NFL player prop of the day: Pump the brakes on D'Andre Swift

·3 min read

I've ignored a lot of red flags in my life — mainly when it comes to dating. My friends always try to warn me, but the heart wants what the heart wants.

Now, you may not want to hear this, but I'm telling you as a friend that D'Andre Swift is no good for you. There are simply too many hurdles for the Lions running back to clear BetMGM's line of 900.5 rushing yards.

Jamaal Williams is a significant other

Swift split carries in his 2020 rookie season with 35-year-old Adrian Peterson. Peterson is gone, but the Lions brought in Jamaal Williams from Green Bay. He has a similar skill set as a receiver, and while he may not be an elite running back, Williams certainly has elite qualities. In 652 career NFL touches, Williams has never fumbled. Swift fumbled three times last year on 160 touches. 

Pass-blocking is a major point of emphasis for Detroit running backs coach Duce Staley, who made it clear that if a running back can't handle pass-blocking, they "can't play for me." That could pose a problem for Swift when you consider that Williams ranks first in pass-blocking grades from PFF over the past two years, while Swift ranked 108th last season.

It also doesn't help Swift that new offensive coordinator Anthony Lynn promised a "hot hand" approach to the Lions backfield rotation and referred to Williams as his "A" back.

D'Andre Swift ran for 521 yards in his rookie season. (Michael McLoone/USA TODAY Sports)
D'Andre Swift ran for 521 yards in his rookie season. (Michael McLoone/USA TODAY Sports)

No offense, but...

The Lions are going to be bad this year. Really bad. Like, "projected to win the second-fewest games and score the second-fewest points in the NFL" type of bad. They lost their best offensive weapon in receiver Kenny Golladay and majorly downgraded the quarterback position from Matthew Stafford to Jared Goff.

Here's what Goff has to work with on offense: tight end T.J. Hockenson and wideouts Tyrell Williams, Amon-Ra St. Brown, Quintez Cephus, Kalif Raymond and Trinity Benson. Yuck. Goff had one of the lowest average depths of target on passes in 2020, with a much more talented receiving corps. This figures to be a dink-and-dunk offense which opposing defenses will be able to play closer to the line of scrimmage. That's not great news for the running game. Even worse is that 11 of the Lions' 17 games this season are against front seven units ranked 13th or better by Sharp Football Analysis.

We've got history

Injury history, that is. Swift had groin surgery in 2018 and has missed nearly all of this year's training camp with a groin injury. Will that soft tissue continue to be an issue? He's also at a higher risk of suffering another concussion, as we're less than a year removed from when he missed two games in 2020 after getting concussed against Washington.

It's not me, it's you

All signs point to Swift gaining less than 900.5 rushing yards this season. Pull up the BetMGM app, bet the under, put your phone down and don't text him back.

Stats provided by SharpFootball and pro football reference

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