WFT Betting Odds: Why Ryan Fitzpatrick will go OVER his projected TD total

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WFT Betting Odds: Why Fitz will go OVER his projected TD total originally appeared on NBC Sports Washington

As the 2021 NFL season inches closer, NBC Sports Washington's Ethan Cadeaux takes a look at a handful of betting props surrounding the Washington Football Team. First up: Ryan Fitzpatrick over/under 22.5 touchdown passes.

The Bet: Ryan Fitzpatrick TD passes, over/under 22.5 (via PointsBet)

When the Washington Football Team's training camp begins in late July, veteran offseason acquisition Ryan Fitzpatrick will enter as the team's starting quarterback. Yes, head coach Ron Rivera said there will be a competition, but it's ultimately Fitzpatrick's job to win.

Barring something unforeseen, Fitzpatrick will be Washington's starter in Week 1. But, based on Fitzpatrick's prop bet of 22.5 passing touchdowns for the season, it's clear PointsBet Sportsbook doesn't think the 38-year-old will be Washington's QB1 the entire season.

If Fitzpatrick starts all 17 games for Washington, he should absolutely go over 22.5 touchdown passes. That's a measly 1.3 passing touchdowns per game. That's more than attainable.

Here's why it will happen.

For starters, part of the reason why Fitzpatrick signed in Washington was the opportunity to play and compete. The veteran spent the past two seasons with Miami and played some of the best football of his career and feels that he has more left in the tank.

Just take a look at this stat:

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Despite putting together above average QB play with the Dolphins, Miami drafted Tua Tagovailoa fifth overall in 2020. Regardless of how well Fitzpatrick played to begin the 2020 campaign, it was inevitable that Tagovailoa would eventually take over.

In Washington, there is no Tagovailoa -- or any future franchise QB -- waiting his turn to play. Yes, Taylor Heinicke showed flashes in the playoffs and had a solid minicamp, but the reality is that it's still a longshot of him turning into a franchise quarterback. Kyle Allen isn't even in the QB race as of now, Rivera said as much earlier in June.

It's Fitzpatrick's job to have and to keep. He just can't mess it up.

In his 16-year career, Fitzpatrick has started 11 or more games in eight seasons. In just four of them has he eclipsed 22.5 touchdowns, a mark he hasn't reached since he threw 31 for the Jets in 2015.

Yet, it's fair to argue that Fitzpatrick has not been on a team as talented as Washington's since then, either. In New York, the QB had a pair of standout receivers in Brandon Marshall and Eric Decker. Both of them had 80 or more catches, over 1,000 yards and 12 or more touchdowns.

In Washington, Fitzpatrick has a revamped receiving corps that could match that Jets group, if not beat it.

Terry McLaurin has already emerged as one of the NFL's best young receivers despite playing alongside subpar quarterbacks. Curtis Samuel is coming off a career season and at age 24, only continues to get better. Dyami Brown is a promising rookie and Logan Thomas is coming off a career year at tight end. 

All of this goes without mentioning Washington's pair of running backs, Antonio Gibson and J.D. McKissic, who were former receivers and figure to be a major part of the passing attack this fall. McKissic hauled in 80 grabs a season ago and Gibson is expected to have a much bigger role in the aerial attack in 2021.

Fitzpatrick is considered one of the NFL's better quarterbacks at getting the ball into his playmakers' hands. In Washington, that's all he'll need to do, and the numbers will speak for themselves.

If all goes well for the club, Fitzpatrick should still be the starter when Week 18 -- wow, that still sounds weird to say -- comes to an end.

And if so, not only will Fitzpatrick easily top the 22.5 passing touchdowns prop, but he'll make a serious run at setting a career-high in the department as well.

The Verdict: OVER 22.5 pass TD

Odds provided by our partner, PointsBet