NFL 2023 season predictions – best outright betting tips and player props

NFL 2023 season predictions – best outright betting tips and player props
Aug 26, 2023; East Rutherford, New Jersey, USA; New York Jets quarterback Aaron Rodgers (8) warms up before a game against the New York Giants at MetLife Stadium. Credit: Robert Deutsch-USA TODAY Sports/Sipa USA - Photo by Icon Sport

The NFL is back.

The 2023 season begins Thursday, Sept. 7, with the Kansas City Chiefs hosting the Detroit Lions.

There are also a few days remaining to lay down wagers on season-long bets for player props and teams. We’ll provide six NFL betting predictions in this article for our best player props and a team prop that caught our eye.

NFL season-long team prop pick

The prop below will be decided when the regular season ends.

New York Jets to make the playoffs @ -130 (1.76)

The biggest offseason news was four-time NFL MVP and Super Bowl-winning quarterback Aaron Rodgers joining the Jets after spending 18 years with the Packers.

Last season, New York had the fourth-best total defense in the NFL statistically and struggled mightily on offense (seventh-worst in total and fourth-worst in points per game) thanks to a rotation of quarterbacks led by Zach Wilson’s poor play.

The franchise still managed to finish at 7-10 with a chance to make the playoffs going into week 17, and with Rodgers under center, would’ve more than likely made them.

Rodgers also went through a down year and missed the playoffs for the first time since 2018. The poor year was partially on him, but having a weak wide receiver room led by rookies didn’t help. Losing Pro Bowler Davante Adams didn’t either. Green Bay’s defense also dropped off from being the No. 1 ranked unit in 2021 to No. 17 in 2022.

The Chico, California native Rodgers has made the playoffs in 11 of 15 seasons, and with an excellent defense behind him, a highly-talented receiver in Garrett Wilson with Pro Bowl potential, he should reach the postseason once again.

Rodgers also reunited with offensive coordinator Nathaniel Hackett, who coached him when he won the MVP in 2021 and 2022, along with three playoff appearances (two NFC Championships).

While New York’s offensive line is certainly a question mark, and the schedule is difficult, a future hall-of-famer one year removed from winning back-to-back MVPs should at least be able to qualify for the postseason.

While their schedule is tough, Sharp Football Analysis’ research shows that the Jets are tied for first in the NFL’s “best net rest advantage.” Four of their five games with a net rest advantage are after Week 11, which should definitely help with a playoff push.

The Jets win total set by sportsbooks is at 9.5, and last year, two teams in the AFC made the playoffs with nine wins. Earning two more wins and getting to 9-8 is certainly feasible, especially with books listing them at +1600 (seventh-favorite) to win the Super Bowl.

NFL season-long player prop tips

The picks below are for weeks 1-18 of the NFL campaign. Injuries can affect these bets. The odds were correct at the time of writing.

Trevor Lawrence over 4,025 passing yards @ -112 (1.89)

After a tumultuous first season for Trevor Lawrence in 2021 with Urban Meyer at the helm and growing pains as a rookie, the former No. 1 overall pick found his groove with Super Bowl-winning coach Doug Pederson in 2022.

Lawrence threw for 4,113 yards in 17 games, averaging 241.9 per contest. According to FantasyPros, compared to his rookie season, his yards per attempt drastically improved from 5.2 to 7.3, as well as his completion percentage (59.6% in 2021 to 66.3% in 2022).

Jacksonville provided the former Clemson star with another weapon on the outside when the organization traded for former Pro Bowler Calvin Ridley. The offense also features 1,000-yard receiver Christian Kirk along with Zay Jones, tight end Evan Engram and pass-catching tailback Travis Etienne Jr.

Lawrence has grown more and more comfortable in the league and led his team to the divisional playoffs, Narrowly losing to the Chiefs by a touchdown.

With the addition of Ridley and a nice arsenal of weapons, Lawrence shouldn’t have any problems once again eclipsing 4,025 passing yards. He’s listed at DraftKings at -115 to hit over 4,050.5 yards, so the current line definitely holds value.

David Montgomery over 5.5 rush TDs @ -150 (1.66)

The Lions acquired David Montgomery in the offseason to serve as a replacement for Jamaal Williams, who departed for New Orleans.

Last year, Williams led the NFL with 17 rushing touchdowns. Obviously, Montgomery isn’t going to match those numbers, but his role in the offense should easily allow him to record at least six rushing scores.

DeAndre Swift left for Philadelphia, and Detroit drafted running back Jahmyr Gibbs with the 12th overall pick in the 2023 draft. Gibbs will definitely handle the pass-catching duties and will receive plenty of carries, but the offense should use Gibbs and Montgomery as a one-two punch, with Montgomery being the primary red zone back, similar to last year’s scheme.

Montgomery has broken the plane six or more times in three of his four seasons in the NFL. In 2022, he scored five times primarily due to having to share the rock with Khalil Herbert and dual-threat quarterback Justin Fields.

Jared Goff isn’t a dual threat, so he won’t take away opportunities from Montgomery.

NFL season-long player props and outright predictions
Nov 6, 2022; Detroit, Michigan, USA; Detroit Lions wide receiver Amon-Ra St. Brown (14) heads upfield past Green Bay Packers safety Darnell Savage (26) after catching a pass in the third quarter at Ford Field. Credit: Lon Horwedel-USA TODAY Sports/Sipa USA – Photo by Icon Sport

Amon-Ra St. Brown over 999.5 rec yards @ -125 (1.8)

Another Lion who enjoyed a breakout season was wideout Amon-Ra St. Brown.

The slot receiver is the clear-cut WR1 in Detroit and is one of the up-and-coming stars in the NFL. In 2022, Brown made 106 receptions on 146 targets for 1,161 yards and six touchdowns.

According to FantasyPros, the former USC product’s 32% target rate per route run was second in the NFL behind Tyreek Hill last campaign. As a rookie in 2021, St. Brown came close to the 1,000-yard mark with 912 receiving yards.

He exploded, averaging 93.3 yards over his final six games that season, and continued his production in 2022, easily surpassing 1,000 yards.

In his third year as a pro and now Jared Goff’s favorite receiver and safety blanket, if he stays healthy, there isn’t any reason why he won’t record back-to-back 1,000-yard seasons.

Chris Olave over 1,025 rec yards @ -112 (1.89)

Chris Olave was drafted at No. 11 overall in 2022 by New Orleans after an electric career at Ohio State. His impressive route running abilities and overall skillset translated well to the NFL, as he caught 72 passes for 1,042 yards and four scores as a rookie.

He did this with putrid play at the quarterback position. Jameis Winston started the first three games for the Saints and went down with an injury, leading to backup quarterback Andy Dalton, now a journeyman who is rostered by Carolina, taking the reins.

The speedy receiver still cracked 1,000 yards, and NOLA has upgraded the signal caller position by bringing in Derek Carr from the Raiders. Carr is by no means one of the top quarterbacks in the league, but he’s certainly above average and has made the Pro Bowl in the past.

Having security under center should enable Olave to enjoy an even better sophomore season and surpass 1,025 yards again. Some analysts are even touting him to make the Pro Bowl.

Mike Evans under 925.5 rec yards @ -140 (1.71)

Unfortunately, all good things must come to an end. Evans, the Texas A&M product, made history multiple times with the Buccaneers as he earned nine consecutive 1,000-yard seasons from his rookie year (2014) to 2022.

Winston and Tom Brady were his two primary quarterbacks over his career, but now he has downgraded massively to Baker Mayfield. Winston struggled many times with accuracy, but he still managed to produce two 4000-yard seasons and one 5,000-yard campaign in 2019, which helped Evans’ case.

Mayfield has never thrown for 4,000 yards throughout his entire career (five years) and has been nicknamed the “WR1 killer”. The former Heisman winner has only produced two 1,000-yard receivers, and one was a slot.

Only once has Mayfield produced an outside receiver (where Evans plays) who earned more than 925 yards (Odell Beckham in 2019).

Since Evans plays the X, he’ll likely record fewer receptions and yardage, with slot receiver Chris Godwin receiving the majority of attention.

The table below shows Mayfield’s top two leading receivers in terms of yardage from 2018-2021. Last season isn’t listed since he split the year between Carolina and Los Angeles (Rams).

YearTop receiver/yards2nd receiver/yards
2021Peoples-Jones: 597Landry: 570
2020Landry: 840Higgins: 599
2019Landry: 1,174Beckham: 1,035
2018Landry: 976Callaway: 586

Evans barely eclipsed 1,000 yards in two of his past three seasons with Brady and has been dealing with a hamstring injury (missed two games in 2022), so a drop-off below 926 yards is likely with Mayfield as the ship’s captain.

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