2015 Super Bowl Cross-Sports Props Expert Picks vs. NBA
by Alan Matthews - 1/27/2015
On Monday this week in my NHL Week Ahead story, I looked at some hockey cross-sport props with Super Bowl XLIX. I love these things so I will continue today with NBA options against the Patriots-Seahawks Super Bowl from both Bovada and Sportsbook.ag. I really wish these sites did more of these for big events. All options are pick'em and -115 unless noted.
Marshawn Lynch receiving yards vs. Dwyane Wade points : Lynch isn't a huge, huge part of the Seattle passing game as he had only 37 catches (albeit his most as a Seahawk) in 16 regular-season games. He has totaled four catches for 32 yards in the two playoff games. Lynch's season high was 76 receiving yards. He has been held under 10 yards seven times. The Heat are in Boston on Sunday. Wade averages 21.7 points. He missed Miami's only other game thus far vs. Boston, which is not a good defensive team. Take Wade.
Lynch carries vs. Chris Bosh points: Lynch was fourth in the NFL with 280 regular-season carries. His high was 26 in Week 3 vs. Denver. Lynch got only 14 carries in the playoff win over Carolina but 25 vs. the Packers. Bosh averages 21.2 points per game. He also missed the first meeting with Boston. I think the Seahawks run often to keep Tom Brady off the field and that Lynch gets at least 22 carries, so he's the choice.
Lynch longest rush vs. Monta Ellis points (-1.5): Lynch isn't a speed back by any margin and generally doesn't break off huge runs unless he goes all "Beast Mode" crazy like he did in that Dec. 21 game in Arizona when Lynch had an incredible 79-yard run. That was by far his longest carry of the season. His longest in the two playoff games has been 24 yards. This is for the Mavericks' game on Saturday night in Orlando. Ellis averages 20.3 points and hasn't faced the Magic yet. I like Ellis.
Patriots points vs. Carmelo Anthony points: The New England offense has been spectacular this postseason with games of 45 and 35 points. However, the Pats have been held to 17 and 14 points in their past two Super Bowls, and those were against a Giants defensive unit that isn't as good as this Seattle one. I think the most New England scores on Sunday is 24. The Knicks host the awful Lakers on Sunday, who are the second-worst defensive team in the NBA and have no one to guard Melo. I'm taking him.
Patriots points (-8.5) vs. Bradley Beal points: This is for Washington's game Saturday at home against Toronto. Beal averages 14.8 points per game, a moderate disappointment after his breakout 2013-14 campaign. But then the Wizards are pretty deep and don't need him to score as much. Beal missed Washington's first meeting with the Raptors. I'll take Beal here.
Russell Wilson completions vs. John Wall points (-0.5): Wilson completed 285 passes during the regular season, which averages out to 17.8 per game. His season high was only 24 completions, which is sometimes a half for guys like Peyton Manning or Drew Brees. Wilson has had just 29 total completions in the two playoff games. Wall averages 17.2 points and had just eight in the early-season meeting with Toronto. I don't see Wilson with more than 20 completions but could see Wall north of 20 points. So he's the pick.
Robert Turbin rushing yards vs. Kyle Lowry points + assists (-10.5): A Robert Turbin prop? Only in the Super Bowl. The Seahawks' backup tailback had just 74 carries during the season and has totaled nine in two playoff games. His season high for rushing yards was 53; he has 27 combined in the two playoff games. Lowry, an All-Star starter this season, is averaging 19.6 points and 7.4 assists. In the first meeting with Boston, Lowry had 13 points and 10 assists. He's the pick.
Shane Vereen receiving yards vs. James Harden points: Vereen has largely been forgotten in the running game but had four receptions for 39 yards in the win over Carolina and three for 41 yards against the Packers. I think he will be used a fair amount on screens and dump-offs with how good Seattle's secondary is against Patriots receivers. Harden leads the NBA in scoring at 27.6 points per game. Houston is in Detroit on Saturday. It's the first meeting of the season. I like Vereen. He'll have something like five catches for 45 yards.
Tom Brady completions vs. LeBron James points (-3.5): I don't see New England being able to run the ball much on Sunday, so I'm guessing Brady throws it at least 38 times. Thus, you have to presume he completes at least around 25. Could he put it up 50 times (with 33 completions) like in the divisional-round win over Baltimore? Maybe. LeBron is averaging 26.2 points but 30.3 this month since returning from injury. Cleveland is in Minnesota on Saturday. James had 24 vs. the Wolves early this season. I think that Cavs game is a blowout and that LeBron perhaps gets the fourth quarter off. Take Brady.
Rob Gronkowski receiving yards vs. Cavaliers points (-32.5): Gronk had a quiet 28 yards receiving vs. the Colts, but the Patriots didn't need him much. I expect a game more like when he had 108 yards on seven carries against Baltimore. The Cleveland offense is firing on all cylinders right now and put up 125 in the first meeting with Minnesota, which is the NBA's worst defensive team. I think you have to assume at least 110 for the Cavs, so can Gronk get around 80 yards? I say yes. Take him.
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