Each week through the Super Bowl, FTN’s resident blabbermouth and player props purveyor, Brad Evans, will attempt to not bleed his pockets dry outlining his favorite picks on the NFL slate. Fade or follow? That, of course, is entirely up to you. And, as always, use the FTN Prop Shop tool to unearth the best lines.
OVER. To join the ultra-exclusive 2,000-yard club alongside some of the game’s most revered ground-and-pounders, Henry needs a very doable 223 yards. Thankfully with the Colts’ contest kicking off in the same 4:25 p.m. ET window, there’s abundant motivation for Tennessee to play all of its starters over four quarters. A win or Indy loss and the AFC South title belongs to the Titans. Mike Vrabel, presumably still incensed by his club’s poor performance in snowy Green Bay last week, will want to wash away the bitterness with repeated Henry smashings. Despite J.J. Watt’s impassioned public plea, Houston is unlikely to play inspired D. The wrecked Texans are beyond repair. They’ve yielded a staggering 5.41 yards per carry and 138.8 rush yards per game to RBs. The reigning rush king has logged two 200-yard performances against the division foe. Bank on a memorable finish to another remarkable season. The Football Frankenstein tramples Texans into the history books. (Sidebar: The over on his 25.5 rush attempts is also quite enticing.)
Prop 2: David Montgomery 108.5 total rush/receiving yards versus Green Bay (William Hill, -115)
OVER. Where art thou, #MandatoryMontgomery disparagers? Have you fully embraced the oversized L? Ripping through would-be tacklers, the sophomore back has body slammed any thoughts of a slump and transformed into a full-blown sensation. He’s RB10 in YAC per attempt (3.30), RB4 in total yards created and ranks top-five in missed tackle percentage (26.8). Bill Lazor’s play calling and improved offensive line execution have unlocked the chain-moving monster from within. He’s powered his way past the above number in five straight games, including hanging 143 yards in a lopsided loss to the rival Packers in Week 12. Green Bay DC Mike Pettine brilliantly contained Henry last Sunday night. However, his defense, which has allowed 4.48 yards per carry and 139.8 total yards per game to RBs, remains vulnerable. In a game with major playoff implications for both teams, Monty spurs the suddenly resplendent Bears offense.
OVER. The Las Vegas tight end is the exuberant gambler tossing hot dice at every casino craps table rolled into one. He’s a money magnet, a player who blows and throws much to the delight of Benjamin-seeking beloved strangers surrounding him. At or near the top in several categories at his position, including target share (27.9%), completed air yards (565), yards per route run (2.30) and total deep targets (16), Waller has steadily fattened wallets down the homestretch. Since Week 11, he’s obliterated the above threshold five times, crossing the 100-yard mark in three contests. Travis Kelce and Hayden Hurst are the only plus-sized targets to reach 61-plus yards against the Broncos this season. Still, Denver ranks No. 11 in most yards allowed to TEs. In a pride-only game, Waller rakes at least 70 yards.
Prop 4: Kyler Murray 39.5 rushing yards versus the L.A. Rams (William Hill, -115)
UNDER. For the Dachshund of the Desert, the pressure is undoubtedly on. Secure a victory against the Jared Goff-less Rams, and the Cardinals soar into the postseason. Lose, and the season is squandered. He’s unquestionably one of the premier scoring dualists in the NFL, but battling through a leg injury, he could be more pocket tied, a similar cautiousness exhibited earlier this season when a tender shoulder hampered him. The Rams, No. 12 in total pressures, will bring the heat, which could lead to flush-and-run opportunities. Daniel Jones and Russell Wilson each surpassed 40 yards against them earlier this season. Murray, however, managed only 15 yards in the first matchup back in Week 13. Again, at that time, his dinged wing caused considerable reluctancy. In the rematch, an identical hesitancy is likely.
OVER. Records, they say, are made to be broken. Entering Week 17, Jefferson holds a sledgehammer, fully prepared to shatter the 60-year-old record for most receiving yards by a rookie held by Bill Groman. All he needs are a mere 207 yards. It may seem like a long shot, but with a proper force feeding from Kirk Cousins rewriting the books is entirely achievable. It’s the Hello Kitties after all, a defense so saddled with ineptitude, a former cologne model eviscerated them for 348 yards and four TDs in a single half last week. On the year, Robert Saleh’s presumed future employer has surrendered 8.4 pass yards per attempt and the second-most yards (3,067) to wide receivers. Overall, 16 wideouts tallied at least 73 yards against them. Given Jefferson’s historical motivation, downfield explosivity (No. 5 in completed air yards) and projected matchup against DB Mike Ford, who’s played on just 24 coverage snaps this season, he should guide backers to a sweatless payday, especially with Dalvin Cook out of action.