Football season is upon us, and that means it’s time to start diving into the futures markets on DraftKings Sportsbook. One of my favorite futures markets is looking at season long players props. Sometimes big names can get in the way of setting a number, particularly a decorated veteran with some injury history. Here’s how I’m looking to fade the Arizona Cardinals defensive end.
Watt’s 10-year tenure in Houston has come to an end, as he looks to start a new chapter with an upcoming team in Arizona. No doubt Watt can help a Cardinals defense that’s really struggled in recent seasons, but is he actually going to flirt with double-digit sacks at this stage of his career? Let’s look back at Watt’s recent season totals.
Excluding his rookie season in 2011, when he had 5.5 sacks in 16 games, this prop has essentially come down to health in every year up until recently. Watt played in all 64 regular season games for the Texans from 2012-2015, averaging an insane 17.25 sacks per season during that time. He finished with 20.5 sacks in two different seasons, and his low was 10.5
In the following four seasons, Watt only played more than eight games once from 2016-2019. In the 2018 season he did recapture his health briefly, recording 16 sacks in 16 games. However, the other three seasons combined, he played in 16 total games and recorded just 5.5 sacks.
The last season was an interesting one — Watt’s first health season of 16 games that he didn’t go over 8.5 sacks (he had just five). I put a lot of stock in that, as it showed us that J.J. simply isn’t the same dominant force he once was, even if he’s capable of staying on the field.
In Arizona, Watt will no longer be relied on to put up big numbers. He’ll line up with other talented pass rushers that are expected to put up numbers, particularly the linebackers. Even with 17 games, it’s plausible that Watt could cash the under here while remaining healthy. But we also can’t ignore injury history with the 32-year-old former Defensive Player of the Year.
Watt’s still getting too much respect for what he was able to accomplish prior to 2016 in his career. The fact is, the under has been a sweat-free cash in four of his last five seasons, and he has just nine total sacks in 24 games the last two seasons. The under is the play here, particularly at the spectacular price offered at DraftKings Sportsbook. Not only are we getting even money, but most shops where you’ll find this prop available set the number at 7.5, and you’ll need to lay some juice.
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All views expressed are my own. I am an employee of DraftKings and am ineligible to play in public DFS or DKSB contests.
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