A look at the NFL’s best rushers and their chances to hit the over or under. We cover who to include in your Week 6 rushing yard parlay here.
Overall, a strong week as both David Montgomery and De’Von Achane (get well soon!) hit the over on their props by halftime. Meanwhile, Rhamondre Stevenson never got into the flow of the game against New Orleans, as I predicted.
What I didn’t predict was the rest of the Patriots joining Stevenson in basically giving themselves a bye week. Big trouble in Foxborough for the Patriots these days.
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With no further ado, onto Week 6…
D’Andre Swift OVER 64.5 rushing yards at New York Jets (-125)
All Swift does is hit the over. Eagles coach Nick Sirianni called himself out in week one, when Swift saw only a single carry in Philadelphia’s opener.
To Sirianni’s credit, he’s since rectified the problem with Swift averaging 18.75 carries per game in the last four carries. He’s also not dipped below 14 in a single contest. At 5.7 yards per rush, this number is attainable in an 11-carry sample.
But averages don’t always tell the story. Instead, let’s tell this one – Philadelphia’s got the league’s best offensive line. Jalen Hurts has clearly been told to preserve himself in the early going. He’s sliding, throwing the ball away, going out of bounds much more often. The tough yards between the tackles are Swift’s job.
Three of the Eagles’ wins over the 5-0 start have followed a formula of “get a lead and kill the clock – and the other team’s morale – with the running game.”
Meet the offensively challenged New York Jets. Outside of crippling Philadelphia turnovers, I don’t see how Zach Wilson exceeds 14 points against this defense. Suggesting the Eagles’ formula will be in play once more.
The Jets’ reputation as a defensive team trying to cover for a shorthanded offense obscures the reality that Gang Green is surrendering 4.5 yards per carry this year to the tune of 146.2 rushing yards a game. Seems like an opponent ripe for the Eagles’ strategy.
Kenneth Walker OVER 66.5 rushing yards at Cincinnati Bengals (-115)
The NFL’s softest rushing defense, by far, resides in Denver, where the Broncos permit a whopping 187.6 yards per contest. Sean Payton probably wishes worse than anything he’d stayed retired. Especially after having his own words stuffed back in his face by Nathaniel Hackett and the Jets’ offense.
(No, really. The Jets have an offense!)
But with the Broncos relegated to Thursday Night Football this week, let’s pick on another team with orange as a primary color in Cincinnati. The Bengals are 31st in the league in rushing yards allowed at 154 per game. Also, Seattle comes into this contest off a bye and well rested.
Consistency’s been the name of Walker’s game in 2023, averaging 4.4 yards per carry. The number is somewhat depressed by a rough 17-carry, 43-yard outing against the Lions’ third-ranked rush defense in week two. However, Walker’s had at least 17 carries per game during Seattle’s three-game winning streak.
The concerns here are the Bengals running away early and rendering the Seattle run game useless (could happen, but we’re trusting the Seahawks’ defense off a bye) and Zach Charbonnet cutting into Walker’s carries.
But Charbonnet only saw the ball five times against the Giants in the Seahawks’ blowout win two weeks ago. In what projects as a close game against a leaky opponent, we’re backing Walker.
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Christian McCaffrey UNDER 69.5 rushing yards at Cleveland Browns (-115)
You probably figured out the formula for the first two pick. Running backs who see a majority of carries against iffy run defenses. Hey, it worked last week.
But here’s the curve ball.
San Francisco might just be THAT good. Dallas certainly thinks so after a 42-10 thrashing on Sunday Night Football where McCaffrey scored for the 14th consecutive game. He’s averaging 102 yards rushing per game this season as the 49ers are off to a blistering 5-0 start.
But no guts, no glory.
Elijah Mitchell’s questionable again with a knee injury, but Jordan Mason emerged last week as another alternative to McCaffrey in the San Francisco backfield. It’s hard to believe the 49ers want to give McCaffrey 20+ carries week in, week out – they just need another option in Mitchell’s absence, and this is an opportunity to see if Mason rises to the challenge.
Speaking of challenges, the Browns are tied with Seattle for the lowest yards allowed per rush (3.2), permitting only 71.8 yards per contest.
San Francisco is travelling across the country off a blowout win to face a team that’s coming off a bye week. Every sign points towards a letdown performance. And while it’s hard to see Cleveland’s offense blowing the doors off the 49ers and forcing them to throw early and often, San Francisco’s faith in Brock Purdy grows every week. If Cleveland stops the run early, Kyle Shanahan won’t hesitate to put this game on the second-year quarterback and turn McCaffrey into primarily a receiving – not rushing – threat.
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BONUS PLAY: James Cook OVER 56.5 rushing yards vs. New York Giants (-115)
Great news, America! We get another nationally televised New York Giants game!
The Giants stink, but they made the playoffs last year and the networks decided to reward them (and us!) with repeated appearances on Sunday Night and Monday Night Football.
This week, it’s the first battle for New York when they take on the Buffalo Bills on Sunday Night. The second battle for New York comes in two weeks when the Giants and Jets meet in their shared home of MetLife Stadium (and no, thankfully, that one won’t be nationally televised).
But let’s look at the bright side, which is that it’s still legal to bet against this putrid squad. And if the 14-point spread isn’t to your liking, take a look at James Cook’s rushing yards.
James Cook Week 6 Rushing Yard
De’Von Achane and Raheem Mostert both smashed their rushing yards props against the NY defense last week, and while his recent efforts aren’t encouraging, there’s plenty of motivation for Cook to have a big day.
The Bills struggled last week in London, losing 25-20 to the Jaguars as Cook went for NEGATIVE yards (-4) on only five carries. This followed a 28-yard outing in a blowout win against the Dolphins, a scenario that should’ve set the second year back from Georgia up for a breakout performance.
In the Bills’ first two victories, Cook averaged 16 carries and 110 yards per game.
Meanwhile, the Giants’ soft run defense (30th in the NFL at 151 yards allowed per games, 5.3 yards per carry) is begging for a reason to quit as Daniel Jones continues to prove his $160 million extension is the worst NY contract since Bobby Bonilla. If Buffalo gets an early lead, and they should, the running lanes will open, and James Cook will have his opportunities.
One bad outing is an accident, and two is a coincidence. If James Cook struggles against New York, it’ll be a trend. One more chance, James – don’t let us down.
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Rob’s Week 6 NFL Rushing Yards Parlay
(All odds courtesy of DraftKings)
- D’Andre Swift OVER 64.5 yards (-125)
- Kenneth Walker OVER 66.5 yards (-115)
- Christian McCaffrey UNDER 69.5 yards (-115)
A $50 parlay (+529) on Rob’s Week 6 Rushing Yards could win $314.57.