Bettors ready to go wild on this week's 2020 NFL Draft

Tua Tagovailoa (13) throws a pass against the Duke Blue Devils
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Ricky Dimon

NFL· 2 years ago

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Since graduating from Davidson (The College That Stephen Curry Built), I have been writing about sports--just about any and all you can think of!--and coaching tennis in Atlanta, Ga. Beyond the four major sports, I am an avid tennis fan and cover the ATP Tour on a daily basis. If I'm not busy writing, you can generally find me on a tennis court or traveling the world wherever a sporting event takes me.

Pickings are slim for sports fans during the coronavirus pandemic. Just about all we’ve had is the final rounds of two different Masters on CBS (Phil Mickelson’s win in 2004 and Tiger Woods’ triumph last year) followed by episodes one and two of “The Last Dance” (a documentary on Michael Jordan and the Chicago Bulls).

But you can’t bet on stuff like that. That stuff is in the past. In fact, there haven’t been any major sporting events for anyone to bet on in more than a month.

At long last, a change will come when the 2020 NFL Draft begins on Thursday night. There are always props to bet on in the draft, and this year there will be even more such offerings than usual with sports fans desperate to throw some money on whatever the heck they can throw it on. As such, sportsbooks can expect a historically active NFL Draft on the betting front.

“We’ll do probably more than 10 (times) what we did last year (on the draft),” John Sheeran, director of trading for FanDuel, said in an interview with ESPN. “It’s really, really tricky to decipher what is actually information that you can use to make your line more accurate. It’s almost impossible to keep on top of all of it. In the instance where we miss key information leaking out, you will invariably find a stream, a waterfall effect of bets that are coming through at that moment of time.”

As if a month-long drought in meaningful betting is not incentive for sports fans to make an unprecedented number of wagers on this NFL Draft, DraftKings Sportsbook is willing to sweeten the pot. It is offering new and returning users a 20 percent profit boost on up two bets. For example, if you put $100 on Jordan Love to be the third quarterback selected at +600 odds, you would profit $720 instead of $600 (yes, for those challenged in math: 20 percent of $600 is $120, $600 + $120 = $720). If you bet on Jalen Hurts to go in the first round at +800 odds, you would profit $960 instead of $800. When it comes to legality in the United States, users in states such as Indiana and New Jersey will be able to take advantage of those opportunities at DraftKings.

There are, of course, an innumerable amount of prop bets on offer for this week’s festivities. The Dallas Cowboys, for example, are -300 to select a defensive player with their first pick (an offensive player is +200). Offensive tackle Jedrick Wills is a +105 favorite to be the New York Giants’ first pick. D’Andre Swift is a -150 favorite to be the first running back off the board. Jeff Okudah is a +130 favorite to be the No. 3 overall pick (obviously behind Joe Burrow and Chase Young). CeeDee Lamb is a -190 favorite to be selected in the top 12 (picked 13th or later is +145). The over/under on wide receivers taken in the first round is 5.5 (Over is -180; Under is +140).

And it goes on, and on, and on. Get your popcorn—and your bets—ready!

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