NFL Sportsbook Betting – 2011 NFL Draft Preview
Sports betting enthusiasts always know that they need to plan ahead and make precise evaluations of the teams they bet on. No sport generates more interest and discussion in the United States these days than professional football, so as the sport prepares for the NFL Draft late in April, a lot of bettors are getting ready to size up how each team will (or won’t) fill its most pressing needs.
NFL betting experts are going to be on the lookout for several stories in particular as the NFL Draft comes into focus. The Carolina Panthers probably shifted away from the quarterback spot when Andrew Luck of Stanford decided to stay in school and resist the temptation to jump to the pros following his sophomore season. Auburn quarterback Cameron Newton is an imposing athletic specimen, but NFL teams will wonder about his polish and precision as a passer. Newton owns a considerable degree of arm strength and can run with a devastating combination of speed and power. However, Carolina might wait one more year and see what Jimmy Clausen can do as the starting quarterback. If Clausen can’t measure up in 2011, then the Panthers – under new coach Ron Rivera – would seek Luck in the 2012 draft. They’ll likely pass on Newton and seek help in the trenches. Auburn defensive tackle Nick Fairley or Auburn defensive end Marcell Dareus will both sit at the top of Rivera’s list. They’ll be hard to pass up for a team that finished 2-14 last season.
The Denver Broncos pick second and the Buffalo Bills pick third. These two teams are cultivating quarterbacks (Tim Tebow and Ryan Fitzpatrick), so they’ll also look to lineplay for their selections, although Denver might very well seek Patrick Peterson, the safety from Louisiana State, to shore up an aging secondary that needs re-tooling.
The team in the top five of the draft that’s most certain to get a quarterback is the Cincinnati Bengals at number four. Because of Carson Palmer’s terrible 2010 season and all the fallout it created, Cincinnati is sure to start over and seek its next long-term quarterback. Blaine Gabbert of Missouri is a pocket passer with above-average mobility who would seem to be the no-brainer choice for head coach Marvin Lewis.
If Auburn’s Newton is going to land someplace, it’s probably with the Tennessee Titans at number eight. Tennessee, of course, detached itself from Vince Young in a bitter feud involving former head coach Jeff Fisher. New coach Mike Munchak has to find a new quarterback to lead the franchise into the future. March Madness betting analysts might not be focusing on the NFL right now, but even they know that the Titans need help under center.
In terms of wide receivers, the two young men who are likely to cash the biggest paychecks are also from the SEC. Much as Dareus and Fairley will hit big paydays on the defensive lines of NFL rosters, Georgia receiver A.J. Green and Alabama pass-catcher Julio Jones are likely to be gone by the time the top 10 picks have been exhausted. Cleveland, picking sixth, needs targets for promising quarterback Colt McCoy. Washington, at number 10, has to find better receivers so that someone – anyone – at quarterback will be able to find a reliable target and shore up the Redskins’ dreadful passing attack under embattled head coach Mike Shanahan.