The nation’s best college football players are in Indianapolis for the ‘Underwear Olympics,’ otherwise known as the NFL Combine. How high a player jumps, how fast he is, what he scores on the Wonderlic will not give teams any insight into how well his game is going to translate to the NFL, but players get put through the process anyway.
Some, like LSU quarterback Joe Burrow, are present but not going through all the drills—but that doesn’t mean anything either. What the Combine does is give us a reason to debate who the No. 1 pick is going to be.
Everyone is assuming it is going to be Joe Burrow, and the odds at PointsBet.com certainly support that assumption:
- Joe Burrow -10000
- Chase Young +1200
- Tua Tagovailoa +2500
- Andrew Thomas +3000
- Justin Herbert +4000
- Derrick Brown +6600
- Jeffrey Okudah +6600
- Jordan Love +8000
- Jacob Eason +15000
- Jake Fromm +20000
- Jerry Jeudy +20000
- Jonathan Taylor +20000
- Jalen Hurts +20000
- CeeDee Lamb +25000
According to those odds, there is a 99.0 percent chance that Burrow is taken with the No. 1 pick in the draft. Chase Young’s shot at going first is a distant 7.69 percent. So, is there any reason to put money down on anyone other than Burrow?
The answer would appear to be no since the Bengals did bench longtime starter Andy Dalton last season and are expected to trade him. Ryan Finley didn’t exactly do anything to earn the job, and with how Burrow played last season, not picking him would be a mistake.
However, there is a chance they don’t.
Rumor has the Bengals possibly getting a second-round pick for Dalton, and if they can, they should absolutely take it. He has been a very good quarterback over the years, and at 32, he could easily have another four or five good years left.
That could also be why they should keep him. Last season was bad because he didn’t have his No. 1 wide receiver, A.J. Green—who should be back and ready to go this year. With the draft capital they can acquire by trading the No. 1 pick, they could potentially improve the offensive line, get a No. 2 wide receiver, improve the defense—the possibilities are endless.
But then whoever trades up will likely take Burrow with the No. 1 pick. At the same time, if the Bengals were not to trade the pick, they could use a guy like Chase Young on their defensive front.
So— how should you bet?
You will not win much unless you bet the farm, but the smart money is on Burrow. Whether it is the Bengals staying put and taking him or someone trading up, no one else is even being discussed as a possible option.
That being said, if you do feel like taking a chance on someone, the only possible option is Chase Young. Next to a play-making quarterback like Burrow, every team wants and needs a pass rusher like Young.