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Most Passing Yards in 2017

NFL Futures Betting: Most Passing Yards in 2017

By Loot, NFL Handicapper,

Betting on which NFL quarterback will compile the most passing yardage is an entertaining bet to make. You can pick a quarterback or even multiple guys and have a vested interest in that player's every game. This bet packs a lot of mileage. And as you can see with the odds, it can be a financially rewarding bet to make, as well. By the time you get to just the fifth pick on the board, the odds are already +1500. That's not too shabby.

Durability is a key factor here. Missing even just a game makes it hard to lead the league in passing yardage with so many prolific passers in the NFL. This is a stat that has risen with passing decades, with league-leaders of 30 years ago not even able to crack the top-ten of what we now see. The quarterback you select is going to have to at least put up something in the neighborhood of 5000 yards passing. That's an average of over 300 yards a game. Not all quarterbacks can do that or at least they don't have the tools around them to do so.

The favorite is Drew Brees and rightfully so with him having led the NFL is passing yards 7 times. That includes a run of three seasons in a row and five in the last 7 seasons. Other current starting quarterbacks who have also been tops in this category include Ben Roethlisberger, Philip Rivers, and Tom Brady. Last season's top five was filled out by Matt Ryan, Kirk Cousins, Aaron Rodgers, and Rivers. With the Saints' offense maybe changing a bit and Brees is getting up there in years, it appears to be a category that could be wide-open. Or it could be business as usual. It's easy to justify a lot of different takes on this bet.

Here are the odds for quarterbacks to lead the NFL in passing yards, along with our commentary on the various picks.

Drew Brees +320
Thoughts: The 7-time leader in passing yards has led the league three times in a row. He never seems to miss a game and no matter how bad things get for the team, his numbers never seem to slip. He is 38 and he lost a key piece in Brandin Cooks. The team added Adrian Peterson and with Mark Ingram and we could see a higher dose of the run-game. Still, it's going to take something big to make it so Brees doesn't figure hugely into this conversation by season's end.

Tom Brady +600
Thoughts: Brady gets a good receiver in Cooks and with Blount departing, the offense may be forced into more of an aerial approach. With guys like Gronkowski and Edelman, Brady has viable targets to put up the necessary numbers to challenge for this award. He has led the league twice before and is always up there with the leaders.

Aaron Rodgers +850
Thoughts: Another team that might need to take to the air a lot is the Packers and their capable field general Rodgers. His totals could swell if they don't find any answers in the ground-game. Still, the value on Rodgers as the third choice on the board isn't all that exceptional, as Rodgers is usually a bit off the season totals needed to compete in this category.

Matt Ryan +850
Thoughts: Second last season behind Brees with 4944 yards through the air, Ryan has been in the top-five in passing yardage for five consecutive seasons. With growth and increased versatility in the receiving corps, in addition to having perhaps the best receiver in the conference in Julio Jones, Ryan should again figure in this race and isn't a bad value at these odds.

Derek Carr +1500
Thoughts: After three seasons in the league, Carr keeps getting better. His backers hope last year's injury at the end of the regular season was an aberration, as he had played in every game prior to that. His numbers continue to swell, but he would still need an increase in his typical production to become a serious contender for this.

Andrew Luck +1600
Thoughts: When healthy, he can post big numbers. In 2014, he threw for 4761 yards and even missing time last season, he still put up a respectable 4240 yards. If the Colts can get better all-around play and Luck gets more support and stays healthy, he has shown he has what it takes to put up huge stats. An interesting darkhorse at +1600.

Kirk Cousins +1600
Thoughts: Third last season with 4917 yards, Cousins has shown in the past two seasons that he can get the ball in the hands of his receivers. But a few of his top targets departed and we'll see is he establishes the same connections with what he now has. But if the 'Skins depreciate this season as some suspect, Cousins will be throwing a lot and should again be a factor in this discussion.

Jameis Winston +2500
Thoughts: Granted, it might be hard to envision a scenario where Winston would lead the league in passing. There is still enough upside to make this an interesting pick at +2500 odds. He topped 4000 yards in each of his first two seasons and could have another gear to exploit with added experience and better tools around him.

Matthew Stafford +2500
Thoughts: He might not be the gunslinger he once was, as he has become more of a dependable veteran type, it's worth noting that his yardage totals have never gone below 4257 yards in the past 6 seasons, topping out as high as 5038 yards. As solid as they come, you can't rule out Stafford.

Philip Rivers +2500
Thoughts: He has already led the league in passing yards before and is usually in the discussion. If he can catch a break and not see his receiving corps decimated by injuries for a change, he could contend for this. Last season, he threw for a respectable 4386 yards with a ramshackle receiving crew. Some help could be on the way, making Rivers a potentially high-value choice at +2500.

Ben Roethlisberger +3000
Thoughts: Roethlisberger has also led the league before. He also has one of the most-explosive receiving packages in the league. The big issue for Big Ben is his health and it's hard to imagine playing every game without incident at this point. If he does, however, he would figure to be a solid choice at +3000. A leap-of-faith perhaps, but maybe one that's worth making.

The Rest of the Choices: Below, starting at 40-to-1, are the rest of the choices, most of whom where it's difficult to fathom them leading the league in passing yards. Still, you see guys like Palmer, Manning, Flacco, and Dalton—guys who could put up big numbers under ideal circumstances. Here is the rest of the pack, the longshots, if you will.


Carson Palmer +4000
Eli Manning +4000
Joe Flacco +4000
Russell Wilson +4000
Andy Dalton +5000
Blake Bortles +6600
Carson Wentz +6600
Dak Prescott +6600
Sam Bradford +8000
Cam Newton +10000
Marcus Mariota +10000
Alex Smith +15000
Brian Hoyer +15000
Mike Glennon +15000
Tyrod Taylor +15000
Trevor Siemian +20000
Cody Kessler +25000
Josh McCown +25000
Deshaun Watson +30000
Jared Goff +50000
Mitchell Trubisky +50000

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