The onslaught of NFL draft props has finally arrived. In the past 24 hours, DraftKings, FanDuel, Pointsbet and the other remaining legalized sportsbooks dropped their largest list of offerings for Thursday night.
Let’s take a look at what changed from early writeups while handicapping the current state of draft props using PFF’s datasets.
TOP FIVE PICK
Pick: DEREK STINGLEY JR. +300 to be taken in the top five (DraftKings)
Stingley has dropped to +180 to be the first cornerback taken. If you think this is good value, the better way to bet it is betting him to go in the top five. A team such as the Houston Texans could very well take Stingley — who was worth 0.91 wins above average (WAA) in 2019, the most among any defender in football — as their first pick at No. 3 overall.
Pick: DEVIN LLOYD +750 to be taken in the top 10 (DraftKings)
This is a big-time overreaction to Micah Parsons‘ impact last year, as he earned the most wins above replacement (WAR) in the league among linebackers by thriving as a run defender, pass-rusher and in coverage. Lloyd, who posted 31 pressures and eight sacks in 2021, has some of Parsons' versatility, which could cause teams to eschew concerns about positional value and take him near the top of the draft.
TOP 32 PICK
Pick: BREECE HALL +160 to be taken in the top 32 (DraftKings)
Right now, the likelihood that a running back is taken in Round 1 is reflected by the +150 price tag. However, if a running back is taken in Round No. 1, it should be Breece Hall being selected by a team such as the Arizona Cardinals or the Buffalo Bills. While Hall was not among the leaders in college football in yards earned on perfectly-blocked runs, he does have the athleticism that previous draft picks — Devin Singletary and Zack Moss — lack. Put those together, along with Buffalo's all-in nature, and I think there’s a very good chance the Iowa State product gets selected higher than we think:
the #Bills drafted Devin Singletary and Zack Moss recently – guys who were very, very good at breaking tackles. Given their offensive makeup, and the ability for them to generated perfectly-blocked runs, they might want someone who can take advantage of such plays: pic.twitter.com/4Qtrp84nEM
— Eric Eager ???????? (@PFF_Eric) April 16, 2022
Pick: KAIIR ELAM +125 to be taken in the top 32 (DraftKings)
The rest of the assumed first-round cornerbacks have seen their draft stock rise, as both Ahmad Gardner and Stingley should get selected in the first 10 picks. Trent McDuffie is the next cornerback who is most likely to be selected, as his draft position prop number sits at 16.5.
Bookmakers haven’t adjusted the other cornerbacks in this draft class, but if the top two go earlier than expected, then we could see a run on cornerbacks earlier than most prognosticators have projected.
Outside of McDuffie, Elam looks like the best cover cornerback for teams in the back half of the first round. He has the size and range to be a shutdown cornerback at the NFL level and is still only 20 years old. He hasn’t received a ton of buzz yet, but with the entire position providing increasing value, now is the time to buy into Elam as a first-round pick.
PLAYER DRAFT POSITION
Pick: NAKOBE DEAN over 30.5 draft position (-130 DraftKings)
Dean was considered the draft’s best linebacker after a sterling performance in the College Football Playoff, but everything since the season concluded has been bad for Dean’s stock due to discussions of position value, his medicals, etc. Given everything we’ve heard, Dean could have a Myles Jack-like fall into Round 2.
Pick: JAMESON WILLIAMS +200 first wide receiver taken (FanDuel)
You’re not getting anywhere close to the best of it anymore, but Williams is more of a coin flip to be the first wide receiver Thursday night, which is closer to the price that is being given to Garrett Wilson (-110). At +200 (33.3% breakeven), grab some value here now that the teams have wised up to how far along Williams is in his ACL recovery.