NFL Draft Projections: The Quarterbacks
by Alan Matthews - 4/22/2010
In the first NFL Draft betting story here on Doc’s, I focused on some unique first-round props that Bodog offers among its dozens of draft propositions. Today let’s look at the quarterback betting options on the site and offer our NFL Draft projections.
And really it’s always the quarterbacks who draw the most interest in any draft, and the odd thing about this year’s is that a guy who will go no better than third among the QBs is getting by far the most attention. Of course that’s Florida’s Tim Tebow, who probably has to be called the best player in Gator and SEC history, if not possibly in NCAA history. Tebow’s resume is unreal, with two national titles (albeit one as a starter), one Heisman Trophy (first sophomore to win it) and two other Heisman Top 5 finishes to go along with nearly every major SEC touchdown record a quarterback can hold (except, ironically, in passing).
Yet every NFL scout was unanimous in saying that Tebow, as he used to be constructed, was not an NFL quarterback. Thus he altered his throwing motion to bring the ball back around his ear as opposed to down near his waist before he threw the ball. And obviously he will have to learn to take a majority of snaps under center as opposed to out of the shotgun. Tebow’s bruising running style might be fine on the goal line in the NFL, but there’s no way he can run as much as he did at Florida because his body would absolutely take a beating.
And let’s not forget the marketability of Tebow, definitely the most popular college football player in years. All you need to know is that 93 million people Googled “John 3:16” the day after Tebow wore the Bible verse on his eye black at the BCS Championship Game against Oklahoma two season ago. Think Tebow, a Jacksonville native and a deity in the Sunshine State, might sell a few tickets for the Jaguars?
Now the word on Tebow is that he has improved his draft stock enough to possibly slip into the late first round. Bodog lists Tebow going between picks 30-50 as the -190 favorite, with earlier in the first round at ‘Even’ and 50 or higher at +260. Don’t waste your money on the 50 or higher despite the value there. The most likely candidates to take Tebow are the Browns, Redskins (he can learn behind Donovan McNabb for 2-3 years), Bills, Jaguars, Seahawks and Patriots. You might be thinking: Patriots? Obviously Tebow wouldn’t replace Tom Brady, but Bill Belichick loves to outsmart the world and reportedly is enamored with the different ways he could use Tebow. Of all those teams mentioned, the Patriots pick the lowest in the first round at 22nd. There is no way Tebow goes there.
Your only chance to make money here is to take the ‘under’ 30 option and hope that New England trades back a few picks and grabs him or the Bills, Seahawks or Jaguars trade their second-round pick and other considerations to get back into the late first round. The Redskins just don’t have enough picks to play with.
Thus, the more interesting and potentially profitable bets involve Notre Dame’s Jimmy Clausen and Texas’ Colt McCoy. Clausen has an ‘over/under’ draft position of 9.5, with the ‘under’ as the -125 favorite. Why 9.5? Because the QB-needy Bills pick at No. 9. Mel Kiper is in love with Clausen – ranks him higher than Sam Bradford – and is really the only notable draft expert who has Clausen going to the Bills. Most other mock drafts have the 49ers taking him at No. 17. But if you have some inside info on the Bills, you can double up on Clausen going at No. 9 overall, as he is offered at 1/1 on the prop bet for that exact draft position. I happen to think Buffalo does take him there.
The other QB props at Bodog involve McCoy’s ‘over/under’ draft position at 38.5. You can see where that number comes from because the very QB-needy Browns draft at No. 38 as of today and barring trades. Reportedly Browns boss Mike Holmgren loves McCoy, comparing some of his intangibles to Joe Montana and Steve Young. I don’t think there’s any chance that McCoy gets by Cleveland unless the Browns think they can just move a few spots down and still get him. The under 38.5 is -175 while the over is +145.
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