2020 NFL Draft Odds & Prop Picks: Albert Okwuegbunam to Be the First Tight End Drafted
Nick Tre. Smith/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images. Pictured: Albert Okwuegbunam
2020 NFL Draft Odds: First TE Drafted
- Cole Kmet: -132
- Adam Trautman: +450
- Brycen Hopkins: +800
- Thaddeus Moss: +1200
- Hunter Bryant: +1200
- Albert Okwuegbunam: +1400
- Harrison Bryant: +2000
- Jared Pinkney: +5000
- Devin Asiasi: +6600
- C.J. O’Grady: +6600
- Josiah Deguara: +6600
- Colby Parkinson: +8000
- Dalton Keene: +12500
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 prop for first tight end to be drafted.
Albert Okwuegbunam to Be First TE Drafted (+1400 at BetMGM)
Before getting to Albert O specifically, I should highlight several salient points.
First, this is an incredibly wide-open tight end market. That there are even 13 players with listed odds to be the first player selected at the position is telling.
Second, this is not a great tight end group anyway, and its deficiencies are all the more apparent when it’s compared to all the other offensive position groups. This is an incredibly strong year for wide receivers and offensive linemen and a markedly above-average year for quarterbacks and running backs.
Given the relative disparity in talent between tight ends and the other offensive positions, the market for tight ends is unlikely to be enthusiastic.
Third, 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 not one of these post-combine Round 1 mocks have I seen a tight end.
If you look at DraftKings, the over/under for tight ends selected in Round 1 is 0.5 (+900 over, -1667 under). For the under, the -1667 odds suggest that there’s a 94.3% chance a tight end won’t be selected in Round 1, and I think the true probability is probably closer to 97%.
So maybe there’s some value in betting the under, if you don’t mind laying the juice.
But the pertinent point is that it’s unlikely we’ll see a tight end selected in Round 1. On DraftKings and FanDuel, Cole Kmet is the only player at the position with an over/under for his draft position, and it is well outside of Round 1.
- Cole Kmet’s Draft Position at DraftKings: 44.5, -110 over, -110 under
- Cole Kmet’s Draft Position at FanDuel: 48.5, +108 over, -142 under
The market is clearly not expecting a tight end in Round 1.
And that brings me to the all-important fourth point: After Round 1, it’s incredibly hard to predict with accuracy the order in which players in a position group will be selected, and that’s especially true with a cohort that is basically an amalgam of undistinguished and indistinguishable prospects.
Depending on the book, Kmet is -160 on the high end (FanDuel) and -125 on the low end (PointsBet) to be the first tight end off the board, and although I think he’s the likeliest candidate for that honor, those odds are too high given how unpredictable the draft is after Round 1.
So I’m going with Okwuegbunam as a 14-to-1 long shot.
If he had declared last year, he might have been a first-rounder as a 21-year-old redshirt sophomore à la David Njoku in 2017.
But he instead returned to Missouri, where he missed games and struggled with a shoulder injury for a second consecutive season.
So now instead of entering the draft as a noted high-upside prospect who had 11 touchdowns as a freshman, he’s an injury risk who had just 12 touchdowns in his final two seasons.
But all it takes is one team to fall in love with Albert O, and he has the raw tools. NFL.com draft analyst Lance Zierlein compares Okwuegbunam to Mark Andrews, and he absolutely crushed the combine with a blazing 40-yard dash, earning a position-high 99 Draft Score from Next Gen Stats.
With his athleticism and production, Okwuegbunam is highly comparable to Noah Fant, who was selected at No. 20 last year.
- Albert Okwuegbunam: 6-foot-5, 258 pounds, 4.49-second 40, 98-1,187-23 receiving
- Noah Fant: 6-foot-4, 249 pounds, 4.50-second 40, 78-1,083-19 receiving
Albert O is as low as +1000 at FanDuel, so there’s a good deal of line-shopping value at +1400, and of all the tight ends in this class, he’s the only one who stands out as a potential difference maker.
At +1400, he has 6.7% implied odds of being the first tight end drafted, but I have to think the true probability is almost double.
PICK: Albert Okwuegbunam +1400: One unit. Limit: +900
[Bet now at BetMGM. NJ only.]
More 2020 NFL Draft Betting Picks
- Total QBs Drafted in Round 1
- How to Bet the Top 3 Picks
- QB Tua Tagovailoa’s Draft Position
- First Wide Receiver to Be Drafted
- First Running Back to Be Drafted
Freedman is the Editor-in-Chief of FantasyLabs, part of The Action Network.