Legal Tampering Period – The Losers

By Adam Walford (@touchdowntips)

Following on from Rob Grimwood’s fantastic post on the winners yesterday I’ve been tasked, quite suitably, with the pessimism, the misery, the teams who did sweet FA, or in the case of the Texans. Worse.


Texans get their pants pulled down by the Cardinals.


In one of the weirder trades of recent times the Arizona Cardinals acquired one of the best three receivers in the game for essentially a bag of chips, and not a nice bag of chips, those “baked” one’s by walkers. It’s another moves by GM/Head coach/Supreme Leader Bill O’Brien which has stymied the masses. Oh, and they then went and signed Randall Cobb on a 3 year deal to try and placate the masses. Weird.

Image result for david johnson
Matt Kartozian-USA TODAY Sports

Additionally they took on the FULL CONTRACT for David Johnson, the full $10.2m contract, for a back who has struggled with injury and form since breaking onto the scene a few years ago. That’s a lot of cash for a running back especially when you’ve got one of the better pass catching backs in the league on your roster already in the shape of Duke Johnson. For the record, I like DJ and I hope he can get back to form, but it’s still a lot of cash to spend on an RB.


David Njoku has some competition, and apparently he welcomes it.


After being drafted at 29 in the 2017 draft there were high hopes for the super-athletic tight end in Cleveland, but a series of niggling injuries and being unable to get together a decent run of games has hit his stock and led his team to bring in Austin Hooper on a big money deal from the Falcons. Neither of them are really blocking TEs, so it’s direct competition, and in those cases the more expensive man usually get the bulk of it all.

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Bengals fall even further behind in the North.


It’d be remiss of me to dampen the spirits of my team and their fans even more. After being quoted by reporters as “being active in free agency” they once again sat and watched as players who’d have improved their roster immediately were picked up for decent deals, the likes of Jack Conklin to the Browns on a 3 year, 42m deal. Nick Kwiatowski to the Raiders for 13m a year both positions of need for the Bengals, and both strengthen AFC teams.

Image result for calais campbell
Reinhold Matay-USA TODAY Sports

The Ravens have also made moves over the last week which further strengthen them, bringing in Calais Campbell and Michael Brockers to add even more to their defensive line, then getting a pick back for Hayden Hurst. They’re taking full advantage of having a rookie QB on a cheap deal.

And the Steelers will be welcoming back the 400lb man at QB which might make them better at that position for next year.


Josh Allen is digging it, but I’m not too sure.


The Bills paid a whole hell of a lot to Stefon Diggs, a 1st, 4th, 5th and 6th for Diggs and a 7th round pick… It’s a lot more than I thought the Vikings would get for someone who so clearly wanted out and bitched and cried about it publicly.

The Vikings get a ton of picks and him off their payroll. Diggs gets to join a team with an inaccurate QB and probably get further frustrated further down the road. Pairing the best route runner in the league with the least accurate QB is an interesting one, hopefully for them it’s a little chicken and egg and it bring Allen up.

Image result for stefon diggs
Bruce Kluckhohn/AP

However, I do get the trade, there’s blood in the water with the Pats possibly losing Brady and their offensive issues on the whole. So while it’s a big payout it could work out well for them.


They gave Jimmy Graham HOW MUCH?!


Why on earth would anyone be money on Jimmy Graham? I wasn’t sure he’d get picked up at all, let alone on a 2 year, $16m deal. But Matt Nagy and the Bears seem determined to keep on paying up at tight end. One of the more perplexing moves done yesterday.

Image result for jimmy graham
Mike DiNovo-USA TODAY Sports

They’re also still without a functional quarterback and supposedly interested in Andy Dalton and Nick Foles. The Bengals apparently want a 3rd for Dalton, the Jags reportedly want to keep Foles (They take a big dead cap hit if he leaves so may as well keep him) Both are upgrades on Trubisky, but still. It’s not an enviable situation.

NFLUK and the Social Scene

By Adam Walford (@touchdowntips)

For the NFL fan March is the ultimate down-spot, we had the climax of the season with the Superbowl, a week or two to recoup, then for all the college nerds the excitement of the combine then the draft in April, but March, well we’ve got free agency opening at least which gives a bit of excitement for a few days but ultimately it’s all just killing time until peak off-season excitement on draft day.

For myself as the betting expert at F10Y towers there’s a few things to keep myself busy. There were markets available on the combine, there’s already odds on teams to win each division, their win totals, MVP and the likes. So a few bits to keep me busy, but my main aim for the summer, much to the delight of the bossman is to reacquaint myself to Excel. Some high-level nerding has been going on with a little help from Tim and his uber-dorklike abilities. All in with the aim of finding any slight edge to gambling when the season comes a-knocking.

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So with it being a little quieter I thought it would be a good time to give a shout out to the community in the UK and give a little promoting to the many fan groups available this side of the pond.

Originally I saw these tables posted by @BaseballBrit on twitter and for the most part the handles haven’t changed since he last updated his 2 years ago but as he’s now travelling the world and excellently promoting Baseball to a UK audience I’m guessing he hasn’t got the time to update so I’ve decided to take the torch and have a follower numbers on twitter.

Of course it might not be an accurate reading of followers of teams in the UK, but as most of my time is spent on twitter it’s where I was looking for numbers. There are of course many many groups on facebook which may be larger than these, but, it is what it is. Oh, and if you know of any other team groups worth a mention then let us know!

So without further blabbed, the AFC teams first.

AFC Follower numbers – 1st March, 2020

Obviously with the Jags being the designated UK team it’s no surprise to see them atop this list, and while I guess it’s still a fan group, I’m assuming here, but it’s probably the only one run by the team itself, it’s definitely the only one with a blue tick, so should we really count them?

The Superbowl champs are in second having topped 10,000 followers on the day of the game this last season, for a true fan-run account it’s an impressive achievement especially as unlike quite a few teams in the list they didn’t have the greatest success in the 80s/90s when football was taking off on this side of the pond, as teams like the Dolphins, Broncos, and to a lesser extent my Bengals did.

A little shameless plug here for the hard work that Paul and Nathan (mostly Paul) do over at WhoDey_UK. As a short-term ‘in-the-know’ participant I had the smallest peek of some of the things they organise on a weekly basis and it’s not just them, there’s a dedicated and eager group of folks who create great data whether it’s college analysis, mock drafts, game previews or predictions and in my humble opinion (having not listened to others) the best team-focused podcast in the UK featuring players, former coaches, beat writers and a whole lot of fun irreverent chat. Earlier in the season they “celebrated” 30 years since the ’89 Superbowl loss to the 49ers but putting together an amazing interview with the sadly late Sam Wyche. One that even neutrals would probably appreciate.

NFC Follower numbers – 1st March, 2020

A little surprising to me to not see the Cowboys at the top of this list, not only are they “Americas team” they were THE team of the 90s with the triplets helping them dominate a large part of the decade. Mick McCarthy is now the coach of them, but he led to the Green Bay Packers to their last Superbowl success a decade ago, I’d guess that led to a lot of the Packers followers, Rodgers and Favre being under center for nearly 30 years now and the fact they’re fan owned probably adds to their appeal. Fair play to the UKPackers and their followers. I can only imagine how large this fan group would be should they ever come over here for a game!

So I’ve tried my best to not make this a ranking exercise as the fact these things exist at all is a great indictment of growth of the game in the UK and the passion that fans over here have towards the game.

Here’s a shout out to all the founders, the participants and readers of good old UK based content! Keep up the good work folks.

DFS roundup; Week 14

By Adam Walford (@touchdowntips)

For some It’s the most wonderful time of the year where if you’ve made your fantasy football play-offs you’re riding the high of that feeling and looking forward to this weekend with great excitement and full of smugness for your achievements of the season.

For some however it’s a far more sombre time, they’re out of it. They’re either competing in the toilet bowl or they’re sat this weekend without a matchup and waiting for the fantasy season to be over, but it doesn’t have to be like that. There is another way. There is another option!

And that option is having a dabble on Daily Fantasy Football! I shall be having a look at Draftkings and trying to pick out some high priced, and some lower priced beauties for this coming week.

Quarterback


High-priced – Lamar Jackson – $7,400

As boring as this suggestion is, I don’t see anywhere else you would want to go should you want to pay up at QB this week. He comfortably leads the position over the season, and with them facing a tough secondary this week there will probably be plenty of opportunities for him to run the ball. That’s where points are quickly accumulated in fantasy football and the chances should be there for him to do that. His opponents at the top? Mahomes vs the best defense in the league NE, Rodgers in a game they should dominate and may well be run heavy, Kirk Cousins… he should have a good game but likely without Thielen again, Diggs took a knock last week. Matt Ryan vs a decent Carolina secondary and Deshaun Watson against a good Denver secondary.

Lower-priced – Ryan Tannehill – $5,800

It’s tough to say no to the Ryans this week, I was between Ryan Fitzpatrick and Ryan Tannehill for the lower priced guy for me this week, and with the Titans having an easier matchup I went for the Titans QB. He’s facing a Raiders team who give up more long passing plays than any other in the league this year. They’ve been horrible in their couple of games on the road recently. The Raiders should be better back at home, but that could actually help the passing game for the Titans if they need to keep up the pace. Tannehill has been great on the ground as well with 3 rushing TDs in his last 4 games and he’s shown he’s not afraid to put his body on the line to get a score.


Running backs


Higher-priced – Leonard Fournette – $7,800

He might not have scored many touchdowns this year, and his offensive line might be garbage, but he’s still nearing 1,000 yards on the ground this year and has been targeted a lot this season averaging 5 receptions per game, which has risen to just over 7 receptions per game over the last 5 games, with both Nick Foles and Gardner Minshew.

Aaron Jones – $6,700

It’s been a weird few weeks for Aaron Jones this year, he was leading the league in rushing TDs after his hat-trick against the Panthers, who are ranked last in rushing DVOA (more on that in a minute) but things have taken a bit of a down-turn recently with a horrible 2.9 and 1.6 yards per carry over his last two games vs the 49ers and Giants in the snow last week. This is a decent bounce-back spot though, he’s back at Lambeau where he’s scored 8 times this year in every game bar one this season.

Lower-priced – Devonta Freeman – $5,400

He’s not scored a rushing TD this season. The Falcons rushing offense has been horrible and he’s coming off an injury. His replacement Brian Hill and Qadree Ollison have both been poor so I don’t think there’s much threat there of them taking too many carries from him. Freeman is a talented back who can be cut quite easily over the summer so it’s reasonable to say he’s playing for his career in Atlanta. BUT He’s going up against the worst run defense in the league who gave up 13 yards per carry to Derrius Guice and over 7 YPC to Adrian Peterson and 3 TDs to them in the process. Freeman is involved in the passing game too with 3 scores in that facet this season.

Patrick Laird – $4,100

Laird ran averaged half a yard per carry last week with 5 yards on 10 carries. BUT he somehow found the endzone from those carries. They’ve put Kalen Ballage on IR, either due to injury or because he’s terrible. Laird however, has been very good in the passing game for the Dolphins so far averaging about 9 yards per reception and targeted. They do face a tough run defense in the Jets but with Laird capable out of the backfield through the air, and at a budget price he’s not a terrible choice.


Wide Receiver


High-priced – DJ Moore – $7,000

Moore has been rising in price week on week, but it’s still not really quick enough. He’s had 47 targets over the last month, resulting in 29 receptions, more than 100 yards per game and 3 TDs in that span, this week they go up against the Falcons who are ranked #27 vs the pass this year according to DVOA. There’s a new head coach in Carolina, he’s likely a little more defensive, but surely your game plan should be carrying on with what’s working. Add to that Greg Olsen is out this week and that’s 25 targets (from 4 weeks) to go around as well.

Courtland Sutton – $6,400

Sutton is a beast. He’s been great this year with some awful QB play in Denver, Flacco, Allen and last week Lock and he’s succeeded pretty well with all of them. Last week he hauled in 4 of 5 targets for 2 TDs, one a brilliant one-handed catch in the end zone, and this was being covered by Casey Hayward who’s one of the better cornerbacks in the league. He’s got it far easier this week against a Texans passing D which ranks 25th.

Low(er)-priced – Zach Pascal – $5,500

Pascal’s numbers last week added up to the best of his career with 109 yards from 7 receptions against the Titans and he’ll be the main man again this week, probably even more so as TY Hilton is once again ruled out, Chester Rogers is likely missing too, he’s up against only really Jack Doyle and Marcus Johnson for competition at WR in the Colts offense, and they go up against the Bucs who are brilliant against the run, not so great vs the pass.

Auden Tate – $4,000

As a Bengals fan myself I can tell you that Auden Tate has been great this year. He’s pulled off a number of highlight reel catches and averaging about 50 yards per game for the season. He’s been pretty regular with his yardage as well, even with Ryan Finley at QB. Only two games where I’d say he’s busted for his price. He’ll likely haul in 4 or 5 catches for about 50 yards again and he’s a big body who should really be getting more looks in the red-zone.


Tight end


I don’t do high priced.

Vance McDonald – $4,300

I don’t really need to dig too deeply into this one. The Steelers are playing against the Cardinals. They’ve given up a TD to the tight end in every game this year bar the Bengals (where Tyler Eifert dropped one in the endzone) So while the Steelers haven’t exactly been what you would describe as “good” on offense this year the trend is there and has been strong. Additionally rookie QBs generally target the RB in the pass game and their tight end. Ipso Facto – Vance McDonald is the man.

Ian Thomas – $2,500

Rock bottom price here. It looks like Greg Olsen is out for this one, so it will be Ian Thomas as the starting TE for the Panthers. He had a few targets last week (4 of 4 for 24) after Olsen went out so he should be involved and for the lowest price you can get if you’ve got to save money you could do a lot worse.


Defense


Packers – $4,000

The Packers are probably rightly the highest price for this week going up against a rookie QB on the road.

Bucs – $2,300

I’m a little surprised the Bucs are this lowly priced. They scored 24 points in fantasy by themselves last week after giving the Jags QBs nightmares. So while they face one of the better offensive lines in the league they also face a team without many good passing options and they’re the best run defense in the league.


You can put together a lineup of Lamar Jackson, Fournette, Freeman, AJ Brown, Sutton, DJ Moore, McDonald, Tate and the Bucs with a little to spare this week. (We’re $100 off being able to get Pascal and it would go against the Bucs D)

NFL Best Bets Week 13

Browns @ Steelers

TIM: Under 39.5 points 

ADAM: Kareem Hunt o3.5 recs – 1/1 (365)


Packers @ Giants

TIM: Packers -6.5

ADAM: Aaron Rodgers o1.5 passing TDs – 5/7 (Sterling Shepard o4.5 recs 4/6)


Jets @ Bengals

TIM: Jets -3

ADAM: Old faithful Auden Tate o42.5 rec. yards – 5/6 (PP)


Eagles @ Dolphins

TIM: Dolphins +10

ADAM: Dallas Goedert anytime – 7/4 (WillHill)


49ers @ Ravens

TIM: Under 45.5 points

ADAM: Lamar Jackson to be awesome – 1/5 (me)


Buccaneers @ Jaguars

TIM: Over 47.5 points

ADAM: Ronald Jones o48.5 rush yards – 5/6 (365)


Titans @ Colts

TIM: Tennessee +3

ADAM: Big Mo is gonna show! – Mo Alie-Cox anytime – 10/1 (WillHill)


Redskins @ Panthers 

TIM: Panthers -10

ADAM: DJ MORE MORE MOOOOOORE o5.5 receptions – 1/1 (Skybet)


Rams @ Cardinals

TIM: Rams -3

ADAM: Jared Goff o250ish? (No lines as potential Murray injury)


Chargers @ Broncos

TIM: Phillips Lindsay anytime 

ADAM: Any Chargers defensive player – 4/1 (Ladbrokes)


Raiders @ Chiefs

TIM: Chiefs -7

ADAM: Darren Waller o4.5 receptions – 5/6 (365)


Patriots @ Texans

TIM: Texans +3.5

ADAM: Texans win 6/4


 

Potential Fantasy Breakout Candidates for 2019

by Adam Walford – @TouchdownTips

Every year in the NFL there’s a below the radar pick who blows up and finishes in the top 24 of their positions, obviously, our job as GM of our fantasy teams is to try and find those diamonds in the rough. While that’s not an easy thing with the popularity of fantasy football online and the amount of information out there posting very similar information it’s something that we all strive to find.

The key things that I look for are changes in circumstance, whether it’s a change of Head Coach, or Offensive Coordinator, injuries to team-mates, or just buzz coming from beat-writers during the offseason, all these things can improve or diminish a players impact in real life and in fantasy football.

First up is a name you’ll find on every break-out list all over the internet, but it’s one I couldn’t possibly ignore:

Chris Godwin – Wide ReceiverTampa Bay Buccaneers (ADP WR19 – Last season 155.7pts, WR24)

Godwin is on my list due to the change of Head Coach in Tampa. Bruce Arians comes out of a very quick retirement to try and convince Jameis Winston not to throw the ball to the opposition for a while, he brings with him Byron Leftwich who he described as a “rising star in the business.”

The Tampa defense hasn’t been a good unit over the years and they’re in a tough division against some very good offenses, this generally means they need to score points and the best way to do that is to let your QB chuck the rock around.

godwin
Photo Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

He will be WR2 to superstar wideout Mike Evans, who should have a great season, but there’s a lot of seasons where QBs have managed to support a WR1 and 2 in fantasy scoring.

Last year Godwin finished with 7 TDs, 842 yards at an average of 14.3 yards per reception. Over his career, Bruce Arians has deployed 4 WR sets 42% of the time when the league average is down at 10%.

Obviously, that means a guaranteed increase in snaps for Chris Godwin, and don’t forget the likes of Breshad Perriman, Justin Watson and Scotty Miller who should also benefit from Arians’ system.

 

Rashaad Penny – Running Back, Seattle Seahawks (ADP RB33 – Last season 65.9pts, RB64)

It’s not often that a running back drafted in the first round gets so relatively few carries in an offense (419 yards from 85 carries at a touch under 5 yards per carry), especially in one that uses the run game so often (53% of their plays last year used the run game).

Penny’s first season got off to a poor start due to a broken finger which allowed teammte Chris Carson to get the bulk of the carries and keep the main job for the majority of the season.

In the small sample size I saw of Penny though, I thought he was a great runner especially behind the poor Seattle offensive line which was the reason they drafted him anyway.

Penny led college running backs in broken tackles in his final year for San Diego State, something that the Seahawks undoubtedly picked up on. Another reason for him playing second fiddle was that he wasn’t up to scratch pass protecting; That’s something which can be taught though, and he’ll have improved on that last season and during training camps.

Another plus for Penny is that Carson missed OTAs with injury meaning he got all of the first-team reps and Pete Carroll runs the ultimate meritocracy, so if you’re playing well he’ll keep you in there.

Christian Kirk – Wide Receiver, Arizona Cardinals (ADP WR33: Last season 102 pts, WR57)

Kirk was having a pretty decent season in a horrible situation in Arizona last year; he had a rookie QB playing behind an atrocious offensive line last season and they ran an historically low number of plays and failed to move the ball.

Once again the change in coaching is a major reason here. Kliff Kingsbury comes in and will be bringing the air raid offense to the NFL with quick passes abound. They drafted Kyler Murray at #1 who threw for 4,361 and 42 TDs in his final year of college, as well as 3 WRs this year from the second round onwards.

None of those receivers has a history with Murray, whereas Kirk had a year with Murray for Texas A & M in 2015 and now has a year of NFL experience under his belt.

kirk
Photo Credit: TexAgs.com

Last season Kirk finished with 590 yards in 12 games at an average of nearly 14 YPC. I think the whole offense will be far more productive this year, probably running around 100 more plays than last season, and he, Larry Fitzgerald and probably Andy Isabella will be the main three guys in 3 WR sets – more time on the field, more plays, more production. Bosh.

Mark Andrews – Tight End, Baltimore Ravens (ADP TE20: Last season 90.2pts, TE17)

One of my Fantasy crushes this offseason is available for essentially nothing at the end of most mock drafts. He formed a good connection with Lamar Jackson and his less-than-accurate arm last season. In fact, in the games since Lamar Jackson took over at QB, Andrews had 308 yards and 1 TD, converting 13 of his 18 targets in that time which was a 771-yard season pace, which would have seen him fifth in yards for Tight ends last year.

Add to this they drafted Marquise Brown to keep defenses honest and add some much needed speed down the field, his addition should help free up space in the middle of the field where Mark Andrews roams.

The worry here would be that Hayden Hurst steps up and avoids injuries in his second year in the league, but seeing as he missed OTAs already and Andrews was always the better offensive weapon I don’t see that being too much of an issue. Given that he’s practically free at the end of most drafts, I think he’s a brilliant pickup.

 

John Ross – Wide Receiver, Cincinnati Bengals (ADP WR 101 – Last season 74.4 pts, WR81) 

Confession time – the reason for this guy being on the list is that a) I haven’t seen anyone else mention him and b) I’m allowed a homer pick aren’t I?!

Another wide receiver, another change of head coach and the possibility of better utilisation in the new system. Guess how many TDs he had last year? 2? 3? Nope, he ended with 7 TDs from 21 receptions, a lot of them from within the redzone.

While he does seem to have been a combine warrior so far in his career, something that I can’t deny too vociferously, he utilised his quickness as well as his speed last season to gain quick separation at the line of scrimmage.

If you want to get technical, he had a meteoric rise in targets from his first year at the Bengals, 29 times more in fact. If that happens again this year he’ll finish with 1,682 targets for the year!

Back to this upcoming year, he’s now under the coaching of someone from the Sean McVay coaching tree and it seems likely that he brings in some of the same creativity that works so well in LA, from what I’ve been hearing it will include an increase in play-action passes which should allow more time for players to get into space down the field.

I believe if Ross is used as he should be that he’ll be able to get separation and get free downfield to add to his redzone TDs.

 

All ADPs and previous season points are half PPR scoring from fantasypros.com

Request-a-bets & other leading stats

By Adam Walford (@TouchdownTips) – 20/7/19

This article I’ll have a look at the Request-a-bets and some of the other player prop markets mainly on Skybet.

Skybet

  • Most Pass yards – Luck, Most rush yards – Zeke, Most receiving yards – TY Hilton – 80/1 (1pt); I recommended Luck and Zeke as bets in the previous post, so to get 80/1 when adding Hilton, who will be the main guy in Indy seems a sensible bet for me personally to take.
  • Regular Season Wins: Bears Under 9.5, Falcons 9+, Cardinals 5+, 49ers 8+, Buccs 7+ – 25/1 (3pts); I think the riskiest one here is 49ers getting to 8 win, although the Buccs is a bit dodgy in a tough division but I like Arians and they should be able to put up points to compete.
  • Regular Season Wins (8pts): Pats, Chiefs & Saints 8+ each, Colts, Browns, Bears, Rams & Cowboys 7+ each – 5/4; Yeah, it should happen. The Browns are the riskiest there but while I’m not on the hype train they should be around there.

All the above are on the request-a-bet sections. Below have been done in order they are found on the Skybet site.

  • Josh Allen most INTs thrown – 12/1 (2pts); Unsurprisingly the 2nd year QBs lead this market, Darnold would be the one I was looking at, but at 17/2 probably too short for me. Last season Big ben lead, but had most attempts, I think he’ll be there again without AB to throw too he’s left with Juju, Moncrief and Washington, and he doesn’t like Washington so I can see his figures being high again as he tends not to take sacks. Proportionally Attempts to INTs, Rosen took the crown with 14 from 217 attempts (6.4%), that was behind an atrocious O-Line with poor coaching in Arizona, now in Miami and not guaranteed a starting position he’s a miss. Josh Allen at 12/1 isn’t the worst shout, he was high last year with 12 INTs from 169 attempts (7.1%) and he’ll continue to be aggressive and looking downfield.
  • Most rush TDs; Not entirely sure who I’d be taking on this one, but Skybet have Todd Gurley as the heavy favourite which increases the prices on everyone else, with his knee issue I’m not confident that he’ll be on the field enough to justify the price he’s set at, so if you fancy someone else in this market they’re probably at a decent price. Last year, Gurley 17, Kamara 14, Henry and Connor 12, Barkley 11, Gordon 10. – I like the look of Mack at 22/1 (18/1 EW on Ladbrokes) and DJ at 28/1 (18s EW Lads) for the Cardinals.
  • Most rec. TDs; Another one that’s a bit too hard to really predict. Last year led by Antonio Brown, obviously on a new team, so that’s him ruled out. Eric Ebron was second, that has to be an out-lier for me, Davante Adams is the most likely to repeat his numbers in my eyes but that’s why he’s the 6/1 fav. To be honest, the only minor bet I’ll be having here is 100/1 on Hunter Henry (or 66/1 if you want EW on Ladbrokes)
  • Kyler Murray most QB rush yards – 10/1 (2pts); Obviously Lamar Jackson is the favourite for this at just over evens, but he won’t run as much as last year, he can’t… So I think it’s worth taking a punt on a guy who rushed for over 1,000 yards and 12 TDs in his final year in college, not quite the 1,600 that Jackson went for, but he’s definitely capable with his legs, I think he should be second favourite, not 5th.
  • Sam Darnold most fumbles lost (just QBs) – 80/1 (1pt); Again Lamar heads this market (7/2) as he had 10 from 147 rush attempts last year (6.8%), obviously due to having so many more rush attempts than any other QB, surprisingly (to me) Kirk Cousins and Sam Darnold both had 4 from 44, about 9% and it’s something that he was susceptible to in college as well. As I mentioned above I don’t see Lamar having that many attempts again and teams will be more wise to it now (see the Chargers stopping him in the playoffs)

Ladbrokes only (as far as I know)

  • Total TDs scored – Saquon Barkley – 6/1 (4pts), David Johnson 16/1 EW (2pt EW, 4 total); Total TDs, so it’s more than likely going to be a running back as they get rushing and receiving TDs, and for me Saquon is the most likely to be a figure in both rushing and receiving TDs. IF DJ is fit for the season then I see no reason why he won’t be able to get back near 1000:1000 and 20 TDs as he did in his last full season. My boy Dalvin Cook probably isn’t the worst shout either at 40s, but I’m in on his yards already and I feel he’s more of an injury risk than DJ.

I won’t be tackling most sacks, most tackles and assists, most interceptions made, higher passer rating etc as I feel they’re too random to be putting any money on.

Good Luck if you follow along, I usually do OK on season longs, so hopefully that will continue.

Adam.

Betting: Season long stats leaders preview

By Adam Walford (@touchdowntips) – 9th July 2019

So it’s the start of July, less than a month until football returns! Well, pre-season football, which isn’t really worth it, but, the Falcons and Broncos 3rd stringers take the field in the HOF game on the 1st of August. Yay!

There’s actually a lot of variety already available in the ante-post betting for next season on most of the big sites, so I’ll have a nose at some that have caught my eye a little. I’ll stick to player related bets here, win totals don’t change a whole lot over the summer, and annoyingly you can’t parlay them without using the betting firms’ Request a Bet service which I’ll get to later in the summer. There’s actually quite a lot of player yardage props which I’ll look at later in the summer as well, and of course the Team totals which I love attacking.

Regular Season MVP

Not a fan of MVP betting at this early stage of the season, or frankly during the season, it’s not a market I particularly like. I can practically guarantee it will be a QB, there’s been a couple of RBs who set records, some fella called Jerry Rice is the only WR to have won it and Lawrence Taylor is the only defensive player to have won it.

Having said that I don’t usually bet on this market, I will probably have a nibble on Deshaun Watson at 33/1. He’s mobile, he’s got one of the best WRs in the game and if Will Fuller can stay fit, a serious TD threat. The Texans are in a tough division and have a tough schedule, if they come through to win that division then it’s safe to say that a lot will be down to Watson. Annoyingly he was around 60/1 earlier in the off-season, only 33/1 now (PP, Lads) but I think he should be shorter still.

The other I would look at would be Carson Wentz. It’s a risk, but the team obviously have no worries about his injury as they signed him to a big deal and traded away Nick Foles so I don’t have too much worry there either. He was MVP-elect before that injury in his rookie year and if anything his WR corps is better now with Desean Jackson brought in, as well as rookie JJ Arcega-Whiteside who I’ve heard good things, to compliment Jeffrey and Agholar. Add the tight ends Zach Ertz and Dallas Goedert to the pass catchers and you’ve got a talented offense there.

  • Deshaun Watson – 35/1 (Betfair)
  • Carson Wentz – 25/1 (Skybet)

Most passing yards

Another one that’s dominated mainly by the QBs for obvious reasons… I won’t go into too much depth on this one.

Mahomes is the favourite, I think a lot depends on whether Tyreek Hill is suspended or not, somehow it looks like he’ll have a small suspension at the moment, which is a big boost for Mahomes and his stats. He’s brilliant.

Big Ben won it last year, I doubt that will happen this year without Antonio Brown there. I don’t think it will be Rodgers, it won’t be Brady, Brees or Goff.

Matt Ryan is in with a shout assuming Calvin Ridley takes a step forward which is perfectly believable, and he’s got Julio, which obviously helps.

I usually plump for Phil Rivers EW and he’ll be up there again with Keenan Allen, Mike Williams likely to step up and Hunter Henry hopefully back and fully fit. But I think it could well be Andrew Luck. I was so impressed with him last year coming back off his shoulder injury and I think the Colts will be a good team this year, TY Hilton should do well and I’d imagine he’ll be fairly decent odds in rec. yards, Parris Campbell is a flexible pass catcher, Doyle and Ebron at TE and Nyheim Hines at RB are all adept pass catchers.

I feel it would be a mistake to not mention Deshaun Watson at 40/1 on Ladbrokes after mentioning him for the MVP above, Hopkins, Fuller, Keke Coutee are a good trio to throw the ball to. Jamies Winston is probably in with a shout here as well, he’s a high volume thrower generally and gets Bruce Arians as his HC who loves going with 4 WR sets, so there will be a lot of people on the field for him to target, he’s 20/1 EW on Ladbrokes, which is actually bigger than everywhere else who only got straight up (10/1 at Skybet or example).

Somehow I have completely ignored Baker Mayfield until now (16/1 Skybet) when I originally wrote this lot, I think he’ll be up there, he’s definitely got the players to throw to, Landry, Beckham, Njoku are a good trio and even the secondary guys are decent enough, the kid showed he’s got the talent in his half season last year and with a full year the only thing detracting is possibly a poor offensive line. Not a bad shout at all, and what kind of idiot does a top passer thing and doesn’t mention Aaron Rodgers. Jesus christ, what an amateur I am some times. Plusses, he’ll be in F you mode after finally getting rid of Mike McCarthy, negatives he has some very tough defenses in his division and I’m just not sure he’ll get near 5,000

  • Andrew Luck – 7/1
  • Jameis Winston 20/1 EW- Both Ladbrokes

Most rushing yards

Apologies for the length and the rambling on this one, but wanted to get my thoughts down as to why I’ve picked the guys I have.

The league as a whole has generally gone away from workhorse running backs these days, preferring to use a couple in rotation so while I’d love to be contrarian and give some value here, but it’s basically between about 4 or 5 guys, the same ones you’ll be taking at the top of your fantasy drafts.

Ezekiel Elliott, Kamara, McCaffrey, Barkley are the top 4, then you’re looking at the likes of Joe Mixon, James Connor, David Johnson, Lev Bell, Todd Gurley, maybe Dalvin Cook. – Zeke won it last year with 1,434 yards over the season and with no-one else really in the backfield there I see no reason why it won’t be him again especially as the offensive line should be stronger than last year, he is used in the passing game, in fact he was used a lot more than I realised last year, 77 receptions was only a handful behind Kamara. I will, however discard Kamara (883) as while the Saints got rid of Ingram, they replaced him seemingly like-for-like with Latavius Murray who will take more of the ground work with Kamara very adept in the passing game, for the same reason I doubt it will be CmcC (1098), while he was a beast last year and has bulked up over the summer he’s just too good through the air for them to give him enough to rack up the ground yards as well. I believe that Saquon Barkley is probably the only real rival for Zeke for the rushing title; He was pretty much the entire offense for the Giants last year and he handled it all in his stride, over 2,000 all purpose yards, 1,307 on the ground, and his breakout speed was a large part of that, one cut and you’re not gonna catch him. Eli still can’t throw the ball so I’d imagine a lot will be on him again this year.

Unsurprisingly Ezekiel Elliott and Saquon Barkley are the two leaders in the betting. 4/1 and 5/1 respectively on Ladbrokes, and 1/4 EW which could come in handy in a minute.

It might be stupid to overlook Todd Gurley who finished 3rd last year despite a small workload for the last few games of the season, and the off-season rumour-mill around him is concerning in regards to his knee. It seems he has mild arthritis there which could lead to less of a workload and they drafted an RB mildly high, or it could mean nothing and they run him into the ground anyway. Personally I’m avoiding him, 16/1 is available on PP if you wanted to go for him though. – Mixon and Connor are basically 3 down backs for their teams, and I believe that the Bengals want to run the ball more this year to set up the play action pass, however the offensive line which was looking improved got knocked back to last years when left tackle Jonah Williams was reported to be out for the season and that’s really dented my confidence in the whole Bengals offense; He did however lead the AFC in rush yards last year behind that line so 12/1 on Lads.

The Steelers always shove the load on one back and it will be Connor again this year, he did well in his first season as the main RB last year and with no Antonio Brown or Lev Bell there they’ll be relying more on Juju and Connor to get the yards, but I just don’t think he’ll get enough yards, it could be my anti-Pitt bias, but I just don’t see it for some reason. David Johnson in Arizona? I love the guy, he’s a brilliant player but I think that team will be too pass heavy (an area he excels in) to give him enough carries to top the table. Leveon Bell, at the Jets now, I don’t believe he’ll be as good without one of the best offensive lines in the league and with a HC who doesn’t like using one guy (Drake/Gore in Miami) and who has come out and said he didn’t want Bell at the cost.

Dalvin Cook was a major talent when he was healthy and I think actually, that he would be my EW bet, available at 22/1 on Ladbrokes and there’s not a lot left in terms of competition in the backfield for him, only really Alex Mattison who they drafted this year, add to that the fact they changed their offensive coordinator to go more run heavy… I think that’s the bet for me at the price.

  • Ezekiel Elliott – 4/1
  • Dalvin Cook EW – 22/1 – Both Ladbrokes.

Most receiving Yards

I’m struggling a bit on this one tbh, there’s a lot of players who I think will be there or there about’s and they’re all generally 20-25s at most. Julio will be up there as he always is, and I mentioned above that I think Ryan will be up there, so of course Julio should be in my thought process here.

Michael Thomas will be around there, but I don’t think he gets enough big plays to win it.

DeAndre Hopkins is another, if I think Watson is going to do as well as I think then theoretically I have to think Nuk will do well this year and the same goes for TY Hilton if I think Andrew Luck will do well, then he should be up near the top of this list as well, at 20/1 on Ladbrokes. 25/1 on Davante Adams isn’t a bad look, he’s the clear WR1 there and Rodgers has essentially said he’ll be looking for him on every single play, but that price is straight up only, a measly 11/1 on Ladbrokes for EW betting. I mean, in fairness at 125/1… Robert Woods isn’t the worst bet in the world but again that’s straight win, only 50/1 on Lads for EW bettors.

Davante Adams – 25/1 – Skybet

Not… That… Long…. Now!