2020 NFL Draft Odds: QB

Odds, trends and analysis

For those seeking the thrill of live sports once again, the NFL Draft will take place from April 23-25 and should temporarily satiate us. It’s going to be a much different experience this year as necessary precautions will be taken to protect against the current pandemic. We’ll be deprived of our recurring favorites – Goodell getting booed, Goodell receiving uncomfortably long hugs from giant men, angry Jets fans, etc. — as the NFL will own the entire broadcast, including footage from inside each team’s war room and player homes.

Whether the league is able to start playing games on time is still unanswerable. In the meantime, we’re moving full steam ahead, helping you find the best value to bet on the NFL Draft. This page will break down the top quarterback prospects in this year’s draft and provide strategies for placing bets on the first QB to get drafted.

NFL draft odds: First QB drafted

When Tua Tagovailoa went down for the season on Nov. 16 last year, so did Joe Burrow’s top competitor for both the Heisman and the likely first quarterback selected in the 2020 NFL Draft. Armed with that info at the time, you may have been able to get even odds that Burrow would be the first QB off the board. If you waited just a few weeks for mid-December to come around, however, those odds dropped all the way to -1000.

Now, the best deal you’re likely going to find offering the 23-year old LSU prospect as the first quarterback taken is down to -10000.

First QB Drafted
Second QB Drafted
Third QB Drafted

Game
04/23/2020
(Eastern Time)
(EST)
Joe Burrow
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OTB
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-10000
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-10000
Tua Tagovailoa
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OTB
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+800
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+800
Justin Herbert
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OTB
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+1200
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+3300
Jordan Love
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OTB
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+5000
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+8000
Jalen Hurts
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OTB
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+22500
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+10000

Game
04/23/2020
(Eastern Time)
(EST)
Justin Herbert
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-125
Tua Tagovailoa
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-110
Jordan Love
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+2000
Joe Burrow
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+3300
Jalen Hurts
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+15000

Game
04/23/2020
(Eastern Time)
(EST)
Tua Tagovailoa
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+100
Justin Herbert
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+100
Jordan Love
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+400
Joe Burrow
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+10000
Jalen Hurts
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+15000

How to bet on first QB drafted

When searching your preferred sportsbook for a full slate of NFL Draft odds, find the tab labeled something along the lines of “First Pick By Position.” Here you should be able to select “First QB Drafted” to find the site’s offerings.

NFL Draft: 2020 QB profiles

Joe Burrow, LSU: Taking a quick look at some of Joe Burrow’s 2019 accomplishments, it’s safe to say we need to place it in the discussion of the greatest college football season ever by a QB. Those accomplishments include: Won the 2019 Heisman Trophy with a record 95% of the first-place votes, won the College Football Championship, led the NCAA in passing yards (5,671), total offense (6,039 yards), and completion percentage (76.3, on 402-of-527 passing), and set an NCAA record with 60 touchdown passes in 15 starts.

Burrow’s strengths as a quarterback should translate perfectly to most modern NFL offensive schemes. His ability to make quick, smart decisions combined with his big frame and athleticism make him a prototype QB for a West Coast offense. Sprinkle in a bunch of Run-Pass-Options (RPOs), much like LSU coordinator James Brady did on 22% of his playcalls last season, and Burrow’s NFL offense might look a bit like John Harbaugh’s scheme in Baltimore, tailor made for reigning MVP Lamar Jackson.

Tua Tagovailoa, Alabama: It’s nothing short of incredible that we’re still even talking about Tua having a shot at being the first QB drafted in 2020. The latest update on the 22-year old came in the form of a few 10-second videos posted to Instagram, highlighting his quick feet and even quicker release as coaches run him through a number of drills. Still, you’re likely going to find most Sportsbooks offering between +800 to +1100 odds that Tua gets drafted before any other quarterback. Not a great risk vs. reward scenario considering how heavy of a favorite Burrow currently is, and probably should be.

Most NFL Draft experts have Tua going to the Dolphins, a team badly in need of a franchise quarterback and picking fifth. According to a recent CBS Sports NFL Mock Draft, however, at the rate Tua is currently recovering from his displaced and fractured hip suffered just 4 months ago, they may need to move up ahead of Detroit at number three to make sure he ends up in Miami. Needless to say, a lot will hinge upon Tua’s personal pro day workout, currently scheduled for April 9.

Justin Herbert, Oregon: Herbert is large (6’6” 237 lbs), he’s mobile (4.46 40-yard dash), and he comes with a cannon on his right arm. After four full years at Oregon, two as the outright starter, he’s considered a high-character guy who should be ready to take the reins of an NFL team right away. NFL Network draft analyst Lance Zierlein calls him “the most physically gifted quarterback in the draft.”

So why isn’t he being given more consideration ahead of guys like Burrow or Tagovailoa? It’s probably not a lack of accuracy, he completed 66.8% of his passes his senior year. As Mel Kiper Jr. put it when discussing his latest mock draft, “You loved the talent. But there was something missing. Was it the lack of great instincts? Not doing well with great anticipation? Whatever it was, there was something missing.”

Jordan Love, Utah State: The Jordan Love stock was soaring after his breakout season for the Aggies in 2018. But a lot of the weapons and talent around him left before the start of 2019 and it showed. Most notably in the form of his FBS-leading 17 interceptions against only 20 touchdown passes (compared to a 32-6 TD-INT ratio the year before).

Love’s appeal to NFL teams centers around his size and athleticism: 6’4” 225 lbs and a 4.52 40-yard dash time. While he never ran for more than 175 yards in a season, his ability to get out of the pocket quickly and make strong throws on the run will open up extra options in the playbook for his offensive coordinator. At the moment, the Jaguars, Raiders and even the Patriots look to be possible landing spots for Love.

Jalen Hurts, Oklahoma: The narrative around Jalen Hurts entering this year’s draft has been heavily focused on his ability to win games and lead a team. After his combine showing in Indianapolis, more teams will take notice of his ability to roll out of the pocket and the improvement in his accuracy as a passer as well.

It remains unlikely we’ll see Hurts drafted in Round 1. But, a few teams looking to bring competition to their current starting quarterbacks are likely to take a second to third round flier on last year’s Heisman finalist. If, as it’s recently been rumored, the Raiders are looking to add Hurts to their depth chart alongside Derek Carr and recent free agent pickup Marcus Mariotta, they may need to trade one of their three third round draft picks to move ahead of teams like the Colts (34th overall pick) and Bears (43rd overall pick). Both franchises have been reportedly showing increased interest in Hurts.

How many QBs drafted in the first round?

NFL Draft QB history

Here’s a list of the first QB taken in each NFL Draft going back to 2010.

YearTeamPlayerCollegePick (No. overall)
2019ArizonaKyler MurrayOklahoma1
2018ClevelandBaker MayfieldOklahoma1
2017ChicagoMitch TrubiskyNorth Carolina2
2016LA RamsJared GoffCal1
2015Tampa BayJameis WinstonFlorida State1
2014JacksonvilleBlake BortlesUCF3
2013BuffaloEJ ManuelFlorida State16
2012IndianapolisAndrew LuckStanford1
2011CarolinaCam NewtonAuburn1
2010St. LouisSam BradfordOklahoma1

NFL Draft strategy and trends

Seven of the last 10 No. 1 overall picks in the NFL Draft were quarterbacks. Only two of those passers, Kyle Murray and Cam Newton, could be considered scramblers who consistently look to get out of the pocket, but the quarterback class was exceptionally weak during both those seasons. The jury is still out on last year’s top QB selections — Daniel Jones still has a lot to prove in New York; in Washington, Dwayne Haskins has the stench of a bust on him after just one season. Even more egregious were the first-round picks spent on QBs in 2011: Jake Locker, Blaine Gabbert, and Christian Ponder were all drafted in the top 12.

The only real argument to be made for Tua as the better NFL Draft pick over Burrow would have been his incredible speed and athleticism. But Tua’s absence at the recent NFL Combine and reports of Burrow running a more-than-respectable 4.7 seconds in the 40-yard dash, are just two more reasons to believe the LSU grad will be selected before his SEC rival.

Ultimately the odds that Tua gets drafted before Burrow don’t seem high enough to warrant a wager only getting you +800 back on your investment.

More NFL Draft betting guides