It’s NFL Draft week, and while teams prepare to shape the future of their franchise and fans debate over which of their mock drafts is better, the time for bettors to wager on football again has come. As years have gone on, the amount of betting markets offered for the draft has increased tenfold, making this a full-blown gambling spectacle. With all the markets come the constantly changing line movements that happen with every rumor or report of “poor character” that happens for a handful of first-round picks.
Here we’ll be taking a look at some of the best plays and markets to look at for this week’s draft. With more rumors and smoke screens thrown by teams, we can only analyze what is given as it comes, so if the odds switch, then the prices you find in this guide could be better or worse by the time you check your sportsbook. Either way, here’s to hoping your favorite team drafts who you want, all while you make a profit.
Jahmyr Gibbs to be drafted in the 1st Round (-165) on DraftKings: It’s hard to find consistency with NFL draft rumors, but one of the common ones over the past few days have been reports of teams looking to trade up for the former Alabama running back. Gibbs has been linked in reports to a handful of teams, including the Chiefs.
The versatile Gibbs did not start off as a popular name in the first round, but now scouts are saying they would be shocked to see him make it out of round one. With his versatility, there is no surprise this number went from (-110) to where it stands now within the time frame of me writing this guide.
Mazi Smith to be drafted in the 1st Round (+110) on DK: The word “freak” is thrown around often this time of year, and Smith is a name that you will be here in the same sentence as that word a lot this week. The defensive lineman out of Michigan has been getting mocked frequently in the 20s, especially since he is a perfect guy for teams to target if their first option goes off the board. Teams like Buffalo and New Orleans are two teams that have been linked to him, so I think he’s worth a look here at, plus money.
Las Vegas Raiders to select a cornerback first (+150) on DK: The Raiders have been one of the teams mocked to take a QB ever since the draft position was set. Reports came out today that they were not sold on the QBs this year, and while they may be a smoke screen, there is also no real pressure with Jimmy Garropolo under contract. The next logical position for them to target would be cornerback, and with the 7th pick, they could likely grab either Devon Witherspoon or Christian Gonzalez, but of which are viable options.
Peter Skoronski to be the 9th Pick (+380) on FD: The offensive line prospects will likely start coming off the board here, and the in-state product could be a nice fit up front in Chicago, who desperately need to protect Justin Fields. Some teams do not like his arm length, but reports say GM Ryan Poles prefers Skoronski even if he needs to move to guard. Chicago could certainly trade back here, but it’s hard to be ranked dead last in QB sack percentage the year before and make a move that could cost you the top three tackles in the draft.
Will Anderson to be the 5th Pick (+250) on DK: The Seahawks are in an interesting spot with their position in this year's draft, and while some think they could go quarterback here if one of them falls, many think it would be foolish not to address their defensive line.
Seattle was 30th in rushing yards allowed per game last season, and Anderson is an excellent fit at this spot. I think Arizona may be leaning toward Tyree Wilson, and based on recent issues with drafting players with so-called character issues (Malik McDowell), I think they go Anderson over Jalen Carter here.
Dalton Kincaid Draft Position Over 24.5 (-130) on DK: The tight end out of Utah’s name has been a popular one leading up to the draft, and the debate between him and Michael Mayer to be the first tight end taken has warranted a lot of opinions. At the end of the day, unless there is a trade, I don’t see a team that would target a tight end outside of Mayer. Kindcaid’s medical history has been a big conversation, and I don’t know if teams are willing to roll the dice early on him with other strong, tight-end candidates that could be taken in the later rounds.
Houston Texans to Draft Quentin Johnston (+1200) on DK: Many scouts are not high on this year's wide receiver class, and one of the wideouts I could see falling out of the first round is Johnston. What Houston will do come draft night is a mystery to a lot of people, but if they end up going defense/quarterback or the other way around in the first round, I think it is very likely the in-state product Johnston falls right to them at pick #33 in the second round.
DJ Turner to be a 1st-Round Pick (+500) on DK: Draft night is never a chalk event that sees players get drafted where they’ve been mocked over the past few months, so it’s worth having ideal odds on a player who could find their way into round one. Turner recorded the fourth fastest 40 time since 2003 and will be coming out of a school in Michigan that has produced some solid NFL defensive backs. We’ve seen teams take swings on athletic players late in the first round that we weren't expecting. This is a very small unit play for me, but I think it’s worth a chance.
Deonte Banks Draft Position Over 21.5 (+100) on Circa: The cornerback out of Maryland has been mocked consistently over the last week anywhere between 18 and 29, but early trades and quarterback movement could cause the run on defensive backs to start a bit later in the first round. He’s currently the third-ranked corner on PFF, but I would not be shocked to see Joey Porter Jr. or Emmanuel Forbes end up hearing their name called before Banks.