Deebo Samuel Is An Underdog To Break WR Rushing TD Record

  • Deebo Samuel has seven rushing touchdowns on the season, tied for the WR rushing touchdown record.
  • Another touchdown would make him sole holder of the record, and he has +150 odds to do so.
  • He has already scored one rushing touchdown against his Week 17 opponents, the Los Angeles Rams.

SAN FRANCISCO - The San Francisco 49ers offense has been reliant on the singular talents of one player - Deebo Samuel - in a way that few other offenses can match. Samuel has logged 1310 receiving yards on the season - more than Tyreek Hill of the Kansas City Chiefs - while being used significantly in the 49ers rushing game.

He currently has seven rushing touchdowns on the season, more than anyone else on his team, and is tied for the most rushing touchdowns by a wide receiver ever.

Deebo Samuel To Break WR Rushing TD Record Odds

  • Under 7½ TD's -200
  • Over 7½ TD's +150

Effectively, this is a bet on whether or not Samuel will manage to score a rushing touchdown against the Los Angeles Rams on Sunday.

This bet is intriguing to online sports betting fans because Samuel’s usage in the run game, while explosive, has been sporadic, and some might argue it has been dependent on the other options available to coach Kyle Shanahan.

What Kind Of Usage Will Samuel See In Week 17?

From Week 10 through Week 15, Samuel scored six of his seven rushing touchdowns on the season.

The 49ers were without starting running back Elijah Mitchell for three of those games, and without Samuel for one more. In other words, Samuel played only one game with Mitchell during that time frame, a Week 12 matchup against the Minnesota Vikings, in which he scored two rushing touchdowns and Mitchell scored one.

That seems less than ideal for Samuel.

Indeed, in Week 17, with Mitchell back, Samuel notched no rushing touchdowns, and had arguably his worst rushing performance of the season against the Houston Texans, rushing seven times for 19 yards. However, his usage numbers have been fairly consistent in the run game - he hasn’t gotten less than five rushing attempts since Week 10, when the 49ers first started really using him in this role.

It seems possible that Samuel will continue to have opportunities on the ground, even with Mitchell back.

He got seven rushes in the Houston game, after all - he just wasn’t able to convert any of them into his usual game-breaking plays. The fact that he got seven rushing attempts in the Houston game while Trey Lance was in the game could bode well for him, as Lance took eight rushes, and is not expected to play against the Rams.

It seems that while his original usage at the position was out of lack of other options, Samuel may have played himself into a permanent role as the change-of-pace running back as well as a wide receiver.

Deebo Samuel Is A YAC God

Samuel is one of the best players in the NFL at converting touches into big plays. He's averaging 3.2 rushing yards after contact this season, which is higher than anyone else with more than 120 rushing yards after contact.

For context, Jonathan Taylor is at 2.8 rush yards after contact, Najee Harris is at 2.2, and Nick Chubb is at 3.0. Each of these players is famously elite at getting yards after contact, and Samuel has been more efficient than all of them.

He’s shown an ability to do more damage than anyone else when he has the ball in his hands. For NFL betting fans, it’s just a question of what his level of opportunity will be. The last time Samuel matched up against the Rams, it was in that Week 10 matchup where he first proved his efficiency as a rusher, scoring a touchdown on the ground to go along with one in the air.

We’ll see if this offensive dynamo can have a similar performance to close out the season and claim a record for himself.