Most expect that Louisville’s Lamar Jackson, the 2016 Heisman winner, will land somewhere in the first round of the 2018 NFL Draft.
Check out our Top 10 mock draft for this weekend’s NFL Draft from AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas, at Sports Interaction. Here’s a look at other props available for the draft, the last big event on the NFL calendar until training camps open.
Total QBs In First Round Odds
In the Top-10 mock draft, we speculated that quarterbacks would go in the first three picks with Cleveland taking Wyoming’s Josh Allen first, the New York Giants selecting Southern Cal’s Sam Darnold second and the New York Jets grabbing Oklahoma’s Baker Mayfield first. A fourth quarterback who is a lock to go early is UCLA’s Josh Rosen, perhaps as high as No. 3 to the Jets or No. 5 to the Denver Broncos. Rosen almost surely will not slip out of the Top 10.
Lamar Jackson Draft Odds
Sports Interaction’s NFL Draft odds have an over/under of 4.5 first-round quarterbacks, with the over a -400 favourite. Most agree that Louisville’s Lamar Jackson, the 2016 Heisman winner, will land somewhere in the first round. That would put this prop over the total.
So which team might land Jackson? The Arizona Cardinals are +225 favourites. They pick 15th and there’s a good chance Jackson will be there. The Cardinals lost starting quarterback Carson Palmer to retirement after last season and signed former No. 1 overall pick Sam Bradford to a one-year contract to keep the seat warm for a young quarterback. Should Arizona want Jackson, though, it might have to trade ahead of No. 12 Buffalo, which also is in need of a young franchise quarterback. The Bills are +275 on this prop.
Perhaps the most interesting team listed is New England at +800. Reports are the Patriots are enamored with Jackson to sit and learn behind Tom Brady for a season or two and then take over for the Hall of Famer. New England has two first-round picks: No. 23 and 31 and could package them to move up and land Jackson – perhaps jumping Arizona and Buffalo.
The over 4.5 QBs, though, is an easy-money bet. There might even be six of them with Oklahoma State’s Mason Rudolph a possibility late in the first round. Jackson lads with Arizona.
Total RBs In First Round Odds
Pretty much every scout agrees that the top-rated player in this draft class is Penn State running back Saquon Barkley, who should go off the board anywhere from No. 2 to No. 7. Running backs have been a bit devalued in the current pass-happy NFL, but Barkley is considered the best tailback prospect since Adrian Peterson. Barkley is the -275 favourite to be the first non-quarterback drafted. He will be, either going No. 2 to the Giants or No. 4 to the Browns.
As for total running backs in the first round, that number is set at just 1.5, with the over a -210 favourite. The likely only other player with a shot is LSU’s Derrius Guice. Teams that could be in the market for a tailback later in the first round would be Seattle (No. 18), Detroit (No. 20) or Pittsburgh (No. 28).
Total Pass-Catchers First Round Odds
This is not considered a good wide receiver class like in 2014 when Sammy Watkins, Mike Evans, Odell Beckham Jr., Brandin Cooks and Kelvin Benjamin all were first-round picks, and all have had some level of NFL success – Evans and Beckham are two of the league’s best receivers. Thus, there’s only a total of 2.5 receivers selected in Round 1, with the under a slight favourite.
The top-rated WR is Alabama’s Calvin Ridley, who should go somewhere between 12-20 to a team like Buffalo, Washington, Arizona, Baltimore, Seattle or Dallas. The No. 2 rated WR is Maryland’s D.J. Moore, followed by SMU’s Courtland Sutton, Memphis’ Anthony Miller and LSU’s D.J. Chark. Not exactly household names. I believe Ridley, Moore and Sutton will be first-rounders and recommend over.
The over/under for tight ends chosen in Round 1 is 0.5, with the over a -160 favourite. The two highest-ranked by scouts are South Dakota State’s Dallas Goedert and South Carolina’s Hayden Hurst.
Go over on this pick. Either Goedert or Hurst will go late in the first round. The Saints could be a good spot for one.