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NFL Betting – Number of Running Backs Drafted In The First Round

Written by:
Phil Simon
Published on:
Apr/13/2020

  • The UNDER 1.5 number of running backs drafted in the first round is huge favorite at -606

  • The OVER pays nicely at better than 4/1

  • Talent pool includes the likes of D’Andre Swift, Jonathan Taylor, J.K. Dobbins, Cam Akers and Clyde Edwards-Helaire

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Good news for sports fans is that the 2020 NFL Draft is scheduled to get started on April 23. For a few days we can take a break from esports, simulated games and ping pong to get a taste of the big time action we’ve all been missing and craving during this COVID-19 outbreak. Oddsmakers made this a special time for folks looking to throw down with a plethora of prop bets available. We’ll continue to look at a few of the posted wagers ahead of the draft.

It seems as though the running back position in the NFL is becoming less important. Past draft results might be a sign that teams see value in the position in later rounds. Last year only one running back was taken in the first round and this year’s supply is strong but not spectacular. The 2020 Draft class is loaded with wide receivers, defenders and a few top-notch quarterbacks, leaving running backs scrambling to find a spot on the first day. The total number of running backs selected within the first 32 picks is set at 1.5 with a nice plus-odds return should two get selected. You can wager on that prop and many others at BookMaker.eu.

Total Number of RBs Drafted in Round 1 of the 2020 NFL Draft

Over 1.5 ( +409 )

Under 1.5 ( -606 )

Depending on who you talk to there could be as many as three running backs taken in the first round or none. The so-called experts can’t seem to agree on anything when it comes draft time. And this year’s festivities are more of a crapshoot with teams not having the ability to meet prospects face-to-face due to the coronavirus.

There is a need for an every-down back on all clubs, but with the success of the New England Patriots and Kansas City Chiefs, teams that haven’t had a star ball-carrier, the need is shifting. Among a group of available running backs that includes among others D’Andre Swift, Jonathan Taylor, J.K. Dobbins, Cam Akers and Clyde Edwards-Helaire, there are certainly two first-round picks, right?

Well, don’t be so quick to jump on the over. Based on team needs and the overall strength of the draft class, oddsmakers are saying the number of running backs selected in the first round will stay below two.

Most draft experts have the first 15-20 players pegged and none of them are running backs. This bet comes down to the later part of the first round and I’m thinking we’ll be lucky to see one back chosen. A lot of people like Swift, and what’s not to like about the guy. He’s a deceptive runner with a mean combination of size and speed. Swift put back-to-back 1,000 yard seasons together and averaged over 6.5 yards per carry for his career.

Another thing that makes Swift a find for whichever team drafts him is his ability to perform in the passing game. He caught 24 passes for 216 yards and a touchdown last season and amassed 73 receptions, 666 yards and five scores during his career with only three drops. He isn’t averse to pass protection either, helping his draft status.

As much of a gamer as Swift is, you can’t overlook what Taylor accomplished during his career at Wisconsin. The first back in FBS history to rush for 6,000 yards in his first three seasons, Taylor showed his durability as a workhorse. He carried the ball more than 300 times the last two seasons and just missed that mark with 299 his freshman year. He averaged 6.7 yards per carry and scored 50 rushing touchdowns.

Proving he can be an every down back could also work against Taylor on draft day. Teams might be concerned about the number of times he touched the ball in college, a number that nears 1,000 with his 42 career receptions.

The Chargers could use a running back to pair with Austin Ekeler now that Melvin Gordon is no longer around. However, it’s likely they go another direction with the sixth pick. Taylor’s style fits that of the Baltimore Ravens, who have the No. 28 pick. I can see that being a perfect match.

There are too many other talented players on the board and the running back position lost some luster when Travis Etienne and Najee Harris elected to return to school. Taylor to Baltimore is the only first round selection and I can piggyback this prop with the first running back taken in the draft to hit on a double winner.

Access live betting lines from your mobile device at BookMaker sportsbook! Real-time spreads, totals, props and money line are all available so start betting with BookMaker today.

- Phil Simon, Gambling911.com

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