2022 NFL Draft Odds Preview and Best Bets to Consider

A general view of the draft stage during the NFL Draft. Chris Trotman/Getty Images/AFP

The 2022 NFL Draft is quickly approaching and OddsTrader is here to make sure you know how to bet on the three-day mega event. We’ll be answering all of your key questions in our NFL Draft betting guide. This includes not only where you can bet and how to bet on the 2022 NFL Draft, and also takes a look at some NFL odds that are available.

When is the 2022 NFL Draft?

  • The 2022 NFL Draft begins with the first round on Thursday, April 28 at 08: 00 PM EDT.
  • The second and third rounds begin Friday, April 29 at 07:00 PM EDT.
  • Finally, Day 3 of the draft starts at 12:00 PM EDT on Saturday, April 30.

The three-day event includes 256 total selections over the course of seven rounds. The first round features 10 minutes between each selection. There are five minutes between picks on Day 2 and 3.

Where is the 2022 NFL Draft?

Venue: The NFL Draft will be held in Las Vegas, Nevada. In the heart of the strip; the Draft Experience and Draft Theater stage will be located behind the High Roller and the Linq, which is a stone’s throw away from Caesars Forum.

Where Can I Watch the 2022 NFL Draft?

You can live stream the 2022 NFL Draft broadcast on ESPN, ABC, and the NFL Network. You’ll either need a TV subscription or a subscription to one of the aforementioned streaming providers. 

Our Best Bets of the 2022 NFL Draft

Trevor Penning, OL, Northern Iowa

  • Odds: -700 (at FanDuel)
  • O/U: 16.5

It’s pretty surprising that FanDuel is even offering Trevor Penning as an option. He is a potential top-10 pick with a floor in the late-teens. His odds of -700 convert to an implied probability of 87.5%. I would probably put this at 99%, barring a gas mask bong video or suffering a serious injury between now and the draft.

A feature FanDuel just started offering is parlaying players in the same market. Including a guy like Penning in those is essentially a free-square.

Treylon Burks, WR, Arkansas

  • Odds: -500 (at Caesars Sportsbook)
  • O/U: 22.5

Initially regarded by many as the No. 1 WR of this class, Treylon Burks disappointed at the NFL Combine, running a 4.55 40-yard dash. He is now likely to be a mid-first-round draft pick for those who want to trust the tape and don’t believe in combine testing.

He also recorded a top speed of 22.6 MPH during one game which would have been the fastest speed among all wideouts in the NFL last season. Burks has gone in 100% of sharp mock drafts over the past two weeks so I consider him to be a great bet here at -500 and another to include in your top-32 parlays.

Daxton Hill, S, Michigan

  • Odds: -160 (at BetRivers)
  • O/U: 29.5

Daxton Hill is an uber-versatile athlete capable of playing both safety and potentially slot corner at the NFL level. His fit differs from team to team but the reality is he’s capable of playing at multiple positions. He elevated his draft stock at the NFL Combine by sprinting for a 4.38 40-yard dash.

Daniel Jeremiah has him ranked 19th among his top 50 players, which holds real weight in today’s NFL world as Jeremiah has consistent communication with NFL front offices and worked in the Ravens’ front office prior to becoming a media talent. I expect Hill to be a mid-to-late first-round pick.

Desmond Ridder, QB, Cincinnati

  • Odds: -135 (at DraftKings)
  • O/U: 31.5

Desmond Ridder is very much in play towards the back half of the first round. Multiple credible NFL sources have mentioned every team they talked to has a first-round grade on Desmond Ridder. I took a small position on Ridder being drafted in the first round as the Steelers (pick No. 20), Titans (pick No. 26), and Lions (pick No. 32) all need a quarterback to varying degrees.

There is also the potential for a team trading into the back half of the first round for a quarterback in order to ensure they get his fifth-year option on the rookie deal.

Kyler Gordon, CB, Washington

  • Odds: -115 (at BetRivers)
  • O/U: 33.5

Recent reports from plugged-in media members have said almost every team has a first-round grade on Kyler Gordon and no teams think he makes it to the second round.

Given those reports and the number of teams needing secondary help in the back end of the first round, I would play this up until -130.

Tyler Smith, OT, Tulsa

  • Odds: +120 (at FanDuel)

Tyler Smith comes in at 6-foot-5, 324 pounds. He could play tackle or guard at the next level. He performed well at the combine, posting an 8.76 relative athletic score (RAS). Among a poll from a number of executives Bob McGinn ran, Smith ranked right behind Trevor Penning. Tyler Smith is very much in play as early as the middle of the first round.

How to Bet on the NFL Draft

Having a decent baseline of information about the NFL Draft, the prospects available in the class, team needs, and the history of decisions the front office has made in past years are all helpful knowledge points to assist with finding value betting on the NFL draft.

The draft has continued to grow into one of the biggest events on the NFL calendar, so the amount of content that surrounds it can be overwhelming. Finding value can also be difficult if you wait too long for certain bets or are getting information from irrelevant sources. If you want avoid the research, our NFL computer picks can help out.

The first step for betting on the 2022 NFL Draft is to make sure you’re getting the best welcome offers from the top sportsbooks in your state. Make sure to check out our analysis of the top sportsbooks and their best promo codes. Continue to read after you’ve signed up for multiple books to ensure that you’re getting the most value back.

How do NFL Draft Odds Work?

Now that you’ve signed up with great sportsbooks and claimed their best offers, it’s time to get down to business. NFL Draft odds can be similar to other sports betting odds but there are some unique types of bets available. Let’s start with the basics.

Sportsbooks use multiple factors when they create odds. They not only want to entice you with an attractive-enough return to lay some money, but they also concede some of the likeliness of a certain outcome. The odds react to the public’s feelings as well as how the oddsmakers have predicted the event. 

We see this in the form of a plus (+) or minus (-) sign in front of a number. A plus sign represents an underdog pick that is less likely to occur than a minus sign. Some bets only have plus sign odds, and these are usually on futures picks that have less certainty because of the increased number of factors associated with the bet.

The minus sign is a favorite pick. The lower the odds number (example: -2300 vs. -115), the more confident the oddsmaker is in the outcome. The certainty rises but so does the payout for bettors. 

The easiest way to show this is to use a $100 bet as an example. Betting $100 on a bet with -1000 odds would net a meager $10 profit. However, throwing a $100 bet on -110 odds would equal a $90.91 profit. But there’s significantly more risk associated with the latter bet.

Always look at multiple books before laying a bet because the odds vary by each sportsbook.

Types of NFL Draft Bets Available

The majority of sportsbooks now offer numerous different bet types for you to get involved with. Some are easy to understand, whereas others can be more intimidating depending on your familiarity with each team and player. Let’s explain each option.

Player Draft Position Odds

This one can be somewhat confusing because of how the over/under structure is presented. Betting on a player with an over/under the line of 4.5 is a numerical bet, not an order of the draft bet. We often associated the lower the pick number with the better pick (No. 1 overall vs. No. 256 overall), but the meaning is different for the over/underplay.

If you take the under on 4.5, you will win if the player is selected prior to the fifth overall selection. Vice versa, if you bet on over 4.5 then you’re saying the player will hear his name called at No. 5 and no earlier.

These bets are ideal for people who know the teams involved in that range well and are familiar with the specific player’s fit with those teams. These lines are often more shaped by public opinion than sportsbooks knowing where a player will land.

First Player Drafted Odds

This is an easy-to-understand format that is often presented with familiar names. The players included could be tied to a position or a team. For example, this could be worded as “first quarterback drafted” and offer five of the most popular passers within the class.

There is a clear favorite often with these odds and several longshots. Even in a deep quarterback class like in 2021, Trevor Lawrence was -6000 to be selected first at one point. But after Lawrence, we saw much more value available until the draft drew closer.

Other positions can be more difficult depending on the team drafting within the expected range of where a player may be picked. The strength of the positional class also matters. The outcome you’re betting on is easy to understand, though.

Total Drafted Odds

Feeling especially confident on a run of a certain position, or want to fade the public’s mock drafts? This is a good area to do so. The total drafted odds are available for certain positions, individual schools, entire collegiate conferences, and entire sides of the ball. 

Looking back through draft classes compared to mock drafts, we tend to see more defensive players and offensive linemen than receivers and running backs. This makes sense when you consider the difficulty of finding impactful blockers and defenders compared to playmakers.

But the public loves fantasy football, so mock drafts and social media discussions revolve around the glamorous positions. This isn’t to say you should always take the over on defensive players projected to go in the first round and under on receivers. Consider it when counting the number of prospects you believe will push the over or under.

Specific Team Selection Odds

Whether a huge fan and expert on one team or have a good feel for what the strategy is for a certain franchise, betting on what a specific team will do can make a lot of sense. These odds are tied to one team and a set of individual players. Usually, there’s a solid favorite and reasonable value plays.

It may make sense to take a long shot for bad teams with a lot of holes. The payoff for taking a calculated gamble could reward you with a +1000 return. The odds are usually best early in the draft period before free agency crystalizes team needs and sportsbooks adjust as realistic options become clearer. 

Remember, the draft is hard to predict. We never know what will happen. What a mock draft said last year bears little consequence to NFL teams.

Team Positional Selection Odds

There are two types of team positional selection odds formats. One is projecting how many of one position a certain team will take. This is often shown as “Team to Draft Position X 1.5” and over odds on an over and under the 1.5 number. 

The other is simply betting on the position a team selects with their first pick. You may not feel comfortable betting on a certain team’s exact player but you may have a strong feeling about the position. The trade-off in odds may be significant but your risk also lessens.

Draft Prop Odds

Want to get weird and take random stabs on picks? This is your zone. These are slightly more random in nature and can offer a nice return on a small play.

Sportsbooks may offer a selection on what position will “Mr. Irrelevant” play, or what side of the ball. Other popular draft props we’ve seen in recent years are how many trades will occur, or if a certain position will have a run of multiple selections in a row.

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