NFC Championship Player Props: Buccaneers at Packers
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Kicking off Championship Weekend in the NFL Playoffs is a clash of two great quarterbacks. Tom Brady leads his Tampa Bay Buccaneers into the frozen tundra of Lambeau Field to take on Aaron Rodgers and the Green Bay Packers. It’s a tremendous duel of these two all-time first-ballot Hall of Famers in what should be a very exciting game.
Looking at the point spread, the Packers are 3- or 3.5-point home favorites, depending on where you look. In this article, we’ll take a look at some of our favorite Buccaneers vs. Packers player props.
Tom Brady – No INT
You can find this Tom Brady player prop to not throw an interception at even money or slightly plus money. As always, make sure you shop around to try and get the best price you can.
Although Green Bay’s pass rush has improved as the season’s moved along, Tampa Bay’s offensive line has been very good and kept Brady very clean. That leads us to believe that Brady won’t be under a lot of pressure in this game, and pressure can lead to bad, errant throws or batted balls at the line that can be picked off.
Brady has always been safe with the football over the course of his career. Recently, since Tampa Bay’s bye week, Brady has only thrown one interception. When it comes to the most important point of the NFL season, the best, most experienced players are likely to do what they can to not turn the ball over, and that’s Brady right now. We saw what happened to the New Orleans Saints and Drew Brees last week against the Buccaneers. Turnovers can absolutely ruin a game for a team. It’s hard to imagine Brady is going to start making costly mistakes now.
The Packers also don’t have a ball-hawking secondary that is going to play ultra-aggressive. Green Bay’s secondary feels more of the bend-don’t-break mentality, which is fine, but it’s not the type of defense we see causing a ton of turnovers.
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Aaron Rodgers – Over 10.5 rushing yards
Last week, we discussed the over on 17.5 rushing yards for Patrick Mahomes, which ultimately didn’t work out because Mahomes got hurt. We’re still confident in our process with that pick, as Mahomes had 3 rushes for 14 yards at the time and was on his way to hitting the over, so we’re going to back that process in regards to our favorite Aaron Rodgers player prop this week. We like over 10.5 rushing yards for Rodgers.
Tampa Bay ranks highly in pressure rate and blitz rate, so there’s some good potential for the Buccaneers to get pressure on Rodgers in enough of a fashion that it can cause Rodgers to break from the pocket a few times this game. That’s when a mobile quarterback like Rodgers can do very well, taking what the defense gives him with his legs rather than getting aggressive with a throw on the run. That’s not to say Rodgers isn’t certainly capable of completing tougher throws on the move, because he is, but he’s also plenty able to get chunks of yards with his legs in what can be a safer option.
As we mentioned last week in regards to Mahomes, mobile quarterbacks appear more willing to take off and run in the gotta-have-it moments of playoff games, and we like taking that same angle this week with Rodgers.
Davante Adams – Anytime TD
Davante Adams seems pretty unstoppable. He averaged 8.2 receptions across the 15 games he’s played this season and has 19 touchdowns in those 15 games. In only three games this season did Adams not score a touchdown, and one of those games (Week 2) he left due to injury.
Adams is by far Rodgers favorite target and this game has excellent potential to be a high-scoring affair. During the regular season, Adams had the most targets, receptions, and touchdowns of anyone in the red zone, and that’s despite missing two regular-season games. Adams is also a player who can hit a deep ball if called upon and he’s someone who can take an short or intermediate route to the house.
We’re going to have to pay up for the over on this prop, as it’s priced right around -175. That said, this price feels as though it should be north of -200 and pushing -250.
Aaron Jones – Over 23.5 receiving yards
Aaron Jones averages a handful of receiving targets each game. He averaged 4.5 targets per game in the 14 regular-season games he played. When you include the team’s lone playoff game this season, he’s averaging 4.3 targets per game. Nearly 74% of those targets across the entire season have been completed passes to Jones, and he averages 7.6 yards per reception.
In a game we feel has excellent potential to be a back-and-forth, high-scoring affair, Jones should see his share of looks in the passing game. He’s very good out of the backfield as a receiver, lines up plenty on the outside, and has the ability to break off big plays once he secures a catch. Jones has a high receiver grade from PFF that is very much deserving. Derek Carty’s THE BLITZ projection model has Jones at 30 receiving yards for this game.
This Jones player prop is sitting at over/under 23.5 receiving yards for Jones. That’s a line he can blow by with just one play and will likely only need two or three receptions to hit the over.