Barring a fairly miraculous turn of events, we know that Joe Burrow is going to be the number one pick in the 2020 NFL Draft on April 23rd. There will continue to be some question about where exactly that means he’ll end up (we’ve already discussed the possibility of the Dolphins trading up to grab Burrow). But it would be a shock at this point if any other player were picked first.
That means most of the early draft speculation concerns the next few picks. And with a handful of names in the mix for those first few selections beyond Burrow, we’re taking a look at some possible outcomes with the oddsmakers’ perspectives in mind.
It’s become a little bit easier to observe the NFL Draft in this fashion because of the recent expansion of gambling options in the U.S. The introduction of online betting options in New Jersey in 2018 seems to have sparked the beginnings of a nationwide trend. Pennsylvania picked up some betting sites that can legally operate shortly after New Jersey, and additional states are looking to do the same. And as a result — whether you personally want to place bets or not — you can now go online and see some U.S.-based sites’ up-to-date odds on major sporting events like the NFL Draft.
That doesn’t mean the odds are the same on every platform. Different oddsmakers update at different times, and the numbers can be affected by ongoing betting activity. However, using some of the most established platforms as resources — options like Unibet and FoxBet, which are already available in both Pennsylvania and New Jersey — here is our best picture of the predicted order of top picks beyond Burrow.
#2 – Tua Tagovailoa
Tua Tagovailoa isn’t quite a consensus number two pick among oddsmakers; Unibet, in fact, has Justin Herbert dead even with the Alabama quarterback in overall odds for the top pick (with both well behind Burrow). Nevertheless, the bulk of betting platforms appear to agree that Tagovailoa is the most likely number two selection. Clearly, his injury has become a concern, to the point that it likely paved the way for Burrow’s place as the surefire top pick. But all indications are that Tagovailoa will still go second — likely either to the Redskins (who own the pick) or the Dolphins, should they choose to trade up.
#3 – Chase Young
Despite the fact that at least one platform (Unibet) had Justin Herbert on Tua Tagovailoa’s level, Ohio State’s Chase Young appears to have the third-best odds for the top pick among a majority of available betting sites. Accordingly, we’re listing him third here.
For his part, Young has been insistent that he’s the best player in the draft, and there are still plenty of evaluators (and fans) who agree. Burrow and Tagovailoa tend to be listed with better odds for top picks simply because of the importance of the QB position and the needs of the teams picking. But some oddsmakers do have Young nipping at the quarterbacks’ heels, such that he may be the only logical pick, from a betting perspective, for those looking for a surprise in the top two.
#4 – Justin Herbert
Oregon’s Justin Herbert may have the most sporadic betting odds of any player presumed to be a top-10 pick. As mentioned, some platforms give him the second-best odds at the top overall selection. Others give him odds that would indicate he could fall out of the top five. But he seems to average out roughly in the number-four spot.
Hesitation from some oddsmakers may be due to the fact that the Giants own the fourth pick, and drafted Daniel Jones just last year. However, there’s every possibility the Dolphins could look to trade up one spot to grab Herbert, if in fact they don’t make a move for Burrow or Tagovailoa. Basically, it’s hard to argue with Herbert here from a betting perspective, even if his sliding to number five may ultimately make sense also.
#5 – Jeffrey Okudah
Depending on where you look, you may see players like Jordan Love and Isaiah Simmons alongside or ahead of Jeffrey Okudah in odds listings. A rough average of projections we looked at would tab Okudah as the fifth pick, however, and it’s starting to seem very unlikely that he’d fall much lower than this.
Recent word out of New York has indicated interest from the Giants, which lends further support to these rough odds-based rankings. There’s a lot of logic to the idea of a Dolphins-Giants swap landing Herbert in Miami at number four and leading Okudah to the Giants fifth overall.
Betting odds at this stage should not be taken as concrete indicators. However, they are unbiased (unlike some of the mock drafts you’ll see floating around the internet), and they’re typically updated. And right now, this is how they’d seem to project things.