3 NFL Player Prop Bets for the Conference Championships
Player props can be useful in a variety of ways, from taking advantage of them straight up within the betting market to measuring a player's potential to produce in daily fantasy football.
Here we'll focus on utilizing our projections and a slew of other tools and simulations to help make money betting player props. For this article, we are using the odds provided at FanDuel Sportsbook to pinpoint spots where value can be had this week.
The prop-betting experience on FanDuel Sportsbook is getting even more fun. You can track your player props with real-time updates and place in-game props with ease.
Note: Betting lines and our player projections may change after this article is published.
Travis Kelce Any Time Touchdown (-105)
The NFL season has three games remaining, and it's time to dive into the conference championships!
The Kansas City Chiefs are hosting the Cincinnati Bengals, and we see a 48.0-point over/under. The Chiefs are favored by just 1.5 points. The Chiefs come in with a slate-high 24.75 implied team total and if they are going to hit that mark, Travis Kelce will likely be involved in the offense.
I know, shocking development here -- Travis Kelce is good. But, this is one of the rare times that we get a Kelce any-time touchdown at even money. We often see his touchdown odds around -140 to -170 on a weekly basis. The issues/news/concerns around Patrick Mahomes' ankle might be playing a part in the odds, but all signs are pointing to Mahomes being ready to play.
Regardless, Kelce at even money for a touchdown is a prop I love this week. Throughout the entire season -- including the playoffs -- Kelce has a 26.1% target share and 25.0% air yards share, playing on 79.2% of the snaps and running a route on 81.3% of dropbacks. He also holds a team-high 30.4% red zone target share.
He is -- and will continue to be -- the best offensive option for the Chiefs' passing game. They should look to lean on Kelce since this is a favorable matchup against the Bengals, who allowed the ninth-most receiving yards to tight ends this season (924).
In the two playoff games for the Bengals this season, Mark Andrews (73) and Dawson Knox (65) led their respective teams in receiving yards. The Bengals are clearly struggling against tight ends, and Kelce should be able to jump in on that trend -- and into the end zone.
Joe Mixon Under 59.5 Rushing Yards (-114)
Next up, we are looking at Joe Mixon under 59.5 rushing yards against the Chiefs.
Mixon is coming off a big game against the Buffalo Bills where he went for 105 yards on 20 carries. That was the first time Mixon was over 15 carries or over 60 rushing yards since Week 16 against the New England Patriots. He hasn't been a major part of their rushing offense and hasn't been effective.
That could certainly happen again this week for a few different reasons. First off, the Chiefs' rush defense was great all season and allowed the eighth-fewest rushing yards to running backs this season (1,380). This is certainly not the ideal spot for the Bengals to establish the run.
Second, if the Bengals fall behind in this game, or if it stays close throughout, they will turn to the passing game. This season, the Bengals had a 61.71% pass-play percentage, which was the seventh-highest in the league. That's not a surprise; when you have Joe Burrow at the helm, you keep the ball in his hands when you need to score points.
The overall game script and the tough matchup should put Mixon in a spot to hit under 59.5 rushing yards this weekend.
A.J. Brown Over 73.5 Receiving Yards (-118)
Finally, we are going with over 73.5 receiving yards for A.J. Brown.
The Philadelphia Eagles are 2.5-point home favorites against the San Francisco 49ers, and the over/under is set at 46.5 points. This gives the Eagles a 24.50 implied team total, a mark they have surpassed in three of their last five games. The other two games were right at 24 points. They have an elite offense; they can move the ball on the ground or in the air.
They showed that last week against the New York Giants with 38 points, but in that win, Brown played a very minor role with 6 targets, and 3 receptions, for just 22 yards. He had a few quotes after their win about wanting the ball more, and since I love a good narrative, we can roll with it this week.
This isn't the only reason we are looking to Brown. Of course, there's much more to it than just that.
While the 49ers are known for having an elite defense -- they allowed the fewest points against this season (277) -- they actually struggled a good amount against opposing wide receivers. This season, their secondary allowed 2,847 receiving yards to wide receivers, which was the sixth-most in the league.
They allow yards but don't allow them to score, which is fine. We're here for a yards prop -- not a touchdown prop. Brown should be able to rack up the yards with his elite role in the Eagles' passing game. He comes in with a 27.7% target share, 9.7 average depth of target (aDOT), 32.1% air yards share, and 27.1% red zone target share on the year.
This is a sneaky great matchup for Brown, who should be seeing more involvement in the offense compared to last week.