After a relatively dull 2-2 wildcard round, I’m ready to divvy up some NFL player props for what should be the season’s best weekend of football!
Damien Williams Over 49.5 Rushing Yards AND 29.5 Receiving Yards
I hope the number is the same as when I posted in the TQE chat about betting these. According to ESPN’s Adam Schefter, “hopes are not high” that RB Spencer Ware will play today. This means it is wheels up for Damien Williams who will be the Chiefs workhorse back. These props are still set as if Spencer Ware will be playing at full health. With the highest total on the slate, we can expect both teams to go back and forth. Not to mention the Colts defense is one of the most overrated in the league due to their strength of schedule.
Earlier in the week I tweeted out, “The Colts defense has played just one team in the top-10 of offensive efficiency. That was against the #Patriots (No. 5 in O efficiency). In that game they allowed 38 points, Tom Brady to complete 34-of-44 (77.3%) passes, and Sony Michel to run for 98 yards on 5.4 YPC.”
The Chiefs offense will present a stark difference from the Colts standard opponents and ranks No. 1 in offensive efficiency.
Beyond the likely offensive explosion from the Chiefs, the Colts have allowed the most targets to running backs this season (140) and second most receptions (110). They also rank in the 0th percentile of weighted opportunity allowed to running backs, the ninth percentile of targets per game, and 25th percentile of receiving yards per game allowed.
There is also expected to be a bit of snow during the game, which could shift the Chiefs to a run-heavier gameplan. The Colts haven’t been bad against the run but I expect volume to help him easily push over 50 rushing yards. The Colts have still allowed 84.56 yards per game to opposing backs. With the props set too low in a strong spot for Williams, he should be able to smash both.
Travis Kelce Over 85 receiving yards:
See above for how I expect the game to go and the Chiefs offensive advantage. Kelce draws the best matchup, as the Colts defense embraces a “bend but don’t break” philosophy. They allow tons of targets underneath and the middle parts of the field but not as much over the top resulting in the league’s most receptions and yards per game to opposing tight ends. This sets up well for Kelce to exceed 100 receiving yards and hit the over on his receiving yards.
Ezekiel Elliott Over 95.5 rushing yard
When starting to break down a game I like to look at how I expect a team to gameplan. We know the Cowboys will try to establish the run with Elliott regardless of the matchup and in this specific instance, they should have a lot of success. The Rams allow a league-worst 5.07 yards per carry to opposing running backs, ranking 20th in rushing success rate allowed, and 28th in explosive rush rate allowed. The past six weeks the Cowboys have run the majority of the time out of 11 personnel to the tune of 5.2 yards per play. The Rams have allowed 5.8 yards per play against 11 Personnel.
With Zeke the focus of the Cowboys game plan and the Rams inability to stop the run there is a good chance Elliott has a massive game.
Connor Allen utilizes analytics and his knowledge of Football to leverage sportsbooks, fantasy leagues, and DFS. He is a Chicago native and you can find more of his work over at http://Rotoworld.com or on twitter @ConnorAllenNFL.