NFL Week 1 Player Props: Picks, Predictions for Chiefs vs Cardinals & Giants vs Titans
Maddie Meyer/Getty Images. Pictured: Daniel Jones.
Congrats everyone! You successfully survived another NFL offseason and have finally made it to Week 1 Football.
This is the most interesting week of the season. Data has not accumulated yet and a lot of unknowns are bound to get revealed. I’ll be taking a lot of notes while watching “Red Zone” on my couch as usual. Be careful not to overreact with results on Monday.
Without a further ado, let’s dive into my two spotlight props to take on Sunday’s late slate of games.
NFL Week 1 Player Props
Over 19.5 Yards — Longest Reception
In his 2021 season with the Packers, Valdes-Scantling ranked second among all NFL wide receivers who had a minimum of 20 catches with a 17.91 Average Depth of Target (aDOT). His specialty is vertical routes that develop down the field.
Impressively enough, Valdes-Scantling has had a 20-plus-yard reception in 11 of 16 games where he has caught at least two passes dating all the way back to 2020. He was signed by the Chiefs in the offseason to stretch the field and should thrive with one of the game’s elite downfield passers in Patrick Mahomes.
Kansas City’s matchup against the Cardinals should be an exciting up-tempo shootout. This offseason, the Cardinals lost their best pass rusher in DE Chandler Jones (10.5 sacks) and rangy LB Jordan Hicks. J.J Watt is questionable and could potentially miss Week 1, and CB Travon Mullen has already been ruled out.
Mahomes will have plenty of time to look for Valdes-Scantling downfield since he’s being protected by Pro Football Focus’ No. 9 offensive line. The Chiefs overhauled their offensive line in the offseason and it should be a much-improved unit.
Valdes-Scantling’s field-stretching prowess has made him a poster boy for long-reception props. Bet on him to keep that production going in a high-scoring affair in Arizona in Week 1.
Over 32.5 Passing Attempts
New Giants head coach Brian Daboll is widely known for his offensive philosophy and spread-style scheme. He used it in 2021 to create an up-tempo Bills offense that helped Josh Allen thrive. I expect this to help Giants this season and to play to Daniel Jones strengths in the passing game.
It is going to be a very tough game for the G-Men to establish the run. The way to beat the Titans was not on the ground last season. Opposing running backs averaged 21.4 rushing attempts against the Titans, which ranked last amongst all NFL teams. The Titans’ rush defense was also able to limit explosiveness allowing a measly 3.9 yards per carry, ranking 29th in the league.
The Rams, Saints and Buccaneers were three of the five teams that also excel in the category. Jones had 51, 40, and 38 passing attempts against them, respectively.
If he can’t beat them on the ground, this will require Danny Dimes to beat them through the air. Jones averaged 37.5 passing attempts, going over the prop in four of the six losses he started last season.
The likely game flow sees the Giants likely having to play catchup. That means Jones will be airing it out plenty.