My best prop-related prediction of the season was last week, when I wrote here that I was due for some serious regression in terms of luck, since I was getting hosed left and right by 1-2 yards here, and a half a catch there. I got that improved luck last week and rolled to a 12-3 record. And for the record, I came very close to losing 2-3 of them, but luck was (finally) on my side in Week 7.
Now that I’m back to above .500, my goal is to go 10-5 or 9-6 most weeks to build up a reservoir of + picks so I can end the season in a range that I view as successful, let’s say +25 on the picks for the season.
Last week’s record: 12-3 Season record: 50-48
Jonathan Taylor (Ind at Det) to score a TD -120 on BETMGM – I’ve never listed TD prop like this, but the odds aren’t bad, and I’m giving Taylor nearly a 100% chance to score, given his role in the passing game in their last game.
Zack Moss (BUF vs. NE) OVER 31.5 rushing yards on BETMGM – This one’s like stealing, since the Bills are ready to hand over a larger role to Moss, and likely this week. The Pats are also so hapless on offense right now that Moss can hit this even if Devin Singletary gets 12+ carries, because they will go run-heavy in bad weather today.
Brandon Aiyuk (SF at Sea) OVER 50.5 receiving yards on BETMGM – Either the linemakers know something about this matchup that only God himself knows or it’s a bad and exploitable number. I’m concerned because this one looks like such an obvious winner that it’s scary, but I’m still playing it because Aiyuk looks good on film and Seattle is down its top corner in Shaquill Griffin, and the 49ers won’t likely dominante on the ground.
Diontae Johnson (Pit at Bal) OVER 49.5 receiving yards on FanDuel – I know it’s a little scary, since the matchup is bad and he’s banged up. But JuJu Smith-Schuster may get stymied in this one against Marlon Humphrey, and Johnson’s three healthy games this year look like this: 10 targets 6/57, 13 targets 8/92/1, and 15 targets 9/80/2. If he can get through the game, he’s getting 10+ targets, and he’s getting at least 50 yards on those targets. As good as their corners are in Baltimore, Johnson’s quickness and separation ability are tough for anyone to stop.
Justin Herbert (LACat Den) OVER 252.5 passing yards on FanDuel – I sometimes have to pull back from what the numbers are suggesting the projections should be because the projections would be absurdly high. That’s the case right now with Herbert, who would be the QB1 on the board if I went only off the numbers. I’m personally accounting for the likelihood that he runs into the wrong matchup and/or just finally levels off and comes back to earth. But even with my conservative projection for him this week, it’s still 32.5 yards higher than this prop, so I gotta go with it. The Broncos can absolutely be thrown on, as well.
Mike Williams (LAC at Den) OVER 36.5 receiving yards on BETMGM – Williams was one of my 3 losses last week, but I’m going right back to the well because last week was absurd. Williams got only 3 looks in the game after getting 8 targets the game before (and he put up 5/109/2), so they will look for him early and he should get at least 5 targets. He actually averaged 10 targets and 95 yards a game in two games against Denver last year and since he can easily get this one 1 catch, I’m in.
Jonnu Smith (Ten at Cin) OVER 35.5 receiving yards on DK – He wasn’t healthy last week and it showed, and he was likely needed to block more than usual against Pittsburgh. He’s been off the injury report all week and the Bengals lead the lead with 9 TE targets against them per game this season. They also just gave up 3 TDs to the Browns last week. This one could be a back-and-forth, high-scoring affair if the Bengal OL can at least give Joe Burrow a chance.
Patrick Mahomes (KC vs NYJ) UNDER 25.5 completions on DK – This is -138, but I’ll still take it because it would be stunning to see him have to throw it more than 32-33 times against the hapless Jets. Mahomes has gone over 25 completions just twice this year against the Chargers and Ravens, to competitive and potent teams. There’s even less of a chance Mahomes goes over 25.5 competitions with Le’Veon Bell playing in a revenge game.
Giovani Bernard (Cin vs Ten) OVER 11.5 rushing attempts – The Titans are easier to throw on, but the Bengals have major, major OL issues this week, so I’m sure they’d love to take some pressure off their rookie QB by running the ball. Opposing RBs are getting 24 carries a game against the Titans, and the Bengals gave only 1 carry to a RB not named Gio last week. We also have some bad weather/wind in Cincy, so Gio’s gotta get at least 12 carries today.
Marquise Brown (Bal at Pit) OVER 52.5 receiving yards – I’m almost always in on Brown when the number is this low, due to his massive role. The Steelers are impossible to run on, and it’s a bad matchup for TE Mark Andrews, yet the best matchup is for Brown on the outside. This means Brown will hit this, well rested coming out of the bye.