- A 378-yard performance in Week 1 has improved the odds for Chiefs QB Patrick Mahomes (+300) to lead the NFL in passing yards
- A steady Week 1 performance plus the addition of Antonio Brown has vaulted Tom Brady to a +900 bet
- Oft-injured Eagles pivot Carson Wentz has emerged as an intriguing value pick at +1400
Patrick Mahomes has wasted no time returning to the form that made the Kansas City Chiefs the NFL’s highest-scoring team last season. Mahomes connected on three touchdown passes while piling up 378 passing yards in the Chiefs’ season-opening 40-26 win in Jacksonville. That game cemented his place as the favorite to lead the NFL in passing yards this season.
2019 NFL Passing Yards Leader Odds
|Team||Odds at Bovada*|
*Odds taken on 09/12/19.
Mahomes Poised to Build on Breakthrough Campaign
Mahomes enjoyed a spectacular season in 2018, his first as the Chiefs’ starting quarterback. The 23-year-old lifted Kansas City to a 12-4 record and top seed in the AFC while becoming the first pivot since Peyton Manning to connect on 50 touchdown passes. In addition, Mahomes also finished a close second to Ben Roethlisberger with 5,097 passing yards, and subsequently opened this summer as a co-favorite in the NFL passing-yards odds, joining Matt Ryan and Andrew Luck at +400.
2019-20 NFL Playoff Odds Tracker
The Chiefs have not avoided adversity in the early going. Star wide receiver Tyreek Hill was forced to leave last weekend’s win over the Jaguars with an upper-body injury that could sideline him for up to six weeks. The loss of last season’s top-receiver is a huge blow to the Chiefs.
— NFL Update (@MySportsUpdate) September 8, 2019
With Hill out of action, Mahomes showed new-found chemistry with Sammy Watkins. Last season’s NFL MVP connected with Watkins on nine of 11 targets for 198 yards and all three of his aerial scores, quickly calming fears as to who would handle things downfield in Hill’s absence.
Ryan, meanwhile, has lost ground on the odds board, falling to +550 after tallying 304 yards and two scores in Atlanta’s meagre performance in a 28-12 loss to the Minnesota Vikings.
Strong Season Debut, Antonio Brown Signing Boost Brady’s Odds
However, a strong season debut combined with the news that mercurial receiver Antonio Brown will join the New England Patriots has given a big boost to Tom Brady. The 42-year-old has vaulted to a +900 bet to lead the NFL in passing yards for the fourth time in his career.
Listed at a lengthy +2500 back in early July, Brady helped his own cause with a spectacular performance on Sunday Night Football, throwing for 341 yards and three touchdowns in New England’s 33-3 demolition of the Steelers.
The addition of Brown, whose recent outrageous off-field antics earned him a ticket out of Oakland, further bolsters Brady’s stock. However, it remains to be seen just how long Brown will remain an active member of the Patriots.
Antonio Brown has not been charged with a crime. But the NFL's personal conduct policy authorizes the league to use the exempt list if it believes after an investigation that a player might have violated the policy in certain ways, including by committing a sexual assault.
— MarkMaske (@MarkMaske) September 11, 2019
Within hours of signing with the Patriots, the reigning NFL receiving touchdowns leader found himself embroiled in yet another controversy, one far more serious than his choice of helmet on game day.
Allegations of sexual assault are currently being investigated by the NFL, and if they prove credible, could lead to Brown being placed on the Commissioner’s Exempt List, sidelining him indefinitely.
A Healthy Wentz Offers Value
There is no shortage of other pivots aiming to challenge Mahomes. Drew Brees sits third in the odds at +800, ahead of Aaron Rodgers at +1100, and Roethlisberger and Philip Rivers at +1200. But perhaps the most intriguing option is Carson Wentz, who comes out of Week 1 as a +1400 bet.
What an incredible debut for Carson Wentz and Desean Jackson
It wasn't perfect, but this duo has officially put the NFC on notice, here are some of the best highlights between the two vs the Washington Redskins
I #FlyEaglesFly I #WASvsPHI I @cj_wentz I @DeSeanJackson11 I pic.twitter.com/Xt9fOU1dg1
— MRCROCKPOT TPL (@mrcrockpot) September 8, 2019
Wentz showcased his precision passing in the Philadelphia Eagles’ 32-27 win over the Washington Redskins, throwing for 313 yards and three scores. That marks the sixth time in 11 starts that the 26-year-old has topped 300 passing yards.
The key to Wentz’ bid to lead the NFL in passing yards will be his ability to stay healthy this season.
The second-overall pick in the 2016 NFL Draft has missed eight regular-season games to injury over the past two seasons, but based on his Week 1 performance, is worthy of consideration at +1400.
Pick: Carson Wentz to lead NFL in passing yards (+1400)
Daniel has been writing about sports and sports betting for over 23 years. The seasoned pro has contributed to the likes of Sports Illustrated, Sportsnet, NESN, Bleacher Report, OddsShark, the Globe and Mail, and The Nation magazine.