Welcome to the Week 9 edition of Jason Bales’s “Top 3 NFL Prop Bets” article. The title is rather self-explanatory. Each week, Jason offers three games or player props that he assesses as bet-worthy. Be sure to pay attention to the betting line. For those new to gambling, a negative number implies the bet is more likely to happen. If a bettor wagers $150 on a -150 betting line, the sportsbook pays out $100 if that bet wins. If a bettor wages $150 on a +100 betting line, the sportsbook pays out $150 if that bet wins. With that introduction out of the way, here are three NFL prop bets to consider this Sunday.
All odds are from DraftKings Sportsbook.
Lamar Jackson OVER 0.5 Total TD Passes
The Baltimore Ravens matchup against their toughest opponent this season, the New England Patriots. Bill Belichick and company are first in the league in total yards per game, second in the league in passing yards per game, and fourth in the league in rushing yards per game. As impressive as their defensive unit is, so far this season, the Patriots played the Pittsburgh Steelers, Miami Dolphins, New York Jets, Buffalo Bills, Washington Redskins, New York Giants, and Cleveland Browns. The Ravens’ offense is significantly better than anyone the Patriots have faced.
Vegas understands that the Patriots walked an easy path to their 8-0 record, as the Ravens are only +3 underdogs at home this Sunday. The Ravens haven’t lost since Week 4 against the Cleveland Browns, but Lamar Jackson did fail to throw a touchdown in both of his last two games. He has 11 touchdowns on the season, a statistic that is slightly inflated due to his 5 touchdown performance against the Miami Dolphins in Week 1. Despite his recent passing struggles, Jackson must play well if the Ravens want to win this game. If the Patriots take an early lead, Jackson will drop back more frequently than usual, increasing his odds to find the end zone through the air. The odds are wide, but the bet is worth it.
Adrian Peterson UNDER 74.5 Total Rushing Yards
Adrian Peterson’s offensive production increased significantly after Jay Gruden left the nation’s capital. Under Bill Callahan, Peterson is a featured running back, rushing for at least 76 yards in all three games in which Callahan called the shots. Earlier this week, the aging veteran running back missed two practices. His absence is likely just a break to allow his body to rest, as he returned to practice on Friday. Peterson will start for the Washington Redskins this weekend.
The Buffalo Bills are a middle-of-the-pack run defense, but their slower offense and higher time-of-possession should limit Peterson’s overall opportunities. The Redskins are +10 underdogs, and the Bills should have a large lead by the start of the second half. Dwayne Haskins is starting this game, and while he will need help with a strong rushing attack, his athleticism allows the Redskins to open up their playbook more often. It is unlikely that Peterson sees a snap share as high as he did in his last game against the Minnesota Vikings (81.1%), especially with a nagging ankle injury. He should return to a sub-70% snap share, and with the Redskins’ likely losing early, Peterson’s volume isn’t going to be enough for 75 rushing yards.
Rashard Higgins to Score a TD
Rashard Higgins is stepping into Antonio Callaway’s role as the Cleveland Browns’ third wide receiver. Last season, Baker Mayfield earned a quarterback rating of over 115 when targeting Higgins. The chemistry is already there, and with Mayfield struggling to get Odell Beckham Jr. and Jarvis Landry the ball, perhaps he can find solace in Higgins.
Antonio Callaway currently has +2800 odds to score a touchdown in Week 9, meaning DraftKings has yet to update their odds to adjust for the recent news. The Browns run 11 personnel on over 70% of their offensive plays, which means Higgins should see a significant amount of playing time. There have been concerns over his absence the last few weeks, but Freddie Kitchens dismissed all claims that Higgins is in the ‘Dawg House’ (pun intended). Do not put a large wager on this recommendation, as +5000 odds are very unlikely to hit. However, there is an edge to be had.