2020 NFL Mock Draft: Freedman’s 100+ Prop Bets for His Projected First-Round Picks

Credit:

Todd Kirkland/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images. Pictured: Joe Burrwo

The NFL Draft is less than 10 days away, so it’s time for me to update my Round 1 mock draft for 2020.

This version is significantly different than the previous versions, now that we’ve had the combine and free agency.

With my 2019 NFL mock draft, I had top-20 scores in the FantasyPros Accuracy Contest and the Mock Draft Database Contest.

I also would have officially had a top-10 score in the Huddle Report Contest, but the invitation emails they sent went to my spam folder. I’ll be in the contest this year.

This mock draft more or less represents how I imagine Round 1 will unfold.

The three aforementioned contests all measure accuracy differently. The same mock could rank in the top three and outside the top 20 in two different contests. So I’m not too focused on the particular scoring details of any given contest. Instead, I’m focused on accomplishing the following tasks.

  • Put as many likely first-rounders as possible in my draft.
  • Mock players within their probable draft range.
  • Order players accurately by position.
  • Identify the positions and/or sides of the ball teams might target in Round 1.
  • Match players with teams relatively likely to draft them.

All of this might sound obvious, but I expect that most people don’t think about mocks the way I do.

If you were to do a mock, you might go through it pick-by-pick trying to match each player perfectly with his team and draft position. That’s not the way I conceptualize a mock. To me, it’s not an exercise in attempted sequential perfection. I know I can’t do a perfect mock. I’m just trying to create a mock that is good enough.

For almost any player after pick No. 1, it’s hard to get everything about his draft situation right — and so I don’t try to get everything right. Instead, I try to maximize my odds of being right about the generalities.

And if, in hitting the generalities, I happen to get the particulars, then that’s great. But I don’t shoot for perfection. I shoot for sufficiency.

You’ll notice that I have only one trade in the mock. There are a few reasons for that.

  1. Trades are almost impossible to predict, so I’d rather not try. My sense is that I’ll be more inaccurate overall if I try to have an accurate number of Round 1 trades in the mock.
  2. Because the 2020 draft will be done remotely due to the coronavirus, I expect there will be fewer trades than usual.
  3. In doing the mock, only once did I hit a point where I thought, “Based on the needs these teams have, the players available and the way experts are mocking them, it really makes sense for this team to trade up and that team to trade down.” Aside from the coronavirus issue, this strikes me as a year in which a lot of trades aren’t necessary. Of course, that doesn’t mean they’re not going to happen.

While breaking down each pick in this mock, I’m also highlighting some NFL draft props I think offer value. These props are available at a number of sportsbooks, including:

Perhaps more than any other mock available, this one is actionable.

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.

As always, be sure to shop around for the best lines you can find.

2020 NFL Mock Draft & Prop Bets


>> Odds via various legal sportsbooks. Find book reviews and the best promos here.


1. Bengals: Joe Burrow, QB, LSU

  • Height: 6’3” | Weight: 221 pounds
  • 2020 Age: 24 | Class: Redshirt Senior
  • Recruitment Stars: 4

Posted April 12: The 2019 Heisman Trophy winner is a one-year wonder, but he has two starting seasons to his name, which should allay some fears about his outlier final season.

Burrow had probably the greatest passing season ever for a collegiate quarterback with 5,671 yards and 60 touchdowns to six interceptions. His 76.3% completion rate and 12.5 adjusted yards per attempt (AY/A) were immaculate.

Gregory Shamus/Getty Images. Pictured: Joe Burrow

Burrow Prop: In late December, I bet Burrow to be the No. 1 pick at -286. Since then, I’ve regularly added to the position, betting him at -500, -1000 and -2200.

Although Burrow is now -10000 to go No. 1 at most books, if you still want to invest, you can find him at -2800.

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 expert mock has Burrow been drafted anywhere other than No. 1.

[Easy Money! Get 2-1 Odds on Joe Burrow to Go No. 1 … (Yes, We’re Serious)]

Also, I think there’s value in betting on Burrow right now to be the 2020 Offensive Rookie of the Year at +250. Over the past 16 years, the league has increasingly become a more quarterback-friendly and pass-focused league, and over that time, a passer has won the award 50% of the time.

All of the OROY quarterback winners since 2004 have started at least 13 games. Most of them had 15-plus starts. With the exception of Dak Prescott (2016), all of them were drafted in Round 1. Aside from Dak and Ben Roethlisberger (2004), all were selected with top-three picks.

Burrow is likely to start in Week 1, and he has a good wide receiver unit in A.J. Green, Tyler Boyd and John Ross and two good receiving backs in Joe Mixon and Giovani Bernard.

It’s not at all hard to imagine Burrow winning the award.

PICK: Burrow No. 1 -2800: One unit. Limit: -3000.
[Bet now at bet365. NJ only.]

PICK: Burrow to Win OROY +250: One unit. Limit: +200.
[Bet now at DraftKings. NJ, PA, IN and WV only.]

2. Redskins: Chase Young, EDGE, Ohio State

  • Height: 6’5” | Weight: 264 pounds
  • 2020 Age: 21 | Class: Junior
  • Recruitment Stars: 5

Posted April 12: For the third time in five years, we’re going to see a Buckeyes pass rusher selected with a top-three pick. Like Joey Bosa (2016, No. 3) and Nick Bosa (2019, No. 2) before him, Young will be the first non-quarterback off the board in his class.

And if circumstances were a little different, it wouldn’t be a stretch to see him go No. 1 overall, as edge defender Myles Garrett (2017) did even though his class had three strong quarterback prospects in Patrick Mahomes, Deshaun Watson and Mitchell Trubisky.

In his standout junior season, Young had 16.5 sacks in 12 games and ranked No. 1 at his position with a 96.1 Pro Football Focus grade. Per PFF: “Young is the best edge prospect we’ve ever scouted.”

The unanimous All-American selection is as close as it gets to a top-two lock.

Young Props: I’ve already got a ticket for Young to go No. 2 at -305, but you can still bet on him at -450, and I think there’s massive value at that number.

I also have a ticket on the Redskins to draft a defender with their first pick at -400.

A couple of months ago, there was a little hype about the possibility of the Redskins drafting a quarterback or trading out of the No. 2 pick, but in every expert mock I’ve seen in April, Young has gone to the Redskins at No. 2, and I want to activate on that information across as many props as possible.

Joe Robbins/Getty Images. Pictured: Chase Young

Young to the Redskins at -400? Yessir. The Nos. 1-2 Burrow-Young exacta? You bet. The Redskins to draft defense with their first pick at -455? I love it. Draft position under 2.5 at -715? Just try to stop me. First defender selected at -2000? I don’t see why not.

Drafted in top five at -9000?

No. That’s where I draw the line.

I lay -9000 juice for no man.

But other than that, I’m investing in any prop that has anything to do with Young to the Redskins at No. 2.

PICK: Young No. 2 -450: One unit. Limit: -3000.
[Bet now at William Hill. NJ only.]

PICK: Young to Redskins -400: One unit. Limit: -3000.
[Bet now at William Hill. NJ only.]

PICK: Burrow No. 1, Young No. 2 -400: One unit. Limit: -3000.
[Bet now at William Hill. NJ only.]

PICK: Redskins Draft Defense -455: One unit. Limit: -3000.
[Bet now at DraftKings. NJ, PA, IN and WV only.]

PICK: Under 2.5 -715: One unit. Limit: -3000.
[Bet now at BetMGM. NJ only.]

PICK: First Defensive Player -2000: One unit. Limit: -3000.
[Bet now at Sugar House. NJ and IN only.]

3. Lions: Jeff Okudah, CB, Ohio State

  • Height: 6’1” | Weight: 205 pounds
  • 40-yard dash: 4.48 seconds
  • 2020 Age: NA | Class: Junior
  • Recruitment Stars: 5

Posted April 12: Last year, the Lions allowed a league-high 503.2 air yards and yards after the catch per game (per AirYards.com), and they traded away No. 1 cornerback Darius Slay this offseason. They need significant help in the secondary.

Okudah is a unanimous All-American selection and easily the top perimeter defender in the class: He held opponents to a passer rating of just 45.3 last year (per PFF).

At the combine he exhibited elite explosiveness with his 41-inch vertical and 135-inch broad jumps, and based on his college production and athleticism, the player to whom Okudah is most comparable as a prospect is Jalen Ramsey (per Player Profiler).

The Lions might desire to trade down 2-3 spots in order to pick up more draft capital, but I’m doubtful that will actually happen. Based on the general market, quarterbacks Tua Tagovailoa (Alabama) and Justin Herbert (Oregon) seem likely to fall to picks Nos. 5-6 if the Miami Dolphins and Los Angeles Chargers stay put, so the Lions might not be able to find a trade partner.

And, besides, even if the Lions trade down 2-3 picks, they’re still likely to get Okudah, so wouldn’t I just mock him to them at No. 3?

Okudah Props: If there’s one thing I love, it’s closing line value, and I got that last month by betting on Okudah at +550 to go No. 3 overall.

The best line I’ve found now is +145, but I still think there’s some value here.

In 75% of the recent expert mocks I’ve surveyed, Okudah has gone No. 3. In 87.5% of them, he’s gone to the Lions.

Like Young, Okudah looks like he offers a lot of value in the prop market right now.

I expect him to go No. 3 — certainly in the top five — as the second defender off the board, and I expect the Lions to draft him.

And I also expect Young and Okudah to be the only Buckeyes selected in Round 1. Buckeyes cornerback Damon Arnette has gotten a little bit of Day 1 hype, but Young and Okudah are the only Ohio State first-rounders in 87.5% of the expert mocks I’ve seen.

Michael Allio/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images. Pictured: Jeff Okudah

PICK: Okudah No. 3 +145: One unit. Limit: -200.
[Bet now at BetMGM. NJ only.]

PICK: Okudah to Lions +120: One unit. Limit: -300.
[Bet now at PointsBet. NJ and IN only.]

PICK: Burrow No. 1, Young No. 2, Okudah No. 3 +250: One unit. Limit: -150.
[Bet now at William Hill. NJ only.]

PICK: Lions Draft Defense -500: One unit. Limit: -800.
[Bet now at BetMGM. NJ only.]

PICK: Under 4.5 +125: One unit. Limit: -200.
[Bet now at BetMGM. NJ only.]

PICK: Second Defensive Player -134: One unit. Limit: -200.
[Bet now at DraftKings. NJ, PA, IN and WV only.]

PICK: In Top 5 -150: One unit. Limit: -200.
[Bet now at FanDuel. NJ, PA, IN and WV only.]

PICK: Under 2.5 Round 1 Ohio State Players -358: One unit. Limit: -400.
[Bet now at BetMGM. NJ only.]

4. Giants: Tristan Wirfs, OT, Iowa

  • Height: 6’5” | Weight: 320 pounds
  • 40-yard dash: 4.85 seconds
  • 2020 Age: 21 | Class: Junior
  • Recruitment Stars: 4

Posted April 12: The Giants might go with linebacker Isaiah Simmons (Clemson). Despite signing Blake Martinez to a three-year deal, they still need help at the position.

But they also need help on the offensive line. Left tackle Nate Solder is 32 years old, and right tackle Mike Remmers left in free agency.

The Giants just invested the No. 6 pick last year in quarterback Daniel Jones, and the organizational priority should be to give their developing passer as much offensive support as possible.

Picking at No. 4, they can get the top tackle in a strong draft class to protect their franchise quarterback, and general manager Dave Gettleman has tended to draft trench players when given the opportunity. Right now, the team is reportedly leaning toward offensive tackle (per SNY’s Ralph Vacchiano).

A three-year starter at a school with a history of producing NFL offensive linemen, Wirfs has an elite combination of strength and technique, and he exploded at the combine with position-best 36.5-inch vertical and 121-inch broad jumps.

There are questions as to whether Wirfs can play on the left side in the NFL, but at worst he looks like a top-tier right tackle, where he can line up before eventually replacing Solder on the blindside.

Michael Hickey/Getty Images. Pictured: Tristan Wirfs

Wirfs Props: I already have tickets on Wirfs to the Giants at +400, to be the first offensive lineman at +200 and to be the second offensive player at +850, but I’m adding more to my position.

The Giants go with an offensive lineman at No. 4 in 62.5% of the expert mocks, so Wirfs is far from a sure thing — Jedrick Wills Jr. (Alabama) could be the first offensive tackle — but the I expect the Giants to draft a tackle at No. 4, and I expect Wirfs to be the top tackle in the class.

PICK: Wirfs to Giants +600: One unit. Limit: +300.
[Bet now at BetMGM. NJ only.]

PICK: Giants Draft Offense -110: One unit. Limit: -135.
[Bet now at DraftKings. NJ, PA, IN and WV only.]

PICK: Under 8.5 -121: 0.5 units. Limit: -125.
[Bet now at DraftKings. NJ, PA, IN and WV only.]

PICK: Second Offensive Player +500: One unit. Limit: +400.
[Bet now at DraftKings. NJ, PA, IN and WV only.]

PICK: In Top 10 -300: One unit. Limit: -350.
[Bet now at FanDuel. NJ, PA, IN and WV only.]

PICK: First Offensive Lineman +150: One unit. Limit: +120.
[Bet now at William Hill. NJ only.]

PICK: Giants Draft Offensive Lineman +120: One unit. Limit: -120.
[Bet now at BetMGM. NJ only.]

5. Dolphins: Tua Tagovailoa, QB, Alabama 

  • Height: 6’0” | Weight: 217 pounds
  • 2020 Age: 22 | Class: Junior
  • Recruitment Stars: 5

Posted April 12: Tagovailoa entered the 2019 college season as the presumptive No. 1 pick, but a potentially career-threatening hip injury in November has drastically changed his draft outlook.

His talent is unquestioned: In his abbreviated junior campaign, Tagovailoa completed 71.4% of his passes and had an elite 13.4 AY/A.

The uncertainty surrounding Tagovailoa has to do with his health. It looks as if he is recovering well.

But multiple teams reportedly are worried about Tagovailoa’s health.

Because of that, I don’t think the Dolphins will trade up for Tagovailoa, especially since they might prefer Herbert (per Bleacher Report’s Matt Miller).

And the Herbert heat is starting to pick up: There’s a chance that next week I’ll have him going to the Dolphins at No. 5 instead of Tagovailoa.

Right now, though, I still think Tagovailoa goes at No. 5.

Tagovailoa Props: I already have Tagovailoa over 2.5 at -300 and over 3.5 at +163 as well as Dolphins to draft an offensive player with their first pick at -480.

In the majority of expert mocks, Tagovailoa goes to the Dolphins, who take an offensive player with their first pick 100% of the time.

On top of that, Tagovailoa goes to the Dolphins or Chargers in every mock I’ve seen, landing at Nos. 5-6 in 81.3% of the expert drafts.

PICK: Tagovailoa to Dolphins +100: 0.5 units. Limit: -120.
[Bet now at PointsBet. NJ and IN only.]

PICK: Tagovailoa to Dolphins or Chargers -400: One unit. Limit: -800.
[Bet now at William Hill. NJ only.]

PICK: Dolphins Draft Offense -556: One unit. Limit: -800.
[Bet now at BetMGM. NJ only.]

PICK: Over 3.5 -185: One unit. Limit: -250.
[Bet now at William Hill. NJ only.]

6. Chargers: Justin Herbert, QB, Oregon 

  • Height: 6’6” | Weight: 236 pounds
  • 40-yard dash: 4.68 seconds
  • 2020 Age: 22 | Class: Senior
  • Recruitment Stars: 3

Posted April 12: For the first time in 14 years, the Chargers will head into the season with someone other than Philip Rivers as their starting quarterback. Rivers is now with the Indianapolis Colts, and head coach Anthony Lynn has indicated that journeyman Tyrod Taylor is penciled in as the starter (per Gilbert Manzano).

In other words, the Chargers are very much in the market for a quarterback of the future, and Herbert — or maybe Tagovailoa — is likely to fall to them at No. 6.

Although Herbert is generally thought of as a strong-armed pocket passer — and that’s true — that’s not all he is. He averaged a respectable 2.4 yards per carry in college (including sacks), and at the combine he had impressive top-three positional marks with a 4.68-second 40-yard dash, 35.5-inch vertical jump, 123-inch broad jump and 7.06-second three-cone drill.

The dude is an actual athlete: He might be a version of Josh Allen who is more of a thrower and less of a runner.

After the 2019 season, Herbert was a tier below Burrow and Tagovailoa in draftnik conversations, but after his Senior Bowl MVP performance and combine blowup, Herbert is locked into the top 10.

With four years of starting experience, he has plenty to recommend him to the NFL, and if not for Burrow and Tagovailoa, he would be a fine candidate to be the No. 1 overall pick.

As a senior, he completed 66.8% of his passes for 3,471 yards and 32 touchdowns to just six interceptions in 14 games.

What’s not to like about him?

Christian Petersen/Getty Images. Pictured: Justin Herbert

Herbert Props: I already have a ticket for the Chargers to draft an offensive player with their first pick at -430. Good luck finding that number anymore.

Herbert goes to the Chargers in the majority of expert mocks, in which the team has taken a quarterback at No. 6 literally 100% of the time.

While Herbert’s over/under is 5.5 with significant juice to the over at most books, there is an alternate line of 6.0 that intrigues me. At -155 to the under, this prop is likely to push, but the over seems highly unlikely to hit — I’ve seen Herbert drafted later than No. 6 in just one rogue expert mock — and the under cashes in roughly one-third of expert drafts.

Also, I expect Herbert to be selected ahead of quarterback Jordan Love (Utah State) — he goes ahead of Love in 100% of the surveyed mocks — although I do think there’s an underappreciated chance the latter goes in the top 10.

PICK: Herbert to Chargers +180: One unit. Limit: -120.
[Bet now at PointsBet. NJ and IN only.]

PICK: Chargers Draft Offense -500: One unit. Limit: -800.
[Bet now at BetMGM. NJ only.]

PICK: Under 6.0 -155: One unit. Limit: -200.
[Bet now at William Hill. NJ only.]

PICK: In Top 10 -450: One unit. Limit: -800.
[Bet now at William Hill. NJ only.]

PICK: Third Quarterback -160: 0.5 units. Limit: -175.
[Bet now at William Hill. NJ only.]

UPDATED PICK (Apr. 14): Herbert Drafted Before Love -560: One unit. Limit: -800.
[Bet now at DraftKings. NJ, PA, IN and WV only.]

7. Panthers: Isaiah Simmons, LB, Clemson

  • Height: 6’4” | Weight: 238 pounds
  • 40-yard dash: 4.39 seconds
  • 2020 Age: 22 | Class: Redshirt Junior
  • Recruitment Stars: 3-4

Posted April 12: The Panthers have a lot of needs: Last year, they started a sixth-round rookie on the blind side. In previous versions of the mock, I had them going with an offensive lineman, but this offseason they acquired left tackle Russell Okung via trade, so although they could still look to improve the line in Round 1, there’s now less urgency.

So I expect the Panthers will look to the defense in Round 1 with the pick ultimately coming down to Simmons or defensive tackle Derrick Brown (Auburn). Between these two players, I must go with Simmons.

The Panthers need help on the interior of their defensive line, but they also need an off-ball linebacker after franchise mainstay Luke Kuechly retired this offseason.

Simmons universally has the higher over/under at sportsbooks (6.5 vs. 8.5 or 9.5), and he’s mocked ahead of Brown in 81.3% of expert drafts.

And as good as Brown is, he’s not as dynamic as Simmons, who lead Clemson in 2019 with 104 tackles, 16.5 tackles for loss and eight sacks — despite lining up as a safety or cornerback on 49.5% of his snaps (per PFF).

The 2019 Butkus Award winner and a unanimous All-American selection, Simmons is a versatile middle-of-the-field defender who can stop the run, cover running backs and tight ends and rush the passer.

His potential is almost otherworldly: “Simmons played 100 or more snaps at edge defender, linebacker, strong safety, free safety and slot cornerback, all while grading out above 80.0 as a run defender, tackler, pass rusher and coverage defender” (per PFF).

With his elite combine performance, Simmons has locked himself into the top 10.

Of all the prospects from the past two decades, the guy to whom Simmons is most physically similar — based on their combine performances — is all-world wide receiver Calvin Johnson (6-foot-5, 239 pounds, 4.35-second 40-yard dash).

There’s a very real chance that Simmons doesn’t even make it to No. 7.

Simmons Props: I already have the Panthers at -205 to take a defensive player with their first pick. I don’t want to count my money before a ticket has cashed — but in every expert mock I’ve seen, the Panthers have drafted a defender in Round 1.

As for the over/under of 6.5, I think Simmons is about 50/50 between the Giants at No. 4 or the Panthers at No. 7 with a lean to the latter. In the sample of surveyed mocks, Simmons’ median and mode are 7.0. At +128, I’m probably getting some value.

PICK: Simmons to Panthers +250: One unit. Limit: +200.
[Bet now at William Hill. NJ only.]

PICK: Panthers Draft Defense -250: One unit. Limit: -500.
[Bet now at BetMGM. NJ only.]

PICK: Over 6.5 +128: One unit. Limit: +100.
[Bet now at William Hill. NJ only.]

8. Cardinals: Jedrick Wills Jr., OT, Alabama

  • Height: 6’4” | Weight: 312 pounds
  • 40-yard dash: 5.05 seconds
  • 2020 Age: 21 | Class: Junior
  • Recruitment Stars: 4-5

Posted April 12: In previous versions of the mock, I had the Cardinals taking a wide receiver: Larry Fitzgerald will likely retire after the 2020 season, and Christian Kirk is yet to look like a No. 1 option.

But after acquiring All-Pro wide receiver DeAndre Hopkins via trade, their needs at the position have been alleviated.

The team, though, still has issues on the offensive line. Right tackle Marcus Gilbert missed all of 2019 and has played just 12 games over the past three seasons. He is already 32 years old and on a one-year contract. He simply cannot be relied upon.

If the team were to draft Wills — who served as the left-handed Tagovailoa’s blindside protector at right tackle — he could start immediately on the right side before perhaps eventually taking over for left tackle D.J. Humphries.

The Cardinals need to give 2019 No. 1 pick and hoped-for franchise quarterback Kyler Murray as much protection as possible, and Wills has as much upside as any tackle in the draft. A two-year starter and first-team All-SEC selection last season, Wills has elite agility and strength and can win as both a pass protector and run blocker.

If Wirfs isn’t the first offensive lineman drafted, Wills probably will be.

Photo by Zach Bolinger/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images. Pictured: Alabama offensive lineman Jedrick Wills

Wills Props: An over/under of 9.5 is available at a couple of books, but I doubt the Jacksonville Jaguars will draft an offensive tackle at No. 9, so I’m targeting the standard over/under of 8.5: I prefer under 8.5 at +116 to under 9.5 at -110.

Plus, I’m not above taking free money, and there’s an opportunity at one book to bet the over at +120. Even though I think the under offers value — Wills hits the under in 68.8% of expert mocks, and his median and mode are 8.0 — I’m going to arbitrage.

And there’s probably some value in betting Wills at -150 to be drafted in the top 10, where he’s placed in 75% of the surveyed mocks.

PICK: Under 8.5 +116: One unit. Limit: -120.
[Bet now at FanDuel. NJ, PA, IN and WV only.]

PICK: Over 8.5 +120 (Arbitrage): One unit. Limit: +120.
[Bet now at PointsBet. NJ and IN only.]

PICK: In Top 10 -150: One unit. Limit: -200.
[Bet now at William Hill. NJ only.]

9. Jaguars: Derrick Brown, DT, Auburn

  • Height: 6’5” | Weight: 326 pounds
  • 40-yard dash: 5.16 seconds
  • 2020 Age: 22 | Class: Senior
  • Recruitment Stars: 5

Posted April 12: Brown could conceivably go as high as No. 3, but not all teams prioritize interior defensive linemen, and not many teams picking in the top 10 have notable needs at the position.

At No. 9, though, he offers too much value to bypass, and the Jags defense could use an upgrade on the interior of the line. The Jags last year were No. 31 against the run in Football Outsiders’ DVOA metric, and Brown — a unanimous All-American selection — is perhaps the best run defender in the class.

Known as a locker-room leader, Brown’s steadiness is likely to appeal to the Jags, who have endured an unenviable amount of personnel turmoil since reaching the 2017-18 AFC Championship, especially on defense.

Although he’s not much of a sack artist — he had just four quarterback takedowns last year — Brown is sufficiently disruptive as a pass rusher, and over the past two seasons, he has earned top-10 PFF grades at the position.

Because he’s not an elite interior pass rusher, I doubt Brown will ever be an All-Pro player, but he seems likely to be an above-average and reliable long-term starter, and for an organization that needs to ensure it doesn’t draft a bust, that’s probably good enough.

While I think Brown is likely to be the pick at No. 9, there is one possibility I want to raise: Quarterback Jordan Love (Utah State) has been mocked to the Jags at No. 20 by several experts, and if the Jags are indeed serious about Love and have decided that second-year sixth-round quarterback Gardner Minshew is not a long-term option, then why wouldn’t they just draft him at No. 9 to ensure they get their guy?

I don’t think Love should be drafted in Round 1 — but I said the same thing two years ago about Josh Allen and last year about Daniel Jones, and both were top-10 picks.

I’m not moving Love up to No. 9 yet, and I’m not mocking him to the Jags at No. 20, but if any Love-to-the-Jags rumors emerge, I might be aggressive in moving him up the board.

Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images. Pictured: Derrick Brown

Brown Props: Brown’s over/under is 8.5 at most books, but at a couple of places it’s available at 9.5, which is an absolute steal to the under at -145. In 93.8% of expert mocks, Brown hits the under with a median of 8.0 and mode of 9.0 and is a near-lock top-10 pick.

The Jags go with a defensive tackle in a supermajority of mocks, and Brown is clearly the top player at the position, ranking as the second defensive lineman in 93.8% of expert mocks.

Perhaps the Jags will look to upgrade their offensive line at No. 9 by selecting a tackle such Mekhi Becton (Louisville), but Brown seems likely to go off the board before a third offensive lineman. He has gone ahead of Becton in 75% of surveyed drafts.

PICK: Jaguars Draft Defense -115: One unit. Limit: -150.
[Bet now at BetMGM. NJ only.]

PICK: Under 9.5 -145: One unit. Limit: -300.
[Bet now at BetMGM. NJ only.]

PICK: In Top 10 -200: One unit. Limit: -400.
[Bet now at DraftKings. NJ, PA, IN and WV only.]

PICK: Second Defensive Lineman -278: One unit. Limit: -400.
[Bet now at BetMGM. NJ only.]

PICK: Brown Drafted Before Becton -105: One unit. Limit: -200.
[Bet now at BetMGM. NJ only.]

UPDATED PICK (Apr. 14): Brown Drafted Before Javon Kinlaw -278: One unit. Limit: -400.
[Bet now at DraftKings. NJ, PA, IN and WV only.]

10. Browns: Mekhi Becton, OT, Louisville

  • Height: 6’7” | Weight: 364 pounds
  • 40-yard dash: 5.10 seconds
  • 2020 Age: 21 | Class: Junior
  • Recruitment Stars: 3-4

Posted April 12: Becton has the unlimited power and force-sensitive quickness of Emperor Palpatine and the body of Jabba the Hutt.

The Browns need to improve their protection for third-year quarterback Baker Mayfield, and despite stealing right tackle Jack Conklin away from the Tennessee Titans with a three-year deal, they still need to upgrade their offensive line.

Left tackle Greg Robinson is a free agent, and after he was arrested by border patrol in February with a human-sized amount of marijuana …

… I doubt the Browns will wish to re-sign him.

A three-year starter with experience at both tackle spots, Becton has seen his draft stock skyrocket since his unbelievable performance at the combine.

Becton is still raw in pass protection, but he has the length to be an elite blindside protector, and his overwhelming dominance as a run blocker is unparalleled in the class.

Becton has the potential to be the true heir to future Hall-of-Famer Joe Thomas’ long-vacant franchise tackle throne, and on the left side, he could form a commanding combo with Pro-Bowl guard Joe Bitonio.

Becton Props: I have a -345 ticket for the Browns to select an offensive player with their first pick, and there’s probably still value in the prop at -400.

In 87.5% of expert mocks, the Browns draft an offensive lineman, and I think that’s likely to be Becton instead of tackle Andrew Thomas (Georgia), who has the higher mean (10.3 vs. 12.8), median (10.5 v. 14) and mode (11 vs. 14) in surveyed drafts.

But as promising as Becton is, I don’t think he’s likely to be a top-eight pick: In 81.3% of expert mocks, Becton has gone over 8.5.

PICK: Browns Draft Offense -400: One unit. Limit: -450.
[Bet now at BetMGM. NJ only.]

PICK: Over 8.5 -130: One unit. Limit: -250.
[Bet now at BetMGM. NJ only.]

11. Buccaneers*: Andrew Thomas, OT, Georgia

  • Height: 6’5” | Weight: 315 pounds
  • 40-yard dash: 5.22 seconds
  • 2020 Age: 21 | Class: Junior
  • Recruitment Stars: 4-5

*Projected trade with Jets

Posted April 12: This is the one trade I’m willing to project, and I’m still doubtful that it happens. The Jets at No. 11 are likely to take either an offensive tackle or a wide receiver, and if they keep the pick, a tackle makes the most sense to me — but the Bucs are overwhelming favorites (based on expert mocks) to take one of the top-tier top-four tackles.

The problem is that, if the Jets take a tackle at No. 11, none of the top four will make it to the Bucs at No. 14, which is probably too high of a pick to spend on Josh Jones (Houston) or Austin Jackson (USC).

And yet it’s hard to imagine the Bucs not drafting an offensive player — specifically a lineman — to support new quarterback Tom Brady.

At No. 14, the Bucs could probably justify drafting defensive tackle Javon Kinlaw (South Carolina), edge defender K’Lavon Chaisson (LSU) or cornerback C.J. Henderson (Florida) in terms of draft value — but they don’t need them.

The Bucs defense was No. 5 last year in DVOA, and it is pretty strong throughout the unit. The Bucs might have the league’s best front four with edge rushers Shaq Barrett and Jason Pierre-Paul and defensive tackles Ndamukong Suh and Vita Vea.

And at corner, the Bucs have four players in Carlton Davis, Sean Murphy-Bunting, Jamel Dean and M.J. Stewart in whom they’ve invested top-100 picks over the past two years. They could use a secondary upgrade on the back end, but No. 14 is probably too soon to draft safety Xavier McKinney (Alabama).

And the Bucs have a clear need on the offensive lineman: Right tackle Demar Dotson will turn 35 years old this year, and he’s a free agent.

Enter Thomas: A three-year starter with experience at both tackle spots and a unanimous All-American selection to his name. An above-average run blocker and adequate pass blocker, Thomas is technically sound and used to playing in a pro scheme.

He has the potential to be a decade-long starter on either side of the offensive line.

Thomas Props: The Bucs draft an offensive player in 87.5% of surveyed mocks, most often Thomas, whose mean (12.8), median (14) and mode (14) all put him above his over/under of 10.5.

Also, I think it’s likely that Thomas will be the only Bulldog selected in Round 1. D’Andre Swift is favored to be the draft’s first running back, but Thomas’ teammate appears in only 37.5% of expert mocks.

Update (Apr. 14): I haven’t seen Thomas taken after teammate and fellow tackle Isaiah Wilson in one expert draft.

PICK: Buccaneers Draft Offense -145: One unit. Limit: -350.
[Bet now at BetMGM. NJ only.]

PICK: Over 10.5 -134: One unit. Limit: -150.
[Bet now at BetMGM. NJ only.]

PICK: Under 1.5 Round 1 Georgia Players +145: One unit. Limit: -120.
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UPDATED PICK (Apr. 14): Thomas Drafted Before Wilson -670: One unit. Limit: -800.
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12. Raiders: Henry Ruggs III, WR, Alabama

  • Height: 5’11” | Weight: 188 pounds
  • 40-yard dash: 4.27 seconds
  • 2020 Age: 21 | Class: Junior
  • Recruitment Stars: 4-5

Updated April 12: This is the one pick where I’m intending to take a stand — at least for now. Ruggs and wide receivers Jerry Jeudy (Alabama) and CeeDee Lamb (Oklahoma) are all in the same tier, but most experts have Jeudy and Lamb going off the board before Ruggs.

In the words of George Costanza, “I’m the opposite of every guy you’ve ever met.”

Over the past four years — essentially, since speedster Tyreek Hill’s rookie season — the NFL has privileged speed at the wide receiver position, and as a result, we’ve seen fast receivers go off the board as either the first player at the position or a top-10 pick.

  • 2019: Marquise Brown, 1.25 (1st) – No pre-draft workout because of injury, reportedly ran a 4.33 as a junior college recruit
  • 2018: D.J. Moore, 1.24 (1st) – 4.42 at 210 pounds
  • 2017: John Ross, 1.10 (3rd) – 4.22 at 188 pounds
  • 2016: Corey Coleman, 1.15 (1st) – 4.37 at 194 pounds (pro day)

Unlike Brown, Moore, Ross and Coleman, the electric Ruggs never had a breakout season in college, but I’m not faulting him for that. With Alabama’s assortment of pass-catching talent and offensive dominance, Ruggs was never called upon to be an alpha receiver, but for his career, he turned 100 touches from scrimmage into 1,791 yards and 25 touchdowns.

Roy K. Miller/Icon Sportswire. Pictured: Henry Ruggs III

That’s elite efficiency, and he is a better receiver than most numbers-based analysts think: Ruggs is an above-average route runner with strong contested-catch skills for his size, and his elite deep speed makes him a threat to score whenever he touches the ball. For his career, he gifted his quarterbacks with a 151.4 passer rating when targeted (per PFF).

Because of how he forces defenses to play him, Ruggs ultimately might be more valuable to his NFL team than his fantasy franchises, but I expect Ruggs, Jeudy and Lamb all to go within a few picks of each other, and if that happens, it shouldn’t be a surprise if Ruggs is the first receiver selected.

And Ruggs is precisely the kind of receiver the Raiders have historically loved to draft — and they certainly have a need at the position. With Tyrell Williams, Hunter Renfrow and Zay Jones, the Raiders have the league’s least inspiring wide receiver unit.

Full disclosure: It’s very possible that by next week I will have lost my nerve and pivoted to Jeudy or Lamb at No. 12. But either way, it’s hard to imagine the Raiders not drafting a receiver either at No. 12 or at No. 19 with their second first-rounder.

Ruggs Props: Before the combine, I bet on Ruggs at +1200 to be the first receiver. Shortly after the combine, I once again bet on him at +700. If I were a ’90s rap group, right now I’d ask this question: You down with CLV?

The best line I can now find for Ruggs to be the first receiver is +300, and I don’t see any value there.

I also have a +200 ticket on the Raiders to draft an offensive player with their first pick, and I’m adding to that position: In literally every expert mock I’ve seen, they take a receiver at No. 12.

Ruggs’ has a spot-on over/under of 14.5, so I’m not betting it — and if I were to bet it, I’d probably take the over at +105 (DraftKings). I know I’m slotting him in at No. 12 in this mock, but it’s really a 50/50 proposition at 14.5: That’s his median for the mocks I’ve surveyed, and his mode is 15.

And if I’m being completely honest with myself, the likeliest outcome is that Ruggs will go to the Denver Broncos at No. 15. In 50% of expert mocks, Ruggs goes to the Broncos — and that means they offer a world of value at +700 to draft him.

Update (April 12): If the Jets trade back to No. 14 as I’m projecting, there’s also an underappreciated chance that they select Ruggs, and they’re +750 to do so.

PICK: Raiders Draft Offense -200: One unit. Limit: -400.
[Bet now at DraftKings. NJ, PA, IN and WV only.]

PICK: Ruggs to Broncos +700: One unit. Limit: +250.
[Bet now at PointsBet. NJ and IN only.]

PICK: Ruggs to Jets +750: 0.25 units. Limit: +750.
[Bet now at FanDuel. NJ, PA, IN and WV only.]

13. 49ers*: Jerry Jeudy, WR, Alabama

  • Height: 6’1” | Weight: 193 pounds
  • 40-yard dash: 4.45 seconds
  • 2020 Age: 21 | Class: Junior
  • Recruitment Stars: 4-5

*Pick via Colts

Posted April 12: The 49ers could do almost anything at No. 13. They have a strong roster top to bottom and can afford to draft for value instead of need.

Given that they recently acquired this pick by trading defensive tackle DeForest Buckner to the Colts, there’s a certain logic to the 49ers using the No. 13 pick to replace him. Kinlaw in particular fits the draft range and would pair nicely with defensive tackle Arik Armstead in the interior of the line.

But the 49ers already have defensive tackle Solomon Thomas to play alongside Armstead, and after losing wide receiver Emmanuel Sanders in free agency, the 49ers have a bigger need at receiver. On top of that, it’s highly likely that one of Jeudy, Lamb and Ruggs will be available at No. 13.

Although I have Ruggs ahead of Jeudy in this mock, I want to be clear that I have a very high opinion of Jeudy, who is a complete receiver. He might never be an All-Pro producer, but he does everything well. He’s a smooth route runner with good hands. He plays inside and outside. He can go deep and across the middle of the field. When he has faced press coverage, he’s usually been able to beat it.

Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images. Pictured: Jerry Jeudy

For two years, Jeudy has been the No. 1 receiver in an offense that might have four first-round wideouts who all get regular playing time. That’s incredible.

With a Fred Biletnikoff Award as the nation’s top receiver in 2018 and back-to-back seasons of 1,000-plus yards and 10-plus touchdowns receiving, Jeudy is a gift to the 49ers and head coach Mike Shanahan at No. 13.

Jeudy Props: Before the combine, I bet Jeudy over 11.5 at -110 and hedged it with a small position of Jeudy to the Jets at +500. I’m still comfortable with those props, but they’re no longer available.

If I had to bet on Jeudy now, I’d look to bet under 12.5 at -134. I know I have him mocked to the 49ers right now — but I can’t ignore that 75% of expert mockers have him hitting the under and going to the Raiders a majority of the time.

Jeudy’s mean (12.1), median (12) and mode (12) all point to the under.

But regardless of where he lands, I do think it’s probable that Jeudy will be drafted ahead of Lamb, who trails him in 68.8% of surveyed drafts.

UPDATED PICK (Apr. 14): Jeudy to Raiders +350: One unit. Limit +350
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PICK: Under 12.5 -134: One unit. Limit: -150.
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PICK: Jeudy Drafted Before Lamb -130: One unit. Limit: -150.
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14. Jets*: CeeDee Lamb, WR, Oklahoma

  • Height: 6’2” | Weight: 198 pounds
  • 40-yard dash: 4.50 seconds
  • 2020 Age: 21 | Class: Junior
  • Recruitment Stars: 4

*Projected Trade with Buccaneers

Posted April 12: By trading down, the Jets get additional draft capital and still manage to take a top-tier prospect at a position of need.

At wide receiver, the Jets have “No. 1 option” Jamison Crowder in the slot with recent addition Breshad Perriman and walking injury Quincy Enunwa on the perimeter. That’s about as appetizing as a year-old hot dog flanked by two pieces of moldy bread masquerading as a bun.

The Jets need a wide receiver, and based on how this mock has unfolded, Lamb is their guy.

A first-team All-American selection, Lamb might be the best receiver in the class. In comparison to Jeudy, he’s bigger, more aggressive and maybe more dynamic after the catch. And with back-to-back years of 1,000-plus yards and double-digit touchdowns, he is just as productive as Jeudy.

But he’s not as smooth in his routes and not as fast. I don’t know how much that matters in actuality, but if Jeudy is drafted before Lamb, those factors will probably be why.

George Walker/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images. Pictured: CeeDee Lamb

Lamb Props: I have a +130 ticket on Lamb to be the first receiver, but I no longer like the prop, even though that number is now available at +200 (William Hill). As Ruggs’ odds have shortened, the head-to-head battle between Jeudy and Lamb has transformed into a three-man scrum. All the value in this prop is gone.

There’s a decent chance I’ll move Lamb up the draft board when I do my next big update: Although his over/under is 12.5 at most books, it’s available at 13.5 in one spot. And even though I have Lamb slotted to the Jets at No. 14, I know how fluid the situation is with Lamb, Jeudy and Ruggs.

Even at -150, under 13.5 looks investable. In 81.3% of surveyed mocks, the under hits with a mean of 12.3, median of 12.5 and mode of 13.

I have to be realistic and acknowledge that Lamb could easily go to the 49ers at No. 13 — and even the Denver Broncos at No. 15, especially if the Jets stay at No. 11 and take an offensive lineman. As a result, I see some value in betting on the 49ers and Broncos to draft him at +700 and +1400.

But whether they stay at No. 11 or trade down to No. 14, the Jets I expect will draft an offensive player. In every expert mock I’ve seen, they’ve selected either a wide receiver or offensive tackle with their first pick. Given that we can bet on them to draft a receiver at +115 and a tackle at +115, I think there’s a decent opportunity to arbitrage.

PICK: Lamb to 49ers +700: 0.25 units. Limit: +500.
[Bet now at PointsBet. NJ and IN only.]

PICK: Lamb to Broncos +1400: 0.25 units. Limit: +1200.
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PICK: Jets Draft Offense -371: One unit. Limit: -400.
[Bet now at PointsBet. NJ and IN only.]

PICK: Jets Draft Offensive Lineman +115 (Arbitrage): One unit. Limit: +105.
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PICK: Jets Draft Wide Receiver +115 (Arbitrage): One unit. Limit: +105.
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PICK: Under 13.5 -150: One unit. Limit: -175.
[Bet now at DraftKings. NJ, PA, IN and WV only.]

15. Broncos: Javon Kinlaw, DT, South Carolina

  • Height: 6’5” | Weight: 324 pounds
  • 2020 Age: 23 | Class: Senior
  • Recruitment Stars: 4

Posted April 12: I’m not satisfied with this pick, to be honest.

The Broncos need a wide receiver after trading away Emmanuel Sanders in the middle of the 2019 season, and this class is loaded at the position. Even though this mock hasn’t fallen right for the Broncos, if I had to project the position they’ll take in Round 1, it would be receiver.

But No. 15 is probably too early to select wide receiver Justin Jefferson (LSU) — although I wouldn’t hate it if they did take him. He’s good … and the Broncos need a receiver.

Kinlaw, however, is a justifiable pick, and I’m slotting him here almost out of necessity: He could go anywhere from No. 9 to No. 20 — the two picks owned by the Jags — and if I keep him on the board much longer, he’ll probably slip too far.

When I look at the Broncos, cornerback seems like a bigger need than interior defensive lineman. They acquired cornerback A.J. Bouye via trade this offseason, but he’s tailed off over the past several seasons (89.9 PFF coverage grade in 2016 vs. 55.4 in 2019). The Broncos also lost No. 1 cornerback Chris Harris via free agency, so cornerback C.J. Henderson would make a lot of sense right here.

But Kinlaw is arguably a top-10 prospect, and the Broncos would be getting great value in drafting him at No. 15.

For context: Kinlaw’s over/under is 13.5, whereas Henderson’s is 16.5 at most books and even 17.5 at one location. In the sample of surveyed mocks, Kinlaw has a significant modal edge (9 vs. 16). The numbers point to Kinlaw as the pick.

John Byrum/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images. Pictured: Javon Kinlaw

And it’s not as if the Broncos don’t need defensive help on the interior. They re-signed Shelby Harris and traded for perennial Pro-Bowler Jurrell Casey, but Harris is on a one-year deal and has been a starter for just one season, and Casey turns 31 years old in 2020. Plus, the Broncos lost longtime stalwart Derek Wolfe to the Baltimore Ravens in free agency.

The Broncos can justify drafting Kinlaw at this spot. A junior college transfer with a notably nasty streak, Kinlaw has three years of starting experience in the SEC, and relative to Derrick Brown, he might be the more complete player. Kinlaw can disrupt as a pass rusher and anchor well enough against the run. He probably has the greater physical talent.

But Kinlaw is also inconsistent, and he has average-at-best technique. Far too often, he is beaten by inferior offensive linemen.

I’m not an expert when it comes to pigskin trench warfare, but to my untrained eye, Kinlaw is a classic boom-or-bust prospect. That’s why he might fall to the Broncos at No. 15.

Kinlaw Props: Kinlaw is in a weird spot in the prop market. He’s not strong enough as a prospect to get any action on props like “First Defensive Lineman” or “Second Defender,” but his place in the draft is too secure for books to offer any “Will He Be Selected in Round 1?” props.

And it’s not as if books post “Third Defensive Lineman” or “Second Defensive Tackle” props.

There’s almost no value in betting on him to be selected in the top 10 at +235 (PointsBet) — or at least not enough for me to bet on it — and his over/under of 13.5 is right where it should be.

Kinlaw is so uncertain of a prospect that it’s probably best to avoid his props.

16. Falcons: C.J. Henderson, CB, Florida

  • Height: 6’1” | Weight: 204 pounds
  • 40-yard dash: 4.39 seconds
  • 2020 Age: 22 | Class: Junior
  • Recruitment Stars: 4

Posted April 12: For years, the problem with the Falcons has been their defense.

Ex: Their epic Super Bowl 51 collapse. If they had managed to get just one stop in the fourth quarter — just one! — “28-3” wouldn’t mean anything to anyone.

The Falcons absolutely must improve on defense, and at No. 16, they have a few players to choose from, namely Henderson, edge rusher K’Lavon Chaisson (LSU) and off-ball linebacker Kenneth Murray (Oklahoma).

This feels like the spot for Henderson.

The Falcons lost No. 1 cornerback Desmond Trufant in free agency. That means if the season started today, they would be forced to rely on a cornerback trio of — checks notes — Isaiah Oliver, Kendall Sheffield and maybe Jordan Miller? That has to be the league’s worst cornerback unit. All three had below-average PFF coverage grades last year of no better than 55.0.

Entering the combine, Henderson was grouped into a sub-Okudah tier with cornerbacks Kristian Fulton (LSU) and Trevon Diggs (Alabama), but thanks to his strong combine performance, Henderson is now a tier unto himself.

Roy K. Miller/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images. Pictured: C.J. Henderson

Although he’s no Okudah, Henderson has No. 1 cornerback potential as a man coverage defender with the size to handle big receivers and the speed to stick with small ones.

Two years from now, this first-team All-SEC standout could be a legitimate shutdown shadow corner whom quarterbacks try to avoid. Of all the perimeter defenders in the class, Henderson might have the smoothest feet.

Henderson Props: I have a -271 ticket on the Falcons to draft a defender with their first pick, and I’m adding to that position. In every expert mock I’ve seen, they’ve taken a defensive player in Round 1.

I’m also investing as heavily as possible in Henderson to be the second cornerback selected. In 100% of surveyed drafts, he has gone before Fulton, Diggs and every other non-Okudah corner.

As for his over/under of 16.5, I love the under, which has hit in 81.3% of expert drafts. At one book, Henderson’s line is 17.5 with -163 juice to the under, which has hit in every mock but one. Even with inflated odds, I’m betting under 17.5.

Update (Apr. 15): Oh, baby. A great middling opportunity has opened up.

In 81.3% of the surveyed expert mocks, Henderson has gone in picks Nos. 13-16. You know what to do.

PICK: Falcons Draft Defense -304: One unit. Limit: -500.
[Bet now at BetMGM. NJ only.]

PICK: Under 16.5 -110: One unit. Limit: -200.
[Bet now at DraftKings. NJ, PA, IN and WV only.]

PICK: Under 17.5 -163: One unit. Limit: -300.
[Bet now at William Hill. NJ only.]

UPDATED PICK (Apr. 15): Over 12.5 -110: One unit. Limit -120.
[Bet now at DraftKings. NJ, PA, IN and WV only.]

PICK: Second Cornerback -358: One unit. Limit: -500.
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17. Cowboys: K’Lavon Chaisson, EDGE, LSU

  • Height: 6’3” | Weight: 254 pounds
  • 2020 Age: 21 | Class: Redshirt Sophomore
  • Recruitment Stars: 4-5

Posted April 12: The Cowboys led the league last season with 6.5 yards per play, and they are loaded on offense with quarterback Dak Prescott, running back Ezekiel Elliott and wide receivers Amari Cooper and Michael Gallup.

They don’t need help on offense, but they need upgrades along the defensive line and in the secondary. And with Kinlaw and Henderson off the board, Chaisson is a deliciously easy pick.

If Elton John were to sing about Chaisson, he might say that “K’Lavon wears his war wound like a crown.” Don’t worry, that joke really was for me alone — but Chaisson does play like a soldier. Every snap is a battle.

Chaisson is much more of a project than a finished product, but he was nevertheless impressive enough in 2019 — just his second full season of collegiate action — to finish the year as a first-team All-SEC player. And that’s despite the fact that he was just one year removed from an ACL injury that cost him almost the entire 2018 campaign.

It’s not surprising that Chaisson is raw: He didn’t play football seriously until his junior year of high school — after he had received a scholarship offer from LSU. Let that sink in: Chaisson was such a dynamic athlete that SEC coaches thought, “I don’t care if he’s never played varsity football: We need to get him.”

A high-energy player, Chaisson is regarded as a locker-room leader in the championship-winning LSU program, and that seems like the kind of thing that would appeal to NFL teams.

Chaisson is not without his issues. His 2018 ACL injury might turn teams off, and he’s a below-average run defender. Plus, he is yet to turn potential into consistent production: Last year, he had just 6.5 sacks. But Chaisson has Pro-Bowl upside. With his linebacker-like agility and off-the-edge power, he could be a double-digit sack producer for years.

Carmen Mandato/Getty Images. Pictured: K’Lavon Chaisson

Chaisson Props: I have a -250 ticket on the Cowboys to draft a defender with their first pick, and I’m looking to invest more. In every Round 1 mock I’ve seen, they’ve taken a defensive player.

Although Chaisson is an edge defender, most sportsbooks have him grouped with the linebackers — probably because LSU listed him as an outside linebacker and he worked out with the linebackers (not the defensive linemen) at the combine.

Because of Chaisson’s positional uncertainty, I’ll probably stay away from the props that have to do with the number of linebackers and defensive linemen selected in Round 1. I don’t want to get screwed out of a winning bet simply because Commissioner Roger Goodell says, “K’Lavon Chaisson, defensive end, LSU” instead of “K’Lavon Chaisson, outside linebacker, LSU.”

But for the props that list Chaisson with other linebackers, he’s intriguing. I’m respectively hammering him at -159 and -176 to be the second linebacker and to go ahead of linebacker Kenneth Murray (Oklahoma). That’s how it has played out in 87.5% of expert mocks.

I also love Chaisson’s line of 17.5: The under has hit at an 81.3% clip in my surveyed sample.

PICK: Cowboys Draft Defense -334: One unit. Limit: -500.
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PICK: Under 17.5 -120: One unit. Limit: -200.
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PICK: Second Linebacker -159: One unit. Limit: -350.
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PICK: Chaisson Drafted Before Murray -176: One unit. Limit: -350.
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18. Dolphins*: Josh Jones, OT, Houston

  • Height: 6’5” | Weight: 319 pounds
  • 40-yard dash: 5.27 seconds
  • 2020 Age: 23 | Class: Redshirt Senior
  • Recruitment Stars: 3

*Pick via Steelers

Posted April 13: Every year, there is a player who jumps into the bottom-half of Round 1 because he distinguishes himself at the Senior Bowl with a week of dominant practices. This year, that player is Jones.

There’s nothing particularly sexy about him: He’s merely above-average at almost everything.

Because he didn’t play at a major program, there were questions entering the Senior Bowl about how he would fare against big-school pass rushers. He emphatically answered those questions with a performance that got draftniks talking.

Last year, Jones was the No. 2 tackle in the country with a 93.4 PFF grade, and over the past three years, he has allowed only 18 quarterback pressures. A four-year starter at left tackle, Jones has the potential to be a long-term blindside protector in the NFL.

Ken Murray/Icon Sportswire. Pictured: Josh Jones

And the Dolphins could certainly use a left tackle after trading Laremy Tunsil to the Houston Texans last year for a 2020 first-rounder and 2021 first- and second-rounders.

In 2019, Jesse Davis, J’Marcus Webb and Julie’n Davenport all took their turn at left tackle — and not one of them finished the year with a PFF grade of even 60.

The Dolphins have taken steps to shore up their offensive line by adding center Ted Karras and left guard Ereck Flowers via free agency, but it’s likely that their 2020 Week 1 left tackle is not currently on the roster.

The Dolphins have so many needs on both offense and defense that it’s hard to predict what they’ll do at No. 18, but it’s notable that in 50% of the surveyed mocks, they take an offensive tackle with their second first-rounder.

Jones Props: Not a lot of props hinge on Jones. If I had to bet, I’d say that he’ll hit under 28.5 — the Dolphins (Nos. 18, 26), Vikings (Nos. 22, 25) and Seahawks (No. 27) are all candidates to draft him — but I don’t want to lay the -150 juice (DraftKings).

I do, however, think there’s value in betting on Jones at -110 to be drafted before offensive tackle Austin Jackson (USC). In 73.3% of relevant expert mocks, Jones goes off the board before Jackson.

PICK: Jones Drafted Before Jackson -110: One unit. Limit: -150.
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19. Raiders*: Kristian Fulton, CB, LSU

  • Height: 6’0” | Weight: 197 pounds
  • 40-yard dash: 4.46 seconds
  • 2020 Age: 22 | Class: Senior
  • Recruitment Stars: 5

*Pick via Bears

Posted April 13: For months, I’ve had linebacker Kenneth Murray (Oklahoma) slotted to the Raiders, but after they signed free agents Cory Littleton and Nick Kwiatkoski to three-year deals, I doubt they’re going to invest significant draft capital into the position. So I’m pivoting to cornerback.

The Raiders have 2019 second-rounder Trayvon Mullen to man one perimeter spot, but No. 1 cornerback Daryl Worley is a free agent, and the team is seemingly content to let him walk. And it’s probably too generous to call Worley a “No. 1 cornerback” anyway. He was the team’s top corner by default. And Lamarcus Joyner — a converted free safety — was horrendous as the team’s primary slot defender last year (42.8 PFF coverage grade).

The Raiders need an upgrade at corner, and Fulton could be their guy. He just feels like a Raider: After entering college as one of the most coveted recruits in the country, he was suspended for his sophomore season for using another person’s urine on a PED test in order to avoid marijuana detection.

See what I mean?

He returned to the field as a junior, and over the past two seasons, he has been one of the most imposing corners in the nation, allowing a completion rate of just 43.2% and only 6.1 yards per target. In 2019, he led the position with 20 forced incompletions.

A true press-man corner with an ideal combination of size and speed, Fulton might be able to stabilize the Raiders secondary.

Wesley Hitt/Getty Images. Pictured: Kristian Fulton

Fulton Props: I think most expert mockers are yet to appreciate the impact that the Littleton and Kwiatkoski signings could have on Murray’s situation, as well as that of linebacker Patrick Queen (LSU).

All expert mocks have the Raiders drafting a defensive player with their second first-rounder: 50% assign them a corner; 43.8%, a linebacker. And if a linebacker isn’t really in play at No. 19, it seems likely that a corner will be the pick. And in that case, Fulton looks like the clear option. Okudah and Henderson are in 100% of the surveyed Round 1 mocks. Fulton is in 87.5%.

After Fulton, there’s no consensus-y candidate at corner. Trevon Diggs (Alabama), A.J. Terrell (Clemson) and Jeff Gladney (TCU) appear in the most expert drafts after Fulton — but not one of them has a mock rate of even 60%.

All of this is a long way of saying that the market is probably too low on a corner to the Raiders at No. 19 in general and Fulton to the Raiders in particular. And that means I like him to go under 25.5 at -102.

PICK: Under 25.5 -102: One unit. Limit: -150.
[Bet now at FanDuel. NJ, PA, IN and WV only.]

PICK: In Round 1 -210: One unit. Limit: -350.
[Bet now at FanDuel. NJ, PA, IN and WV only.]

20. Jaguars*: Xavier McKinney, S, Alabama

  • Height: 6’0” | Weight: 201 pounds
  • 40-yard dash: 4.63 seconds
  • 2020 Age: NA | Class: Junior
  • Recruitment Stars: 4

*Pick via Rams

Posted April 13: This isn’t a pick that thrills me. It’s hard to know what to do with the Jags, especially since this is their second first-rounder.

They need help at corner after trading Jalen Ramsey to the Rams last year and A.J. Bouye to the Broncos this offseason, but I’m not sure about the available options. As previously mentioned, after Fulton the mock drop-off to Diggs, Terrell and Gladney is significant.

I’m tempted to slot in quarterback Jordan Love (Utah State) — I’m not sold that the Jags are actually sold on Minshew as their long-term starter. And yet if the Jags want Love, wouldn’t they just take him at No. 9?

But McKinney fits in this general draft range, and the Jags could use an upgrade at safety: 2018 third-rounder Ronnie Harrison had a mediocre 60.9 PFF grade last year, and he hasn’t played well enough to prevent the team from looking for a replacement.

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 is the most well-rounded safety in the class.

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

McKinney Props: I don’t see value in McKinney’s over/under of 24.5 — he’s likely to be drafted around picks Nos. 18-28, and it’s pretty hard to anticipate which team will want him.

But McKinney still has some prop pop. I love him at -200 to be the first safety. In 93.3% of applicable mocks, McKinney is drafted before Grant Delpit (LSU), Jeremy Chinn (Southern Illinois) and every other safety.

For Delpit, the main issue is that he’s in only 18.8% of expert mocks while McKinney is in 87.5%. I like Delpit: He was a unanimous first-team All-American in 2018 and the Jim Thorpe Award winner as the nation’s top defensive back in 2019. But I’m betting on Delpit not to be drafted in Round 1 at -150 and instead to go in Rounds 2-7 at -125.

As for Chinn, he trails McKinney in every relevant mock I’ve seen. And given that I’m so down on Delpit and Chinn, it’s probably not a surprise that I like under 1.5 safeties selected in Round 1 at -110.

One more prop has my eye: McKinney vs. Diggs, his Alabama teammate. As you probably expect, McKinney is going off the board before Diggs in 80% of expert mocks.

PICK: In Round 1 -250: One unit. Limit: -350.
[Bet now at William Hill. NJ only.]

PICK: Delpit Not in Round 1 -150: One unit. Limit: -250.
[Bet now at PointsBet. NJ and IN only.]

PICK: Delpit in Rounds 2-7 -125: One unit. Limit: -250.
[Bet now at BetMGM. NJ only.]

PICK: First Safety -200: One unit. Limit: -400.
[Bet now at PointsBet. NJ and IN only.]

PICK: McKinney Drafted Before Chinn -225: One unit. Limit: -500.
[Bet now at William Hill. NJ only.]

PICK: McKinney Drafted Before Diggs -182: One unit. Limit: -250.
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PICK: Under 1.5 Round 1 Safeties -110: One unit. Limit: -130.
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21. Eagles: Justin Jefferson, WR, LSU

  • Height: 6’1” | Weight: 202 pounds
  • 40-yard dash: 4.43 seconds
  • 2020 Age: 21 | Class: Junior
  • Recruitment Stars: 3

Posted April 13: As a high-school recruit, Jefferson ran a 4.88-second 40-yard dash at 180 pounds. For a guy to run that slowly and still be a three-star recruit, he must be an exceptionally good football player, and that’s true of Jefferson.

What’s more is that after three years in LSU’s training program, he’s now an NFL-caliber athlete. At the combine, he blew away depressed expectations with a 4.43-second 40-yard dash and 37.5-inch vertical and 126-inch broad jumps.

Before the combine, Jefferson was in about half of expert mocks. Now, he’s in literally all of them.

Although Jefferson led LSU as a sophomore with 54 receptions, 875 yards and six touchdowns, he didn’t burst onto the national scene until his junior year, when he shifted into the slot and benefited from Burrow’s transformation into a superstar.

Because Jefferson’s 111-1,540-18 campaign coincided with his move to the slot and Burrow’s breakout, it might be easy to pigeonhole him as a slot-only, quarterback-dependent receiver.

That’s not the case.

Jefferson is better on the interior than the perimeter, and he feasted on zone coverage, but he can line up all across the formation, and he has excellent hands. For a mid-sized receiver, he has near-elite contested-catch ability.

Jonathan Bachman/Getty Images. Pictured: Joe Burrow, Justin Jefferson

And the Eagles needs a wide receiver.

They have a strong offensive line, and quarterback Carson Wentz, running back Miles Sanders and tight ends Zach Ertz and Dallas Goedert are foundational pieces, but the entire wide receiver unit is a question mark.

Alshon Jeffery is 30 years old going on 45. DeSean Jackson played in just one full game last year. Greg Ward is an undrafted quarterback-turned-slot receiver. And J.J. Arcega-Whiteside massively underwhelmed last year as a rookie.

Jefferson should be a significant upgrade on former slot receiver Nelson Agholor, whom the Eagles allowed to leave via free agency.

Bottom line: Jefferson is a 21-year-old SEC receiver with an above-average physical profile and an elite production history. A guy like that tends to have NFL success.

McKinney Props: I’m already invested in the Eagles to draft an offensive player and a wide receiver in particular with their first pick at -182 and -143, and I’m adding to those positions. In 87.5% of expert mocks, they take a receiver.

I don’t think Jefferson is quite 50/50 to be drafted by the Eagles — Denzel Mims (Baylor), Tee Higgins (Clemson), Jalen Reagor (TCU) and Brandon Aiyuk (Arizona State) are all candidates at No. 21 — but he probably offers a little value at +175, and I expect him to go ahead of Higgins in particular: In 87.5% of expert mocks, Jefferson has been selected first.

On his over/under of 21.5, I like the under at even money. And you know I’m betting on Jefferson to go in Round 1.

PICK: Eagles Draft Offense -182: One unit. Limit: -300.
[Bet now at BetMGM. NJ only.]

PICK: Eagles Draft Wide Receiver -150: One unit. Limit: -250.
[Bet now at DraftKings. NJ, PA, IN and WV only.]

PICK: In Round 1 -500: One unit. Limit: -600.
[Bet now at William Hill. NJ only.]

PICK: Under 21.5 +100: One unit. Limit: -125.
[Bet now at BetMGM. NJ only.]

PICK: Jefferson to Eagles +175: 0.5 units. Limit: +175.
[Bet now at PointsBet. NJ and IN only.]

PICK: Jefferson Drafted Before Higgins -430: 0.5 units. Limit: -430.
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22. Vikings*: Trevon Diggs, CB, Alabama

  • Height: 6’1” | Weight: 205 pounds
  • 2020 Age: 22 | Class: Senior
  • Recruitment Stars: 4

*Pick via Bills

Posted April 13: The Vikings acquired the No. 22 pick by trading disgruntled wide receiver Stefon Diggs to the Bills. Does that fact make them more likely, or less likely, to use that pick on Stefon’s brother, Trevon? Or does it not matter at all?

It probably doesn’t matter.

But the Vikings have picks Nos. 22 and 25, and I think it’s likeliest that they will emerge from Round 1 with a new cornerback and wide receiver, although they could certainly look to draft an offensive tackle or edge defender.

Given that the class is deep at receiver and the Vikings still have two-time Pro-Bowler Adam Thielen at the position, I’ll slate a cornerback to the Vikings at No. 22.

At cornerback, the Vikings most often lined up with Xavier Rhodes and Trae Waynes on the perimeter and Mackensie Alexander in the slot last year. All three of them are now gone. Rhodes signed a one-year deal with the Colts, and Waynes and Alexander joined the Bengals on respective three- and one-year contracts.

All the Vikings have at the position now is 2018 first-rounder Mike Hughes, who went on injured reserve last year in Week 17 with a broken neck. He’s expected to be ready for the 2020 season, but who really knows? He broke his neck.

So the Vikings need to draft a cornerback, and Diggs seems like a good fit.

Daniel Dunn/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images. Pictured: Trevon Diggs

A high-school receiver, Diggs transitioned fully to defense as a sophomore and became a starter as a junior. As a senior, he led Alabama with eight pass breakups and allowed a completion rate of only 42.3% on his way to earning a 90.1 PFF coverage grade.

A physical press-man defender with great size and a receiver’s instincts, Diggs has the potential to be for the Vikings what they thought Rhodes was a few years ago: A shadow corner capable of matching up with opposing big-bodied No. 1 receivers.

Diggs Props: I don’t see any value in betting Diggs’ over/under of 27.5 — he might go as early as No. 17, or he might fall out of the top 32 — but I do like the over on 5.5 Alabama players to be selected in Round 1.

Diggs is the sixth ‘Bama player in my mock, and in 56.3% of expert drafts, the over has hit.

Update (Apr. 15): In applicable mocks, Diggs is drafted ahead of Clemson cornerback A.J. Terrell in 61.5% of the time. That’ll do.

PICK: Over 5.5 Round 1 Alabama Players +112: One unit. Limit: +100.
[Bet now at FanDuel. NJ, PA, IN and WV only.]

UPDATED PICK (Apr. 15): Diggs Drafted Before Terrell +110: One unit. Limit: -135.
[Bet now at DraftKings. NJ, PA, IN and WV only.]

23. Patriots: Jordan Love, QB, Utah State

  • Height: 6’4” | Weight: 224 pounds
  • 40-yard dash: 4.74 seconds
  • 2020 Age: 22 | Class: Redshirt Junior
  • Recruitment Stars: 2-3

Posted April 13: Ugh. I hate this pick.

Even though the Pats no longer have franchise quarterback Tom Brady, I don’t think they will actually draft Love. Sure, he has great “tools.” His arm is strong. He can make all the throws required of an NFL quarterback … except for the accurate ones.

Love looked great in 2018, completing 64.0% of his passes with a 9.4 AY/A and 32-6 TD:INT ratio. But he massively regressed in 2019.

There are, of course, extenuating circumstances. There always are. After the 2018 season, Matt Wells left for Texas Tech, and new head coach Gary Andersen tried to run Wells’ offense so that Love wouldn’t need to learn a new scheme.

Basically, that meant Love was playing for a coach who didn’t know what he was doing. And most of the offensive starters from the 2018 season graduated, so Love was playing with new guys in 2019.

It’s easy to see why and how Love’s final college season underwhelmed.

But here’s the thing about postmortem analysis: The body is still dead.

Love was bad in 2019. There’s no getting around it. His completion percentage dropped to 61.9%. His AY/A plummeted to 6.4. And his interception total screamed up to a nation-high 17 as his touchdown total sagged to 20.

I think it’s generous to call him even a project. When optimistic evaluators see Love, they think of a raw Patrick Mahomes. But that’s not who Love is. He lacks Mahomes’ improvisational wizardry — his consistent ability to turn a near sack into a long completion. For Mahomes, a broken play is an opportunity to throw a touchdown. For Love, it’s the excuse to throw an interception.

Thanks to his rushing ability (2.4 yards per carry, including sacks), Love will have fantasy utility, just as Josh Allen and Daniel Jones do for the Bills and Giants. Just as Blake Bortles did with the Jaguars.

But that doesn’t mean Love will be a good NFL quarterback. I’d bet that he won’t be. And based on everything I’ve heard and read about head coach Bill Belichick, he doesn’t seem like the type of decision maker to draft a “toolsy” prospect with accuracy issues in Round 1.

If I had to project a player to the Pats right now, it would probably be edge defender A.J. Epenesa (Iowa).

But I’m slotting Love in at No. 23 simply because I need to get him on the board somewhere in this draft range, and the Pats ostensibly have a need at quarterback.

Gregory Shamus/Getty Images. Pictured: Jordan Love

In reality, I could see the Pats trading out of Round 1, with a team jumping up to No. 23 to get Love. Maybe the Colts, who could develop Love for 1-2 years behind aging quarterback Philip Rivers, who started his career with two years on the bench behind Drew Brees.

When I update this mock next week, I really don’t know what I’ll do with Love. I might have him going to the Jags at No. 20 with Epenesa or another defender going to the Pats at No. 23.

At this point in the draft, a lot is fluid.

Love Props: The over/under for Love is moving. Even just a day ago (April 12), I saw it at 16.5 at a couple books. Now on April 13, it’s at 19.5 in most spots with a rogue 17.5 still available. Even with the movement, I’ll bet the over. Love has gone off the board after 17.5 and 19.5 in 93.8% of expert mocks.

With Love, I think the market is significantly off in either one direction or the other: I expect him to go in the top 10 or the late 20s. I don’t see much realistic middle ground between those two outcomes. And I also see no value in betting on Love to be selected in Round 1 at -2000.

Even though I’m technically mocking Love to the Pats right now, I’m definitely not betting on them to draft a quarterback. In fact, I think there’s value in betting on them to draft a defensive player at +110. In all of the mocks in which they don’t take a quarterback — and, remember, I doubt they take one with their first pick — they go with a defensive player.

In half the surveyed mocks, they go with an edge defender.

The first non-player prop I bet for the 2020 draft was under 4.5 quarterbacks at -150. Haha, oh baby. The best line I can find for that now is -450 — and I still think there’s value in that line. After Love, I doubt strongly that we see another quarterback go in Round 1.

Even though I don’t have a high opinion of him, Love is going to be drafted — probably with a top-50 pick, probably by a team with a degree of uncertainty at the quarterback position, especially if we’re looking beyond this year.

With that in mind, it might be reasonable — or at least acceptable — to place some small, speculative just-for-fun bets on the team to draft him.

  • Jags: +360 – They could easily take him at No. 9 or No. 20.
  • Colts: +650 – Rivers is on a one-year deal and looked nearly done in 2019.
  • Pats: +700 – I mean … I don’t know. With the Pats, no one knows.
  • Dolphins: +1400 – We know they’re drafting a quarterback this year.
  • Chargers: +2000 – Again, we know they’re drafting a quarterback this year.
  • Raiders: +2500 – Derek Carr might be nearing his “Andy Dalton” phase.
  • Steelers: +12500 – Is the end nigh for Ben Roethlisberger?

I’m going to put 0.5 units on the Jags and 0.3 units on the other six teams. If the Jags, Colts or Pats draft Love, I’ll more or less break even. If the Dolphins, Chargers, Raiders or Steelers draft Love, I’ll profit anywhere from 2.2 to 35.5 units. If one of the other 25 teams happens to draft him, I’m out 2.3 units.

In all honesty, this is probably a -EV bet. Again, it’s primarily for fun.

PICK: Patriots Draft Offense +110: One unit. Limit: -125.
[Bet now at DraftKings. NJ, PA, IN and WV only.]

PICK: Patriots Draft Defensive Lineman +375: One unit. Limit: +250.
[Bet now at BetMGM. NJ only.]

PICK: Over 17.5 -106: One unit. Limit: -250.
[Bet now at PointsBet. NJ and IN only.]

PICK: Over 19.5 -110: One unit. Limit: -200.
[Bet now at William Hill. NJ only.]

PICK: Under 4.5 Round 1 Quarterbacks -450: One unit. Limit: -600.
[Bet now at bet365. NJ only.]

PICK: Love to Jags +360: 0.5 units. Limit: +360.
[Bet now at BetMGM. NJ only.]

PICK: Love to Colts +650: 0.3 units. Limit: +650.
[Bet now at FanDuel. NJ, PA, IN and WV only.]

PICK: Love to Pats +700: 0.3 units. Limit: +700.
[Bet now at DraftKings. NJ, PA, IN and WV only.]

PICK: Love to Dolphins +1400: 0.3 units. Limit: +1400.
[Bet now at BetMGM. NJ only.]

PICK: Love to Chargers +2000: 0.3 units. Limit: +2000.
[Bet now at BetMGM. NJ only.]

PICK: Love to Raiders +2500: 0.3 units. Limit: +2500.
[Bet now at BetMGM. NJ only.]

PICK: Love to Steelers +12500: 0.3 units. Limit: +12500.
[Bet now at BetMGM. NJ only.]

24. Saints: Kenneth Murray, LB, Oklahoma

  • Height: 6’2” | Weight: 241 pounds
  • 40-yard dash: 4.52 seconds
  • 2020 Age: 22 | Class: Junior
  • Recruitment Stars: 3-4

Posted April 13: Although a couple sharper drafters have the Saints going with a wide receiver at No. 24 — and that would be a good range to select one in this class — the Saints don’t have an obvious need at the position, given that they have Michael Thomas, just signed Emmanuel Sanders and drafted Tre’Quan Smith with a third-round pick two years ago.

But the Saints could use some defensive help, especially at linebacker, where a spot has been vacated by A.J. Klein, who signed with the Bills this offseason.

There might be some debate about this, but to me, the best off-ball linebacker in the class is Murray.

A three-year starter, Murray is widely regarded as a high-character, cerebral player who hits harder than the holy spirit. (That might be the most scout-like sentence I’ve ever written.)

Although Murray is much more of a run-stopping thumper than a do-it-all backer, he’s manageable in pass defense: He had a career-best 80.6 PFF coverage grade last year and has improved each season against the pass.

A playmaking sideline-to-sideline size/speed specimen, Murray should be an NFL starter right away and has the potential for a 10-year career as a defensive signal caller.

Scott Winters/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images. Pictured: Kenneth Murray

Murray Props: I have a +104 ticket on the Saints to draft a defender with their first pick, and I’m adding to it at -110. In 81.3% of expert mocks, they’ve gone with a defensive player in Round 1.

Murray’s over/under of 21.5 is probably right, so I’ll stay away from that prop, but I do think there’s a little value in betting Murray to be drafted in Round 1 at -450. He’s been a first-rounder in 87.5% of the surveyed mocks.

If Murray isn’t the first off-ball linebacker off the board, that will almost certainly be Patrick Queen (LSU), who is more of a safety/backer hybrid than a pure middle-of-the-field general.

Of the two, Queen might actually have the higher ceiling, but he started for just one season in college and is still incredibly raw. It wouldn’t surprise me if NFL teams preferred the more proven player, and I see value in betting Murray to go ahead of Queen at -125.

Finally, I’m extremely confident that we will see fewer than 2.5 players from Oklahoma drafted in Round 1. In not one expert mock have I seen any Sooner other Murray and wide receiver CeeDee Lamb selected in the top 32.

PICK: Saints Draft Defense -110: One unit. Limit: -150.
[Bet now at BetMGM. NJ only.]

PICK: In Round 1 -450: One unit. Limit: -450.
[Bet now at William Hill. NJ only.]

PICK: Under 2.5 Round 1 Oklahoma Players -400: One unit. Limit: -800.
[Bet now at BetMGM. NJ only.]

PICK: Murray Drafted Before Queen -125: One unit. Limit: -150.
[Bet now at Sugar House. NJ and IN only.]

25. Vikings: Denzel Mims, WR, Baylor

  • Height: 6’3” | Weight: 207 pounds
  • 40-yard dash: 4.38 seconds
  • 2020 Age: 23 | Class: Senior
  • Recruitment Stars: 3-4

Posted April 13: The Vikings need a wide receiver after trading Stefon Diggs this offseason, and I allocated a cornerback to them at No. 22, so here’s the spot to get them some pass-catching talent.

There are a few guys other than Mims who could be in play at No. 25: Tee Higgins (Clemson), Jalen Reagor (TCU) and Brandon Aiyuk (Arizona State) have all appeared in more than a few expert drafts.

But Mims has been mocked in Round 1 at a 75% clip, far more frequently than any other receiver still on the board. And the preference experts have for him makes sense: Of the receivers available, he’s the most complete.

Unlike Higgins, Mims is an elite athlete, as evidenced by his otherworldly 4.38-second 40-yard dash and position-best 6.66-second three-cone drill.

Unlike Reagor, Mims has the size to compete on contested catches and didn’t regress in his final season of college.

And unlike Aiyuk, Mims has multiple seasons of notable production at the FBS level (61-1,087-8 receiving in 2017; 66-1,020-12 receiving in 2019).

Mims isn’t a polished receiver. Coming from Baylor, he has a limited route tree, and over the past two seasons, he’s had an unsightly 12.9% drop rate (per PFF).

If he wins in the NFL, it won’t be because he’s a smooth technician with jaw-dropping routes. It will be because he’s just so dominant as an athlete and aggressive at the catch point: In 2019, he finished No. 2 in the nation with 20 contested catches.

For a Vikings team that might be looking for the downfield playmaking it used to get from Diggs, Mims is a reasonable first-round selection.

Getty Images. Pictured: Denzel Mims

Mims Props: I don’t think books have posted an over/under for Mims — and that might be the ultimate sign of how inefficient the NFL draft market is — but there are still some props available for investment.

He offers great value to be drafted in Round 1 at -130, and if you want to lock in a profit by arbitraging him to go in Rounds 2-7 at +150 (BetMGM), you have the option.

Also, there are three head-to-head props I like for Mims.

  • Drafted before Reagor: -400
  • Drafted before K.J. Hamler (Penn State): -350
  • Drafted before Laviska Shenault Jr. (Colorado): -250

In all the relevant expert mocks, Mims has respectively been selected before them 84.6%, 100% and 100% of the time.

PICK: In Round 1 -130: One unit. Limit: -200.
[Bet now at William Hill. NJ only.]

PICK: In Rounds 2-7 +150 (Arbitrage): One unit. Limit: +150.
[Bet now at BetMGM. NJ only.]

PICK: Mims Drafted Before Reagor -400: One unit. Limit: -400.
[Bet now at William Hill. NJ only.]

PICK: Mims Drafted Before Hamler -350: One unit. Limit: -600.
[Bet now at William Hill. NJ only.]

PICK: Mims Drafted Before Shenault -250: One unit. Limit: -500.
[Bet now at William Hill. NJ only.]

UPDATED PICK (Apr. 14): Mims Drafted Before Tee Higgins -152: One unit. Limit: -180.
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26. Dolphins*: Patrick Queen, LB, LSU

  • Height: 6’0” | Weight: 229 pounds
  • 40-yard dash: 4.50 seconds
  • 2020 Age: 21 | Class: Junior
  • Recruitment Stars: 4

*Pick via Texans

Posted April 14: After a quarterback and left tackle, what do you get the team that needs everything?

The Dolphins could look to solidify their offensive line further by drafting another tackle or perhaps an interior lineman like center/guard Cesar Ruiz (Michigan), but it might be weird to draft two tackles in Round 1 — which one would play on the left side? — and No. 26 still feels too early for Ruiz.

Plus, the Dolphins have lots of other needs, especially on defense.

Although they have signed edge/linebacker Kyle Van Noy via free agency, the Dolphins still have notable off-ball issues: Van Noy will likely line up most on the line of scrimmage, so if the season were to start today, linebackers Raekwon McMillan and Jerome Baker — total liabilities last year against the pass and the run — would probably play in base defense.

For the sake of the fans and the franchise’s future, that can’t be allowed to happen.

In Queen, the Dolphins get an immediate starter and precocious up-and-comer with All-Pro potential. More of a safety than a pure linebacker, Queen will need to add more muscle and refine his technique in order not to be pushed around in the running game.

But he’s a strong pass defender — he had an 82.0 PFF coverage grade last year in just his first full season of as a starter — and his ability to match up with running backs out of the backfield and tight ends in the slot will give the Dolphins defense a real edge.

A running back by trade, Queen didn’t start as a linebacker until his final high-school season. Once he learns more of the position’s subtleties, he could be nearly unstoppable.

Queen Props: I don’t see any value in betting on Queen to be drafted in Round 1 at the steep price of -527, but I love the over for two lines I’ve found.

  • Over 20.5: -182
  • Over 23.5: -110

I also like the prop for fewer than 5.5 LSU players to be drafted in Round 1. Although Queen brings the total up to five — along with Burrow, Chaisson, Fulton and Jefferson — I doubt that safety Grant Delpit will make it into the top 32.

As stated above in my Xavier McKinney breakdown, the issue with Delpit is that, despite his talent, he’s in only 18.8% of expert drafts. And after Delpit, no other LSU player has appeared in the surveyed mocks even once.

In 87.5% of expert drafts, under 5.5 LSU players hits.

PICK: Over 20.5 -182: One unit. Limit: -250.
[Bet now at BetMGM. NJ only.]

PICK: Over 23.5 -110: One unit. Limit: -200.
[Bet now at William Hill. NJ only.]

PICK: Under 5.5 Round 1 LSU Players -225: One unit. Limit: -350.
[Bet now at Sugar House. NJ and IN only.]

27. Seahawks: Austin Jackson, OT, USC

  • Height: 6’5” | Weight: 322 pounds
  • 40-yard dash: 5.07 seconds
  • 2020 Age: 21 | Class: Junior
  • Recruitment Stars: 4-5

Posted April 14: It’s almost impossible to have any sense of what the Seahawks will do at No. 27. Two years ago, they made running back Rashaad Penny a surprise first-rounder at No. 27. Last year, they reached for edge defender L.J. Collier at No. 29.

Experts are mocking them with defenders in two-thirds of their drafts, usually defensive line or secondary — edge rusher Yetur Gross-Matos (Penn State) in particular feels like their kind of prospect — but no one has any real idea.

And it wouldn’t be surprising at all to see the Seahawks trade out of Round 1 entirely.

The issue is that I don’t actually see them going defense at No. 27.

They’ve solidified their secondary over the past year by cheaply acquiring cornerback Quinton Dunbar and safety Quandre Diggs via trade. And for the defensive line, they drafted Collier last year and just re-signed Bruce Irvin, who played with the team in 2012-15 and last year had 8.5 sacks and 16 quarterback hits in 13 games with the Panthers.

Their defense isn’t the feared unit it once was, but it’s also not a liability. The Seahawks have been able to rebuild it on the fly and don’t need to invest another first-rounder into it after doing so last year.

So that puts me on the offensive line, where the Seahawks still need to improve. They have Pro-Bowl left tackle Duane Brown, but he’s 34 years old and his contract expires in two years. They recently signed tackle Brandon Shell away from the Jets, but his contract is just for two years and backup-level money.

They need another tackle, preferably one with upside, youth and the strong probability of still being in the league and on their team after the 2021 season.

Jackson fits that description. I don’t want to say that he’s exactly like two-time All-Pro Tyron Smith — his USC forefather — but he looks a lot like Smith the 2011 draft prospect in terms of size, athleticism, age, college playing experience and NFL potential.

Like Smith, Jackson will likely play at right tackle early in his career before fulfilling his destiny and switching to the left side. Smith has the power to play at right tackle and the length to play at left tackle. He’s raw, but he’s not yet 21 years old, and he’s talented enough to play in any type of scheme.

Jackson is a great pick at No. 27.

Jackson Props: There’s not much value on Jackson to be drafted in Round 1 at -192, and his over/unders of 25.5 and 28.5 are also fairly priced, but I am intrigued by the prop for number of offensive linemen drafted in Round 1.

For months, the over/under for that prop was 5.5 with juice increasingly being added to the over. Yesterday, 5.5 was still available at DraftKings. But that number is no longer available.

If you have a ticket for 5.5, you either let it ride and enjoy the massive CLV you’ve gotten — or you bet under 6.5 and hope to get that sweet, sweet middle.

If you got 5.5 at reasonable odds (let’s say -120 or better), going for the middle might be the play. In 50% of expert mocks, exactly six offensive linemen have gone in Round 1. Middling this prop by going under 6.5 at -110 is a very viable play.

If you don’t already have a ticket for over 5.5, I think you either stay away from 6.5 or take a small position on the under. This is a good class for offensive linemen, but in 68.8% of expert mocks, the under has hit: Seven is a high number, especially considering that we’re also likely to have 3-4 quarterbacks and 6-7 wide receivers selected in Round 1. There are only so many picks available in the top 32.

Since the NFL added the Texans in 2002 and went to a 32-team draft, the median for offensive linemen selected in Round 1 has been 5.5 and the mode has been six. The under has hit at a 72.2% clip. We could see seven-plus offensive linemen go in Round 1, but I’m willing to take a small position against it.

PICK: Under 6.5 Round 1 Offensive Linemen -110: 0.5 units. Limit: -150.
[Bet now at DraftKings. NJ, PA, IN and WV only.]

28. Ravens: Yetur Gross-Matos, EDGE, Penn State

  • Height: 6’5” | Weight: 266 pounds
  • 2020 Age: 22 | Class: Junior
  • Recruitment Stars: 4

Posted April 14: Perennial Pro-Bowl right guard Marshal Yanda retired this offseason, so the Ravens could look to replace him with interior lineman Cesar Ruiz (Michigan) — but I’m leaning toward the defense in this spot.

And more to the point, Gross-Matos is a player I need to get into the Round 1 mock, and No. 28 fits his general draft range.

As a regular business practice, the Ravens invest more draft capital than most teams do in edge defenders. Over the past four years, they have drafted six edge rushers in the top 100.

  • 2016 (2.42): Kamalei Correa (Boise State)
  • 2016 (3.70): Bronson Kaufusi (Brigham Young)
  • 2017 (2.47): Tyus Bowser (Houston)
  • 2017 (3.74): Chris Wormley (Michigan)
  • 2017 (3.78): Tim Williams (Alabama)
  • 2019 (3.85): Jaylon Ferguson (Louisiana Tech)

A lot of these guys don’t hit: The Ravens know that a number of the edge defenders they draft will bust. But that’s why they invest so heavily and regularly in the position: They want to be sure that they’re as strong as possible with their pass rush.

The Ravens are strong on the interior of their defensive line with the recent additions of Calais Campbell via trade and Derek Wolfe via free agency, but top edge rusher Matt Judon is on the franchise tag and Bowser is in the final year of his rookie deal. Both could be gone in 2021.

In Gross-Matos, the Ravens get needed depth at the position and a potential replacement for Judon or Bowser, who collectively replaced Terrell Suggs and Za’Darius Smith before them: That’s just how the Ravens do business. They build with an eye toward the future.

In his two years as a starter, Gross-Matos totaled 17.5 sacks and 35 tackles for loss. While he doesn’t have elite athleticism or pass-rushing skills, Gross-Matos is above average at almost everything, and he has exhibited steady improvement each season.

Perhaps most importantly, he doesn’t make big mistakes. He rarely is dominated by an offensive lineman. Although he’s unlikely to make an immediate NFL impact, Gross-Matos could develop into a Pro-Bowl producer by the end of his rookie contract.

Matthew Pearce/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images. Pictured: Yetur Gross-Matos

Gross-Matos Props: There’s no value on Gross-Matos to be selected in Round 1 at -500, but I do like over 26.5 at -125. A team might reach for him before that: The Dolphins (Nos. 18 & 26), Vikings (Nos. 22 & 25) and Patriots (No. 23) are all possibilities.

But in 62.5% of expert mocks, Gross Matos has been drafted no earlier than pick No. 27.

PICK: Over 26.5 -125: One unit. Limit: -145.
[Bet now at DraftKings. NJ, PA, IN and WV only.]

29. Titans: A.J. Epenesa, EDGE, Iowa

  • Height: 6’5” | Weight: 275 pounds
  • 40-yard dash: 5.04 seconds
  • 2020 Age: 22 | Class: Junior
  • Recruitment Stars: 4-5

Posted April 14: Given that they played in the AFC Championship last season and actually had a 17-7 lead in the second quarter, the Titans don’t have many significant weaknesses.

On offense, 10 of their 11 projected starters had PFF grades of at least 70 last year. That’s outstanding.

On defense, though, they aren’t as stout, especially at edge. The team let Cameron Wake walk in free agency, and he missed most of the 2019 season with a knee injury anyway. The Titans need a player to pair with 2018 second-rounder Harold Landry, and Epenesa is a strong option.

In talking about the Patriots at No. 23, I said that “if I had to project a player to the Pats right now, it would probably be edge defender A.J. Epenesa (Iowa).”

The Titans are pretty much Pats West, and Epenesa is the type of workmanlike no-frills prospect defense-focused head coach Mike Vrabel — a former edge rusher for the Pats — would love to have on the roster.

Months ago, Epenesa was commonly mocked around picks Nos. 13-22, but after a nondescript combine, he has fallen down the draft board.

But it’s not as if he’s a nonathlete: He’s just not exceptionally athletic. He is, however, a detail-oriented and technically sound edge rusher who plays with immense power and does his job every single snap.

He’s capable against the run, and he offers scheme optionality with the size to play as a defensive end in a 4-3 or 3-4 defense. In his two seasons as a regular contributor at Iowa, he racked up 22 sacks, 30.5 tackles for loss and eight forced fumbles.

Epenesa is the kind of football player other football players love, and he could be the anchor of a defensive line for a decade.

Epenesa Props: For a guy going this late in Round 1, A.J., son of Eppy, has a few good props to his name. I like him to go under 30.5 at -110, and I also like him to go in Round 1 at -200. In 81.3% of expert mocks, he has hit the under and landed on Day 1.

And I think the Titans are going to go with defense for their first pick. I have a -105 ticket on that prop, and I’m adding to the position.

Finally, between Epenesa and Gross-Matos, it’s probably a tossup for who is drafted first. Getting Epenesa at +118 in that head-to-head matchup is good.

PICK: Titans Draft Defense -105: One unit. Limit: -150.
[Bet now at BetMGM. NJ only.]

PICK: In Round 1 -200: One unit. Limit: -300.
[Bet now at Sugar House. NJ and IN only.]

PICK: Under 30.5 -110: One unit. Limit: -250.
[Bet now at BetMGM. NJ only.]

PICK: Epenesa Drafted Before Gross-Matos +118: One unit. Limit: +105.
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30. Packers: Tee Higgins, WR, Clemson

  • Height: 6’4” | Weight: 216 pounds
  • 40-yard dash: 4.54 seconds (pro day)
  • 2020 Age: 21 | Class: Junior
  • Recruitment Stars: 4-5

Posted April 14: After not working out at the combine and then displaying mediocre athleticism at his pro day, Higgins has seen his draft stock drop precipitously.

In mid-February mocks, Higgins was a locked-in top-four receiver. Now, he has been jumped by Jefferson and Mims and is competing with the likes of Jalen Reagor (TCU), Brandon Aiyuk (Arizona State) and maybe even Laviska Shenault Jr. (Colorado) to get one of the final Round 1 spots in a handful of drafts.

But I still think he has a decent chance to sneak into Day 1.

The Packers take a receiver at No. 30 in an overwhelming 81.3% of expert mocks, and it’s easy to see why: They need to give aging franchise quarterback Aaron Rodgers more offensive support, specifically at wide receiver. Aside from Davante Adams, the Packers lack a reliable pass-catching presence.

And this is a great class for drafting a wide receiver. Even at No. 30, the Packers can get a guy with true difference-making ability — and that guy is T.E.E. Higgins.

It’s LOL adorable that #NFLTwitter evaluators think Higgins’ mediocre pro day matters. It will likely impact where he’s drafted, but I still expect him to have NFL success.

Dabo Swinney played receiver in college and started out at Clemson as the wide receivers coach. His eye for talent at the position is unparalleled. If a guy has the official Swinney imprimatur, he’s likely to exceed expectations in the NFL.

Streeter Lecka/Getty Images. Pictured: Tee Higgins

Of all the Clemson receivers Swinney has had a hand in recruiting to the program, here are the six to enter the NFL as top-150 draft selections.

  • 1.04 (2014): Sammy Watkins –  1,048 yards, nine touchdowns in second season
  • 1.07 (2017): Mike Williams – 11 touchdowns in second season, 1,003 yards in third season
  • 1.27 (2013): DeAndre Hopkins – five 1,000-yard campaigns and three All-Pro selections
  • 4.108 (2010): Jacoby Ford – 625 yards, seven touchdowns as a rookie with limited playing time
  • 4.118 (2014): Martavis Bryant – 1,102 yards, 14 touchdowns in first 16 NFL games
  • 5.149 (2019): Hunter Renfrow – 504 yards, four touchdowns in final eight games of rookie season

I defy you to name another college program that has so reliably produced NFL-ready receivers over the past decade.

Alabama? Kevin Norwood (4.123, 2014) and ArDarius Stewart (3.79, 2017) beg to differ. Ohio State? DeVier Posey (3.68, 2012) and Devin Smith (2.37, 2015) think otherwise. USC? Patrick Turner (3.87, 2009), Damian Williams (3.77, 2010) and Marqise Lee (2.39, 2014) laugh at you.

And timed athleticism is extremely overrated for wide receivers, especially for big guys with a respectable amount of draft capital and good college production (Higgins is 118-2,103-25 receiving, 1-36-1 rushing over the past two years).

Based on age, size, speed, college production and likely draft range, here are the five NFL prospects of the past decade to whom Higgins is most comparable:

  • Courtland Sutton: 2.40 (2018) – 6’3″ | 218 pounds | 4.54-second 40 time
  • JuJu Smith-Schuster: 2.62 (2017) – 6’1″ | 215 pounds | 4.54-second 40 time
  • Davante Adams: 2.53 (2014) – 6’1″ | 212 pounds | 4.56-second 40 time
  • Allen Robinson: 2.61 (2014) – 6’2″ | 220 pounds | 4.60-second 40 time
  • DeAndre Hopkins: 1.27 (2013) – 6’1″ | 214 pounds | 4.57-second 40 time

If the Packers have the opportunity to draft Davante 2.0 at No. 30, do you think they’ll do it?

Some tape-grinding enthusiasts think that Higgins is too soft to succeed in the NFL. They say he lacks the physicality necessary to beat NFL corners.

Maybe. I don’t know.

I just know it seems pretty stupid to think that a highly-recruited and productive 21-year-old big-bodied Clemson receiver won’t be good as a professional.

Higgins Props: I have a -177 ticket on the Packers to draft an offensive player with their first pick, and I still like that bet. In 93.8% of expert mocks, they’ve gone offense in Round 1.

I think Higgins has a little under a 50% chance to land in Round 1, so I like his under of 32.5 at +130. At the same time, if you want to arbitrage that prop by betting on him at -110 to be drafted in Rounds 2-7, you have the option.

I’m marginally interested in betting over 1.5 Clemson players in Round 1, but the -189 odds are probably prohibitive: It’s best to stay away. I should’ve grabbed this line sooner.

Similarly, I don’t see much value in betting on how many wide receivers will be drafted in Round 1. Over 5.5 is -250 and under 6.5 is -260. The market has hammered these lines into their proper place. If you think we get to seven wide receivers — that’s a high number — feel free to bet over 6.5 at +192 … but I’m not betting on it.

PICK: Packers Draft Offense -186: One unit. Limit: -300.
[Bet now at PointsBet. NJ and IN only.]

PICK: Under 32.5 +130: One unit. Limit: +115.
[Bet now at William Hill. NJ only.]

PICK: In Rounds 2-7 -110 (Arbitrage): One unit. Limit: -110.
[Bet now at BetMGM. NJ only.]

31. 49ers: A.J. Terrell, CB, Clemson

  • Height: 6’1” | Weight: 195 pounds
  • 40-yard dash: 4.42 seconds
  • 2020 Age: 22 | Class: Junior
  • Recruitment Stars: 4-5

Posted April 15: It’s hard to know what to do with the 49ers because their roster is strong, which means they can afford to draft more for value and less for need — and they also have a pick at No. 13. But the majority of expert mockers have the 49ers taking a cornerback at some point in Round 1, and that makes sense.

No. 1 cornerback Richard Sherman is 32 years old and in the final year of his contract.

Across from Sherman, it’s uncertain if the team will go with special teamer-turned-postseason starter Emmanuel Moseley or starter-turned-bench fodder Ahkello Witherspoon, but either way, it might not matter beyond 2020: Moseley is on a one-year contract, and Witherspoon is in the final year of his deal.

As for slot corner K’Waun Williams, he had the option on his contract exercised this offseason — but like Sherman, Moseley and Witherspoon, he too is slated to be a free agent next year.

The team just re-signed the potential-laden but injury-stricken former Pro-Bowler Jason Verrett — but he was on injured reserve for almost the entire 2019 season, and he has played just six games over the past three years. He cannot be relied on. Plus — and, please, stop me if you’ve heard this before — he’s on a one-year deal.

The top five corners on the 49ers roster: All of them will need new contracts if they are to stay with the team.

Clearly, some — perhaps most — of them will not be with the 49ers in 2021, so they would do well to draft a corner now, and Terrell is a nice option.

A two-year SEC starter with good athleticism and great length, Terrell has the ability to play in most schemes but is probably best as a press-man defender. Because of his size, he can match up with larger receivers, but he can still hang with smaller, faster wideouts because of his speed.

Jamie Schwaberow/Getty Images. Pictured: A.J. Terrell

Terrell isn’t much of a playmaker: In his two years as a starter, he managed a modest five interceptions across 28 games. He’s not the kind of defender quarterbacks fear to target, but rarely is he exposed in one-on-one situations. At a minimum, he’s almost certainly an upgrade on Moseley and Witherspoon on the perimeter.

In 2019, Terrell held route runners to 23 receptions on 426 coverage snaps, and in each of his two final campaigns, he had a PFF coverage of at least 80. He’s an NFL starter.

Terrell Props: There’s no value in betting under 2.5 Clemson players in Round 1 at -286, given that we see two or fewer in 75% of expert mocks.

But with Terrell, we get the over on 4.5 cornerbacks selected in Round 1 at -115 odds, and I’m betting it. Terrell is about 50/50 to go on Day 1, so there’s little reason to bet his over/under of 33.5, but he is +120 to be drafted in Round 1, and at that price, I’ll invest.

PICK: In Round 1 +120: One unit. Limit: +110.
[Bet now at FanDuel. NJ, PA, IN and WV only.]

PICK: Over 4.5 Round 1 Cornerbacks -115: One unit. Limit: -135.
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32. Chiefs: Jeff Gladney, CB, TCU

  • Height: 5’10” | Weight: 191 pounds
  • 40-yard dash: 4.48 seconds
  • 2020 Age: 24 | Class: Redshirt Senior
  • Recruitment Stars: 3

Posted April 15: Two years ago, the Chiefs defense ranked No. 26 in the league in DVOA, and when the Chiefs needed a stop in the 2018-19 AFC Championship, they couldn’t get it.

Last year, they improved on defense — they were merely mediocre at No. 14 in DVOA — and that incremental change helped them win Super Bowl 54. But they still need to build a more reliable defense if they want to compete for a championship on a yearly basis, so I expect them to draft a defender at No. 32.

It’s hard to say which position they will target, but with the last pick in Round 1, they are in a great spot to get value by taking whatever strong defensive player happens to fall down the draft board.

Ideally, they could get an off-ball linebacker to solidify the middle of their defense: Last year, starting linebackers Anthony Hitchens and Damien Wilson had respective PFF grades of 44.3 and 49.1. In run defense and pass coverage, they were both subpar. But this class is thin at the position, and I doubt either Murray or Queen will drop to No. 32.

On the defensive line, perhaps tackle Ross Blacklock (TCU) could be on option. He’s expected to go in this general range, and the Chiefs are weak on the interior except for Chris Jones, who is on the franchise tag and a candidate to be traded during the draft.

But the Chiefs secondary probably needs more help than the defensive line. Slot corner/safety Kendall Fuller left via free agency, and free safety Juan Thornhill suffered a season-ending knee injury in December, so the quality of his contribution in 2020 might be suspect.

On top of that, No. 1 cornerback Bashaud Breeland is on a one-year deal, and No. 2 cornerback Charvarius Ward will be a restricted free agent in 2021 — and neither one was all that good last year. Breeland had a PFF coverage grade of 51.3; Ward, 62.9.

Even with strong safety Tyrann Mathieu able to chip in with some work in the slot, the Chiefs clearly need help at cornerback.

Expert mockers have more or less tiered Diggs, Terrell and Gladney together with their projections, and as the last remaining corner from the cohort, Gladney offers value.

He is small and old — especially for a Round 1 candidate — but the dude is tough. Texas tough. As in, “his family raises horses” tough. He competes with a gritty physicality perhaps best exemplified by this fact: He played the entirety of his senior year — and worked out at the combine — with a torn meniscus, which has since been surgically repaired.

A four-year Big 12 starter, Gladney cut his collegiate teeth by playing against some of the best receivers in the nation on a weekly basis. His 2018 matchup against then-Iowa State wide receiver Hakeem Butler is legendary: Despite being seven inches shorter and 36 pounds lighter than Butler, Gladney held him to just 14 yards on two receptions.

Butler finished the 2018 season No. 8 in the nation with 1,318 yards receiving and was selected No. 103 overall in the 2019 draft, but Gladney shut him down through sheer will and unrelenting physicality.

Gladney might never be a Pro-Bowl defender, but he’s the type of corner who incessantly irritates receivers and gets under their skin with his play-to-the-whistle ball-hawking aggressiveness.

Matthew Visinsky/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images. Pictured: Jeff Gladney

Perhaps most importantly, Gladney is versatile. He’s best in man, but he can play zone. He lines up most on the outside, but he frequently travels into the slot.

I don’t want to sound ridiculous, but Gladney feels like the cornerback version of Honey Badger. The Chiefs could use that.

Gladney Props: The over/under of 35.5 with -110 odds on both sides isn’t exploitable, but I like Gladney at +165 to go in Round 1. He’s present in 43.8% of expert mocks, which is about as high of a percentage as one can reasonably get near the end of Round 1 across a decently sized sample.

I also like Gladney at -121 to be drafted before cornerback Jaylon Johnson (Utah), who has trailed the TCU corner in 77.8% of applicable mocks.

I have a -152 ticket on the Chiefs to draft a defensive player with their first pick, and I’m adding a little more to the position.

PICK: Chiefs Draft Defense -179: 0.5 units. Limit: -200.
[Bet now at BetMGM. NJ only.]

PICK: In Round 1 +165: 0.5 units. Limit: +150.
[Bet now at BetMGM. NJ only.]

PICK: Gladney Drafted Before Johnson -121: One unit. Limit: -175.
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More NFL Draft Prop Analysis

Below is prop analysis on the players I’m not mocking in the top 32.

Cesar Ruiz, C/G, Michigan

  • Height: 6’3” | Weight: 307 pounds
  • 40-yard dash: 5.08 seconds
  • 2020 Age: 21 | Class: Junior
  • Recruitment Stars: 3-4

Posted April 15: Ruiz is the top interior lineman in the class, and he has a realistic chance to go in Round 1. With the speed to play center and the strength to play guard, he will be an automatic NFL starter as a rookie.

Ruiz Props: There’s no value in betting Ruiz to go in Round 1 at -167. He’s in only 43.8% of expert mocks — but in the applicable drafts, he goes ahead of offensive tackle Ezra Cleveland (Boise State) 71.5% of the time.

PICK: Ruiz Drafted Before Cleveland -167: One unit. Limit: -200.
[Bet now at DraftKings. NJ, PA, IN and WV only.]

D’Andre Swift, RB, Georgia

  • Height: 5’8” | Weight: 212 pounds
  • 40-yard dash: 4.48 seconds
  • 2020 Age: 21 | Class: Junior
  • Recruitment Stars: 4-5

Posted April 15: Swift is my No. 1 fantasy back in the class due to his youth, scheme versatility and pass-catching ability (56-513-4 receiving in two final seasons). With a three-down skill set, he could be a top-10 fantasy back right away in point-per-reception scoring.

Todd Kirkland/Getty Images. Pictured: D’Andre Swift

Swift Props: There’s a little value in betting over 26.5 at -167, as Swift has hit the over in 68.9% of expert mocks. Where I really like Swift is to be selected in Rounds 2-7 at +115, given that he appears in only 37.5% of expert Round 1 mocks.

I like how Swift compares to running back Jonathan Taylor (Wisconsin) and the other backs in the class. There’s a little value in betting Swift to be drafted before Taylor at -180 and to be the first back selected at -200. Both of those have happened at a 75% in relevant mocks.

PICK: In Rounds 2-7 +115: One unit. Limit: -135.
[Bet now at BetMGM. NJ only.]

PICK: Over 26.5 -167: 0.5 units. Limit: -167.
[Bet now at DraftKings. NJ, PA, IN and WV only.]

PICK: First Running Back -200: 0.5 units. Limit: -200.
[Bet now at BetMGM. NJ only.]

PICK: Swift Drafted Before Taylor -180: One unit. Limit: -200.
[Bet now at FanDuel. NJ, PA, IN and WV only.]

Zack Baun, EDGE, Wisconsin

  • Height: 6’2” | Weight: 238 pounds
  • 40-yard dash: 4.65 seconds
  • 2020 Age: NA | Class: Redshirt Senior
  • Recruitment Stars: 3

Posted April 15: Baun entered Wisconsin as an all-state dual-threat quarterback and leaves it as a Patriots-style linebacker with edge ability and off-ball functionality. It took Baun some time to transition to defense, but in his final season of college ball he put it all together with 12.5 sacks and 19.5 tackles for loss.

His draft stock might drop due to a diluted urine sample at the combine — which he has explained by saying that he drank way more water than usual before weighing in at the combine — and that’s a totally normal thing for an undersized linebacker to do when he’s trying to make “edge rusher” weight, so I still expect him to be drafted no later than Day 2.

Baun Props: Because of urine-gate — or, if you will, watergate (#NailedIt) — I expect Baun to fall out of Round 1. Even before news of his questionable combine test broke, Baun was going in Round 1 in only 37.5% of expert mocks.

Of course, if you want to arbitrage this prop by betting on him to go in Round 1 at +125, you can.

PICK: Not in Round 1 -117: One unit. Limit: -150.
[Bet now at PointsBet. NJ and IN only.]

PICK: In Round 1 +125 (Arbitrage): One unit. Limit: +125.
[Bet now at Sugar House. NJ and IN only.]

Ross Blacklock, DT, Texas Christian

  • Height: 6’3” | Weight: 290 pounds
  • 40-yard dash: 4.90 seconds
  • 2020 Age: NA | Class: Redshirt Junior
  • Recruitment Stars: 4

Posted Apr. 15: Blacklock is the rare interior defensive lineman who is more of a pass rusher than a run stuffer, but he’s strong enough to anchor when needed.

Incredibly quick for a player of his size, Blacklock has some Gerald McCoy-esque potential.

Blacklock Props: I like Blacklock to go in Rounds 2-7 at -125 since he’s in Round 1 of only 37.5% of expert mocks. I also like over 31.5 at -121, which provides a little more value than his Rounds 2-7 prop, because if he goes in Round 1, there’s a decent chance it’s at No. 32.

PICK: In Rounds 2-7 -125: One unit. Limit: -140.
[Bet now at BetMGM. NJ only.]

PICK: Over 31.5 -121: One unit. Limit: -150.
[Bet now at BetMGM. NJ only.]

Jalen Reagor, WR, TCU

  • Height: 5’11” | Weight: 206 pounds (combine), 198 pounds (pro day)
  • 40-yard dash: 4.47 seconds (combine), 4.28 (pro day)
  • 2020 Age: 21 | Class: Junior
  • Recruitment Stars: 4

Posted April 15: More of a playmaker and offensive weapon than a route runner and receiver, Reagor broke out as a sophomore (72-1,061-9 receiving, 13-170-2 rushing), but he regressed as junior because of poor quarterback play. Still, he’s an explosive, peak-Jeremy Maclin-esque player with the ability to score as a receiver, runner and returner (two punt return touchdowns in 2019), and he’s highly likely to enter the league as a top-100 pick.

Zach Bolinger/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images. Pictured: Jalen Reagor

Reagor Props: There’s a modicum of value on Reagor to go in Rounds 2-7 at -179. He’s been mocked out of Round 1 in 68.8% of expert mocks.

Where I really like Reagor is in his head-to-head matchup with wide receiver Brandon Aiyuk (Arizona State). They’re both in just 31.3% of Round 1 mocks, but Reagor has the higher mean (24.6 vs. 25.2) and median (22 vs. 24) and is +118 to be drafted first.

PICK: In Rounds 2-7 -179: 0.5 units. Limit: -185.
[Bet now at BetMGM. NJ only.]

PICK: Reagor Drafted Before Aiyuk +118: One unit. Limit: +105.
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Brandon Aiyuk, WR, Arizona State

  • Height: 6’0” | Weight: 205 pounds
  • 40-yard dash: 4.50 seconds
  • 2020 Age: 22 | Class: Senior
  • Recruitment Stars: 3

Posted April 15: Aiyuk has just two years of FBS experience, but in his 2017 campaign at Sierra College, he dominated the junior college ranks with 1,019 yards and 15 touchdowns from scrimmage plus three return touchdowns in 10 games. And in his final college season, he flashed once again with 1,198 yards and eight touchdowns plus a return score in 12 games.

Aiyuk isn’t a physical receiver or polished route runner, but he’s good with the ball in his hands and is versatile enough to line up all across the formation. He looks like a guy with a reasonable chance of having a couple 1,000-yard seasons in the NFL.

Aiyuk Props: I don’t see much value in Aiyuk right now, but I’m taking a small position in him to be drafted in Rounds 2-7 at -145. He’s been mocked outside of Round 1 in 68.8% of expert drafts.

PICK: In Rounds 2-7 -145: 0.5 units. Limit: -185.
[Bet now at BetMGM. NJ only.]

Jonathan Taylor, RB, Wisconsin

  • Height: 5’10” | Weight: 226 pounds
  • 40-yard dash: 4.39 seconds
  • 2020 Age: 21 | Class: Junior
  • Recruitment Stars: 3

Posted April 15: A lot of sharp fantasy analysts have Taylor as the top fantasy back in the class after his electric combine performance, and I can’t argue with them. A two-time Doak Walker Award winner and consensus All-American selection, Taylor had three straight seasons of 2,000-plus scrimmage yards in college, and as a junior he showed his pass-catching ability (26-252-5 receiving).

I have Swift ahead of Taylor because I think he’s vastly superior as a receiver: He’s the crisper route runner, he has better hands and he can line up in the slot and out wide. But Taylor is the better runner and probably still good enough as a receiver to get a three-down workload right away. He should go no later than Round 2.

Taylor Props: There seems to be a disconnect between Taylor’s round and over/under props. Taylor is -330 not to be drafted in Round 1. In other words, he’s -330 to go over 32.5. But Taylor’s actual over/under props aren’t nearly that drastic: He’s -134 to go over 36.5 and -125 to go over 37.5.

So the market is basically saying that picks Nos. 33-36 are worth -200.

Maybe … but I kind of doubt it. Taylor is mocked in Round 1 of just 25% of the expert drafts I’ve surveyed. Sucker that I am, I’ll bet that he won’t be drafted in picks Nos. 33-36. I’m taking over 36.5 at -134.

Photo by Michael Allio/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images. Pictured: Johnathan Taylor

In the big picture, we really might not see a back drafted in Round 1. It happens in just 50% of expert mocks, but right now you can bet under 0.5 backs taken in Round 1 at a resplendent +220. Get it. This might be favorite bet on the board.

PICK: Over 36.5 -134: One unit. Limit: -150.
[Bet now at BetMGM. NJ only.]

PICK: Under 0.5 Round 1 Running Backs +220: Two units. Limit: +120.
[Bet now at bet365. NJ only.]

Laviska Shenault Jr., WR, Colorado

  • Height: 6’1” | Weight: 227 pounds
  • 40-yard dash: 4.58 seconds
  • 2020 Age: 22 | Class: Junior
  • Recruitment Stars: 3

Posted April 15: Like Tee Higgins, Shenault was universally mocked in Round 1 in early February, but Shenault underwhelmed at the combine with a 4.58-second 40-yard dash — in part because he worked out with a core injury that required surgery — and since then his draft stock has dropped.

But Shenault is still plenty athletic for a guy of his size, and he’s more of an Anquan Boldin-esque bully than than a size/speed producer. There are, though, some issues with Shenault. First, he always seems to be injured: He never played a full season in college.

Also, he regressed a lot as a junior after having a breathtakingly dynamic sophomore campaign.

  • 2018 (nine games): 86-1,011-6 receiving, 17-115-5 rushing
  • 2019 (11 games): 56-764-4 receiving, 23-161-2 rushing

I don’t typically like investing in receivers who don’t finish college in a productive manner.

But Shenault had a new coaching staff and was significantly hindered by poor quarterback play in 2019, and his talent is undeniable. Whether he’s taking a direct snap as a wildcat quarterback, catching a screen pass at the line of scrimmage or running a deep slant, Shenault is simply a playmaker.

That doesn’t mean he’ll have NFL success. He feels a lot like a slower, non-return man version of Cordarrelle Patterson. That said, we should remember that C-Patz had 479 scrimmage yards and seven touchdowns in the final eight games of his rookie year. There’s a universe in which Patterson becomes an NFL star — and that universe might be Shenault’s.

Shenault Props: With his fall from grace, Shenault is now in Round 1 of just 12.5% of expert mocks. I like him quite a bit at -278 not to be selected on Day 1.

PICK: Not in Round 1 -287: One unit. Limit: -350.
[Bet now at PointsBet. NJ and IN only.]

Cole Kmet, TE, Notre Dame

  • Height: 6’6” | Weight: 262 pounds
  • 40-yard dash: 4.70 seconds
  • 2020 Age: 21 | Class: Junior
  • Recruitment Stars: 4

Posted April 15: And then on Saturday, God created the Notre Dame tight end.

Over the past five years, UND has had something of a dry spell, but in the decade before that, the Fighting Irish sent a top-tier prospect at the position to the NFL seemingly every other season.

  • Anthony Fasano: 2.53, 2006
  • John Carlson: 2.38, 2008
  • Kyle Rudolph: 2.43, 2011
  • Tyler Eifert: 1.21, 2013
  • Troy Niklas: 2.52, 2014

In Kmet, the Irish have another top prospect at the position — and as a 21-year-old rookie, he will join an elite cohort of players. Here are the receiving tight ends over the past 25 years to be drafted no later than Round 4 and to play their first season at age 21.

  • Irv Smith Jr.
  • David Njoku
  • Maxx Williams
  • Eric Ebron
  • Rob Gronkowski
  • Aaron Hernandez
  • Martellus Bennett
  • Jermichael Finley
  • Kellen Winslow
  • Jason Witten
  • Todd Heap
  • Tony Gonzalez

Say what you want about some of those guys — but it would be hard to find a better collection of tight ends with so simple a screen.

Despite his size, Kmet is more of a move tight end than an inline player: He gets pushed around too much as a run blocker, and he needs to get better at fighting off contact early in his routes. But he has the frame to add more bulk, and eventually he should be good enough as a blocker to be functional.

Like most tight ends — even good ones — he will probably contribute little within his first couple of seasons. But he has top-five tight end potential and could offer great value in rookie dynasty drafts if he slides down the board as fantasy investors focus on this year’s glut of wide receivers, running backs and quarterbacks.

Joe Robbins/Getty Images. Pictured: Cole Kmet

Kmet Props: Although this isn’t reflected in the odds, the race to be the first tight end selected is between two guys — Kmet and Albert Okwuegbunam (Missouri). If a team wants a more traditional tight end, it will go with Kmet. If it wants more of an athletic marvel, it will go with Albert O.

No other guys outside of those two really make sense.

Less than a month ago, Kmet was available at PointsBet for -125. I could kick myself for not grabbing it then. But now I have a -225 ticket on him, and I’m adding to that position at -286.

Kmet’s over/unders of 44.5 and 45.5 seem about right, so I’m staying away from those, but I doubt that Kmet — or any other tight end — will make his way into Round 1. It could happen: Hayden Hurst on Day 1 was a surprise in 2018. But in not one expert mock have I seen a tight end. Even at -560 odds, there’s value in betting under 0.5 tight ends in Round 1.

And you can indirectly arbitrage that prop if you want by betting on Kmet at +700 to go in Round 1 — because if there is a tight end who goes that early, the odds are overwhelming that it will be Kmet.

PICK: First Tight End -286: One unit. Limit: -400.
[Bet now at BetMGM. NJ only.]

PICK: Under 0.5 Round 1 Tight Ends -560: One unit. Limit: -800.
[Bet now at DraftKings. NJ, PA, IN and WV only.]

PICK: In Round 1 +700: One unit. Limit: +600.
[Bet now at Sugar House. NJ and IN only.]

Albert Okwuegbunam, TE, Missouri

  • Height: 6’5” | Weight: 258 pounds
  • 40-yard dash: 4.49 seconds
  • 2020 Age: 22 | Class: Redshirt Junior
  • Recruitment Stars: 3

Posted April 15: If he had declared last year, Albert O. 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

He’s not a blocker or much of a route runner, but he has near-elite above-the-rim ability at the catch point, and if a team looked at him and thought, “That guy’s a slightly smaller version of young Jimmy Graham,” I would get it.

A massive boom/bust prospect, Albert O. has No. 1 overall tight end upside and “I can’t believe I thought that guy was good” downside.

Okwuegbunam Prop: This is an incredibly wide-open tight end market, in part because this year’s group of prospects isn’t all that good. Given the relative disparity in talent between tight ends and the other offensive positions, the market for tight ends is unlikely to be enthusiastic.

As I mention in my analysis of Kmet, I doubt we see a tight end go on Day 1.

And that brings me to this all-important 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 aside from two guys.

So I’m going with Okwuegbunam as a 16-to-1 longshot to be the first tight end drafted. I already have a +1400 ticket, and I’m adding a little to the position.

PICK: First Tight End +1600: 0.5 units. Limit: +1400.
[Bet now at DraftKings. NJ, PA, IN and WV only.]

J.K. Dobbins, RB, Ohio State

  • Height: 5’9” | Weight: 209 pounds
  • 2020 Age: 22 | Class: Junior
  • Recruitment Stars: 4

Posted April 15: Dobbins really intrigues me.

He entered college as a highly desired recruit, and in his three years with the Buckeyes, he put up numbers.

  • 2017 (FR): 1,538 yards, eight touchdowns from scrimmage
  • 2018 (SO): 1,316 yards, 12 touchdowns from scrimmage
  • 2019 (JR): 2,250 yards, 23 touchdowns from scrimmage

And he was a consistent pass-catching presence with a 71-645-5 receiving line across his three seasons.

Even though he didn’t work out at the combine, his athleticism is not a question. As a recruit in 2016, Dobbins had the No. 1 overall athletic score at The Opening, where he competed alongside all the other top recruits in the country.

Ranking in the 99th-percentile with his size-adjusted speed (4.45-second 40-yard dash), explosiveness (43.1-inch vertical jump) and agility (4.09-second 20-yard shuttle), Dobbins is one of the most elite all-around athletes in the 2020 class.

Given his productive consistency, receiving ability and elite physicality, Dobbins has the look of a three-down back who should have multiple seasons of top-20 running back production.

Dobbins Props: I don’t see much value in betting Dobbins at -167 to be drafted ahead running back Clyde Edwards-Helaire (LSU), who is probably the best pass-catching back in the class, and although I am tempted by Dobbins at +1100 to be the first back selected, I probably won’t invest further. I already have a small +700 ticket on him, and I’ve become less enthusiastic about his draft prospects as Swift and Edwards-Helaire have been hyped.

But I will take a small nibble on over 46.5 at -125. I doubt we see a running back in Round 1, and between Swift, Taylor, Edwards-Helaire and a handful of other backs — Cam Akers (Florida State), A.J. Dillon (Boston College) and Zack Moss (Utah) — there’s a lot of competition for the post-Round 1 picks (Nos. 33-44) available to the under.

PICK: Over +44.5 -126: 0.25 units. Limit: -135.
[Bet now at FanDuel. NJ, PA, IN and WV only.]

Jalen Hurts, QB, Oklahoma

  • Height: 6’1” | Weight: 222 pounds
  • 40-yard dash: 4.59 seconds
  • 2020 Age: 22 | Class: Senior
  • Recruitment Stars: 4

Posted April 15: If not for what Burrow did in 2019, Hurts might have become the third straight transfer quarterback to win the Heisman Trophy for Oklahoma. Hurts entered college as the No. 1 dual-threat quarterback recruit in the nation, and he opened his career at Alabama with two strong seasons, leading the Crimson Tide to the College Football Championship in each campaign.

But after getting Tua’ed in the 2017-18 title game and demoted in the 2018 season, he transferred to Oklahoma for 2019 and had himself a year.

  • Passing: 69.7% completion rate, 12.2 AY/A, 32-8 TD:INT ratio
  • Rushing: 1,298 yards, 20 touchdowns, 5.6 yards per carry (including sacks)
  • Awards: Semifinalist – Heisman Trophy, Maxwell Award, Davey O’Brien Award

Hurts isn’t a traditional, strong-armed pocket passer with pinpoint accuracy. But he’s smart, tough and accurate enough to deliver the ball where it needs to be, and his ability to make plays out of the pocket and rush the ball on designed runs and forced scrambles gives him a significant playmaking ability that no other quarterback in this class has — not even Tua.

Hurts is pretty much a good Tim Tebow. Or at least a better Tim Tebow.

Hurts is maybe a combination of Lamar Jackson and Dak Prescott: He’s a better thrower than Jackson, a better runner than Prescott and almost certainly not as good as either — but he’s got potential.

As long as a team doesn’t reach for him at the end of Round 1, whatever team gets him will be acquiring a good player with long-term upside at a discount.

Brian Bahr/Getty Images. Pictured: Jalen Hurts

Hurts Props: I’m not sure what to make of the head-to-head matchup between Hurts and quarterback Jake Fromm (Georgia). I think Hurts should be drafted first at -106, but I don’t know.

Plus, there’s an opportunity for the smallest of arbitrage bets on the prop by taking Fromm at +110 — and why would I turn down free money, even if it’s pennies? If I bet one unit on Fromm at +110 and he wins, I break even. If I bet 1.1 units on Hurts at -106 and he wins, I get +0.038 units. It’s not much, but it’s a risk-free bet.

I’m seeing three different over/unders for Hurts: 60.5, 61.5 and 62.5. Meh.

I’m very invested in under 4.5 quarterbacks. I bet it first at -150 and have continued to bet it to -450. If I’m wrong and five quarterbacks go in Round 1, I think Hurts will be the guy who pushes the prop to the over.

So I want to hedge a little — but I’m hedging with a freeroll mindset.

I’m just going to assume that Hurts doesn’t fall out of Round 3. That might not be the safest assumption, but it’s one I’m willing to make: He’s too good of a player to last until Day 3.

With that in mind, I’m making these bets.

  • Round 1: +1400 – 0.4 units
  • Round 2: +120 – two units
  • Round 3: +140 – one unit

If Hurts goes in Round 1, I’ll profit +2.6 units. That will significantly offset my losses from the 4.5 Round 1 quarterback prop.

If he goes in Round 2, I’ll profit a unit. Not bad.

If he goes in Round 3, I’ll break even on the Hurts bets and almost certainly be in the clear with under 4.5 quarterbacks in Round 1.

If Hurts goes after Round 3 … that will suck. I’ll be out 3.4 units — but at least those losses will be partially offset by cashing my tickets for under 4.5 quarterbacks (I hope).

These aren’t sexy bets, but I feel pretty good about them all together.

PICK: Hurts Drafted Before Fromm -106 (Arbitrage): 1.1 units. Limit: -106.
[Bet now at DraftKings. NJ, PA, IN and WV only.]

PICK: Fromm Drafted Before Hurts +110 (Arbitrage): One unit. Limit: +110.
[Bet now at PointsBet. NJ and IN only.]

PICK: In Round 1 +1400: 0.4 units. Limit: +1400.
[Bet now at BetMGM. NJ only.]

PICK: In Round 2 +120: Two units. Limit: +120.
[Bet now at PointsBet. NJ and IN only.]

PICK: In Round 3 +140: One unit. Limit: +140.
[Bet now at BetMGM. NJ only.]

More 2020 NFL Draft Betting Picks


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

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