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 Nick Chubb’s longest rush
Just keep riding this one 一 the over on Nick Chubb’s longest rush looks like a great play almost every week.
Nick Chubb’s longest rush, current line:
- Take the over at 19.5 or lower
For the first time this season under was a winner for Chubb’s longest rush prop last week, as his longest attempt went for “only” 18 yards. But considering the degree to which New England sold out to stop the Browns’ run game, Chubb’s ability to break off an 18-yard run should only boost our confidence in his big-play ability.
The Baltimore Ravens are allowing five or more yards before contact to opposing running backs on 16% of attempts, the second-highest rate in the NFL per TruMedia.
With extra room to run in this matchup, expect Chubb to break off at least one 20-yard gain on Sunday afternoon.
Consider the over on Caleb Huntley’s rushing yards
Last week we successfully played the over on Caleb Huntley’s rushing yards, and he draws an even better matchup this week against the Cincinnati Bengals.
Caleb Huntley’s rushing yards prop, current line:
- Take the over at 37.5 or lower
As I mentioned last week, the books don’t seem to have noticed just how good the Atlanta Falcons run game has been this season.
Cordarrelle Patterson hit the over in two of his three full games, and both Huntley and Tyler Allgeier have hit their overs in the two games without Patterson.
The Falcons’ rushing success stems from a dominant offensive line, which is creating three or more yards before contact on 32% of carries, the league’s highest rate per TruMedia.
Atlanta ran the ball well last week against one of the league’s best run defenses in the 49ers. Now they face the Bengals, who have allowed three or more yards before contact at the league’s sixth-highest rate (28%).
The Bengals have also been susceptible to giving up big plays on the ground, as they rank 23rd in the percentage of attempts gaining 10 or more yards.
Huntley’s yardage prop has been available at 27.5 in each of the last two weeks. Even if it rises by 10 yards, the over still looks like a good bet in this matchup.
Consider the under on Joe Mixon’s longest rush
The Bengals’ run game has been among the least explosive this season, so take the under on Joe Mixon’s longest rush against Atlanta.
Joe Mixon’s longest rush, current line:
- Take the under at 14.5 or higher
Mixon has been one of the least explosive running backs this year, gaining 15 or more yards just once on 104 carries.
This is mostly due to the inability of the Bengals’ offensive line to create running lanes for Mixon 一 he’s gained three or more yards before contact at the league’s 10th lowest rate (out of 50 qualified running backs), per TruMedia.
Atlanta does not have a dominant run defense, but it’s much improved from 2021.
The Falcons ranked dead last in the rate of giving up three or more yards before contact last year, but are 16th this season.
Atlanta also ranks 12th in the percentage of carries by running backs producing 15 or more yards.
Given the Bengals’ inability to create room for Mixon to run, even a league-average run defense like Atlanta looks like a tough matchup.
Consider the over on George Kittle’s receptions
The Chiefs’ use of two-high safety formations makes it a good opportunity to take the over on George Kittle’s receptions prop.
George Kittle’s receptions prop, current line:
- Take the over at 4.5 or lower
Outside the red zone, Kansas City uses two-high coverages on 65% of opponent dropbacks, the league’s second-highest rate, per TruMedia. This keeps the middle of the field open at a higher rate 一 exactly where the 49ers use Kittle.
When facing two-high coverage schemes, Kittle leads the team with a 32% target share since returning to the field in Week 3, according to TruMedia. This trend held true last year as well 一 when healthy he led the team with a 24% target share versus two-high coverage.
Consider the under on Cole Kmet’s receptions
Kmet has hit the over on his receptions in just two of six games, with the line consistently staying at 2.5 receptions.
Cole Kmet’s receptions prop, current line:
- Take the under at 2.5 or higher
Last week I recommended the under for David Njoku’s receptions against the New England Patriots based on their lack of two-high safety formations. Those formations tend to leave the middle of the field open, creating more opportunities for tight ends.
According to TruMedia, New England ranks dead last in two-high usage (17%) which should continue to diminish tight end usage against the Patriots.
Based on Bill Belichick’s tendency to take away what the opponent does best, there’s further reason to bet the under on Kmet in this matchup.
Chicago’s most dangerous asset on offense is Justin Fields’s running ability. So we should assume Belichick wants to force Fields to make decisions from the pocket.
This is Fields’s weakness, and when he hangs in the pocket for an extended period of time, Kmet’s usage declines.
Based on data from TruMedia, take a look at Kmet’s target share based on Fields’s time to throw:
- Throws in under 3.0 seconds: 17.1%
- Throws after 3.0 seconds: 5.1%
Assuming New England does attempt this strategy of forcing Fields to hang in the pocket, we should expect another slow day for Kmet.
Consider the under on Marcus Maye’s tackles
Due to the Cardinals’ fast-paced offense, Marcus Maye has a high number for his tackles prop, giving us a good opportunity to bet the under on Thursday night, based on his role in the New Orleans Saints defense.
Marcus Maye’s tackles prop, current line:
Marcus Maye has lined up at free safety on 70% of his snaps this season, a role which should diminish his tackling output against the Cardinals.
Murray throws 10 or more yards downfield on 27% of his attempts, which ranks 25th out of 32 quarterbacks, per TruMedia. Additionally, 27% of his attempts do not cross the line of scrimmage, the fifth highest rate.
Since the Cardinals’ offense favors shorter routes, deep safeties have fewer tackle opportunities.
Players lined up at free safety have averaged only 5.5 tackles per game against Arizona. Players lined up at strong safety or in the slot, have averaged 10.2 tackles per game.
Maye did record nine tackles in a game earlier this year, but that was against the Falcons. Marcus Mariota throws 10 or more yards downfield at the league’s highest rate, so Mayes’ elevated tackle count was to be expected.
In Maye’s other two games, he recorded four tackles in each.