Every week through the Super Bowl, I will attempt, using tools and stats from FTNBets.com, to slay the sportsbooks, scribbling my favorite side, total or prop picks for the week’s upcoming NFL slate. Some will win. Many will lose. Fade or follow? That, of course, is up to you. With the Divisional Round on tap this weekend, here are three picks worth diving into:
Prop 1: Cam Akers
OVER 16.5 rush attempts (-125, DraftKings)
After stints with Darrell Henderson and Malcolm Brown as his primary rushers, It only took Sean McVay approximately one full millennium to realize the rookie running back is good at what he was drafted to do, carry the football. As displayed occasionally before the playoffs, the youngster was a three-down monster last week against the Seahawks. He exhibited spectacular open-field burst, cutback skills, break-tackle brawn (3.46 YAC/att.) and soft hands in a 30-touch, 176-total-yard thrashing of Seattle. Including that intoxicating effort, he’s received ball-to-belly at least 21 times in five of his last six contests. The increased snap and opportunity shares combined with the Rams’ unyielding defense and Jared Goff’s tender thumb arrow to another rigorous workload. Green Bay tightened the trench screws down the regular season’s homestretch, but it still surrendered 4.37 yards per carry and 91.6 rush yards per game to RBs. Assuming Jalen Ramsey and his L.A. cohorts prevent Aaron Rodgers from dissecting them, Akers will reach the 20 rush attempts mark.
Prop 2: Lamar Jackson
OVER 75.5 rush yards (-110, BetMGM)
Attempting to chase down Jackson is akin to sprinting after Usain Bolt behind the wheel of Ferrari 812 Superfast GTS, a woefully futile exercise. Once he sees a crease, he’s gone. Jackson has sprinted past the proposed threshold in five of his last six contests, often obliterating the number. In a game with a 50.5 total, he should add more napalm to the hot streak. The Bills performed only adequately against dual-threat QBs during the regular season. Ryan Tannehill, Patrick Mahomes, Cam Newton, Kyler Murray and, heck, even Drew Lock rushed for at least 36 yards against them. Though the Dachshund of the Desert is a step below Lamar, he’s not on the same plane. “Action” Jackson shuttles his way to at least 80 yards. Oh, and if you’re into same-game parlays, matching Lamar’s rush yards prop with an anytime TD (+105) is a likely profitable exercise.
Prop 3: Mike Evans
UNDER 4.5 receptions (+100, DraftKings)
Based on their prior pugilistic engagements, Evans and Marshon Lattimore aren’t frolicking on a Caribbean beach hand-in-hand anytime soon. It’s a full-blown rivalry, one in which the Saint have won fairly handily. In their past four encounters, Evans failed to haul in five passes each time. There’s no questioning the receiver’s toughness. He tweaked his knee in Week 17 only to return six days later, catching six-of-10 targeted passes for 119 yards in Washington. Still, he’s not quite 100%. Evidenced by his 101.6 passer rating and 1.24 yards per snap allowed on the season, Lattimore is an unsteady contributor. He, however, typically rises to the occasion in high-leverage contests and has given up just a 58.3% catch percentage in 15 games. His big-stage, big-game mentality matched with his ownership of Evans suggests the DB’s smack talk will be backed.