Starting on Thursday evening (8pm Eastern time, 1am UK Time) the 2022 NFL Draft will start with the First Round of picks from the cream of college football talent from the past season.
The Jacksonville Jaguars are on the clock with the first pick in the draft and there has been plenty of speculation about which top college talent they are going to select with that coveted first pick of the draft.
Last year, the Jags also picked first and landed Clemson quarterback Trevor Lawrence with their first pick, adding running back Travis Etienne later in the first round too. This year, it looks likely the Jaguars will look to boost their defense with the likes of Michigan’s Aidan Hutchison, Georgia’s Travon Walker and Oregon’s Kayvon Thibodeaux all being strongly linked with that first pick.
With no on-field action taking place, fans who are keen on betting on the NFL have been enjoying a wager on the draft for some time now and there is still chance to place your bets on a number of different markets available on the draft with bet365 Sport.
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Let’s now take a look at some of those good value draft markets available now at bet365, together with our tips for which of the options available in each look the best value bet.
Bet365 NFL Draft Betting Markets & Tips
Leading Odds – Travon Walker 5/8, Aidan Hutchison 8/5, Ikem Ekwonu 5/1, Evan Neal 20/1, Kayvon Thibodeaux 22/1
The Jacksonville Jaguars own the first pick of the draft and for a good while, many people felt the. Jaguars would go for Evan Neal, who is rated by many as the best player in this draft. However, when the Jaguars franchise-tagged their first choice left tackle, Cam Robinson, it appeared that a move for Neal was far less likely.
Then Aidan Hutchison became the de-facto favourite to be the first pick for the Jaguars, a team that has so many needs on its roster that you could make a case for any player in any position in the first round helping out their team. Hutchison is a fantastic edge rusher from Michigan who finished runner up in the Heisman Trophy voting.
However, in the weeks since the Combine, the performance of Travon Walker of Georgia has moved him into real contention and with many experts stating that Walker may have a higher ceiling in the NFL than Hutchison, there has been plenty of money for the Georgia star over the last few weeks.
The Jaguars have Josh Allen as one edge rusher and teaming him up with Walker or Hutchison would be a very strong move from Jacksonville. The Jaguars are not likely to be playoff-ready next season which makes me think the option to develop Walker into a better player than Hutchison makes sense, I just don’t see how the Jags could pass up on Hutchison as an NFL-ready edge rusher.
My Tip – Go for Aidan Hutchison to be first pick at 8/5.
Leading Odds –Aidan Hutchison 5/6, Kayvon Thibodeaux 2/1, Travon Walker 5/1, Malik Willis 11/1, Ahmad Gardner 16/1, Evan Neal 28/1, Derek Stingley Jr. 28/1.
Second to pick in the draft are the Detroit Lions and like the Jaguars, the Lions have glaring needs in all parts of the team. However, with Hutchison and Walker being viewed by many as the top two prospects in this draft, it seems likely that the Lions will take whichever of those two players that the Jaguars do not.
In essence, this is a no-lose scenario for the Lions. Either Walker or Hutchison would be big improvement to their pass rush defense, while they could even make a move for Evan Neal or Ikem Ekwonu here if they wanted to improve their offensive line instead.
However, a team that has given up as many points as the Lions have over the years have to start stopping teams scoring and that begins with an effective pass rush, so for me, that means with Hutchison off the board here, Walker would be the next pick.
My Tip – With Hutchison gone, I’d back Walker to be next off the board at 5/1.
Leading Odds –Ahmad Gardner 7/2, Ikem Ekwonu 15/4, Travon Walker 15/4, Evan Neal 5/1, Derek Stingley Jr 6/1, Kayvon Thibodeaux 8/1, Aidan Hutchison 10/1, Malik Willis 25/1.
For me, the first real intrigue of the draft will come at number 3 as the Houston Texans are a team that have so many needs that almost any top player left available could be a contender.
I’m ruling out Houston going with a QB here as I don’t think any QB this year is a top ten draft talent. I also feel Hutchison and Walker will be off the board, which cuts down the options.
There’s been lots of talk about the Texans going after Ahmad “Sauce” Gardner at corner, but I feel if they are going to run with Davis Mills at QB, they need to protect him and that brings Ikem Ekwonu and Evan Neal into the reckoning.
Many people reek Thibodeaux could be an option, especially with two Edge Rushers going in the first two picks and that would be a strong selection for the Texans too.
The Texans can’t lose with this pick, but they do need to address their most glaring need and for me, that is on the offensive line.
My Tip – This is toss up between Ekwonu and Neal, but I’d go for Neal at 5/1.
Leading Odds – Malik Willis 4/6, Kenny Pickett 6/4, Desmond Ridder 12/1, Matt Corral 16/1, Sam Howell 40/1, Carson Strong 100/1, Bailey Zappe 125/1, Kaleb Eleby 200/1
I don’t feel any of the quarterbacks in this year’s draft are a top ten talent, but that doesn’t mean a team won’t draft them there. There’s plenty of teams in need at this position for whom the likes of Willis and Pickett in particular would be a big upgrade.
For me, the first quarterback to be drafted is likely to be Malik Willis and I could see him going as high as sixth in the draft, which is where the Carolina Panthers will be picking and with Sam Darnold their QB at the moment, Willis would likely be an upgrade.
If he doesn’t go to Carolina then Seattle is another potential landing spot at number 9 in the draft and if he falls further, then expect the Pittsburgh Steelers to be interested too.
I feel Malik Willis will be the first pick as a QB, but where that pick is in the draft is anyones guess and of the QB’s listed above I think Willis and Pickett will likely go in the First Round, while Ridder and Corral could also go in the first, but may drop into the second.
My Tip – Malik Willis will be drafted first – it is just a case of who by.
Leading Odds –Garrett Wilson – Evens, Drake London 2/1, Jameson Williams 2/1, Chris Olave 14/1, Treylon Burks 18/1, Jahan Dotson 50/1, Christian Watson 50/1.
As the odds suggest, there are three very real contenders to be the first Wide Receiver drafted this year, it is just a question of when the first player will be selected and by whom.
Looking at the draft, there are a couple of teams picking early that need Wide Receiver talent, the Jets (who pick 4th and 10th) being an obvious one, while you can make a case for the Giants (who pick 5th and 7th) and the Falcons who pick 8th, especially with Calvin Ridley suspended for the season.
However, those three teams all have pressing needs with those first picks in the draft and the quality of players likely to be available to them means I can’t see the Giants, Falcons or Jets using their first pick on a Wide Receiver.
So, the Giants at number 7 is a possibility, but I think there are better options likely to be available there such as Gardner, Thibodeaux or Stingley and so I’d expect the Giants to go on defense with that pick.
So the Jets at 10 look the first real prospect and there’s no news on the Jets making a move for a top quality WR at the moment, even with Deebo Samuel requesting a trade from the 49ers. Unless something dramatic happens, I think pick 10 is where the first WR will go.
I think the pick will either be Garrett Wilson or Jameson Williams, with Wilson perhaps the favourite due to his better injury record and excellent ability to gain extra yards after the catch.
My Tip – The first WR off the board will go to the Jets at 10 and will be Garrett Wilson
Team To Draft Kenny Pickett (QB) – Carolina Panthers 6/4, New Orleans Saints 11/4, Pittsburgh Steelers 7/2, Atlanta Falcons 6/1, Seattle Seahawks 9/1, Tennessee Titans 14/1.
I see Pickett being the second quarterback off the board and if the Panthers are going to pick a QB, I see that being Willis. That means Pickett, a Pennsylvania native, would be a very enticing option for the Steelers later in the first round.
My Tip – Pickett to the Steelers.
Team To Draft Malik Willis (QB) – Pittsburgh Steelers 9/4, Carolina Panthers 7/2, Atlanta Falcons 5/1, New Orleans Saints 5/1, Detroit Lions 7/1, Seattle Seahawks 7/1,
I think if any team us going to take a QB early then it will be the Panthers. And if any QB is going to go early, it will be Willis. I envisage that Willis will be long gone before the Steelers pick later in the draft, unless they trade up to take him, which I can’t see happening.
My Tip – Willis to the Panthers.