Best NFL Player Prop Bets for Week 2 of the 2021 NFL Season

| September 17, 2021 1:41 pm PDT

I’ll be honest, my Week 1 player prop bets didn’t go so well. However, I will counter and say Week 1 is the toughest to bet on because there is so much unknown.

Now that we have some 2021 stats to go off of, I feel much more confident with my top player prop bets for Week 2.

If you’d like to follow my lead and place your bets, check out the top NFL betting sites.

Let’s check out my favorite NFL player prop bets for week two.

Christian McCaffrey Over 43.5 Receiving Yards (-110)

Christian McCaffrey played in just three games last season, as he dealt with an ankle and shoulder injury.

He made his return to the field in Week 1 and looked as good as ever.

  • 21 carries
  • 98 rushing yards
  • 9 receptions
  • 89 yards

There was some doubt that McCaffrey would be able to replicate his success with new quarterback Sam Darnold. Clearly, the Carolina Panthers continue to emphasize their star running back and fans should love that.

This week, McCaffrey and the Panthers take on a New Orleans Saints defense that held the Green Bay Packers to just three points last week.

I don’t think we’ll see a huge blowout this weekend. The sportsbooks seem to agree, as they’ve set the line at just (-3.5).

The least likely outcome is the Panthers coming away with a big victory. Because of that, the Panthers will need to utilize McCaffrey in the passing game to keep up with the Saints offense.

It’s worth mentioning that McCaffrey has gone over 43.5 receiving yards in four of his six matchups with the Saints.

I think he has a great chance to make it five out of seven this weekend.

Bet on McCaffrey and watch him flourish.

Baker Mayfield Under 33.5 Pass Attempts (-105)

Last week, I went with the over on Baker Mayfield’s passing attempts. I figured the Cleveland Browns offense would need to pass to keep up with Patrick Mahomes and the Kansas City Chiefs offense. Well, Cleveland controlled most of the game and didn’t need to pass a lot.

Mayfield finished the game with 28 pass attempts.

There is an argument he needs to step up his game.

Ideally, of course, he just wouldn’t be asked to do too much.

I believe Cleveland would like to keep Mayfield’s passing attempts down. They are a run-first team with Nick Chubb and Kareem Hunt leading the way.

This week, the Browns take on the Houston Texans.

Houston surprised a lot of people with their Week 1 victory. However, that was against a rookie head coach and a rookie quarterback. The Jacksonville Jaguars are nowhere near as good as the Browns.

The Texans had the worst run defense last season.

That plays right into the Browns game plan. They want to beat you with their ground game.

Because of that, I think we’ll see Mayfield’s passing attempts kept way down. Honestly, I would’ve played this down to around 28 passing attempts or so. I mean, the spread on this game is (-12.5).

Unless something totally crazy happens, I think the Browns will control this game from start to finish. That means a lot of runs and less passing attempts.

Jonathan Taylor Over 2.5 Receptions (+115)

The Indianapolis Colts operate with two running backs. Jonathan Taylor is their lead back while they like to use Nyheim Hines as their pass-catching back.

In Week 1, both running backs had their fair share of work in the passing game.

Stat Jonathan Taylor Nyheim Hines
Receptions 6 6
Receiving Yards 60 48

Their Week 1 opponent, the Seattle Seahawks, have a stingy front four. Because of that, the Colts had to go to the air to pick up their yards.

With T.Y. Hilton out of the lineup, both running backs acted as the top target for new quarterback Carson Wentz.

Indianapolis may have a tough time running the ball this weekend against Aaron Donald and the Los Angeles Rams defensive line.

Los Angeles had a big Week 1 performance. Matthew Stafford led a Rams offense that may have what it takes to contend for a Super Bowl. Because of that, I expect a lot of passing attempts for the Colts offense this week.

Hines will have his fair share of targets but the Colts like to sprinkle Taylor into the passing game. He’ll likely have a screen or two called for him.

I think the value is way too good to pass up here.

James Robinson Over 40.5 Rushing Yards (-115)

I may be in the minority here but I still believe James Robinson can have a big role in the Jacksonville Jaguars offense.

Robinson had a terrific rookie season but everyone was fading him when the Jaguars drafted Travis Etienne. When Etienne went down with a season-ending injury, everyone went back to praising Robinson.

However, a questionable Week 1 game plan has everyone panicking about Robinson’s usage.

Stat James Robinson Carlos Hyde
Rushing Attempts 5 9
Rushing Yards 25 44

Jacksonville went up against the worst run defense and had 51 pass attempts to 16 rushing attempts. A lot of that is because they fell behind early but they didn’t even try to establish the run. 

This week, I think that changes

The Jaguars will take on the Denver Broncos this week. The Broncos have an elite secondary with Kyle Fuller, Patrick Surtain, Justin Simmons, and Kareem Jackson. Does Urban Meyer really want Trevor Lawrence going up against that?

He may have no choice but I think we see Jacksonville attempt to establish the run early.

Last season, Robinson had under 40 rushing yards in a game just twice. It’s a different coaching staff but they have to realize how talented Robinson is.

I’m betting on a bounce-back this week.

Darren Waller Longest Reception Over 23.5 Yards (-110)

How impressive did Darren Waller look in the Las Vegas Raiders Week 1 victory over the Baltimore Ravens?

Waller looked like a tight end that is ready to challenge Travis Kelce as the best in the game.

It may have been a slow start but Waller came on strong in the second half. His 10 receptions and 19 targets were by far a team-high. In fact, his 19 targets were third-most ever for a tight end.

He also happens to have an amazing story.

He is such a difficult player to guard because he is a wide receiver trapped in a tight end’s body. His 6’ 6”, 255-pound frame makes him so difficult to bring down. It’s so hard for a linebacker or safety to cover him.

His speed, route running, and physicality makes him a threat for over 20 yards on any reception.

In Week 1, Waller’s longest reception was 24 yards.

Last season, we saw Waller have a longest reception over 23.5 yards seven times in his final eight games. It’s clear that Las Vegas emphasized getting Waller more downfield looks. That carried over to this season.

With all the targets Waller gets, he has plenty of opportunities to have a reception over 23.5 yards.

A.J. Green Under 41.5 Receiving Yards (-115)

Following a nine-year career with the Cincinnati Bengals, A.J. Green signed a one-year deal with the Arizona Cardinals this offseason. Green struggled with injuries last season, but this season was a chance for a fresh start.

In Week 1, Green had just two catches for 25 yards. His six targets were second-most behind DeAndre Hopkins.

Among Cardinals wide receivers, Green had one of the highest snap shares.

  • DeAndre Hopkins: 61 snaps
  • J. Green: 55 snaps
  • Christian Kirk: 39 snaps
  • Rondale Moore: 20 snaps

The Cardinals ran 69 offensive plays in Week 1.

Some may look at that as a sign of things to come, but I’m viewing it in a different light.

Green finished behind both Christian Kirk and Rondale Moore in receptions and yards. If he played that many more snaps than both players, why couldn’t he take advantage of it with better stats?

At this point, I think it’s fair to say that Green’s best days are behind him. He may have a 70 or 80 yard game here or there, but we’ll never see the monster 100+ yard, three touchdown games we saw in the mid-2010s.

I don’t see Green threatening 41.5 receiving yards on Sunday.

Matt Ryan Over 1.5 Passing Touchdowns (-120)

The Atlanta Falcons offense did not look good in Week 1.

Matt Ryan passed for just 164 yards and zero touchdowns in the Falcons 32-6 loss to the Philadelphia Eagles.

Does Ryan and the Falcons have what it takes to bounce back this week? Well, yes and no.

Atlanta matches up with the Tampa bay Buccaneers. Tampa Bay looked like the Super Bowl contender they are in their Week 1 victory. However, if there is a weakness to their team, it’s their passing defense.

Their top cornerback, Sean Murphy-Bunting, went down with an elbow injury and will miss multiple games. When he went out, the Dallas Cowboys offense took over.

Check out what Dak Prescott did against the Buccaneers defense.

  • 42/58
  • 403 yards
  • 3 touchdowns
  • 1 interception

With Calvin Ridley and Kyle Pitts at his disposal, Ryan has what it takes to push the ball down the field. They don’t have a quality option in the backfield, so Ryan will have opportunities to throw touchdowns in the red zone.

Considering the spread on this game is (-12.5), Atlanta will likely be playing catch up. Garbage time presents an opportunity for Ryan to throw a touchdown.

Last season, Ryan had five touchdowns in two games against Tampa Bay.

DK Metcalf Longest Reception Over 25.5 Yards (-110)

Honestly, this was a toss-up between DK Metcalf and Tyler Lockett. Ultimately, I went with Metcalf because he is more consistent.

Metcalf didn’t have a target in the first half of the Seattle Seahawks Week 1 game. In the second half, Metcalf had four receptions for 60 yards and a touchdown. His longest reception of the day came on a 30-yard catch.

Russell Wilson’s big arm and Metcalf’s elite speed makes him a downfield threat.

However, that’s not the main reason I’m going with this bet.

Seattle will host the Tennessee Titans this week. Tennessee didn’t put up much of a fight in their Week 1 loss to the Arizona Cardinals. Their pass defense looked especially bad.

Check out the longest reception for the Cardinals top receiving options.

  • DeAndre Hopkins: 38 yards
  • Chase Edmonds: 36 yards
  • Rondale Moore: 29 yards
  • Christian Kirk: 26 yards

Tennessee couldn’t stop anyone in the Cardinals passing game. Even A.J. Green had a 21-yard reception.

The Seahawks are smart enough to exploit the weakness of the Titans defense. I think we’ll see some deep passes heading Metcalf’s way on Sunday.

He already has one catch over 25.5 yards this season. He likely makes it two this week.

Miles Sanders Over 2.5 Receptions (+100)

A lot of people were fading Miles Sanders this offseason. The Philadelphia Eagles brought in a head coach that employed a running back by committee in his last role. It didn’t help that the Eagles signed/drafted multiple running backs.

However, we saw in Week 1 that Sanders is still the lead back.

Sanders had 15 carries and 74 rushing yards. On the receiving end, he had four receptions for 39 yards. His longest reception of the day came on a 25-yard catch and run.

People believed Boston Scott was the Eagles primary receiving back, but he did not record a snap in Week 1. Sanders was the team’s top receiving option with Kenneth Gainwell also factoring in.

This week, Philadelphia will face the San Francisco 49ers.

The 49ers allowed running backs D’Andre Swift and Jamaal Williams to each record eight receptions in Week 1.

The numbers are a bit misleading because they mostly came in garbage time, but still.

I expect this game to be close, but I think the 49ers have the advantage. Sanders can make a difference in the passing game. It’d be foolish for the Eagles not to utilize him in that facet.

A few screen passes could win bettors some money.

Patrick Mahomes Over 27.5 Passing Completions (-120)

Patrick Mahomes reminded everyone last week that he is still the best quarterback in the NFL.

The Kansas City Chiefs defense struggled throughout their Week 1 game. The Chiefs trailed for nearly the entire game, but it didn’t affect Mahomes.

Mahomes three all three of his touchdown passes in the second half in the Chiefs 33-29 victory.

This week, Mahomes and the Chiefs will take on the Baltimore Ravens.

Coming into this season, a lot of people had these two teams meeting in the AFC Championship Game. However, that talk has gone away following a disappointing Week 1 loss for the Ravens.

Baltimore dealt with a ton of injuries this offseason and it continues to get worse. Their secondary looked helpless late in the game against Derek Carr. Imagine how they’ll look against Mahomes.

This will be the fourth time Mahomes faces the Ravens in his career. Check out his completions from the first three games.

  • 2018: 35 completions
  • 2019: 27 completions
  • 2020: 31 completions

I know some people will say that the Chiefs won’t pass as much because they’ll be in control. However, that was basically the case in their last two matchups against Baltimore.

They always like to keep their foot on the pedal.

My Top NFL Player Prop Bet for Week 2

  • Justin Herbert Over 300.5 Passing Yards (-115)

We’ll see both offenses on display when the Los Angeles Chargers take on the Dallas Cowboys.

Last week, Justin Herbert went up against one of the best defenses in the league and showed out. He passed for 337 yards in the Chargers victory. Imagine what he can do against the Cowboys defense.

Want more NFL betting content? Feel free to read the articles below.

Nicholas Sterling
Nicholas Sterling

Nicholas has been a Sports Writer with since May 2021. He has a rich sports background, writing about NASCAR, NFL, NBA, MLB, NHL, Golf, etc. Nick is always ready for a new challenge.

He enjoys rooting on D.C. sports teams, including the Commanders, Wizards, and Capitals.

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