How to Bet on the NFL Draft: Available Props, Rules by State, Sportsbook Promos, Strategy & More

How to Bet on the NFL Draft: Available Props, Rules by State, Sportsbook Promos, Strategy & More article feature image

Andy Lyons/Getty Images. Pictured: The Cardinals make an NFL Draft selection.

The NFL Draft has developed into a months-long betting holiday for some. For sportsbooks, it's among the most annoying days of the year.

NFL Draft lines move quickly on very little action. If it takes a whale to move the Super Bowlpoint spread on the day of the game, it takes a tiny ripple to tank a draft price.

The most extreme modern example: Last year on draft day, someone on Reddit posted that Will Levis was telling friends and family he'd be taken No. 1 overall by the Panthers; he dropped from 60-1 to 6-1 to go first overall at FanDuel. He went in Round 2. J.J. McCarthy moved from 60-1 to 14-1 to go No. 5 to the Chargers, who just signed Justin Herbert to a massive extension.

So how do you actually bet the draft, where do they get the odds from, and what's available to bet in what states?

How Do They Make the Odds?

For the NFL Draft, sportsbooks don't know much more than you. They almost certainly don't have any inside info. All they can do is 1) react to news/reputable mock drafts and 2) react to what their users are betting.

This makes for a frustrating bookmaking experience. Every signal, piece of news, and mock draft said Levis would not go first last year. But if you're getting hammered by thousands of bettors at 60-1 because of a Reddit rumor, what else can you do but move it? And then you have to move other players to correspond with that move.

Most serious NFL Draft bettors and bookmakers are using three things:

  • Aggregation of mock drafts, from a site like NFL Mock Draft Database. This will account for any work you'd need to do about team needs, team draft history, etc.
  • Mock drafts from insiders who have a proven history of draft accuracy (draft bettors take Peter Schrager mocks seriously for example).
  • News (the question is which news you should take seriously, and which is team-driven smokescreens designed to throw off other teams). I'm not an expert on which reporters just carry water for front offices, but if you do plan to take draft betting seriously, you should figure it out.

Once they get a sense for the likelihood of a player will go in a certain spot, they can make the prices for a variety of props.

If you're 70% sure Notre Dame OL Joe Alt will go to the Titans at No. 7, you can price his draft position and position of the Titans first pick accordingly. If you're 80% sure another lineman won't go in picks 1-6, you can use those two data points to price first offensive lineman taken.

But trades and players falling can throw a wrench into those probabilities. Books have to use decision tree-type logic to map out the rest of the prices.

A 2024 example: The Falcons seem most likely to take an EDGE rusher with the No. 8 pick. Great, price Alabama's Dallas Turner and UCLA's Laiatu Latu as favorites to be the No. 8 pick. That would make those players possible top 10 picks, too, so you can price that.

But No. 8 seems like a logical place for a trade, since a WR-needy team could jump the Bears at No. 9 to grab Washington WR Rome Odunze, since Chicago could also be in the market for a receiver. That would drastically alter the odds of Turner and Latu's draft spot over/under, their odds of going in the top 10, and potentially the Falcons' first position drafted, depending on where they trade back to.

Are There Any Sportsbook Promos?

As of Thursday afternoon at 12 p.m. ET, I couldn't find any promos for existing users. Again, this is not an event sportsbooks really think they can make a ton of money on, or one that acquires any new users. So they'd rather give you promotions for the NBA and NHL playoffs, and even MLB.

You can use any new-user promotions on the draft, like BetMGM's first bet on the house up to $1,500, or FanDuel and bet365's $150 in bonus bets. These offers are never tied to just a single game or event.

NFL Draft Betting Markets Available

I've counted about seven "types" of NFL Draft betting markets that you can attack. The major sportsbooks — DraftKings, FanDuel, bet365, BetMGM — should offer most of them, assuming there aren't any unique rules for NFL Draft betting in your state. In Ohio for example, you can't bet on the No. 1 or No. 2 overall picks, but you can bet on picks 3-10.

Sportsbooks haven't innovated a ton with the NFL Draft, because they don't want to be exposed. To me, the NFL Draft seems more like a marketing opportunity for sportsbooks than a moneymaker. Illinois operators took about $4.5M in football betting handle in April 2023, and that probably included some action on the XFL. So all football betting, including the draft, was 1/50th of what they booked in basketball, and 1/25th of what they took on baseball. The handle is small.

Here are a few other things to know about NFL Draft betting:

  • They're never going to let you parlay a whole lot because of the exposure. If you do have some inside info and could use the advantages of parlays to increase your upside, you could really take the books for a ride.
  • Sportsbooks are also going to close a lot of markets (all markets in some states) when the draft starts; "live betting" isn't really a thing. If they do leave certain markets up, like the No. 8 overall pick, they'll close it a few picks before.
  • You can bet in between rounds; last year, FanDuel listed lines for players like Levis, CB Joey Porter Jr., TE Michael Mayer and TE Michael Musgrave to be drafted by particular teams.

1. Exact Pick

Easy enough — you're just picking the player who will be selected at that number. It doesn't matter which team takes the player, and if there's a trade, the bet will still stand.

exact nfl draft pick odds from fanduel

2. Position of Team's First Pick

This is a fun market, especially for fans who follow their teams closely. The Giants for example are heavy favorites to take a wide receiver with their first pick.

It must be the team's first pick, so if that team has multiple first-round picks, it will be the first player selected.

ny giants first pick position odds

3. Landing Spot for Individual Player & Draft Spot O/U

You can bet a player to go to a specific team, and over/under his draft position slot.

The juice will vary greatly — OL Joe Alt for example is listed at 7.5, but heavily juiced to the under, because it's been clear for a while that the Titans will take an offensive lineman at No. 7 and he's the top-rated in the class.

You can also bet players to be drafted by specific teams.

4. To Be Picked in the "Top X"

Easy enough — you can bet a player to be selected in the Top 5, or Top 10, or in the first round.

5. Draft Position Matchups

At DraftKings, you can bet who of two players will be selected first. Washington QB Michael Penix is -265 to be picked before Bo Nix, for example.

6. First Drafted by Position

Who will be the first wide receiver taken? Or the first offensive lineman?

7. "Total X" Drafted in First Round

There are a handful of markets where you can select over/under how many of a certain type of player will go in the first round:

  • Total defensive players in the first round
  • Total players from the ACC
  • Total QBs

Total quarterbacks has been a popular prop this year because it's believed four QBs will definitely go in Round 1 — Caleb Williams, Jayden Daniels, Drake Maye and J.J. McCarthy — while Nix and Penix aren't considered Round 1 talents, but may be selected on Day 1 anyway.

draftkings nfl positional totals

Does My State Allow NFL Draft Betting?

*State has some special rules about what's offered, or when you can bet.

New HampshireYes
New JerseyYes
New YorkNo
North CarolinaYes
Rhode IslandNo
West Virginia*Yes

Special Rules by State


In Arizona, you have until 8 p.m. ET on Thursday to place your bets. Then all markets will close. So you can't bet Day 2 on Friday.

Before then, Arizona has a pretty complete list of draft props at FanDuel, including player selected at each pick.


NFL Draft betting in Iowa closes 24 hours before the draft begins, and then nothing is offered between rounds.


Kansas is missing a lot of player-specific props, like a player to get drafted over or under a certain draft spot. However, you can bet on a specific player to go No. 1 or No. 2 overall, for example.


Massachusetts modeled its NFL Draft rules after Michigan, which has a full menu but some time restrictions. Massachusetts Sports Wagering Division Manager Sterl Carpenter told the Massachusetts Gaming Commission this week that they want to prevent wagers on leaked info.

There are three main restrictions:

  1. Any pre-draft offering that could be impacted during any round must be made before the draft.
  2. Any round-specific offering (like whether a player will be drafted in Round 3) must be made prior to that round.
  3. And any specific pick bet must be made two picks prior — so if you're betting Will Levis to go No. 5 overall during the draft, you must make that bet prior to pick No. 3 being announced.

Here is the language straight from the Mass. Sports Wagering Catalog.


In previous years, Michigan had been more restrictive like Iowa. But Michigan bettors now have a little bit more freedom.

The rules are pretty much identical to what we just outlined in Massachusetts. It shouldn't affect your betting all that much.


Nevada is far more restrictive around props than states like New Jersey. Like Iowa, betting must stop 24 hours before the Draft begins.


Ohio approved NFL Draft betting last year, but with a ton of weird restrictions.

For example, you can't bet on who will be the No. 1 or No. 2 overall pick, but you can bet on who will be pick No. 3 (all the way through No. 10). There are some other props not on the board in Ohio, like which position a particular team will draft with their first pick.

Overall, the menu is pretty limited at FanDuel. In 2024, there's nothing available at FanDuel outside of the No. 3-10 overall picks, and total players drafted by conference.

Ohio sports bettors will have a bevy of opportunities to bet on the upcoming NFL draft, as the Ohio Casino
Control Commission has approved a number of new betting markets. These include specific bets on what pick an athlete will be selected (excluding the 1st/2nd overall pick).

— RLinnehanXL (@RLinnehanXl) April 13, 2023

West Virginia

Wagering closes at 8 p.m. ET on Wednesday night.

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