cardinals rams player props
PHOTO CREDIT: CRAIG DUDEK

The Arizona Cardinals and Los Angeles Rams will become the 16th pair of division foes since 2003 to meet for the third time in a season in the Wild Card round of the NFL Playoffs. They will also become the first to do so on a Monday night. The two teams split their regular season meetings, each securing road victories. Both enter the playoffs headed in opposite directions, with Los Angeles winning five of its final six games, while Arizona lost four of its last five.

Let’s take a deep dive into the best Cardinals vs. Rams player props picks for this NFC Wild Card game matchup.

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Cardinals vs. Rams Player Props Picks

Kyler Murray Over 297.5 Pass + Rush Yards

With Kyler Murray’s passing yardage prop set at just 253.5 yards, the 44 yard gap between these two might compel some to simplify things and go for that, knowing that Murray rushes for just 30.2 yards per game. However, we believe Murray may end up rushing for more than 44 yards in this one, which would create an advantage for us by picking this prop bet.

For starters, Murray topped his season average for rushing yards in both games against the Rams this year, running for 39 yards in the first meeting and 61 yards in the second. He also topped his season average on the ground in five of his final six games this year, averaging 46 yards per game on the ground during that stretch and reaching that magic 44 yard number in four of those outings. Since the calendar turned to December, Murray has averaged 7.1 yards per rush, after having averaged just 3.0 yards per carry prior.

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If Kyler Murray can hit that 44 yard marker in his first playoff game and the most important game of his young career, then we would need no more than 254 passing yards from him. If he can approach his season high of 74 rushing yards, we could need as little as 224 yards from him through the air. He topped that amount in 13 of his 14 appearances.

But, even with the conservative angle, we should feel confident that Murray can get it done, as he reached 254 or more passing yards in nine of his 14 outings and got at least to 239 yards in three others. His two outings against the Rams saw him put up 268 and 383 passing yards, while also eclipsing his rushing average in both contests, as mentioned above.

On the other side, the Rams allowed the quarterbacks from 10 teams to throw for at least 268 yards against them, a number Murray produced both times he faced them and one that would leave the Cardinals’ quarterback needing less than his season average on the ground in order to cash this prop. Murray torched this Rams’ secondary when they met on Monday night earlier this season and owns a 325 yard passing game on this field from his rookie season. He should be able to get over 300 total yards with no problem in this one.

Cooper Kupp Over 107.5 Receiving Yards & 1+ Touchdown Scored

Given that Cooper Kupp, the guy who destroyed his receiving yardage prop totals on an almost weekly basis this season, is roughly -165 to score a touchdown in this game, this prop bet is a fantastic way to improve those odds to a generous +175. That’s right, the over went 14-3 on Cooper Kupp’s receiving yardage props this season, culminating with his Week 18 performance when he tallied 118 yards against a yardage prop goal of 106.5 yards, an absurdly high value historically. But, that’s how good Cooper Kupp was this season.

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Kupp reached at least 90 yards receiving in every game except one and that was back in Week 4 against this Cardinals team, creating a little extra motivation for him. He topped this prop’s requirement an astonishing 11 times, including a 13 catch, 123 yard effort in his second bite of the apple against Arizona in Week 14 on Monday Night Football. In fact, he reached at least 108 yards in five of his final six games and we see no reason why he should fail to do so here in a home game of such importance.

Kupp also topped this prop’s yardage needs in four of his final five home games and faces an Arizona defense that slips from sixth best against the pass overall to just 12th best when the Cardinals go on the road. The Cardinals are 11th best in terms of limiting opponents’ yards per catch (9.9), but across the last three games they conceded 12.2 yards per reception, the league’s second highest number during that stretch. Further, when Arizona is away from home, opponents throw the ball 63.1 percent of the time against them, the NFL’s fourth highest rate.

On the touchdown front, Kupp might actually be more impressive. He totaled 16 receiving scores which was two more than anyone else in football and placed him fourth in total touchdowns league-wide. He scored six times in his final six regular season games, crossing the goal line in five of those outings, including the second meeting with Arizona.

And that’s a consistent theme against the Cardinals this season for most receivers as they allowed the most touchdowns to wideouts this year, giving up 1.59 per game. In fact, they gave up 13 receiving scores to wideouts in just the last five weeks alone. That should be music to Kupp’s ears, given that he plays in an offense that threw the second most touchdowns in football this year. If Cooper Kupp has an average game by his standards in the team’s most important outing, then he should cash this prop for us.

Zach Ertz Over 5.5 Receptions

When Zach Ertz was traded to Arizona from the Philadelphia Eagles after Week 6 of the regular season, it was expected that it would take him some time to make an indelible mark in this offense. He was eased in cautiously, catching three or four of his four of five targets in his first four weeks with the team.

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Things changed after that, though, and Ertz was targeted at least seven times and caught five balls or more in all but one of his remaining seven appearances. In fact, in the final four weeks of the regular season he caught at least six balls and was thrown to at least nine times in each game.

Ertz will be facing a Rams defense against which he caught five of seven targets back in Week 14. Los Angeles allowed the 10th most tight end targets (7.4) and receptions (5.3) per game this season as part of the NFL’s 22nd ranked pass defense. In fact, the Rams allowed an opposing tight end to catch at least five balls against them nine times this year with four of those happening against NFC West competition and three of them coming in the final five weeks of the regular season.

The Rams allowed the fourth most completions per game this year (24.5) and opponents threw the ball the eighth highest percentage of the time against them (60.4). With Los Angeles’ excellent pass rush which averaged the third most sacks per game, Kyler Murray will need a reliable underneath option allowing him to get the ball out of his hands quickly and Ertz seems promising to be that guy, based on his recent uptick in usage.