Season-long props aren’t always the easiest bets to follow.
If you have an over, one injury usually ruins your action. Unders that force you to root against a player all season can be a bit odd. But it’s a popular market, which makes sense given the crossover with fantasy football. If you drafted Justin Jefferson first overall, why not also bet him to get more than 1,400 yards this season?
With the season about to start, we got Yahoo Sports’ Nick Bromberg, Frank Schwab and Scott Pianowski together one more time to share their favorite player prop bets (to go with their favorite MVP and award bets, favorite Super Bowl bets and favorite win total bets):
Among the quarterbacks, which prop bets do you like?
NIck Bromberg: I immediately looked toward the rookie quarterbacks and was drawn towards C.J. Stroud’s passing yards over/under for the season. Stroud is the undisputed starter after he was chosen at No. 2 overall and the Houston Texans are going to find themselves trailing a lot this season. With an over/under of 3,050.5 yards, Stroud has to simply average 180 yards passing per game over a full season to hit the over. That feels like a smart play.
Frank Schwab: Mostly I like the young, unproven quarterbacks. There’s uncertainty, but that’s where you find value. If you’re just betting Patrick Mahomes overs, you’ve got a huge number to reach. So give me the overs on Jordan Love, Kenny Pickett, Sam Howell and Desmond Ridder yards, each of which you can find at less than 3,400. The total on Ridder is about 2,500, which is a little disrespectful even in a run-heavy offense. I also want the overs on touchdowns for Pickett and Howell, each of which are under 20. Given all their weapons to throw to, those numbers won’t be too hard to reach.
Scott Pianowski: Kenny Pickett over 17.5 touchdowns? Yes please. Positive regression was always a good angle there, and the Pittsburgh Steelers have several pass catchers on the escalator.
Which running backs are you backing or fading?
NB: Bijan Robinson is a fantasy darling entering his rookie season, but I’m taking the under on 1,100.5 rushing yards. Tyler Allgeier was great in his first season for the Atlanta Falcons in 2022 and deserves his share of carries this season. I can see Robinson being used all over the field for Atlanta because he’s such a good receiver. 900 rushing yards and 500 receiving yards feels like a good baseline in 2023.
FS: D’Andre Swift’s rushing total is only about 500 yards. All indications are that Swift is the preferred back in a crowded Philadelphia Eagles backfield. Even if he splits time with Rashaad Penny, Kenneth Gainwell and Boston Scott, 500 yards is not hard to reach behind that offensive line. I’ll also go with whatever overs you have on Dameon Pierce, who will emerge this season as a top 10-12 running back. I’m also going to take the under on Travis Etienne Jr. His total is north of 900, and I think the Jacksonville Jaguars will pass it a lot and also get Tank Bigsby involved enough that it will cut into Etienne’s numbers.
SP: Nick Chubb’s rushing, I’ll go over any reasonable number. It’s just a bet on him staying healthy. He’s finally ready for a full bell-cow season with Kareem Hunt and D’Ernest Johnson gone, and the Cleveland Browns have a plus offensive line. They also might recognize that they need to hide Deshaun Watson a little bit.
How about the receivers?
NB: Marquez Valdes-Scantling had 42 catches a season ago in his first season with the Kansas City Chiefs and played a vital role for the Chiefs in their AFC title game win over the Bengals. I’m not expecting MVS to run a full route tree in 2023 or become the No. 1 wide receiver in a group that has a lot of depth. But at an over/under of 40.5 catches in 2023, I can easily see Valdes-Scantling hitting the over as he’s more comfortable in the offense.
FS: In 2021, Brandon Aiyuk started the season in the doghouse and ended up with 826 yards. Last season he had 1,015. This season you can find his total at less than 800, and I have no reason to believe he takes a big step back. This one isn’t a comfortable bet, but Adam Thielen’s total is about 500 yards, and someone has to catch the ball for the Carolina Panthers. Give me the over. I’ll also take any Calvin Ridley overs you have; he showed in preseason that he’s back and ready for a monster season. As for some unders, Los Angeles Chargers rookie Quentin Johnston seems a little to start the season, and I’m also fine with Evan Engram unders because I see most of his targets from last season going to Ridley.
SP: Garrett Wilson got to 1,103 receiving yards last year, despite a clown car of quarterbacks. Now the New York Jets have Aaron Rodgers, and even back-nine Rodgers represents a huge upgrade. Did you see that preseason usage? Wilson is going to be targeted off the bus, and only injury can keep him under 1,300 yards or more. His prop is still in the low 1100s, sign me up.