Kyler Murray‘s NFL draft position won’t be the only thing on the line when the dynamic Heisman Trophy winner runs the 40-yard dash at the 2019 NFL Combine.
Thanks the expansion of legalized sports betting, this year, multiple New Jersey sportsbooks and bettors will also have money at stake on the performances of Murray and his fellow Combine participants in multiple drills.
Combine latest in non-traditional wagering events
For years, the NFL Combine has served as the proverbial oasis in the desert of the offseason for football enthusiasts.
While many of that year’s draft-eligible college prospects display their athletic wares in a multitude of drills, fans are left to dream of what could be if their favorite team nabs one of the best from the college ranks at a position of need.
On its own merits, the annual talent evaluation extravaganza does actually have some redeeming qualities. For example, there’s plenty of elite athleticism demonstrated in tests like the 40-yard dash and quarterback/receiver passing drills.
And for 16 years, the bench press test always carried a bit of extra flavor thanks to inimitable strength coach and spotter John Lott, who encouraged, cajoled and generally worked players into a lather in an attempt to squeeze every last rep out of them.
But this year, there’s the added element of intrigue that may trump all of that — cold, hard cash.
Like the just-completed Oscars and the forthcoming NFL draft, the NFL’s annual “underwear Olympics” is yet another new, rather unlikely, wagerable event this year. BetStars NJ, DraftKings Sportsbook and PointsBet have a robust selection of Combine-based wagers centered on the major drills that will be completed during the five-day period between February 28 and March 4.
Interestingly, each of the three sportsbooks is taking a slightly different tack with the type of wagers offered.
BetStars is focusing on offering odds on all-time records in each drill being eclipsed:
- 60-yard Shuttle (Shelton Gibson’s 2017 record of 10.71 seconds to be broken): No: -250/ Yes: +180
- Bench Press: (Stephen Paea’s 2011 record of 49 reps to be broken): No: -650/Yes: +400
- Broad Jump: (Byron Jones’ 2015 record of 12’3 inches to be broken): No: -500/ Yes: +333
- Vertical Jump: (Chris Conley’s 2015 record of 45.0 inches to be broken): No: -350/Yes: +235
- 40-yard Dash: (John Ross’ 2017 record of 4.22 seconds to be broken): No: -333/Yes: +240
Notably, DK is one of two New Jersey operators currently offering player-specific bets. They’ve unsurprisingly honed in on the two prize quarterbacks in this year’s draft — Murray and Ohio State’s Dwayne Haskins — for one of those wagers:
40-yard Dash Prop
- Kyler Murray: Over 4.39 seconds (-125)/ Under 4.39 seconds (-106)
- Dwayne Haskins: Over 4.80 seconds (-121)/ Under 4.80 seconds (-110)
Then, the raw power of Haskins’ OSU teammate Nick Bosa, who finished his three-year college career with 29 tackles for loss and 17.5 sacks over 29 games, can be wagered on as well:
Bench Press Prop
- Over 27.5 reps: -121
- Under 27.5 reps: -110
Finally, DK is also offering over/under bets on the top overall performances in each of the four most popular drills:
Fastest Overall 40-Yard Dash Time:
Over 4.29 seconds (-115)/Under 4.29 seconds (-115)
Most Bench Press Reps By a Player:
Over 40.5 (+100)/ Under 40.5 (-134)
Highest Vertical Leap By a Player:
Over 43.5 inches (-115)/ Under 43.5 inches (-115)
Longest Broad Jump By a Player:
Over 137 inches (-115)/ Under 137 inches (-115)
For its part, PointsBet is seemingly taking a cue from both of its fellow Garden State sportsbooks in terms of the variety of Combine bet types on its board.
PointsBet is offering both over/under wagers on top numbers for each individual drill and wagers on whether the all-time best performances in each of them will be eclipsed.
- Fastest 40-Yard Dash By Any Player: Over 4.29 seconds (-110)/ Under 4.29 seconds (-110)
- Highest Vertical Jump By Any Player: Over 43.5 inches (-110)/ Under 43.5 inches (-110)
- Most Bench Presses By Any Player: Over 40 reps (-110)/ Under 40 reps (-110)
- Position of Player to Record the Fastest 40-Yard Dash: DB (+100)/ WR (+125)/ RB (+175)
- Record-Breaking 40-Yard Time: Yes (+240)/ No (-334)
- Record-Breaking 60-Yard Shuttle: Yes (+180)/ No (-251)
- Record-Breaking Bench Press Reps: Yes (+400)/ No (-667)
- Record-Breaking Vertical Jump: Yes (+235)/No (-345)
- Record-Breaking Broad Jump: Yes (+333)/No (-501)
Additionally, PointsBet’s player-specific prop for the 40-yard dash actually includes several players in addition to Murray not part of DraftKings’ offerings. That list includes top prospects such as Stanford’s Bryce Love, Penn State’s Trace McSorley, and Ole Miss’ D.K. Metcalf:
Best 40-Time Over/Under (All odds set at -110):
- Kyler Murray: Over/Under 4.37 seconds
- Bryce Love: Over/Under 4.38 seconds
- Trace McSorley: Over/Under 4.65 seconds
- D.K. Metcalf: Over/Under 4.59 seconds