Underdog Fantasy NFL Picks: Week 2

Dallas Cowboys wide receiver Amari Cooper running with the football
Image Credit: Emilee Chinn-Getty Images

Do you feel like a sharp football fan? Does winning money sound appealing to you? Of course!

Thankfully, Underdog Fantasy offers sports fans many gaming options such as best ball fantasy drafts and pick ’em prop challenges. As for the initial question posed, I’m here to help sharpen your football acumen by utilizing several helpful resources such as BetPrep projections to topple the over/under and rivals picks.

It’s easy to get started. Here’s how it works:

  • Create an account on Underdog Fantasy.
  • Use the promo code PROPS to claim an extra $10 on your first deposit.
  • Go to the Pick’em Games.
  • Make two or more selections to receive a correlated payout of 3x, 6x, 10x, or 20x.
Use the promo code PROPS to get $10 FREE!

It’s pretty fun, and Underdog Fantasy is available in most states except for the following: Arizona, Connecticut, Hawaii, Idaho, Nevada, Louisiana, Montana, Washington, Delaware, and Iowa.

Now, let’s take a look at my five favorite Underdog Fantasy NFL picks for the Sunday main slate of Week 2.

Mark Ingram UNDER 39.5 Rushing Yards

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The Texans provided old-school establish the run diehards a dreamy Week 1, feeding their backs a whopping 37 carries against the Jaguars. Ingram led the backfield, toting the rock 26 times for 85 yards. However, his hefty workload was the product of a perfect game script from start to finish.

The Texans were in a neutral or positive game script every second of their Week 1 game. Still, according to Pro-Football-Reference, Ingram played just 46% of the offensive snaps. David Johnson (28%), Phillip Lindsay (26%), and Rex Burkhead (13%) all mixed in as well. More importantly, as you can see on BetPrep, the Texans are monstrous 13-point underdogs. Thus, if things go according to plan, they’re likely to be in a negative game script for much of Sunday’s contest.

Playing catch-up won’t allow them to pound the rock as frequently, and superior pass-catching backs, Johnson and Burkhead, should steal some of Ingram’s playing time. In addition, Ingram was inefficient.

According to Football Outsiders, out of 40 backs with at least eight runs in Week 1, Ingram ranked 28th in Defense-adjusted Value Over Average (DVOA). Also, his longest run was only 11 yards, and Pro-Football-Reference credited him with a pathetic one broken tackle on 26 carries. Interestingly, Pro Football Focus credits him with two broken tackles. Regardless, both are poor marks on such a large volume of carries. So give me the under on Ingram’s 39.5 rushing yards prop.

Cooper Kupp OVER 70.5 Receiving Yards

Image Credit: Rich Barnes-USA TODAY Sports

Kupp is the man in the Matthew Stafford-led Rams’ passing attack. According to Pro Football Focus, Kupp played 28 pass snaps, running a route on 27 of them. Van Jefferson’s 23 routes were second among receivers, followed by Robert Woods’s 18, and rounded out by DeSean Jackson’s 10.

Kupp not only easily paced the team in routes, but he also led the team in targets (10), receptions (seven), and receiving yards (108). According to Sports Info Solutions, his 38.5% target share was the third-highest mark last week. Tyler Lockett destroyed the Colts last week, hauling in four receptions for 100 yards, and I’m expecting Kupp to do the same this week.

I’m not alone, as BetPrep projects Kupp for 80.17 receiving yards. In addition, this total looks a little soft, as BetPrep has the present line for his receiving yards at 72.5, so I’ll enjoy the lower total offered at Underdog Fantasy.

Jalen Reagor OVER 3.0 Receptions

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Reagor disappointed folks as a rookie in a loaded draft class for wideouts. However, his usage and second-year quarterback Jalen Hurts’s Week 1 showing were drastically different than in 2020. According to Sports Info Solutions, Reagor had an average depth of target of 13.3 yards in 2020. Last week, it was 1.2 yards. He was used as an after-the-catch weapon, peppered with six catchable targets rather than being targeted on downfield throws.

The new usage meshes with Hurts’s faster time to throw and a massive reduction in average throw depth. Hurts’ average throw depth of 8.4 yards downfield in 2020 was tied for the sixth-highest mark among quarterbacks with at least 75 pass attempts. That mark cratered to 3.1 yards, the lowest among quarterbacks who attempted at least 10 passes.

This usage is ideal for Reagor’s receptions outlook. Finally, he’s comfortably second among receivers in the usage hierarchy, running 27 routes on 29 passing snaps, eight more than Quez Watkins’ 19 routes. BetPrep’s in lockstep with my over selection, projecting him for 4.62.

Robby Anderson UNDER 4.0 Receptions

Image Credit: Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports

I’m thrilled that Underdog Fantasy’s player prop for Anderson is receptions and not receiving yards. The reason is simple; the Panthers have reverted to using him as a field-stretching, shot-play option after varied usage last year.

The speedy wideout had a career-low 9.5 yards average depth of target in 2020. That mark blew up to 29.7 yards on three targets last week. He had an average depth of target of 15.1 yards or deeper in three of four years before 2020.

The team might have made that decision because of the addition of rookie wideout Terrace Marshall Jr. The tall rookie wideout dominated slot snaps (79.2% on his 24 passing snaps), resulting in an average depth of target of 8.2 yards, per Pro Football Focus. Finally, D.J. Moore’s average depth of target was reduced from last year’s 13.7 yards to 11.4 yards last week.

Anderson’s a boom-or-bust field stretcher rather than a player who projects to be peppered with targets. As a result. BetPrep projects him for 3.22 receptions. Thus, I’m once again on the same page.

Amari Cooper OVER 6.0 Receptions

Image Credit: Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports

The Cowboys are 3.5-point underdogs in a projected shootout in Los Angeles against the Chargers. That’s fantastic for Cooper’s outlook. In the opening week Thursday Night Football shootout, Pro Football Focus credited Dak Prescott with 62 dropbacks. Cooper was on the field for all 62, running 58 routes.

As great as CeeDee Lamb was, Cooper was better. To that point, he led the team in targets (16), receptions (13), and receiving yards (139). Also, this isn’t a new development. Prescott attempted 223 passes in 2020, and Cooper’s 52 targets on those attempts were 14 clear of Lamb’s 38 targets in second place. In addition, Cooper’s 37 receptions were 10 clear of Lamb’s second-place 27 receptions.

Cooper should be force-fed the ball in an offense that, according to Sharp Football Stats, played at the fastest pace in 2020 when the scoring margin ranged from trailing by seven points to leading by seven points. Yet again, BetPrep joins me on the over bandwagon, projecting him for 7.09 receptions.