Covers Experts give their favorite NFL Draft prop picks

Apr 22, 2013 |
Covers Experts give their favorite NFL Draft prop picks
The first round of the 2013 NFL Draft starts Thursday at 8 p.m. ET.
Photo By - USA Today Sports
The first round of the 2013 NFL Draft starts Thursday at 8 p.m. ET.
Photo By - USA Today Sports
The NFL Draft can be a long, drawn out pageant - if you don't have money down on the numerous prop bets available for the three-day event. We went to the pros - Covers Experts handicappers - and got their favorite prop picks for the NFL Draft, which begins Thursday at 8 p.m. ET.

Steve Merril: Tavon Austin Draft position: 12.5 (over even under -140)

Under 12.5

With the Jets trading Darrelle Revis to the Buccaneers, New York is now picking ninth and might take WR Tavon Austin as the Jets desperately need some speed and playmakers on offense, so I think Austin Under 12 is work a look.

Jesse Schule: Manti Te'o Draft position: 26 (over -120 under -120)

Pick: Under 26

Prior to the scandal involving a non-existent girlfriend that was said to have died of leukemia, he was expected to go early in the first round. While his off-field issues have seen his stock drop, I believe somebody will take a chance on him as a top-20 pick. We have seen this story before as talented prospects have seen their stock drop due to off-field issues. This particular incident doesn't seem to be something that teams will have to worry about moving forward. I believe that if teams pass on Te'o late in the first round, they will regret it.

Sean Murphy: Tyrann Mathieu Draft position 76.5 (over -110, under -130)

Pick: Under 76.5

This is an ideal draft class for the "Honey Badger" to throw his name into. The talent pool simply isn't that deep and there are a number of teams looking for help in the secondary. Off-field issues are handled differently these days and I wouldn't be surprised if someone is willing to take a flyer on Mathieu early in the third round.

Marc Lawrence: Marcus Lattimore Draft Position: 84.5 (under -120)

Pick: Under 84.5

Lattimore was a first-round stud in 2012 who bypassed the draft last year and ultimately blew out his knee on a horrific tackle early last season. Word is his recovery has progressed far beyond expectations and he is a first-class individual. After witnessing Adrian Peterson's amazing comeback from a similar injury last season, he figures to be a calculated risk worth taking.

Matt Fargo: Matt Barkley Draft Position 33.5 (over -160 under +120)
Pick: Under 33.5
The half-spot hook in this could be huge as the 33rd pick in the draft goes to Jacksonville and the Jaguars are very interested in a quarterback that could start right away. If Geno Smith is gone, Barkley is their man. His football IQ is off the charts and, while he is shorter than ideal, his intangibles should make him successful and worth an early shot.

Doc's Sports: Eddie Lacy Draft position: 22.5 (over -200 under +150)

Pick: Under 22.5

The most running back-hungry teams in the first round are the Bengals, Rams and Packers. No. 21 Cincinnati has BenJarvus Green-Ellis and thus likely bigger priorities with its first pick. No. 22 St. Louis needs a replacement for Steven Jackson. Right now the Rams' No. 1 back is unheralded Daryl Richardson, who had 98 carries for 475 yards in 2012 as a seventh-round rookie. Sam Bradford needs all the offensive help he can get, so the Rams won't let Lacy get by them.

Bruce Marshall
: Geno Smith Draft position: 8.5 (Over Even, Under -140)

Pick: Over 8.5

Smith is not the sure-fire, immediate-impact QB that dominated the first round last year. Smith's stock has apparently dropped a bit further in pre-draft workouts, to the point where the likes of E.J. Manuel and Ryan Nassib, not to mention Matt Barkley, could be picked earlier.  Most of the teams slotted No. 1 to No. 8 have addressed any QB issues in the offseason and require more immediate help elsewhere. Geno likely goes somewhere between picks No. 12 to No. 20 instead.

Bryan Power: Number of QBs selected in the first round (0 +700, 1 +140, 2 +145, 3 +325)

Pick: Three (+325)

Though not a quarterback-rich draft, that hasn't stopped all the usual suspects from focusing on the position anyway. Teams always reach for a signal caller in the first round. There will certainly be at least one gone in the Top 8. There could be three gone in the Top 13 with the Cardinals, Bills and Jets all looking for long-term solutions under center.  West Virginia's Geno Smith seems like a lock for the Top 10, though I don't think he's ready.

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