Making the Most of Your NFL Draft Bets

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The National Football League will host all 32 teams and dozens of young men about to realize their NFL dreams this month for the annual NFL Draft, held over three days each April. And those dreams include the hope that they, too, can one day lift the Lombardi Trophy signifying a Super Bowl victory.

The 2023 NFL Draft will be held at Kansas City’s Union Station, and arrives two months after that venue hosted the victory celebration for this year’s Super Bowl champion Chiefs,

As with most things NFL-related, the draft is big news, big money is being made, and it’s a big event for sports betting.

Number One Overall Pick

The Carolina Panthers are on the clock for the top pick, and all signs point to them taking a quarterback. The last time they picked No. 1 overall, Carolina selected quarterback Cam Newton, who led them to the Super Bowl. This year, bookmakers have the choice narrowed to one of two possible players. has Alabama quarterback Bryce Young as the favorite at -250. He is followed by Ohio State quarterback C.J. Stroud at +180. Florida QB Anthony Richardson is a distant third at +2000.

First Defensive Player Selected

Assuming that everyone is correct in their predictions that quarterbacks will come off the board with picks one and two, which of the top defensive players will be the first to be drafted?

Alabama’s Will Anderson finished his college career with 34.5 sacks, and he is the prohibitive favorite to be the first defensive player selected. has him as a -500 heavy favorite, followed by a pair of players at +550. They are Georgia defensive tackle Jalen Carter and Texas Tech All-American Edge Tyree Wilson.

Carter’s involvement in a January crash that killed two members of the Georgia football team may see him slide a little bit on draft day. The broken foot suffered by Wilson in November may do the same to him.

Cream of the Tight End Crop

This is one of the best tight end draft classes in recent memory. Teams will be able to get solid contributing tight ends later in the draft. But at the head of the class, there are at least two bonafide stars: Dalton Kincaid of Utah and Michael Mayer of Notre Dame.

This has turned into one of the more interesting draft day betting battles, with Mayer the early favorite, but Kincaid since passing him on the odds board. BetUs has Kincaid at -150 because of his ability to make plays after the catch. Mayer is +125 and is largely considered the more NFL-ready of the two top tight ends.

Darnell Washington is perhaps the best athlete of the group. But his lack of production at Georgia has him down the board at +550.

Conference Bragging Rights

Each of the 259 players that will be selected at the 2023 NFL Draft will move on from their college days and begin life as a pro. But as one last act for their college and conference, each player selected will influence the conference betting line.

BetOnline has set the over/under on SEC players selected in the first round at 11.5, which is the most of any conference. The Big Ten is next at 8.5 first round selections. The ACC and Big 12 are both at 3.5 players selected in the first round.

Last year, the SEC had 12 players selected in the first round, including five from the Georgia defense.

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