The grind of the NFL regular season has come to an end. Super Wild Card Weekend is here, and provides us with the six-game betting card on DraftKings Sportsbook that spans over three days.
I’ll write up each of the six games below, and provide both betting thoughts on the games, as well as some wagers and props still on the board that I’ll give out at plays. Let’s rip through the games!
Elijah Mitchell OVER 36.5 Rushing Yards (-115) — 1.5-units
Elijah Mitchell To Score/SF to win (+350) — 0.3-units
I’d be pretty shocked if Seattle pulled the road upset here, but I’m not willing to lay this many points in a divisional matchup with weather potentially mucking it up. If you want to use the Niners as a moneyline parlay piece, I’d say go right ahead (I did earlier in the week before these favorites all grew even larger).
I think this is a terrific prop game, particularly on the San Fran side. I was initially interested in Christian McCaffrey’s rushing prop, which has continued to get bet up. He rushed for over 100 yards when these teams last played, and Seattle has been awful defending the run. But the more I researched it, the more I realized I might be focusing on the wrong RB.
Mitchell didn’t play in that regular season game I referenced, and actually missed time in two stints. However, in the five games he did play, Mitchell averaged 55.8 yards on the ground, and only stayed under 36.5 once (finishing with 35).
This could be much closer to a time-share in the backfield with CMC than the public perception suggests. So against a 30th-ranked Seattle defense that gives up over 150 yards per game rushing, Mitchell is my favorite prop of the weekend, at a modest 36.5 yards. The 4for4 player prop tool has a massive edge on Mitchell this week, projecting him for 63.8 rushing yards.
I also like the small sprinkle on Anytime Touchdown with the SF win at +350. Mitchell scored twice last week against Arizona, and if this does wind up following game script and the Niners lead big late in the game, we could see him scamper in again.
If you’re looking for another way to back Elijah Mitchell props in a SGP, there is also a special DK Nation SGP:
George Kittle To Score/SF to win (+170) — 0.3-units
This is also a tremendous matchup for the TE on the Niners’ side, and Kittle is a great way to take advantage. The Seahawks ranked dead last in the NFL, allowing nearly 70 yards per game to TE during the regular season.
Kittle contributed to inflating those numbers just a few weeks ago in the regular season matchup with Brock Purdy at QB, bringing in 4-of-5 receptions for 93 yards and two touchdowns. The Niners might keep things simple for the rookie QB, but that likely involves a heavy dose of Kittle in a superb matchup. The yards seem like they are priced way too low in this one.
We also have a good chance to see Kittle find the end zone. Obviously, he did it twice the last time these teams met, and he’s been Purdy’s go-to-guy down the stretch — seven total touchdowns over his last four games.
LAC/CIN ML Parlay (+110) — 1-unit
The board has been moving quickly this week when it comes to prices on sides, so apologies for not getting plays out earlier. I played the Chargers for a unit when they were a PK, but I think we still have plenty of ways to play them. I’ll choose to lump in the Bengals on the ML and get us some plus money here, rather than lay any points with LAC.
As for the matchup, the Chargers got stomped by the Jags in the regular season, but it was back when injuries were a huge issue for them. Now the Chargers have their dudes back, and should be ready to take advantage.
Justin Herbert will be better protected this time around, and will have Keenan Allen to throw to, which should make a huge difference. Allen has been a massive producer lately, and plays right into the weakness of the Jags. I’d love Mike Williams to be available to haul in some deep balls, but I trust this enough with Allen in — and could be interested in an Allen receptions prop if/when Williams is confirmed out.
Jacksonville didn’t look sharp in the AFC South showdown last week. The defense really won them that game against a Titans team that really had no passing game. Then the offense had trouble pushing the ball downfield against a terrible Tennessee secondary. The secondary is the strength of this Chargers defense, and should give the Jags a tough time.
Buffalo should absolutely win this game, but the number is getting out of control. Anyway you want to try and use the Bills, though, I’m in agreement with. I actually placed a 6.5-point teaser earlier in the week with BUF -2.5/CIN -0.5, but like I mentioned, the board was moving so quickly, I was unable to post the play in time.
I like backing Cook on his rushing prop, though, as a way to invest in the Bills coming out and trouncing Miami. Cook has well exceeded this number three times in his last five games, rushing for 64 and 45 yards in two games against New England, and 99 against Chicago. He also finished with 34 yards in a home game against the Dolphins during that time span, but that was a closer game, so he received less work. Cook put those numbers up on just five carries, though (6.8 YPC), so if he gets 6-8 carries in this one it could wind up being enough.
Down to a third-string QB, game script should certainly set up differently this time around, versus Miami’s last trip to Buffalo. And if it does, there’s a good chance Cook could see some extra work towards the end of the game.
Didn’t expect to be placing Giants receiving props in the postseason, but here we are. New York has gotten slammed when it comes to injuries to pass-catchers, but it’s James who’s found a groove with Daniel Jones and broken out down the stretch. James has gone over this mark in four of his last seven games, coming up just short in a couple others.
His best game of the season came last month in that game in Minnesota, hauling in 8-of-11 targets for 90 yards. Take away his long reception of 33 yards, and James still cashes the over here handily. Not that this rematch will go just as the last game went, but I do think it helps that the Giants were just in this atmosphere and were very competitive.
Strong lean to the G-Men getting three points here, but I feel the James prop is too short a number against a Minnesota secondary that ranks near the bottom of the league.
LAC/CIN ML Parlay (+110) — 1-unit
Like the Bills, I don’t have much of a take on this game outside of being absolutely stunned if Baltimore could somehow win. I have the Bengals in teasers, moneyline parlays, and laid the points back when it was -6.5.
Cincy is rolling at the moment, and it’s becoming evident that Lamar Jackson just isn’t coming back. That sets up a home playoff game against an injured Tyler Huntley, or Anthony Brown. The Bengals are my most confident outright winner for this weekend, so while all the good prices have moved on, use that info how you please.
TB +2.5 (+100) — 1.5-units
I’ve had this spot circled for weeks now, and even with it becoming a somewhat public play, I can’t back away if I feel it’s the right side. We know all the numbers — Tom Brady hitting at a ridiculous clip as an underdog and he’s never lost to Dallas in his career. But a more important historical stat tells us more about this game in my opinion — NFL playoff underdogs that are bet down to a shorter price (like the Bucs who opened +3) are a ridiculous 43-18-2 ATS (since 2003, per BetLabs). The move off the key number is telling.
I get how bad the Bucs have been. But Brady has his targets mostly healthy, in a strong matchup against a poor Dallas secondary. While moving the ball might not be a smooth operation all game, big plays to the likes of Mike Evans will be on the table.
This is more of a fade of the Cowboys, though. This team has been awful down the stretch. In the last five games, the Cowboys have nearly lost at home to the Texans, blown a massive lead to lose in Jacksonville, barely won at home against an Eagles team that scored 34 with their backup QB, beat a Titans team that sat every single key player, and gotten waxed in the finale at Washington. Dak Prescott was 14-for-37 passing in the game against the Commanders, and has now thrown eight interceptions over that five game span (11 over his last seven games). I’ll take some Brady magic here.
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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.
The contents contained in this article do not constitute a representation that any particular strategy will guarantee success. All customers should use their own skill and judgment.