Three Running Back Props For NFL Week 2

New Orleans Saints running back Alvin Kamara heads upfield during a 2021 regular-season game.
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Welcome back to the wonderful world of NFL Player Props! Today, we will focus on running back props for Week 2 of the NFL season.

We’ve gathered some data in the opening weekend of the NFL, but we also have to be careful to not overreact to just one game. That’s a tight rope that we’ll attempt to balance on with the following analysis.

With that, let’s take a look at three running back props to consider for NFL Week 2.

Derrick Henry – Under 108.5 Rushing Yards

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It’s too soon to push the panic button, and we don’t have nearly enough evidence to say that Derrick Henry has hit the wall. But it was concerning to see him struggle last week against an average Arizona run defense.

And consider the history of often-used backs. Henry has led the league in rushing attempts in each of the last two seasons, and including the postseason, he topped the 400 touches mark in 2020. Post-400 touch seasons have been traditionally bad, making it a little worrisome for Henry this season.

Specifically this week, however, it’s the Seahawks that make his production suspect. They just held a good Johnathan Taylor to 56 yards and 3.0 ypc, and they will do something similar to Henry this Sunday. Take the under because he will not get to 100 yards rushing.

Alvin Kamara – Over 64.5 Rushing Yards

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Even with 83 receptions in 2020, Alvin Kamara had just 270 touches last season. He’s less about volume and more about efficiency. That philosophy led him to 83 yards rushing in his first game with new starting quarterback Jameis Winston, and there is every reason to think that it will continue against the Panthers in Week 2.

Including the playoffs, Kamara has rushed for at least 83 yards in four straight games. It’s also apparent that with Winston under center and no Michael Thomas, New Orleans is content to be more methodical on offense. That will only serve to pump up Kamara’s rushing totals.

The final part of the equation is the Panthers’ defense. In 2020 they allowed eight different running backs to rush for more than 65 yards in a game, including 83 from Kamara in Week 7. (He didn’t play in their Week 17 game).

All signs point to another big day from the Saints Pro Bowl running back. Take the over.

Miles Sanders – Over 62.5 Rushing Yards

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Not that the Falcons defense is world-beaters, but Miles Sanders and his 4.9 ypc were notable last week. He carried the ball 15 times for 74 yards, and he looked fast and strong doing it. There is no doubt from his performance in Week 1 that he is going to be one of the top backs in football this season.

Also notable in Week 1 was the difficulty the 49ers had in stopping the run against a collection of backs not nearly as good as Sanders. San Francisco allowed 4.8 ypc and a total of 116 yards rushing in their 41-33 win over the Lions, and that was with Detroit going exclusively to the pass during their fourth-quarter comeback.

And consider these numbers. In his last 16 games, Sanders has gone over 63 yards in 11 games. That’s a success rate of 68%. As an underdog, that rate climbs to 70%, and at home, he went over 63 rushing yards 83% of the time.

Expect for Sanders to get the ball early and often and comfortably hit the over.