 58 YARDS FOR THE TD 😱 pic.twitter.com/EypNNJZYHE
— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) December 5, 2021
It was a small sample size, but Pickett scrambled on 17% of his dropbacks last week against the Jets when NOT facing pressure and had a 25% scramble rate when facing pressure.
There is no way he will be able to maintain that going forward, but I do think we see him opt to scramble at a high rate as he adjusts to the NFL.
I'm projecting Pickett closer to 24.5 rushing yards as the Steelers will likely be in a trailing game script that forces him to drop back a ton. Buffalo's defense will also likely pressure him at a high rate. I would bet this up to 20.5.
Under 15.5 Rushing Attempts (-114, FanDuel)
The Steelers will likely lean on the run early to help take pressure off of Kenny Pickett, but considering the Bills allow the second-lowest Y/C to RBs (3.10) — not to mention they are 14-point favorites — I expect Pittsburgh to abandon the ground game early.
Harris hasn’t been dominating the backfield as much this season thanks to the emergence of Jaylen Warren, who has been getting 3-4 carries per game the past few weeks. Warren has averaged 5.0 yards per carry, so we might see him eat into Harris’ role even more going forward as the Steelers look to spark their running game.
I’m projecting Harris closer to 14.5 rush attempts, but there are more paths to a floor game so I would bet this down to -130.
Under 3.5 Receptions (+115, DraftKings)
Mooney is coming off his best game of the season, going for 4/94/0 against the Giants. He only saw five targets in that game and typically needs a lot of things to go his way in order to clear 3.5 receptions given his enormous aDot of 16.7.
I would project Mooney to catch around 55% of his targets based on his current route tree, and it’s easier to illustrate this by looking at his NextGenStats route chart from Week 4.
Mooney had almost no margin for error to finish with four receptions. His 56-yard reception was on a pass that traveled 59 yards through the air, with two defenders on him.
Nothing is too imposing about his matchup against the Vikings, and he could fly over his yardage prop (49.5 yards) on just a couple of catches — but I think the best way to fade Mooney is on his receptions prop.
I’m giving him a 60% chance to be held to fewer than 3.5 receptions and love the plus odds we are getting. I would bet this down to +100.
Over 15.5 Rushing Attempts (-114, FanDuel)
Williams has dominated the Lions' backfield with D’Andre Swift sidelined, accounting for 76% of the team’s rush attempts.
The Lions rank fourth in early down run rate (in neutral situations) which gives Williams a very high floor in this market. He was able to rack up 19 rush attempts last week despite the Lions trailing by at least 10 points for much of the game.
I expect a tighter game script against the Patriots, and I’m projecting him closer to 17.5 attempts. I would bet this up to -135.
Under 5.5 Rushing Yards (-125, BetMGM)
Rush is one of four quarterbacks who has yet to scramble despite facing pressure 30-plus times this year. His longest run of the season came last week on a six-yard run that was mainly due to the Commanders leaving a wide-open lane to the right. He also took a hard hit after attempting to slide.
I doubt that play will be in his repertoire against the Rams based on his statuesque scramble rate and Los Angeles' inability to generate pressure (last in pressure rate). I’m projecting this closer to 3.5.
Yes, this prop is ugly, but I’m projecting Rush to stay under this number around 62% of the time. I would bet it down to -135.