Jaguars vs. Bengals: The best Trevor Lawrence player prop bets for TNF
It’s after Bart and Lisa Simpson fail in their audition to become Mr Burns’ heir, that Homer utters that now infamous advice. "Kids," he says, "you tried your best and you failed miserably. The lesson is never try."
Anybody reckon it’s time to give Trevor Lawrence those same motivational words?
I joke of course, this guy’s NFL carer is only three hours old, but boy has it been a rough ride for the Jacksonville QB. The No. 1 draft pick came into the season with sky-high expectations and so far he’s failed to deliver. The Jags are 0-3, and Lawrence has thrown more interceptions than TDs.
Now the Jaguars travel to Cincinnati for an AFC showdown with the 2-1 Bengals. Here are the best Trevor Lawrence props bets ahead of the primetime game.
Fri, October 1 2021, 12:20 AM
Over/Under 247.5 Passing Yards
It would be unfair to be too tough on Lawrence, who is only 22 years of age and playing under center for the Jags. When I was 22, I spent my Thursdays at a student bar drinking Tequila and then getting a kebab on the way home.
But the numbers are not pretty. Lawrence has the worst completion record (54.2%) of any QB in the league this season, he’s averaged the lowest yards gained per pass attempt of any QB who has started all three games (5.7), and no QB has been intercepted more times (7).
Lawrence has been pressured 21% of the time on the dropback and has averaged just 2.4 seconds in the pocket. He simply isn’t getting the protection he needs from his offensive line. The Bengals sacked Ben Roethlisberger four times in Week 3 and hit him an additional five times, as well as picking off two interceptions.
They didn’t make life easy for the veteran, and they will look to feast against the rookie on Thursday. Lawrence’s decision-making still leaves a lot to be desired, and while he will inevitably show his true talent on the biggest stage one day, a short week and a trip to Cincinnati probably isn’t it.
This is especially true as the Jags look to lean even more on the running game, with James Robinson going from five carries in Week 1, to 11 in Week 2, and 15 in Week 3. Expect to see more of him again on Thursday.
Over/Under 14.5 Rushing Yards
Where Lawrence may find more joy is with his legs. Through three years at Clemson, he rushed 231 times for a total of 943 yards and 18 touchdowns. That averages out at 23.5 yards per game.
In his NFL career he has already run for 21 yards against the Broncos and 27 yards against the Cardinals, and this line looks a little short.
Neither Kirk Cousins or Ben Roethlisberger are renowned runners, so the Bengals didn’t have to worry there, but in the Week 2 game with the Bears, Andy Dalton ran twice for 25 yards and rookie Justin Fields ran 10 times for 31 yards.
The opportunity is there, and given how quickly the pocket is collapsing around Lawrence he may have to use his legs to get out of trouble.
Over/Under 1.5 Touchdown Passes
The Bengals have only given up four passing touchdowns this year and have one of the top 10 red zone defenses in the league. That’s how hard thy are going to make it for Lawrence to rack up multiple scores on Thursday night.
Lawrence lit up his time in college and threw multiple touchdowns in 70% of the games he played for Clemson, including in eight of the 10 games in 2020. But this is a different level now, and despite having the likes of D.J. Chark to aim for, it’s tough to see Lawrence throwing multiple scores.
The Jaguars are averaging just 17.7 points per game so far this season (27th in the NFL), and that number is unlikely to change much in a game where the Bengals are favoured by a TD and the total line is just 46.