Many bettors may not know this, but oddsmakers typically experience a sharp drop off in betting following the NBA playoffs. Although baseball is one of the most profitable sports for sharp bettors, it simply doesn’t compare to basketball or football in terms of popularity. For this reason, many sportsbooks will begin posting an overabundance of prop bets in an attempt to encourage action.
These prop bets cover a wide range of topics including not only athletics but also film and television, politics, celebrity gossip and the bizarre (like the over/under for the Nathan’s Hot Dog eating competition or the possibility of alien life). However, there’s one surefire way to attract bettors — anything involving the NFL.
Each year, sportsbooks begin their NFL coverage at increasingly early dates. Super Bowl Futures are available before the previous season has finished, win totals are posted weeks before the draft and prop bets are rolled out as soon as possible. For example, this year’s Rookie of the Year odds were released just 48 hours after the NFL draft was completed.
Another example? Last season sportsbooks waited until August to post a majority of their player props, however, this year we didn’t even make it out of June before 5Dimes began posting their first round of prop bets. On Tuesday (6/30), the renowned sharp book posted regular season props for most rushing yards and most receiving yards. Although they have yet to post odds for most passing yards, it wouldn’t be surprising to see those odds posted shortly.
The tables below display the current odds for each player to lead the league in their respective categories at 5Dimes. We will continue to update these tables throughout the offseason.
|Player||5Dimes (8/18)||5Dimes (7/1)|
|Player||5Dimes (8/18)||5Dimes (7/1)|
It’s interesting to see that there’s a five-way tie for the 2015 rushing title with Adrian Peterson, Arian Foster, Jamaal Charles, Marshawn Lynch and DeMarco Murray all listed at +600. The 30-year old Peterson missed all of last season after physically abusing his son, yet his odds are on par with Murray — who rushed for nearly 500 yards more than any other player last season.
For what it’s worth, the fantasy football projections at NFL.com have Packers RB Eddie Lacy leading the league in rushing with 1,342 yards. Even so, Lacy has just the 6th shortest odds at +850.
Steelers WR Antonio Brown, who led the league with 1,698 receiving yards last season, is expected to once again lead the league in receiving. This falls in line with the projections from ESPN and NFL.com.
If you’re looking for a potential value bet, Bears WR Alshon Jeffrey is an intriguing name. The former South Carolina star tallied 85 receptions for 1,133 yards last season after posting 89 catches for 1,421 yards in 2013. Following Brandon Marshall’s trade to the Jets, Jeffrey should see increased targets and could be in line to post a career year. Currently listed at +2500, Jeffrey could slightly undervalued.
Note: This article was originally posted on July 1st and was updated on August 18th.
In the seven weeks since this article was initially published, we have seen these odds fluctuate tremendously. Arian Foster, who was originally the co-favorite to lead the league in rushing, will likely miss several games due to a groin injury and, as a result, dropped from +600 to +1200. Another major move involved Le’Veon Bell, who moved from +1800 to +1350 following the announcement that his suspension would be reduced from three games to two.
The most interesting takeaway may be that Adrian Peterson, who was initially tied with four other players as the favorite to lead the league in rushing, has emerged as the clear cut front runner (+450). This news may be particularly valuable for fantasy football players who are debating whether or not to take Peterson with the top overall pick.
Although ESPN currently has LeVeon Bell as the top ranked running back, we would advocate taking Peterson with the first overall pick. We would also point out that Jeremy Hill (10th ranked RB by ESPN) is being tremendously undervalued.
Among wide receivers, it’s interesting to see that Demaryius Thomas is on the decline (+650 to 1000) while Alshon Jeffrey (+2500 to +2000) and Keenan Allen (+8000 to +4500) are clearly on the rise.
Who do you think will lead the league in receiving? Can Adrian Peterson bounce back to take the rushing title? Please leave your comments in the section below.
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David Solar is the Content Manager for Sports Insights and can be reached directly at David@sportsinsights.com.