2020 NFL Draft Odds & Prop Picks: Betting on Xavier McKinney to Be First Safety Drafted

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Daniel Dunn/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images. Pictured: Xavier McKinney

2020 NFL Draft Odds: First Safety Drafted

  • Xavier McKinney: -177
  • Grant Delpit: +130
  • Antoine Winfield Jr.: +1600
  • Jeremy Chinn: +3000
  • Ashtyn Davis: +3300
  • Kyle Dugger: +3300

Odds as of Monday, March 30, and via DraftKings. Get up to a $1,000 sign-up bonus at DraftKings today or see more offers and reviews for the best online sportsbooks.


A robust prop market is forming for the 2020 NFL Draft, and that’s great for us.

Last year, I went 54-29 (+17.7 units) on draft props. There’s no guarantee I’ll have similar success this year, but I do like a lot of the props out there, including the one for first safety to be drafted.

Xavier McKinney to Be First Safety Drafted -177 (DraftKings)

I must go with the chalk here.

I take a “wisdom of the crowds” approach by surveying as many reputable mock drafts as possible. I find that these drafts, created by mockers with established records of success, collectively give me a good sense of the realistic range of outcomes.

In 80% of the 10 first-round mocks I’ve surveyed, Alabama safety Xavier McKinney is the first safety selected. And he’s included in 90% of the mocks. As a point of comparison: LSU safety Grant Delpit is in only 40% of the Round 1 mocks.

I personally prefer Delpit: He started all three years at LSU, which has produced a number of NFL-ready safeties such as Jamal Adams, LaRon Landry, Tyrann Mathieu and Eric Reid. Delpit was an unanimous first-team All-American in 2018. And he won the Jim Thorpe Award as the nation’s top defensive back in 2019.

If I were an old-school tape-watching scout, I’d say something like “Delpit’s a football player.”

But McKinney might be the more versatile player.

For the past two years, McKinney has played the “Minkah Fitzpatrick” role in the Alabama defense, and although he’s not as accomplished as his former college teammate and unlikely to be drafted as highly as Fitzpatrick was (No. 11 in 2018), McKinney will probably be the first safety selected thanks to his ability to defend in the slot, in the box and deep downfield.

McKinney and Delpit both entered college in 2017 as four-star recruits, and both probably deserve to be first-rounders in 2020. Delpit had the better college career, but McKinney’s versatility has made him the preferred prospect.

PICK: Xavier McKinney: One unit. Limit: -300
[Bet now at DraftKings. NJ, PA, IN and WV only.]

More 2020 NFL Draft Betting Picks


Freedman is the Editor-in-Chief of FantasyLabs, part of The Action Network.

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