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The first Monday Night Football matchup is here. The Baltimore Ravens (-4) travel to Sin City to face the Las Vegas Raiders. Betting against the spread and game totals is more practical but player props is where it’s at. These are more fun and keep things interesting because you can hit a player prop and still get the spread, game total wrong.
Here are the props I like for Ravens at Raiders, all odds via BetMGM.
Prop No. 1: Lamar Jackson OVER 69.5 rushing yards (-125)
The Ravens are a run-first team, ranked 32nd in passing and first in rushing last season. Well, Baltimore is down three running backs. The first, second and fourth-leading rushers in JK Dobbins, Gus Edwards, and Justice Hall are all out from injury. The team’s third-best rusher, Mark Ingram, is now with the Texans. Enter: Lamar Jackson.
For two straight seasons, Jackson was the Ravens' leading rusher and now he’s without his four best RBs. In 15 regular season games last year, Jackson rushed OVER this number in six, plus once in the postseason. Las Vegas ranked 23rd in opponent rushing yards, giving up an average of 126 rushing yards per game, allowing near this number in three additional games.
The Ravens did add Latavius Murray and Trenton Cannon to the roster, while Devonta Freeman and Le’Veon Bell were signed to the practice squad. The Ravens do also have Ty’Son Williams, though he was an undrafted free agent in 2020 who spent nearly all last season on the practice squad.
Experience and familiarity will come through for tonight. Shorthanded, Jackson will do what he does best, run all up and down this field to get a win.
I looked to his rushing attempts, 10.5 is a great number but it's juiced to -200. That's too high of a price even if the narrative fits the situation. If you see something similar at more reasonable odds, it's worth a consideration.
Prop No. 2: Lamar Jackson anytime touchdown (-130)
Pay the juice. Jackson has had 19 rushing scores in his three-year career, including eight last season. The Raiders ranked 30th in opponent rushing touchdowns, giving up 23 scores on the ground, five to quarterbacks.
Prop No. 3: Lamar Jackson to have two or more rushing touchdowns (+500)
This is definitely worth a sprinkle. Jackson had only one game last year where he scored two or more rushing scores. Raiders, however, allowed at least two rushing scores in 10 games played.
Prop No. 4: Mark Andrews anytime touchdown (+120)
If not Jackson, then who? The Raiders gave up 10 receiving touchdowns combined to tight ends and running backs. If Jackson doesn’t have a running back to throw to, then TE Mark Andrews could be the player to benefit.
Andrews led the team in receiving touchdowns in 2019 and was second in receiving touchdowns last year. I’ll take a shot at plus money instead of laying (-110) on his OVER receiving yards.
Without a stable of running backs, MNF will be the Lamar Jackson show.