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NFL

PlayLine NFL Projections: Week 9

Josh Engleman

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Players: Aaron Rodgers, Tom Brady, Marcus Mariota & Dak Prescott

Stats: Passing yards


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Today, we’ll be projecting the expected yards for the four quarterbacks, Aaron Rodgers, Tom Brady, Marcus Mariota & Dak Prescott, in the “Awesemo.com Presents: $1,000,000 Perfect Line Bonus + $2,500GTD –  The Signal ($750 to 1st!)“ PlayLine contest.

Your PlayLine predictions are scored according to the chart below. It’s really simple. The closer your PlayLine is to the athlete’s actual performance, the more points you get. The more points you get, the better your chances of winning!

You will receive PlayLine points each time the featured athlete registers a stat that you predicted will occur. Once the athlete’s actual stat total in a particular category goes over your prediction, you will no longer receive additional per stat PlayLine points.


Aaron Rodgers

Average yards per game: 326.1

Standard deviation: 74 yards

Aaron Rodgers and the Green Bay Packers came so close to toppling the undefeated Los Angeles Rams last week but just couldn’t get it done. After throwing for over 400 yards in each of the games prior, Rodgers was fairly quiet with just 286 yards in that game. However, it doesn’t get any easier, as he’ll have to deal with the New England Patriots this week.

The Patriots, though, haven’t been sharp defensively this season despite coming in with a 6-2 record and riding a five-game win streak. They currently rank 25th in opponents’ total yards per game (382.8) and 27th in opponents’ passing yards per game (277.2), so there’s an opportunity for Rodgers to really let loose this week. The Patriots are currently -5.0 favorites because of their play lately, but the Packers won’t be fazed at all, as it’s a game they can absolutely win.

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The forecast looks favorable, but for the likes of Rodgers and Tom Brady it won’t matter either way. It’s going to be a must-watch matchup with two of the all-time great QBs squaring off, and it wouldn’t be a surprise to see them both throw for a ton of yards. We’re going to predict between 360-400 yards for Rodgers.


Tom Brady

Average yards per game: 275

Standard deviation: 68 yards

The Patriots are rolling, winning their last five games after starting the season 1-2. Over those five games, Brady has thrown for an average of 311.2 yards. The Packers, though, possess an above average defense to this point, allowing 340.9 total yards per game (12th in the NFL) and 221.7 passing yards per game (5th), so Brady could experience some resistance this week.

Brady has posted fairly consistent numbers of late, which makes life easier when predicting his passing yards. The magnitude of the matchup, with Rodgers on the other side, means Brady will have added motivation to get the job done. He’ll have home field advantage on his side, too, which is always a bonus no matter how good you are.

As mentioned earlier, don’t be surprised if this is an old-fashioned shootout between the two QBs. It seems reasonable to predict between 320-360 yards for Brady this week.


Marcus Mariota

Average yards per game: 171.7

Standard deviation: 99 yards

Marcus Mariota has had a wildly inconsistent season for the Titans. He’s thrown for over 150 yards just twice, which is pretty poor for an NFL quarterback of any stature. The Titans’ offense has struggled all season long in general, slotting in at 30th in both total yards per game (280.9) and passing yards per game (173.0), and it’s not going to get any easier this week with a top-5 defense on the other side.

Their opponent, the Dallas Cowboys, rank 3rd in opponents’ total yards per game (313.7) and 3rd in opponents’ passing yards per game (217.4), making them a nightmare matchup for the Titans and their sub-par offense. Tennessee might be better off running the ball, as opposed to attacking through the air this week, especially considering Mariota isn’t much of a pocket QB.

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Both teams come into the game with 3-4 records, and the Cowboys are listed as -5.5 favorites. It’s a game that won’t see a ton of passing yards, or passing attempts for that matter, so we’re going to lock Mariota in between 180-230 yards.


Dak Prescott

Average yards per game: 202.4

Standard deviation: 45 yards

The Cowboys are coming off of a bye, so they’ll be fresh and hoping to turn things around against a Titans team that has lost three straight. Dallas’ offense hasn’t been great this season, ranking 28th in total yards per game (320.0) and 29th in passing yards per game (183.1), so they’ve turned to their defense to try and keep them in games.

They went out and got Amari Cooper from the Oakland Raiders to try and help with their offensive struggles, and he’s set to be active this week, but one guy can only do so much. Cooper won’t solve anything for the Cowboys, but he’ll at least serve as another option for Prescott to turn to. The Titans actually have a solid defense, ranking 11th in opponents’ total yards per game (338.7) and 9th in opponents’ passing yards per game (226.4), so it won’t be easy for Prescott even with the extra help.

Dallas will likely attack via the ground for most of the night, as the Titans aren’t nearly as effective in that area, so Prescott could be in for another low yardage game. After a season-high 273 yards against the Washington Redskins two weeks ago, he likely settles in between 190-230 yards this week.

Josh is Contributor for Awesemo.com where he hosts video and writes content regularly across the primary sports of MLB, NBA, and NFL as well as contributing to the development of models and projections for soccer. He originally started producing projections & articles for Reddit's r/DFSports in 2014 where he built a loyal following that brought him to where he is today. Josh is most known for his elaborate Excel spreadsheets, which he shares in all of his video content. You can find him on Twitter or hanging out in Awesemo's Premium Slack. You can contact Josh by emailing [email protected].

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