NFL League-Leader Bets
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July is here, which means things are heating up in the NFL. We have just under a week until the start of training camp, but we still have plenty of opportunities to get some futures wagers in play. In terms of the current betting markets over at Tipico Sportsbook, here of some of the top bets I’m targeting right now.
Regular season most rushing yards: Nick Chubb +750 & Jonathan Taylor +1000
Derrick Henry is the odds-on favorite to repeat as the league’s rushing champ, but we’re going to try to get a better price than his +400. Nick Chubb has been pound-for-pound one of the best between-the-tackles runners over the last three seasons, averaging a massive 5.2 yards per carry. Fantastic after contact, Chubb has accomplished the almost unbelievable feat of averaging over 4.0 yards after contact per attempt in two of his three years in the NFL. Add to that the fact that he’s in an uber-run-heavy offense under Kevin Stefanski with a great offensive line in Cleveland and we’re cooking with gas.
But it’s also worth getting a wager in on Jonathan Taylor in this category. While he got off to a slow start in 2020, Taylor was a revelation down the stretch. Over the final five weeks of the season, Taylor averaged 6.7 yards per tote and only Henry had more rushing yards. Indianapolis is set up for success on the ground with arguably the league’s best offensive line. Taylor figures to be one of the NFL’s true workhorse ball carriers this season and is very much in the mix to take the rushing title.
Regular season most receiving yards: Davante Adams +1200
I know. I know. This one comes with some risk given the uncertainty surrounding Aaron Rodgers’ status with the Packers. As of right now, we don’t know if Rodgers will even be with the Packers when camp opens up or if he’ll hold out/retire. While some still believe he could also be traded, that one seems like the least likely course of events given how close we are to the start of the season. Bringing in a quarterback at this time of year just isn’t feasible given how much that player will need to absorb in such a short period of time.
But is this wager worth the risk? Absolutely it is. Stefon Diggs, DeAndre Hopkins and Calvin Ridley are the co-favorites at +750. It’s fair to argue that Davante Adams would at least be right there with that trio in this market if Rodgers was 100% going to be in camp. Assuming Rodgers is with the Packers, my current projections have Adams slightly edging out Diggs for the crown with Ridley and Hopkins close behind. Sure, it isn’t a slam dunk, but we are leveraging some risk to take advantage of a price disparity.
Regular season most passing yards: Matthew Stafford +1200
It’s going to be hard to beat out the two favorites in this category in Patrick Mahomes (+300) and Dak Prescott (+500), but if we’re going to tie up some of our bankroll for the next six months in futures wagers, we might as well go after a live option at a good price. At this point, we don’t really know what Matthew Stafford will look like in Sean McVay’s offense. But we do know two important pieces of information: 1.) Jared Goff twice topped 4,600 yards under McVay, and 2.) Despite being stuck in football purgatory for the last several seasons, Stafford showed massive upside early in his career with a 5,000-yard season in 2011 along with 4,967 passing yards in 2012.
With the Rams, Stafford not only gets to play in an exciting system that has been on of the leagues better offenses over the last half decade, but he also gets a rock solid set of weapons in Robert Woods and Cooper Kupp. He also has a capable pass catching tight end in Tyler Higbee and veteran big-play specialist DeSean Jackson. The results have the potential to be very explosive for Stafford in a Rams uniform.
BONUS BET: Houston Texans to have a 0-17 record: YES +1500
Don’t break the bank on this one, but it’s very much in play. On paper, the Texans have the league’s worst roster. Franchise quarterback Deshaun Watson is embroiled in legal matters and has also made it clear that he doesn’t want to play for the team regardless of his off-field issues. That will leave journeyman Tyrod Taylor and/or rookie third-rounder Davis Mills at the helm. Houston also heads into the season with the league’s oldest lead running back in 29-year-old David Johnson and has essentially no one other than Brandin Cooks at wideout. And that’s just on the offensive side of the ball. Defensively, the Texans have arguably the league’s worst front-7 along with a secondary that was consistently torched by opposing receivers last year. It’s hard to not win a game in the NFL, but the Texans have the roster pull it off this season.
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