Well, Thanksgiving was fun. As a Bears fan, I have mixed feelings. On one hand, the Bears won and that's awesome. On the other hand, they won and Matt Nagy likely bought himself a little more time as the team's head coach. Regardless, this is not about the Bears, this is about making money on NFL Week 12 prop bets. I just had to vent for a second before we get going.
Last week, I went 1-3 on my picks. Mecole Hardman came through and went over 24.5 receiving yards. Justin Fields got hurt, so the over on his passing yards was doomed. Then, the Cam Newton interceptions over and Devonta Freeman rushing yards under both tanked. Let's get back on track today with a few pocket fillers.
Disclaimer: All betting odds are courtesy of BetRivers unless stated otherwise. All lines and odds mentioned are as of the time of writing and subject to change.
Najee Harris Over 17.5 Rushing Attempts (+105)
The Pittsburgh Steelers will get a rematch against the Cincinnati Bengals this week. Back in Week 3, the Bengals knocked off the Steelers 24-10. Harris carried the ball only 14 times. However, that was then and this is now.
Through his first four games, Harris averaged 13.8 carries per game. Since Week 5, Mike Tomlin has gotten his rookie running back more involved, especially on the ground. From Week 5 to Week 10, Harris averaged 24.2 carries per game. Last week, he only toted the rock 12 times against the Los Angeles Chargers.
I don’t believe last week was a change in philosophy, but rather a game script that led to him getting fewer carries. The Steelers dug themselves into a 27-10 deficit entering the fourth quarter and had to throw the ball more than they normally do. Ben Roethlisberger’s 44 pass attempts were his second-most all season. I’m banking on Tomlin going back to his roots and leaning on his durable rookie ball carrier.
Nick Chubb Under 17.5 Rushing Attempts (-121)
There’s a little juice to pay here. Nonetheless, I still like it. The Browns are getting Kareem Hunt back this week after a calf injury sidelined him since Week 6. Chubb should handle the bulk of the work, but Hunt averaged 11.5 carries per game prior to the injury.
The Browns can run effectively against just about anyone in the NFL. However, the Ravens rank sixth in rush defense DVOA. Baltimore's plan must consist of forcing Baker Mayfield to throw, especially as banged up as he’s been. To me, this line should be closer to 15.5 or 16.5. This is the last number I’d play it at, but I’ve already locked it in as one of my bets.
Ty Johnson Over 21.5 Receiving Yards (-110 on FanDuel)
While Mike White was starting at quarterback, Zach Wilson spoke about needing to take what’s given to him and checking down to the open receiver more often. That’s something he picked up on while watching White play.
Michael Carter is out with an injury, so Johnson figures to get plenty of snaps along with Tevin Coleman. Of the two, Johnson is the preferred receiving back. Last week, Johnson only had one catch for eight yards. Prior to that, he went over this number in five straight games. 21.5 is a low number, so we should cash this one easily.
*LOCK OF THE WEEK*
D’Onta Foreman Under 13.5 Rushing Attempts (-125 on DraftKings)
The Tennessee Titans are a mess offensively right now due to injuries. The most recent addition to the list was A.J. Brown, who landed on injured reserve earlier this week. Now, the Titans are down their three best weapons with Derrick Henry and Julio Jones already on injured reserve.
Foreman figures to get a chunk of the carries out of the backfield, but the team also has Dontrell Hilliard, who will receive snaps and is a better receiving back. Hilliard played a much larger percentage of the snaps last week -- 63 percent to Foreman’s 19 percent. Each player carried the ball seven times. In what could be a game with many three-and-outs against a tough New England Patriots defense, it’s hard to imagine Foreman suddenly getting 14 or more carries. I'm locking it up.