NFL player props: Bring out the Heinz for a cooked Baker Mayfield

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  • Cleveland Browns
    Cleveland Browns
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  • Pittsburgh Steelers
    Pittsburgh Steelers
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  • Baker Mayfield
    Baker Mayfield
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Monday night's Browns-Steelers game has seen heavier line movement than a honky-tonk bar. Pittsburgh opened as a three-point underdog but now sits as a three-point favorite after Sunday's NFL action eliminated Cleveland from playoff contention. Instead of square dancing on the Steelers' spread, here are two player props I'll be playing on BetMGM Monday night:

Baker Mayfield under 19.5 pass completions

What sense does it make for the Browns to play Mayfield the entire game when he has a torn labrum and fractured bone in his shoulder that will necessitate surgery after their season, which is unofficially over, is officially over? Cleveland has him signed through next year and has nothing to gain by letting T.J. Watt and Cameron Heyward tee off on the former Heisman winner for four quarters in below freezing temperature. Even if he plays all 60 minutes, Mayfield has completed 20 or more passes in just five of 13 games this season, proving my hypothesis that a Baker's throw is the opposite of a chef's kiss. Only five quarterbacks have a worse completion percentage this year, and three of them are rookies. 

Chase Claypool over 39.5 receiving yards

NFL meme Twitter exploded when Claypool wasted precious seconds celebrating a first down in the waning moments of a comeback attempt versus the Vikings in Week 14. He only saw two targets the following game, but managed to sneak out of the doghouse for six targets against the Chiefs. Three key members of Cleveland's secondary have been ruled out for Monday's contest, opening up Pittsburgh's chances for success in the passing game. Claypool has hit this number in 10 of 13 outings this season and has four games where he's gone over it with a single catch.

Cleveland Browns quarterback Baker Mayfield has completed just 62.4% of his pass attempts this season. (Ken Blaze/USA TODAY Sports)
Cleveland Browns quarterback Baker Mayfield has completed just 62.4% of his pass attempts this season. (Ken Blaze/USA TODAY Sports)

Stats provided by teamrankings.com and nfl.com.

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