After three weeks of trying to beat the SI Sportsbook with my player prop predictions, I am 10-4 while being +5.35 units on a 100 dollar baseline of each investment.
If I wager on the favorite, I lay the juice to win $100 (-115 betting line = 115 dollars to win 100). On the underdog side, I wager 100 to win the extra profit (100 to win 150 with +150 betting line).
When reviewing all the props lines, I’m looking for flaws in pricing. I would expect most of my investments to come on the over side unless I see an overcorrection in a stat line.
QB Jameis Winston, New Orleans Saints
O/U 201.5 passing yards (-115)
The Saints’ passing game looks like a shell of itself with Winston taking over as their quarterback. He’s attempted only 63 passes over three weeks while delivering minimal passing yards in each matchup (148/5, 111/0, and 128/2). This offense takes a significant hit in their passing upside with Michael Thomas injured, but teams in the NFL can’t win games without more success in the passing game.
Based on his yards per pass attempt (6.1) this season, Winston would need 34 passing plays to gain over 201.5 yards. Before 2021, he passed for 202 yards or more in 60 of his 70 starts, with two of his failures coming after leaving the game early with an injury. Over this span, he averaged 35.9 passes per game.
The Saints’ offense last year threw the ball 522 times (32.6 per game). They passed for over 201 yards in 12 contests, and Michael Thomas missed nine games.
The Giants’ defense allowed 118 passes (39.3 per game) over the first three weeks while facing Denver (264/2), Washington (336/2), and Atlanta (243/2). Quarterbacks gained 7.1 yards per pass attempt.
New Orleans should be much better throwing the ball in this matchup, leading to Winston gaining well over 200 yards passing. As a result, I have him projected for 250 yards and two touchdowns this week.
QB Josh Allen, Buffalo Bills
O/U 2.5 passing touchdowns (+130)
As expected, most fantasy sites have Allen ranked as the top quarterback in the land in Week 4. SI Sportsbook has the Bills favored by 16.5 points with an over/under of 47, suggesting a 32-15 outcome for Buffalo to cover the spread.
Allen hit his passing stride against Washington, leading to 358 yards and four touchdowns. However, he struggled with his completion rate (56) over the first two games against Pittsburgh and Miami while gaining only 5.3 yards per pass attempt.
The common thought in this matchup is that the Bills will pull out to a big lead and turn to the run game in the second half. Buffalo needs to get their top wideout (Stefon Diggs) rolling, and they want to be aggressive in the passing game to compete with the best teams in the NFL. Last week, Emmanuel Sanders (5/94/2) flashed, giving Allen another weapon to attack through the air.
This season, the Texans allowed 10 touchdowns on 34 possessions while facing Jacksonville (rookie quarterback), Cleveland (run team), and Carolina (lost Christian McCaffrey early in the game). Two offenses passed for over 300 yards, with quarterbacks gaining 8.0 yards per pass attempt. The Browns only threw five passes to their wideouts in Week 2 (4/50).
In 2020, the Bills’ wide receivers led the NFL in catches (312), receiving yards (3,879), touchdowns (28), and targets (412). Against the Steelers, Allen looked to his wideouts 40 times (23/221/1), and he had no problem beating Washington’s secondary last week (23/277/2).
The “smart bet” might be on over 279.5 passing yards by Allen based on his wide receiver data, but I’m going with his over in touchdowns (2.5) thanks to the added odds (+130). His early projections came to 330 passing yards with four touchdowns and some ground success (8/39/1).
WR Stefon Diggs, Buffalo Bills
O/U 84.5 receiving yards (-115)
After a dull effort in Week 3 (6/62 on 10 targets) against Washington, I expect Josh Allen to get Diggs heavily involved early in the game. In 2020, he looked to be open on almost every play, leading to the emergence of the Bills’ star young quarterback and an excellent season (127/1,535/8).
Wide receivers have 34 catches for 476 yards and two touchdowns on 56 yards against the Texans. Marvin Jones (5/77/1) and D.J. Moore (8/126) had the most success. CB Vernon Hargreaves has a first-round pedigree (2016), but quarterbacks had a high QB rating (over 100.0) against him in 2019 and 2020. Houston tends to keep him on the right side of their defense, allowing Diggs to gain an edge against any of the Texans’ cornerbacks.
WR Amari Cooper, Dallas Cowboys
O/U 61.5 receiving yards (-115)
With Dallas dumping the run game in Week 1 against Tampa, Cooper jumped out of the gate with a massive showing (13/139/2). Unfortunately, the Cowboys turned to the run game over the past two weeks, leading to two dull outputs (3/24 and 3/26) by their star wideout.
The Panthers’ defense played well over the first three weeks (only four touchdowns on 33 possessions), helped by a favorable schedule (NYJ, NO, and HOU). All three offenses struggled to run the ball (2.6 yards per carry), but only the Jets showed a pulse in the passing game (258/2). Corey Davis finished with five catches for 97 yards and two scores, and Brandin Cooks (9/112) made plays all day long for Houston.
Carolina will get texted this week in the deep passing game, and the Cowboys’ offense commands attention on the ground. Based on his home resume, Cooper looks to be a favorable play in the prop bet market.
WR Tyreek Hill, Kansas City Chiefs
O/U 5.5 catches (-125)
I wanted to use Keenan Allen (over 81.5 receiving yards) as my last play this week based on his play at home as well, but I couldn’t get past Tyreek Hill in a bounce-back game after two off weeks (3/29 and 5/67).
Last year, he finished second in wide receiver scoring (329.10 fantasy points) in PPR leagues, but the Chiefs had pockets of games where they struggled to get him the ball. Over 15 games in the regular season, Hill has seven targets or fewer in eight starts. Six of these showing came over the eight weeks.
The Eagles’ defense did an excellent job defending wide receivers over the first three games (5/51, 10/125/1, and 9/118/1) despite being on the field for almost 99 out of 180 minutes (55 percent). The 49ers (38/117/1) and Cowboys (41/160/2) choose to run the ball while playing from the lead. Deebo Samuel (6/93) is the only receiver to have more than five catches against Philadelphia.
CB Darius Slay rarely works out of the slot where Hill lines up for more than half of his plays.
This matchup projects to be high scoring based on the over/under (54.5) at the SI Sportsbook. Kansas City’s defense has allowed 32 points per game this year, with opponents scoring 12 offensive touchdowns on 30 possessions. Their defense has risk against the run (5.4 yards per rush) and pass (9.1 yards per attempt).
The Chiefs need Hill to play well to win this game. Kansas comes into the game with a two-game losing streak, and Patrick Mahomes comes off a disappointing two-interception performance against the Chargers.
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Senior analyst Shawn Childs is a multi-sport, high-stakes fantasy legend with lifetime earnings in the high six-figures. He has been providing in-depth, analytical break downs for years all while helping his subscribers to countless titles and winnings across season-long & DFS. An inaugural inductee of the NFBC Hall of Fame, Shawn can teach you how to prep like a champ!