Browns vs Chiefs: The best betting props for the NFL Divisional Round
The Cleveland Browns are just one win away from reaching the AFC Championship game after making the playoffs for the first time since 2002.
Minor detail here, but standing in the way of this potential Cinderella story are the defending Super Bowl champion Kansas City Chiefs.
The underdog Browns face the Chiefs in the AFC Divisional Round on Sunday, Jan. 17, and here are the three best props bets to pounce on.
Sun, January 17 2021, 8:05 PM
After a slow start to his tenure with the Browns, tight end Austin Hooper has become a more reliable target for quarterback Baker Mayfield.
Hooper saw 15 targets in Week 16 and 11 targets in last weekend’s stunning playoff win over the Pittsburgh Steelers, with 23 catches over his last four games. He also has three touchdowns over that span. Looking at the entire season, Hooper is tied for second on the Browns in red zone passing targets, and has sole possession of second on the team in passing targets within the opposition’s 10-yard line. All four of his catches within the 10-yard line have turned into touchdowns.
TOUCHDOWN @Browns! #Browns— NFL Brasil (@NFLBrasil) January 11, 2021
Baker Mayfield acha Austin Hooper na end zone para ampliar o placar!#NFLBrasil #NFLnaESPN pic.twitter.com/Eq2XJ2nlw3
Furthermore, the Chiefs gave up nine touchdowns to tight ends during the regular season.
Cleveland will likely try to establish its run-game led by Nick Chubb and Kareem Hunt, and Jarvis Landry should see a healthy dose of targets, which may eat into Hooper’s opportunities. But he’s been rolling lately, and with Kansas City’s defense likely focused on limiting the run, this could be a sneaky play.
Pick: Austin Hooper anytime touchdown (+225)
Travis Kelce receiving yards
Best of luck to the Browns in trying to contain Travis Kelce.
The Chiefs’ veteran tight end continued to dominate during the regular season, racking up double-digit targets in nine of 16 games with 1,416 yards receiving – the second highest total in the NFL, not just at his position.
The total for Travis Kelce receiving yards is currently 88.5 yards. The Over would have hit for this total eight times during the regular season. Five times during a six-game stretch, Kelce recorded 100 receiving yards or more, and by the end of the regular season he had averaged 13.5 yards per reception.
Most first downs/TDs by season (TEs):— PFF Fantasy Football (@PFF_Fantasy) January 14, 2021
🔸 ('20) Travis Kelce - 79
🔸 ('19) Travis Kelce - 66
🔸 ('18) Travis Kelce - 67 pic.twitter.com/QF9hL2nZSV
The Browns gave up 907 yards to opposing tight ends in the regular season, which averages out to almost 57 yards per game.
Given how dynamic the Chiefs are offensively, bettors can feel confident getting 89 or more receiving yards from Kansas City’s star tight end.
Pick: Travis Kelce Over 88.5 receiving yards (-135)
Nick Chubb receiving yards
The Browns' offense is likely to revolve around Chubb and Hunt chewing up yards on the ground and chewing up that clock to limit the time Patrick Mahomes spends on the field.
One prop that may not garner much attention is total Chubb receiving yards.
When you think of the Browns, you immediately think of Chubb as the bruising runner. He typically gets 17-23 carries per game, and generally has a shot at reaching 100 yards rushing.
Nick Chubb. GONE ♨️— Bleacher Report (@BleacherReport) January 11, 2021
(via @NFL) pic.twitter.com/xEPBDhyulj
However, Chubb experienced a bump in receptions toward the end of the season, and when he’s caught the ball he’s turned those receptions into big plays – most recently a 40-yard catch and run against Pittsburgh last weekend.
In 17 catches from Week 12 to last week’s Wild Card game, Chubb is averaging 11.8 yards per catch.
Chubb may only get a few targets on Sunday, but 13 yards or more seems like an achievable feat.
Pick: Nick Chubb Over 12.5 receiving yards (-125)