Bird Bets: Navigating Eagles player props for Super Bowl 57
With Super Bowl 57 just days away, (most) Philly fans need to plan their Eagles player props strategy early as Sunday will be filled with “pregaming” or squashing the intense anxiety until the big game.
There are so many options to choose from when it comes to Super Bowl prop betting, from the first rushing attempt to the first touchdown scorer or even betting that a non-quarterback will throw a touchdown. Let’s break down some individual Eagles player props that have a good chance of hitting with the matchup against the Chiefs.
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Jalen Hurts OVER 20.5 completions (-130)
Despite hitting over 21 completions four times in 17 starts, this is a purely matchup-based bet. Quarterbacks averaged 34.6 pass attempts and 24.1 completions against Kansas City this season, though they usually trailed in most of those games. However, those 24.1 completions get dragged way down by Malik Willis’ five-completion performance. The only quarterbacks not to reach 22 completions against the Chiefs this season were: Derek Carr (Week 5), Malik Willis (Week 9), Bryce Perkins (Week 12), and Davis Mills/Jeff Driskel (Week 15).
Jalen Hurts Longest Rusher OVER 13.5 yds (-115)
With Defensive Player of the Year nominee Chris Jones prowling the interior of the defensive line, Jalen Hurts might have to run more than he planned, even with that strained shoulder. Kansas City allowed Joe Burrow to go for 11 and 14-yard rushes, and Trevor Lawrence went for long runs of 11 and 12 yards. Most importantly, it’s the Super Bowl, and if there is one thing I can guarantee, it’s that Jalen Hurts will leave everything on the field.
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Miles Sanders OVER 60.5 rush yards (-115)
Kenneth Gainwell OVER 19.5 rush yards (-120)
I’m not sure if Vegas is baiting casual bettors to take the over on big names, but Playoff Kenny is real. The fifth-round pick out of Memphis has blossomed in the 2023 postseason primarily due to the best offensive line unit of Jeff Stoutland’s career, but also his vision to find cutback lanes in his zone running scheme. Gainwell leads all players in the 2023 playoffs with seven runs totaling ten or more yards and averages 6.2 yards per attempt.
Kenneth Gainwell in the divisional round: 13 touches | 121 yards | 1 TD
Miles Sanders total seems a bit high, but in Jalen Hurts’ 15 regular season starts, the former Penn State Nittany Lion averaged 76 yards on the ground. Despite totaling 42 rushing yards in the NFC Championship, Sanders has gone over 60 yards in three of his last five games.
Ankle injury or not, Patrick Mahomes is the NFL’s most dangerous gunslinger, especially when Andy Reid gets an extra week to prepare him for an opposing defense. Shane Steichen needs to lean on the rushing attack to set up his wide receivers for deep shots and stifle whatever inventive and off-the-wall play designs Big Red concocted over the extra week.
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DeVonta Smith longest reception OVER 23.5 yards (-115)
AJ Brown Anytime TD (+125)
Jaylen Watson (6-2, 197 pounds) and Trent McDuffie (5-11, 193 pounds) will receive safety help as Kansas City’s outside cornerbacks. Given their height differential, expect Watson to spend most of his time against AJ Brown and Trent McDuffie matching DeVonta Smith. McDuffie’s outstanding play for an undersized rookie cornerback on the outside has been impressive this season, but The Slim Reaper’s ball skills are far too elite.
In the Eagles’ previous two playoff games, Jalen Hurts seemed to be targeting DeVonta more on that bubble screen from their patented RPO action. With teams worried about being gashed up the middle, Smith should continue to excel when he gets the ball with space to operate.
Jaylen Watson will have the roughest Super Bowl Sunday experience out of anyone if his assignment is to cover AJ Brown all game. In the Divisional Round, Watson gave up 55 yards on two catches to Zay Jones, and Tee Higgins caught three passes for 58 yards with an absolute “You’ve Got MOSSED!” touchdown in the AFC Championship. Now that every team knows about the Eagles’ patented QB sneak on the goal line, why not get crazy and throw a fade to AJ Brown in the Super Bowl?
Josh Sweat OVER 0.75 sacks (+115)
Brandon Graham OVER 0.75 sacks (+195)
With a week of watching the tape on the Eagles, the Chiefs should be cowering at the game-wrecker coming off the defense’s left side. Haason Reddick is having an all-time first season with his hometown team and is doubling down on his exceptional play this postseason. PFF graded Chiefs’ right tackle Andrew Wylie as the 63rd ranked offensive tackle out of 83 players this season. Andy Reid needs to use his second tight end, Noah Gray, to chip or double-team Reddick in a favorable matchup.
After sustaining a terrifying neck injury in Week 17 against the Saints, Josh Sweat had 1.5 sacks against the Giants in the Wildcard Round. Sweat and Brandon Graham will take turns battling left tackle Orlando Brown Jr who’s protecting Mahomes’ blindside. The former Baltimore Raven has not been up to par this season, allowing a team-high 56 pressures and nine during the postseason.
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Darius Slay 1st Interception (+700)
With Patrick Mahomes’ ankle injury and the Eagles’ obvious advantage in the trenches, look for Andy Reid to utilize a ton of quick passes and screens to counteract that pass rush. In those situations, I think the Darius Slay with the first interception comes into play.
Slay’s awareness and recognition of route combinations are second to none in the NFL. With no clear-cut number one wideout, someone has to step up other than Travis Kelce, and I think Darius Slay will be there waiting to make a play on the ball. Slay’s last interception came back in Week Six, so saying he’s due for another one is an understatement.
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