Three Week 1 NFL Prop Bets: Back Diggs Against Pittsburgh?

Buffalo Bills wide receiver #14 Stefon Diggs warms up before a 2021 road game.
Image Credit: Rich Barnes-USA TODAY Sports

It feels great to be here writing about three NFL prop bets to make in Week 1, and I hope it’s just as exciting for you to be reading!

We’ve made it, the NFL season is here. With help from the platform, we’ll be identifying NFL props every week to target.

We’ll be using trends, matchups, and traditional statistics to inform our prop picks, this is strictly a data-driven decision-making process.

Without further ado, three of my favorite NFL prop bets for Week 1.

Gus Edwards OVER 40.5 Rushing Yards Vs Raiders

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In case you missed it, promising young Baltimore running back JK Dobbins is out for the season.

This is a blow for the Ravens, and for bettors, as Dobbins had come on strong at the end of last season.

Staying with this rushing offense, it’s Gus Edwards who figures to see the biggest usage increase.

Edwards had a fine 2020 season despite splitting duty, averaging 5.0 yards per carry in the regular season and 4.4 ypc in two playoff appearances.

40.5 yards is a very tame line against a weak Las Vegas defense, and as the starting running back, Edwards should see plenty of work in this one.

Edwards averaged 45.19 yards per game last season and now is the top back on an offense that likes to run the ball.

BetPrep has two trends that suggest an over is coming for Edwards in Week 1:

Ran for 41+ yards in 7 of his last 9 (77.78%) games when he had at least 5 carries last game.

Ran for 41+ yards in 6 of his last 8 (75%) games when he is averaging at least 3.5 rush yards per attempt on the season.

The ‘last game’ in this instance was last year’s divisional round, where Edwards had 10 carries. While we can’t yet quantify how many yards he’s averaging per rush this season, he far exceeded the 3.5 YPA in the second trend.

Take Edwards confidently in Week 1.

*UPDATE: Edwards suffered a significant knee injury in practice, and he could miss quite a bit of time. His rushing props have been taken off the board as a result. 

Stefon Diggs OVER 89.5 Receiving Yards Vs Steelers

Image Credit: Rich Barnes-USA TODAY Sports

Stefon Diggs is the clear top receiver on a Buffalo offense that likes to sling it. Diggs led all receivers in yards and receptions last season, finishing 2020 with 127 receptions for 1,535 yards.

I love this line against a Steelers defense that allowed receivers to average 146.05 yards per game. Just last season, Diggs went for 130 yards against this defense, and the secondary has arguably taken a step back this offseason.

BetPrep is full of positive trends for Diggs, again referencing the last game performance. Diggs last played in the AFC Championship, catching 6 balls for 77 yards, and he averaged 103.66 yards per game in the 2020 playoffs.

Positive trends:

  • Caught for 90+ receiving yards in 9 of his last 12 (75%) games when he had at least 5 targets last game.
  • Caught for 90+ receiving yards in 9 of his last 12 (75%) games when he had at least 5 catches last game.
  • Caught for 90+ receiving yards in 6 of his last 8 (75%) games when he averaged at least 10 yards per catch last game.

Christian McCaffrey OVER 47.5 Receiving Yards Vs Jets

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Christian McCaffrey is back as the top weapon in this Carolina offense and should be busy right out of the gate.

McCaffrey played in just three games last season, but remember his 2019 season that saw the running back catch 116 balls for 1,005 yards. This is a playmaker through the air who should be targeted frequently against a weak New York Jets defense.

47.5 yards is reasonable for a guy who averaged 62.8 receiving yards per game in 2019 and caught 10 passes for 82 yards in his last game of the 2020 season.

Comfortably slot McCaffrey in your prop bets for Week 1, his usage is more than enough reason to pursue the wager.