It is a dark time right now in the sports world, with COVID-19 taking games off the table for what appears to be a while. The NFL is doing its best to save us, making no changes to the off-season schedule, including the NFL Draft. We may see coverage done in an entirely different way this year, with social distancing keeping the event from being crowded with fans, but the Draft will certainly be happening come April. And with it, comes some props to bet! Here are five of my favorite bets right now on DraftKings Sportsbook.
All odds provided by DraftKings Sportsbook and all odds subject to change.
2020 NFL Draft
First Tight End Drafted: Cole Kmet (-110)There will be plenty more props to come on DKSB, but the market is currently flush with “First x Drafted” props, and they are among my favorite to bet. My primary tool to use when trying to leverage draft props is Grinding the Mocks, a shiny-powered website created by Benjamin Robinson. His suite of apps scrape the data from hundreds of mock drafts to try to give an idea of draft position come April.
Kmet is not a household name, but played at a major school in Notre Dame. On Grinding the Mocks, no other TE is projected to selected within 20 picks of him. Albert Okwuegbunam was once thought to be a first rounder, but has dropped like a rock over the past few months, while Adam Trautman has probably already hit his ceiling as a fringe top-100 selection. Kmet is the chalk, and for good reason. These odds will likely fall fast as time goes on.
First Running Back Drafted: Jonathan Taylor (+125)The two biggest names at RB this draft season are Taylor and Georgia’s D’Andre Swift. Swift is the favorite right now, coming in at +115 to be the first back off the board. With that said I am leaning Taylor. The Wisconsin star is projected just 2.3 picks behind Swift on Grinding the Mocks, and has has a measurably better college career.
Swift – 3,551 total yards, 25 total touchdowns over three seasons
Taylor – 6,581 total yards, 55 touchdowns over three seasons
Taylor followed up one of the greatest careers in college football history with a 4.39 40-yard dash at the NFL Combine, while weighing 226 pounds. Swift ran just a 4.48 at 212 pounds. There is no doubt in my mind that Taylor is the superior RB prospect, so getting him at higher odds than Swift seems like a great bet.
First Wide Receiver Drafted: CeeDee Lamb (+130)Alabama’s Jerry Jeudy (-121) has seen his stock take a little hit this season after opening up the year as a potential top-five draft selection. That said, he is neck and neck with Lamb to be the first wideout off the board. In fact, Grinding the Mocks has Lamb to come first off the board, indicating there could be some value here right away. Jeudy had the better 2018 campaign, but Lamb was more productive in 2019. This is probably about a coin flip, which means +130 for Lamb has positive expected value.
First Offensive Lineman Drafted: Mekhi Becton (+200)I admittedly do not know a ton about offensive line prospects, but I do know that big people are not meant to move like Becton.
WOW😱— PFF Draft (@PFF_College) February 28, 2020
6”7 364 lbs. Mekhi Becton just ran a 5.11 40-yard dash.pic.twitter.com/TOobb4Q9Y9
As a result of this insane Combine performance, Becton has been a major riser up draft boards. Grinding the Mocks has him as the first offensive lineman off the board, followed by Jedrick Wills (+160) and Tristan Wirfs (+200). This should be a very tight race, but I’ll take the forward momentum of Becton given the elongated odds.
Total Quarterbacks Drafted in the First Round: Over 4.5 (+340)The only recommended play I’ll make today that isn’t a first player off the board prop is this one. Right now, there are four absolute locks at the position to go in the first round. LSU’s Joe Burrow, Alabama’s Tua Tagovailoa, Oregon’s Justin Herbert and Utah State’s Jordan Love. But can one more passer sneak into the first round? I think so. The available candidates would be Jacob Eason (Washington), Jalen Hurts (Oklahoma) and Jake Fromm (Georgia). All of these players have warts, but if the right team comes along looking for that fifth year of team control, they could end up as late Day 1 picks.
Teams drafting late in the first round that could be in the market for a QB include the Patriots (23), Saints (24), Dolphins (26) and Packers (30). The Colts, Lions, Chargers, Panthers and Bears all have early second round picks and could look to trade into the first round if they miss on a QB with their first selection. It isn’t something I think is likely to happen, but the current odds price it as a 22.7% chance. I think the odds are better than that we see a fifth passer in the first round.
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