Draft Kings released a rather limited set of early CFB Player Props this week and is likely holding off the rest until Saturday morning, so that is something you will want to stay apprised of. As such, I also included the FanDuel early releases to beef up our options. Keep in mind that each provider's coverage area varies from state-to-state, so check to make sure you know which ones are available in your locality.
D.J. Uiagalelei - Clemson - 262.5 (DK)
With “Trevor Terrific” missing this week’s game, and possibly next week’s pivotal contest against Notre Dame, five-star true freshman D.J. Uiagalelei will be thrown right into the fire against Boston College this Saturday.
Though immensely talented, D.J. is still a raw prospect who will not be forced to do too much with Clemson likely to lean on their run game and super star RB Travis Etienne. BC is allowing 165 yards per game on the ground and 4.5 YPC. While 262.5 yards isn’t a bad line, it’s hard to envision a raw passer like Uiagalelei uncorking 38 passes a game like we’re accustomed to seeing from Lawrence.
At the end of the day, Clemson is going to try to play safe and not hurt themselves by courting turnovers in the passing game. A steady diet of Travis Etienne is likely, as i’m taking a “prove it” stance here with the freshman signal caller. Give me the Under in a look-ahead spot to Notre Dame next week.
Devonta Smith - Alabama - 101.5 (FD)
The college football world mourned the loss of perhaps the most dynamic playmaker in all of CFB, Jaylen Waddle. In his wake, I expect an uptick in usage from Devonta who had already been heavily featured the last three weeks, receiving 38 targets that he turned into 401 yards and three touchdowns in that span. His receiving acumen is impeccable, as Smith has yet to drop a pass in 2020 while reeling in 79 percent of his targets.
Slade Bolden will now handle the underneath work while John Metchie and Devonta Smith take the top off of opposing defenses. Alabama is averaging 398 passing yards per game, the second highest mark in the nation. On a personal level, how badly do you think Nick Saban wants to annihilate Mike Leach to set the tone for the rest of his SEC West tenure?
I’m predicting a full-on, Cobra Kai, No Mercy performance out of the Crimson Tide offense as the mayor of munchkin land will make The Pirate bend the knee to the Kings of the SEC.
Chuba Hubbard - Oklahoma State - 110.5 (FD)
This has been a bizarro season for Oklahoma State, as the usually high-flying, mullet-flowing Mike Gundy has relied on an experienced defense that returns 10 starters and is allowing only 12 points per game thus far. A punishing run game is imperative if his strategy is going to work, and fortunately for the Cowboy faithful they happen to possess a true workhorse in All-American RB Chuba Hubbard.
Hubba-Chuba has eclipsed the 100-yard mark in his last three games while averaging 23 carries per game and posting 145 and 139 yards rushing over his last two contests. This week’s showdown against Texas is a huge game for both teams, as OSU has their best team since the Brandon Weeden led 2011 Cowboys that eviscerated Oklahoma in their rivalry game that season for the first time in eight years. Conversely, Tom Herman's seat is piping-hot after their loss to Oklahoma and the oil-baron boosters are getting restless. He’s basically Paul Dano going to visit Daniel Day Lewis in “There Will Be Blood” if he loses this game.
I like taking superstars in big games, especially when they’re likely to see 25+ carries against the Big 12 blue-blood Longhorns. Chuba is going to run wild tomorrow, OVER.
Desmond Ridder - Cincinnati - 210.5 (DK)
I realize Ridder is a rushing specialist of sorts, but Memphis’ defense is so inept at covering the pass, Cincinnati would be foolish to ignore the competitive advantage they have when airing it out against what is likely to be a series of eight-man boxes. If you think i’m exaggerating about Memphis’ D, consider the fact they’re giving up 440 passing yards per game thus far.
However their rushing defense has been surprisingly solid, giving up 127 YPG on the ground, 3.6 yards per carry and only allowing four total rushing touchdowns so far this year. Cincinnati will likely try to move the ball with their bread and butter ground game initially, as they’re averaging 211 YPG with an excellent 5.4 yards per carry. If Memphis gets up or they stack the box, Ridder’s 210.5 mark is not a high-bar to clear. I’m playing the over 210.5 in this crucial AAC showdown.
Bo Nix - Auburn - 234.5 (FD)
Admittedly, this week’s early props slate is not the layup line that we’ve seen in weeks past. DK only released a small amount of advanced prop lines, possibly because we’ve been consistently taking them to the wood-shed every time they release a large set of players on Friday night. With a large slate to work with this week, I expect a big release Saturday AM.
In the absence of the greatest player prop QB in existence, the immortal Jarrett Guarantano, the title of favorite player prop Under SEC QB falls to the inaccurate and ground-based Auburn QB, Bo Nix. He has failed to hit the 235 yard mark in three of his five games this season, and last week he wouldn’t have come close if it weren’t for an acrobatic 58-yard touchdown reception from Seth Williams where he out-jumped the opposing Ole Miss cornerback with only 1:11 seconds left in regulation to break a 28-28 tie and give Auburn the dramatic victory. Without that improbable play that could only work against a Lane Kiffin coached team, he would have had 180 yards passing on the day. As it stood, he still only threw for 238 yards against the worst defense in the nation.
Last year Nix failed to clear the 235 yard mark in 10 of his 13 games, clearly illustrating the difficulty the sophomore quarterback has had in the passing game. With the emergence of five-star running back Tanks Bigsby who has thoroughly dominated with 100+ yard showings in each of his last three games while averaging 20 carries per contest, Auburn has now found it’s identity as a run-first outfit.
LSU’s defense stiffened up last week against South Carolina and now appears to have finally settled in after having major problems keeping teams out of the end zone. Darryl Stingley is back, and Auburn’s short-passing game isn’t geared towards making big plays down the field. I’m going Under on Nix as I think we see a heavy dose of the run game from both sides since true freshman T.J. Finley filling in for LSU in Myles Brennan’s absence.