NFL Props To Bet For (Almost) Every Game: Baker Mayfield, Aaron Jones, More Week 1 Player Prop Picks
Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images. Pictured: Baker Mayfield
Sean Koerner, our Director of Predictive Analytics, is highlighting his favorite player props on PrizePicks for every slate throughout the 2021 NFL season — and he has 16 for Sunday’s Week 1 slate, featuring one for almost every afternoon game.
Operating under the daily fantasy umbrella (meaning that they’re available in more states than betting!), PrizePicks offers a unique opportunity for action on player props. Instead of betting on individual props, you parlay two or more together.
Koerner has a 372-278-4 (57%) all-time record on NFL bets he’s tracked in the Action app.
Stefon Diggs Under 7.5 Rec
I expect Josh Allen and Stefon Diggs to remain one of the NFL’s top QB and WR duos. However, it shouldn’t be a surprise to see some regression in 2021. Diggs saw his target share shoot up over the final six games with John Brown out of the lineup. I’m projecting him for 7.1 receptions, but getting the hook of 7.5 on a prop like this is extremely valuable.
Emmanuel Sanders Under 40.5 Rec Yards
Sanders was brought in to replace John Brown and is expected to be in a timeshare with Gabriel Davis to begin the season. However, given he’s been dealing with a foot injury, there is a chance Sanders could be limited and concede some playing time to Davis.
I expect the talented second-year player to overtake Sanders eventually, but if Sanders is already banged up, it could happen as soon as this week. Therefore, I’m projecting this closer to 30.5 and would pick this down to 35.5.
Elijah Moore Over 3.5 Rec
It’s essential to treat the player prop market like a stock market. For example, I made it a point last season to strategically back rookie WRs before they broke out. And Elijah Moore is a rookie wideout who I’m expecting to break out immediately.
Jamison Crowder has already been ruled out, and Keelan Cole is shaping up to be a game-time decision. I expect Moore to snag 4-5 balls in his debut.
Ryan Tannehill Over 245.5 Pass Yards
The Titans offense could be a bit more pass heavy after adding Julio Jones and losing offensive coordinator Arthur Smith. After Malcom Butler’s surprise retirement, it would make sense for the Titans to attack the Cardinals’ shaky secondary.
I’m projecting Tannehill closer to 255.5 yards and would take this up to 250.5.
DeAndre Hopkins Under 7.5 Rec
Similar to Stefon Diggs, I’m projecting Hopkins for 7.1 receptions. The fact we get the hook here with 7.5 gives us quite a bit of value. The Cardinals added ancillary WRs in A.J. Green and Rondale Moore who should chip away at Hopkins’ target share.
Keenan Allen Over 58.5 Rec Yards
The Chargers have a brutal matchup this week at Washington. I’m expecting Herbert to lean on Allen as his first read as a way to avoid taking sacks from Washinton’s elite front four. I would take this up to 60.5
Matt Ryan Under 290.5 Pass Yards
Ryan’s prop continues to climb, but I’m not sure why. The Falcons could be more balanced after trading away Julio Jones and bringing on head coach Arthur Smith. I would pick this to 285.5.
Jalen Reagor Under 44.5 Rec Yards
Reagor is the type of player who has a wide range of outcomes for Week 1. I would not be surprised if he catches 1-2 deep balls and finishes with 100+ yards. However, his median outcome is going to be closer to 38.5 yards.
I would pick this to 41.5.
Ja’Marr Chase Over 40.5 Rec Yards
The market is well aware of the rookie’s recent drop issues, and it’s undoubtedly possible that Chase gets off to a slow start. However, his prop market has fallen way too far. There’s a reason Chase went No. 5 overall in the 2021 NFL Draft — he is one of the better WR talents we have seen this past decade.
I love buying the dip here and would pick this up to 44.5.
T.J. Hockenson Over 42.5 Rec Yards
Hockenson has been dealing with a shoulder injury since Aug. 10, allowing him to slip under the radar heading into the season. However, the Lions have the worst WR depth chart in the league, which means that Hockenson is the odds-on favorite to be Jared Goff’s top target this season and should thus have a high weekly floor.
I would take this up to 44.5.
Baker Mayfield Over 251.5 Pass Yards
The Browns should be forced into a pass-heavy game script to keep up with the Chiefs offense. Therefore, this is the perfect time to invest in Mayfield going over his yardage prop. I would take this up to 256.5.
Clyde Edwards-Helaire Under 59.5 Rush Yards
I am bullish on CEH to have a Year 2 breakout, mainly because I think he’ll be more involved in the passing game. He’s been limited recently due to an ankle injury, which means KC may allow Darrel Williams and Jerick McKinnon to steal a few carries.
I expect the Browns to keep this game close, preventing the Chiefs from having a run-heavy game script. I would take this down to 56.5.
Nelson Agholor Under 42.5 Rec Yards
Agholor could be limited due to an ankle injury. It’s also a brutal matchup where he will see a ton of man coverage by Byron Jones and Xavien Howard. As a result, the Pats will lean on Jakobi Meyers, Jonnu Smith and Hunter Henry in this matchup.
I would take this down to 39.5.
Javonte Williams Over 34.5 Rush Yards
I expect this matchup to be a defensive struggle.
The Broncos naming Teddy Bridgewater as their Week 1 quarterback tells me they plan on running a conservative, run-heavy offense to begin the season. Melvin Gordon and Javonte Williams are expected to split carries early in the season, but it’s only a matter of time until the second-round rookie becomes the lead back.
I would take this up to 36.5.
Aaron Jones Under 65.5 Rush Yards
I would project Jones closer to this number if the game were being held at the Superdome, but it’s been moved to the outdoor, warm weather of Jacksonville. In those situations, running backs tend to get fatigued and need breathers. I expect A.J. Dillion to chip in with a few more carries this week as a result.
It’s also a very tough matchup considering the Saints had the second-best run defense in Football Outsiders’ DVOA.
Marquez Callaway Under 4.5 Rec
Callaway is potentially going to be shadowed by shutdown corner Jaire Alexander. Nevertheless, there’s a good chance that he and Winston can connect for a couple of deep balls, which is why I’m in line with his receiving yards market. However, there is quite a bit of value here on him to go under 4.5 receptions.