We are only 49 days away from the 2021 NFL Draft, and the betting opportunities are opening up by the day. While we are just at the tip of the iceberg for what will end up being hundreds of prop betting opportunities, there are five NFL Draft prop bets that stand out to me to bet right now.
In Todd McShay’s most recent mock draft, he has the New York Jets selecting Wilson with the second overall pick. This is significant because McShay was college roommates with Jets general manager Joe Douglas, so there may be inside knowledge there. More importantly than rumors, the value of this line is fantasy. As high as -400 on other sportsbooks, Wilson sits at just -260 to be the second overall pick on FanDuel, creating an arbitrage opportunity. Whether the Jets hold the second overall pick, keep Sam Darnold and trade back, or trade it to the Texans or Seahawks for Deshaun Watson or Russell Wilson, you can bet your bottom dollar the pick will be a quarterback at second overall. If you are uncomfortable laying such heavy juice, with Justin Fields still on the board you can bet a fifth of your wager on Fields +500 on DraftKings Sportsbook and freeroll this bet.
Najee Harris first off the board
If you are in New Jersey and haven’t signed up for Tipico Sportsbook, fix that and take advantage of their $250 cash deposit match.
Tipico is the only sportsbook to have plus money on Harris being the first back taken in the draft. This line opened at +120 across the industry and the standard line is now -110. Look for this to be juiced to -150 by the time draft day comes around as Harris has a complete profile. He is a workhorse back with elite production and athleticism and is the best pass-catching back in the class, a trait that has shot running backs up the board in years past. This is a two-horse race between Harris and Travis Etienne, and Harris is going seven picks higher on average than Etienne in mock drafts across the industry.
Another fantastic value opportunity, Chase sits at just -135 on FanDuel Sportsbook to be the first receiver off the board while he is as high as -180 on other books. Currently per the NFL mock draft database, Chase is taken with the third overall pick in 39% of mock drafts, which is the third-most popular pairing in the entire draft between team and player. Chase sat out last season, but has a flawless profile of production, athleticism, analytics and age. While Heisman winner Devonta Smith is an intriguing play, he would mark the first sub 17-pound receiver to go top 10 in NFL history, which is where he will need to go to surpass Chase, and even that might not be enough with Chase favored to go in the top six picks in the draft.
Bet the under on Mac Jones
If you are following my picks on the FTN Bet Tracker, you got this a week ago at 18.5, which was an absurd value, but at 15.5 it is still a strong pick. Quarterbacks don’t hang around long on draft day, and with three quarterbacks projected to go top four, Jones and Trey Lance shouldn’t have wait long to hear their names called. The Panthers at No. 8 and the Patriots at 15 are the most quarterback-needy teams, but both the Bears and Washington are desperate for a new signal caller and are poised to move up to jump the Patriots as well. Recently, former NFL GM Mike Tannabaum said that the Panthers at No. 8 is Jones’ floor — while I don’t agree with that, Jones is a strong bet to be gone within the first 15 picks of the NFL draft.
Could Zach Wilson go first overall?
I do not think this will happen, as Trevor Lawrence is the no-brainer first overall pick, but there has been some buzz of late that Wilson is viewed in the same level as him by some. I find it highly unlikely Urban Meyer would come out of retirement to coach any quarterback other than Lawrence, who he said was “the best college quarterback ever,” but strange things have been known to happen during the NFL draft. Currently Wilson is +1100 or lower on all other books, but BetMGM has a +3500 line available. If you think there is any chance the Jaguars do something crazy and don’t take Lawrence, BetMGM is the clear best book to place that wager.
Eliot Crist is the Chief Operating Officer of Fade The Noise. Formerly of TQE, PFF, and 4for4 Eliot has been playing fantasy sports for 18 years and betting on them for 12. the 2019 Pros vs Joes champion, Eliot has had success in both best ball and in DFS with seven career GPP wins. He makes frequent appearances on Sirius XM radio talking fantasy sports and CBS New York talking sports betting. Eliot contributes Season Long, Best Ball, DFS, and Betting NFL content and you can find him in our premium chat interacting with customers.