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Saturday, 19 January, 2019

Cowboys' RB Ezekiel Elliott should gobble up the yards

DeAndre Hopkins can star for Houston Texans

Dallas running back Ezekiel Elliott
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Dallas's season last year was almost a sideshow to their running back Ezekiel Elliott's battle to avoid a domestic-violence suspension - he eventually served the six game ban in November and December - so at least the Cowboys can concentrate on his on-field efforts this term.

Elliott's suspension went a long way towards explaining why Jason Garrett's side were unable to push Philadelphia harder for the NFC East title, but Elliott was was prolific when he was on the field.

He fell just 17 yards short of 1,000 for the season in only ten games and his 98.3 average yards per game was almost ten more than anyone else in the league.

Similar figures look likely this time as the Cowboys may rely on their running game even more now quarterback Dak Prescott no longer has veteran wide receiver Dez Bryant and tight end Jason Witten at his disposal.

Pittsburgh's Antonio Brown leads the market to chalk up the most receiving yards, but there could be some each-way value a little further down the list by supporting a couple of players who will be boosted by the return of their first-choice quarterbacks.

Deshaun Watson's knee injury was a body blow for Houston last term, but it still didn't stop DeAndre Hopkins posting an impressive 1,393 yards playing with inferior replacements Tom Savage and TJ Yates.

Hopkins can put up some big numbers again, as can Green Bay's Davante Adams, who should benefit from a full season with Aaron Rodgers and the departure of Jordy Nelson.

Adams recorded 546 yards in eight games with Rodgers's replacement Brett Hundley, who cannot be considered in the same class as the Packers' top man and while they will have their work cut out to keep pace with Minnesota in the NFC North, Adams could have a big campaign.

First-round quarterback Sam Darnold has been named the starter for the New York Jets and big things are expected from Giants running back Saquon Barkley, so the race to be offensive rookie of the year looks competitive.

Wide receivers have won the award just twice in the last 14 years, but expect Atlanta's Calvin Ridley to announce himself on the big stage.

With defences concentrating on the threat of Julio Jones and Mohamed Sanu in an excellent Falcons offence, there should be opportunities for him to make his mark and the first-round pick is worth an interest.

E Elliott most rushing yards
3pts 11-4 Hills, Ladbrokes, Sky Bet
D Hopkins most receiving yards
1.5pts each-way 10-1 Sky Bet
D Adams most receiving yards
1pt each-way 28-1 BoyleSports
C Ridley offensive rookie of the year
0.5pt 33-1 Betway

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Deshaun Watson's knee injury was a body blow for Houston last term, but it still didn't stop DeAndre Hopkins posting an impressive 1,393 yards
E.W. Terms
Sky bet