In this weekly NFL player props preview, we’ll highlight some bets you should consider for the upcoming week. Since player props typically aren’t posted until closer to game day, this early preview will look at some particularly favorable or unfavorable matchups that could become actionable.
This doesn’t mean we should automatically bet on these props, but these are some of the first players to check when lines are posted. Hopefully, oddsmakers haven’t identified the same trends as us, and we can find favorable value on these player props.
Also, be sure to check out the Sharp Angles Betting Podcast every Wednesday for further discussion on these player props and more betting advice for the week ahead.
Consider the over on Josh Allen’s longest rush and rushing yards props
Expect Josh Allen to do some damage with his legs against the Detroit Lions 一 take the over on his longest rush prop.
Josh Allen’s longest rush prop, current line:
Josh Allen’s rushing yards prop, current line:
Allen’s longest rush has gone over 15 yards in seven of 10 games, including seven of his last eight.
He gets a great matchup this week against a Lions team that has allowed a run of at least 16 yards to six different quarterbacks.
It’s also tempting to play the over on Allen’s total rushing yards.
Based on opponent-adjusted data from TruMedia, Detroit has allowed a league-worst 70% more rushing yards than expected, based on its yards per attempt allowed compared to each quarterback’s rate against other opponents.
Take a look at a few notable mobile quarterbacks and their yards per attempt output against Detroit, compared to other defenses.
QB Yds/Att vs DET Yds/Att vs Others Justin Fields 11.3 6.3 Jalen Hurts 5.3 3.8 Daniel Jones 7.1 5.6 Geno Smith 7.0 4.4
The risk in placing either of these bets, is due the potential for a blowout. In an easy win against Cleveland last week, Allen carried the ball just three times for seven yards.
Consider the under on D’Andre Swift’s rushing yards prop
The Bills are a tough matchup for D’Andre Swift, who has seen a diminished role in recent weeks 一 take the under on his rushing yards prop.
D’Andre Swift’s rushing yards prop, current line:
The Bills rank 16th in yards per attempt allowed to running backs (4.2), but it’s been a strange path to get there.
Let’s break down that yardage allowed to running backs further, with help from TruMedia:
- 0.5 yards before contact per attempt allowed (leads league)
- 3.7 yards after contact per attempt allowed (ranked 31st)
Based on this bizarre breakdown we should expect certain running backs who excel at fighting through early contact to fare well against Buffalo 一 Aaron Jones and Dalvin Cook fall into that category and each had strong games against the Bills.
Swift, however, is at his best in space and does not handle early contact well.
Swift is averaging 1.3 yards per attempt when given one or fewer yards before contact, which ranks 52nd out of 53 qualified running backs per TruMedia.
Although Swift’s sample size is fairly small this year, fighting through contact has never been his strength. Here’s a look at his yards per attempt with one or fewer yards before contact throughout his career:
- 2022: 1.3
- 2021: 1.5
- 2020: 1.8
Even during his most productive season in 2020, Swift only ranked 47th out of 63 qualified ball carriers.
Consider the over on Amon-Ra St. Brown’s receptions prop
We’ve used the Bills’ unique defense approach to our advantage in the past, and this week it looks like Amon-Ra St. Brown could be the beneficiary 一 take the over on St. Brown’s receptions.
Amon-Ra St. Brown’s receptions prop, current line:
Since the Lions traded T.J. Hockenson to Minnesota, St. Brown has a ridiculous 38% target share. Without many other options, Detroit clearly wants to feed him the ball.
Jared Goff may find it easier than usual to get the ball to St. Brown in this matchup based on the Bills’ heavy reliance on two-high coverage.
Outside the red zone, Buffalo uses two-high coverage on 61% of opponent dropbacks, the second-highest rate in the league, per TruMedia.
Since the Hockenson trade, St. Brown’s target share against two-high coverage is 43%.
Two-high coverage creates more opportunities in the middle of the field, so with St. Brown frequently lined up in the slot, it makes sense that he would be getting more opportunities in this scenario.
Buffalo also uses the combination of zone coverage with no blitz at one of the highest rates in the league. Their overall usage has dipped, but that appears to be due to Jordan Poyer’s injury.
Poyer returned to the field against the Browns, and Buffalo uses the zone coverage/no blitz combo on 72% of plays outside the red zone with Poyer on the field.
The Bills use this scheme because they trust their defense to keep the play in front of them and limit big plays (especially with Poyer out there), but it does allow for more receptions.
Take a look at the effect it has on Brown’s catch rate:
- 77.4% catch rate vs zone coverage/no blitz
- 68.1% catch rate vs all other coverages
All these factors should create easy opportunities for St. Brown to rack up the receptions in this matchup.
Consider the over on Tony Pollard’s rushing yards prop
Bet the over on Tony Pollard’s rushing yards prop, and expect it to be a winner for the seventh consecutive week.
Tony Pollard’s rushing yards prop, current line:
When Pollard crosses the line of scrimmage without contact, he averages 8.4 yards per attempt, the fifth-best mark, according to TruMedia.
That’s bad news for the Giants’ defense, which contacts running backs at or behind the line of scrimmage on just 36% of attempts, the league’s second-worst rate.
Ezekiel Elliott’s status is a factor in this as well.
Elliott suited up last week after missing the previous two games. However, Elliott was a limited participant in practice due to a knee injury and played just 21 snaps.
It’s possible Elliott would have played more if the game were not a blowout 一 but this matchup also has the potential to get ugly, with Dallas favored by nine points.