We’ve got an awesome matchup on tap for Thursday Night Football. That’s something that hasn’t been said all that often over the years. Rather than the typical Thursday night AFC South matchup, we actually get what should be a fun game between a pair of legitimate NFC contenders.
Just a few weeks after the Cardinals picked up a thrilling 37-34 win over the Seahawks in Glendale, the two teams will meet again tonight. This time, the game takes place in Seattle. The Seahawks have opened as 3.5-point favorites in a game with a 57.5 over/under, which is one of the highest totals we’ve had for any game all year long.
NFL betting sites have quite a few player-specific prop bets available in anticipation of the battle for NFC West supremacy. How should you bet Thursday night’s potentially high-scoring clash?
Kyler Murray Total Passing Yards
- Over 280.5 (-110)
- Under 280.5 (-110)
Kyler Murray is making a very real push to win the league’s MVP award in just his second pro campaign. The former Heisman winner has already accounted for 27 touchdowns this season, 10 of which have come on the ground. Murray has also topped 2,300 passing yards while completing better than 68 percent of his throws.
Murray is truly electrifying. He threw three touchdown passes and rushed for another against the Seattle defense at home just under a month ago, and he threw for 360 yards, too.
Kyler Murray is the first player in NFL history to record a passing and rushing TD in a game eight times in the first nine games of a season.
His eight such games in 2020 are also tied for the most in a single season in NFL history. pic.twitter.com/fyhYCA4IFD
— Arizona Cardinals (@AZCardinals) November 16, 2020
While he has put up astounding numbers thus far, he’s not always a guy that is going to put up eye-popping yardage totals through the air. Because he does so much of his damage with his legs, he’s unlikely to finish the season among the league leaders in air yards. Murray has topped 300 passing yards just twice through nine games. He has gone over tonight’s over/under of 280.5 four times.
Seatte has been hemorrhaging air yards all year long, but the under on 280.5 looks like a solid bet here. Murray has gone under that total more frequently than he’s topped it, and we have some rain in the forecast tonight. It won’t be a massive storm like we saw in New England on Sunday night, but 280.5 just looks a bit high, even in a favorable matchup.
The Bet: Under 280.5 (-110)
Russell Wilson Total Passing Yards
- Over 315.5 (-110)
- Under 315.5 (-110)
Russell Wilson looked like the clear-cut MVP of the league through the first quarter of the season, but he has hit the skids of late. Seattle has dropped three of their last four, and Russ has struggled with turnovers. Through those last four games Wilson has thrown nine touchdowns, but he has also been intercepted another seven times.
Wilson put 388 passing yards on the board against Arizona earlier this season in the aforementioned shootout. He’s pushing 2,800 passing yards on the year, and he has topped 315.5 four times in nine games. He also hit 315 passing yards on the nose in Week 3 against Dallas.
315.5 is one of the highest passing yardage total props we have seen all year. The Cardinals rank 20th in the league in passing yards allowed per game (249.8). Wilson’s top deep threat, Tyler Lockett, is also battling a knee injury coming into this game.
While Russ has clearly shown that he can put up massive totals, that prop just feels way too high. He comes into this game averaging about 310 passing yards per game, so if he hits his average tonight he’s still coming in under the total. Bet the under on 315.5 passing yards for Wilson tonight.
The Bet: Under 315.5 (-110)
Kyler Murray Total Rushing Yards
- Over 57.5 (-125)
- Under 57.5 (+100)
We could bet on the over/under for rushing yards for Kenyan Drake or Chase Edmonds, but the Cardinals’ quarterback actually has a higher rushing total prop than either of the team’s primary running backs. Kyler checks in at over/under 57.5, which puts him in front of both Drake (47.5) and Edmonds (23.5).
Murray has recorded double-digit carries five times through nine games, including each of his last four. While he has only crossed the century mark in terms of yardage once, he hasn’t finished with fewer than 61 rushing yards in any of the games in which he has toted the ball at least 10 times. In fact, Murray has finished with less than 57.5 rushing yards in a game just twice all season long.
The Seahawks’ defense has been quite a bit more effective in defending the run this season, but Murray still rushed for 67 yards and a touchdown in their previous meeting. With Drake and Edmonds having been fairly unreliable all year long, there is really no reason to believe Murray won’t be rushing as often as he possibly can moving forward.
The juice is on the over here, and it’s hard to argue against it. The over/under of 57.5 rushing yards is a tick too low, so bet that over.
The Bet: Over 57.5 (-125)
DK Metcalf Total Receiving Yards
- Over 79.5 (-110)
- Under 79.5 (-110)
DK Metcalf has quickly established himself as one of the league’s best young receivers. Considering this seems to be a golden era for young pass-catchers around the league, Metcalf’s ability to stand out above the rest is no small feat. The Ole Miss product has hauled in 45 passes for 816 yards with eight touchdowns already.
Interestingly enough, he had his worst game of the year in the high-scoring tilt with Arizona last month. Metcalf caught just two of five targets for 23 yards in that game, though he did have a long touchdown catch called back by a penalty. Still, Arizona’s secondary did an impressive job of shutting him down over the course of 60 minutes. Not many teams have done so.
Most receptions gaining 30+ yards:
1. D.K. Metcalf – 10
2. DeAndre Hopkins – 8 pic.twitter.com/q4Trt5iAtM
— PFF (@PFF) November 19, 2020
Metcalf has recorded at least 80 receiving yards seven times in nine games. He was quiet last week against the Rams when he caught just two passes, but he has otherwise been heavily involved in the passing game on a weekly basis. The week after his quiet outing against the Cardinals, he was targeted a whopping 15 times and finished with a career-high 12 receptions.
If that’s any indication, Wilson should look to get Metcalf involved early and often tonight following his mediocre showing in LA last Sunday. With Tyler Lockett hobbled by a knee injury, it’s reasonable to expect Metcalf to get a few more targets than usual tonight, as well. I like the over on 79.5 receiving yards for DK tonight. Arizona likely can’t shut him down twice.
The Bet: Over 79.5 (-110)
DeAndre Hopkins Total Receiving Yards
- Over 86.5 (-120)
- Under 86.5 (-105)
DeAndre Hopkins was the hero for the Cardinals last week when he hauled in Murray’s Hail Mary pass as time expired to give Arizona a stunning victory. Hopkins has been everything the Cardinals could’ve hoped for and more since arriving from Houston over the offseason.
The former first-rounder has caught 67 of his 88 targets for 861 yards and four scores on the year. Last week’s game was his fifth 100-yard game of the season already, and he has topped 86.5 receiving yards five times through nine weeks. One of those 100-yard games came against these very Seahawks.
As mentioned, Seattle has been brutal against the pass all year. The Seahawks are allowing a league-worst 353.3 passing yards per game, which is over 43 yards per game more than the next-worst defense. While I’m skeptical of Murray’s chances of topping his own passing yardage prop, I don’t have the same concerns about Nuk at 86.5.
Once again, I like the over. Seattle has shown zero ability to slow down opposing pass-catchers all year long, so Hopkins should have a field day against the league’s most porous secondary.