If you're looking for a reason to cheer during Super Bowl XLVII from New Orleans this weekend, look no further than player prop bets.
Not only is the list of choices and options seemingly endless, but there are plenty of intriguing bets for bold football fans to mull over and go all-in on. Whether you're convinced that Baltimore Ravens fullback Vonta Leach will carry the ball for at least two yards on his first carry or sure that San Francisco 49ers wide receiver Michael Crabtree will fail to score a touchdown, these fun mini-wagers are for you.
Here we'll break down and predict a few of the more intriguing player prop bets heading into Super Bowl XLVII.
*All betting information according Sportsbook.com.
Colin Kaepernick's Rushing Yards
Colin Kaepernick is as dominant a runner as he is a passer, evidenced by his record-breaking performance on the ground against the Green Bay Packers in the NFC Divisional Round.
But can he rush for more than 55 yards on the ground against Baltimore in such a high-stakes matchup?
The second-year field general rushed for a quarterback-record 181 yards and two touchdowns on 16 attempts in San Francisco's win, but turned right around and rushed for only 21 yards on two carries against the Atlanta Falcons in the NFC Championship Game the following week. So, Kaepernick comes into Super Bowl XLVII averaging 101 rushing yards per game this postseason.
Despite that fact, I'm taking the under on his rushing yards on Super Sunday, a day in which no quarterback has ever run for more than 64 yards.
The Ravens have only allowed 39 rushing yards on seven carries combined to quarterbacks this postseason. Granted, they went up against three pocket passers in Andrew Luck, Peyton Manning and Tom Brady, but the Ravens' defense has proven it doesn't give up cheap yards to the quarterback.
Over 55.5 yards (-115)
Under 55.5 yards (-115)
Joe Flacco's Completions
The over/under on Joe Flacco's number of completions in Super Bowl XLVII has been set at 21.5, which is very surprising when you consider Flacco has yet to complete more than 21 passes in a single game this January.
However, Flacco's completion numbers have increased since Wild Card weekend. After completing just 12 balls against the Indianapolis Colts, Flacco completed 18 against Denver and finally 21 two weeks ago at New England.
Still, the under looks to be a very safe bet in this case. I like the fifth-year veteran to fall short of 22 completions this weekend.
Although the Niners surrendered 26 and 30 completions to Aaron Rodgers and Matt Ryan respectively, Flacco is a different style of passer, one who thrives on the big play down field rather than tacking together completions all over the field. His 9.2 yards per attempt average is among the highest of all postseason passers in 2013, trailing only Colin Kaepernick and Russell Wilson.
Under 21.5 (-120)
Ray Rice's Longest Reception
It's no secret that Baltimore's Ray Rice is one of the premiere receiving backs in the NFL today, which is why this player prop bet is quite tempting.
Rice has caught a pass in three of the Ravens' last five games dating back to the regular season and each of his three longest receptions in those games was longer than the over/under mark of 14.5 yards. His longest reception against the Patriots two weeks back was 15 yards exactly.
On the flip side, Rice has just four receptions in three postseason games this winter, despite being targeted 10 times since the 2013 playoffs began.
Knowing what we know about the 49ers' defense, though, it's hard to imagine there not being a few instances on Sunday when Flacco dumps it off to Rice in the flat or at the line of scrimmage. If and when that happens, you would have to like Rice's chances of ripping off a gain of more than 14 yards.
I like the over on this prop bet.
Over 14.5 yards
Under 14.5 yards (-120)
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