So it’s the start of July, less than a month until football returns! Well, pre-season football, which isn’t really worth it, but, the Falcons and Broncos 3rd stringers take the field in the HOF game on the 1st of August. Yay!
There’s actually a lot of variety already available in the ante-post betting for next season on most of the big sites, so I’ll have a nose at some that have caught my eye a little. I’ll stick to player related bets here, win totals don’t change a whole lot over the summer, and annoyingly you can’t parlay them without RaBs which I’ll get to later in the summer. There’s actually quite a lot of player yardage props which I’ll look at later in the summer as well, and of course the Team totals which I love attacking.
Regular Season MVP
Not a fan of MVP betting at this early stage of the season, or frankly during the season, it’s not a market I particularly like. I can practically guarantee it will be a QB, there’s been a couple of RBs who set records, some fella called Jerry Rice is the only WR to have won it and Lawrence Taylor is the only defensive player to have won it.
Having said that I don’t usually bet on this market, I will probably have a nibble on Deshaun Watson at 33/1. He’s mobile, he’s got one of the best WRs in the game and if Will Fuller can stay fit, a serious TD threat. The Texans are in a tough division and have a tough schedule, if they come through to win that division then it’s safe to say that a lot will be down to Watson. Annoyingly he was around 60/1 earlier in the off-season, only 33/1 now (PP, Lads) but I think he should be shorter still.
The other I would look at would be Carson Wentz. It’s a risk, but the team obviously have no worries about his injury as they signed him to a big deal and traded away Nick Foles so I don’t have too much worry there either. He was MVP-elect before that injury in his rookie year and if anything his WR corps is better now with Desean Jackson brought in, as well as rookie JJ Arcega-Whiteside who I’ve heard good things, to compliment Jeffrey and Agholar. Add the tight ends Zach Ertz and Dallas Goedert to the pass catchers and you’ve got a talented offense there.
Deshaun Watson – 35/1 (Betfair), Carson Wentz – 25/1 (Skybet) – 2 pts on each
Most passing yards
Another one that’s dominated mainly by the QBs… I won’t go into too much depth on this one.
Mahomes is the favourite, I think a lot depends on whether Tyreek Hill is suspended or not, somehow it looks like he’ll have a small suspension at the moment, which is a big boost for Mahomes and his stats. He’s fucking brilliant. Big Ben won it last year, I doubt that will happen this year without Antonio Brown there. I don’t think it will be Rodgers, it won’t be Brady, Brees or Goff. Matt Ryan is in with a shout assuming Calvin Ridley takes a step forward which is perfectly believable, and he’s got Julio, which obviously helps. I usually plump for Phil Rivers EW and he’ll be up there again with Keenan Allen, Mike Williams likely to step up and Hunter Henry hopefully back and fully fit. But I think it could well be Andrew Luck. I was so impressed with him last year coming back off his shoulder injury and I think the Colts will be a good team this year, TY Hilton should do well and I’d imagine he’ll be fairly decent odds in rec. yards, Parris Campbell is a flexible pass catcher, Doyle and Ebron at TE and Nyheim Hines at RB are all adept pass catchers. I feel it would be a mistake to not mention Deshaun Watson at 40/1 on Ladbrokes after mentioning him for the MVP above, Hopkins, Fuller, Keke Coutee are a good trio to throw the ball to. Jamies Winston is probably in with a shout here as well, he’s a high volume thrower generally and gets Bruce Arians as his HC who loves going with 4 WR sets, so there will be a lot of people on the field for him to target, he’s 20/1 EW on Ladbrokes, which is actually bigger than everywhere else who only got straight up. (10/1 at Skybet or example) Edit – Somehow I completely missed off Baker Mayfield (16/1 Skybet) when I originally wrote this lot, I think he’ll be up there, he’s definitely got the players to throw to, Landry, Beckham, Njoku are a good trio and even the secondary guys are decent enough, the kid showed he’s got the talent in his half season last year and with a full year the only thing detracting is possibly a poor offensive line. Not a bad shout at all.
And what kind of idiot does a top passer thing and doesn’t mention Aaron fucking Rodgers. Jesus christ, what an amateur I am some times. Plusses, he’ll be in Fuck you mode after finally getting rid of Mike McCarthy, negatives he has some very tough defenses in his division and I’m just not sure he’ll get near 5,000
Andrew Luck – 7/1 (5 pts) Jameis Winston – 20/1 EW (2 pts)- Both Ladbrokes
Most rush yards
Apologies for the length and the rambling on this one, but wanted to get my thoughts down as to why I’ve picked the guys I have.
The league as a whole has generally gone away from workhorse running backs these days, preferring to use a couple in rotation so while I’d love to be contrarian and give some value here, but it’s basically between about 4 or 5 guys, the same ones you’ll be taking at the top of your fantasy drafts. Ezekiel Elliott, Kamara, McCaffrey, Barkley are the top 4, then you’re looking at the likes of Joe Mixon, James Connor, David Johnson, Lev Bell, Todd Gurley, maybe Dalvin Cook. – Zeke won it last year with 1,434 yards over the season and with no-one else really in the backfield there I see no reason why it won’t be him again especially as the offensive line should be stronger than last year, he is used in the passing game, in fact he was used a lot more than I realised last year, 77 receptions was only a handful behind Kamara. I will, however discard Kamara (883) as while the Saints got rid of Ingram, they replaced him seemingly like-for-like with Latavius Murray who will take more of the ground work with Kamara very adept in the passing game, for the same reason I doubt it will be CmcC (1098), while he was a beast last year and has bulked up over the summer he’s just too good through the air for them to give him enough to rack up the ground yards as well. I believe that Saquon Barkley is probably the only real rival for Zeke for the rushing title; He was pretty much the entire offense for the Giants last year and he handled it all in his stride, over 2,000 all purpose yards, 1,307 on the ground, and his breakout speed was a large part of that, one cut and you’re not gonna catch him. Eli still can’t throw the ball so I’d imagine a lot will be on him again this year.
Unsurprisingly Ezekiel Elliott and Saquon Barkley are the two leaders in the betting. 4/1 and 5/1 respectively on Ladbrokes, and 1/4 EW which could come in handy in a minute.
It might be stupid to overlook Todd Gurley who finished 3rd last year despite a small workload for the last few games of the season, and the off-season rumour-mill around him is concerning in regards to his knee. It seems he has mild arthritis there which could lead to less of a workload and they drafted an RB mildly high, or it could mean nothing and they run him into the ground anyway. Personally I’m avoiding him, 16/1 is available on PP if you wanted to go for him though. – Mixon and Connor are basically 3 down backs for their teams, and I believe that the Bengals want to run the ball more this year to set up the play action pass, however the offensive line which was looking improved got knocked back to last years when left tackle Jonah Williams was reported to be out for the season and that’s really dented my confidence in the whole Bengals offense; He did however lead the AFC in rush yards last year behind that line so 12/1 on Lads. The Steelers always shove the load on one back and it will be Connor again this year, he did well in his first season as the main RB last year and with no Antonio Brown or Lev Bell there they’ll be relying more on Juju and Connor to get the yards, but I just don’t think he’ll get enough yards, it could be my anti-Pitt bias, but I just don’t see it for some reason. David Johnson in Arizona? I love the guy, he’s a brilliant player but I think that team will be too pass heavy (an area he excels in) to give him enough carries to top the table. Leveon Bell, at the Jets now, I don’t believe he’ll be as good without one of the best offensive lines in the league and with a HC who doesn’t like using one guy (Drake/Gore in Miami) and who has come out and said he didn’t want Bell at the cost… Dalvin Cook was a major talent when he was healthy and I think actually, that he would be my EW bet, available at 22/1 on Ladbrokes and there’s not a lot left in terms of competition in the backfield for him, only really Alex Mattison who they drafted this year, add to that the fact they changed their offensive coordinator to go more run heavy… I think that’s the bet for me at the price.
Ezekiel Elliott – 4/1 (7 pts); Dalvin Cook EW – 22/1 (2 pts) – Both Ladbrokes.
Most Recieving Yards
I’m struggling a bit on this one tbh, there’s a lot of players who I think will be there or there about’s and they’re all generally 20-25s at most. Julio will be up there as he always is, and I mentioned above that I think Ryan will be up there, so of course Julio should be in my thought process here. Michael Thomas will be around there, but I don’t think he gets enough big plays to win it. DeAndre Hopkins is another, if I think Watson is going to do as well as I think then theoretically I have to think Nuk will do well this year and the same goes for TY Hilton if I think Andrew Luck will do well, then he should be up near the top of this list as well, at 20/1 on Ladbrokes. 25/1 on Davante Adams isn’t a bad look, he’s the clear WR1 there and Rodgers has essentially said he’ll be looking for him on every single play, but that price is straight up only, a measly 11/1 on Ladbrokes for EW betting. I mean, in fairness at 125/1… Robert Woods isn’t the worst bet in the world but again that’s straight win, only 50/1 on Lads for EW bettors.
Davante Adams – 25/1 (3 pts) Skybet
Keep an eye out over the summer at there will be many more articles released by myself. The second week of August I’ll be doing my divisional previews, things will be settled by then and more importantly I’ll have time off work without the wife and kid here, so plenty of time to get my shit together and get things done. Of course I’ll look at the other markets as well, win totals, team total points, other player props, RaBs and anything else that pops up and I think offers a bit of value.
And I’ll be sorting out some more fantasy leagues the closer the season gets as well as some bestballs to get thing rolling in the coming weeks.
Not… That… Long…. Now!