3 NFL Player Prop Bets for Thursday Night Football: Week 16
Player props can be useful in a variety of ways, from taking advantage of them straight up within the betting market to measuring a player's potential to produce in daily fantasy football.
Here we'll focus on utilizing our projections and a slew of other tools and simulations to help make money betting player props. For this article, we are using the odds provided at FanDuel Sportsbook to pinpoint spots where value can be had this week.
The prop-betting experience on FanDuel Sportsbook is getting even more fun. You can track your player props with real-time updates and place in-game props with ease.
Each and every week I'll be bringing separate prop bets articles for Monday Night Football, Thursday Night Football, and the Sunday main slate.
Note: Betting lines and our player projections may change after this article is published.
Christian Kirk Under 48.5 Receiving Yards (-110)
Tonight's game is going to be an ugly one but there are still some player props to attack.
The weather report for tonight's game looks horrible. The temperature is under 40 degrees, winds are around 15-20 mph, and gusts may be up to 35 mph, all per Kevin Roth. This type of weather will impact the offenses, specifically when it comes to the passing game, so we want to focus on some unders tonight. This is why we see a very modest 37.5-point over/under with the New York Jets hosting the Jacksonville Jaguars.
Christian Kirk under 48.5 receiving yards is the first spot that I'm looking at tonight, and it's not only due to the weather. This is also an extremely difficult matchup since the Jets have allowed the second-fewest receiving yards to opposing wide receivers this season (1,690).
They have the sixth-best pass defense, per our metrics, which is not an ideal matchup for Kirk to be racking up the yards.
Kirk also has a 9.5 average depth of target (aDOT), which is just a bit higher compared to Zay Jones with an 8.6 aDOT and Evan Engram with a 6.6 aDOT. When the Jaguars do pass the ball, taking the shorter/easier passes will be the best plan.
Between the horrible passing weather and a tough defensive matchup, Kirk should be on a path to hit the under tonight.
Zach Wilson Under 195.5 Passing Yards (-110)
This is another weather-influenced prop with Zach Wilson under 195.5 passing yards.
The weather is the theme of today's article, and if that is going to negatively impact the passing game, the unders on props is the spot to look.
When it comes to Wilson, he has been remarkably inconsistent this season, which has even led him to be benched for a few games. In his eight games this season, he has been over this yardage mark just four times. While he has been over 300 passing yards twice this year, he has also been under 121 yards three times.
The range of outcomes is rather large for Wilson, but considering the potential weather impact for tonight's game, he should be on the lower end of that.
That shouldn't be too much of a surprise since Wilson has been downright horrible this year. He comes in with a -0.02 Passing Net Expected Points (NEP) per drop back this season and a 39.75% passing success rate.
All of this has Wilson projected for 191.05 yards, hitting the under on his prop tonight.
Travis Etienne Over 17.5 Rushing Attempts (-102)
If these teams aren't able to pass the ball effectively, that means rushing props offer some clear value.
I'm going with Travis Etienne over 17.5 rushing attempts due to the clear correlation between the weather and the potential difficulty passing the ball.
Etienne is averaging 13 rushing attempts per game on the season, but that has jumped up to 16 rushing attempts over the last seven weeks. During the first portion of the season, the Jaguars had James Robinson, who took plenty of carries away from Etienne. With Robinson now on the Jets, Etienne has become the focal point of the Jaguars' rushing attack.
This has allowed Etienne to rack up 19, 24, and 28 rushing attempts in three of these last seven games, showing they clearly trust him to carry the load when needed.
Etienne is projected for 18.15 rushing attempts tonight, which would land him over this prop's projected total.