2024 NFL Draft Odds: Latest on Caleb Williams, Marvin Harrison Jr., and More

By Chris Hughes   February 13, 2024 

2024 NFL Draft Odds: Latest on Caleb Williams, Marvin Harrison Jr., and More

The NFL calendar is one that does not stop with the playing of the Super Bowl. Some circles are already looking forward to Super Bowl 59 (and we have the early futures odds for that here). But next up in the offseason is the NFL Draft Combine, which is followed by the NFL Draft on April 25 in Detroit. For the second year in a row, the Chicago Bears are on the clock thanks to a smart trade last year that sent the No. 1 pick to Carolina in exchange for wide receiver D.J. Moore and the Panthers’ first-round pick in 2024.

The Panthers turned out to have the worst record in the league last year, so the Bears get the top spot again. But in reality, it all goes back to this play by former Bears coach Lovie Smith at the end of the 2022 regular season. If the Texans lost this game, they would’ve chosen No. 1 last April.

While the play cost the Texans the top spot, it may have helped them because it took the decision out of their hands to take C.J. Stroud over Bryce Young — which is looking like the correct choice after one season.

So there are plenty of storylines going into this draft. Will the Bears alter course from Justin Fields and take a quarterback in a QB-rich draft, or will they trade down again? Washington and New England sit behind them with QB as a major need for both franchises. Let’s take a look at the NFL Draft odds and some key bets to make at this early juncture.

NFL DRAFT ODDS: Caleb Williams Heavy Favorite to Go No. 1

2022 Heisman Trophy winner and USC quarterback Caleb Williams’ odds of going No. 1 get shorter and shorter as the days go on. At -650 to start 2024, Williams is now -1200 at FanDuel to be the top overall pick come April. While his numbers were strong, Williams did lose five of his last six games as a starter. There has also been some criticism of his skills in recent weeks.

But even if the Bears pivot and keep Fields, expect a team to take Williams with the No. 1 pick. The Bears pick twice in the first nine picks. Of the other eight teams picking in the top 10, all but one is set at quarterback (the LA Chargers at No. 5 with Justin Fields). If Chicago wants to part with the pick, there will be plenty of suitors, and Williams is the likely top pick. There isn’t any value on him at No. 1 and not enough of a reason to pick Drake Maye (+900), Marvin Harrison Jr. (+1600), or anyone else.

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What Team Will Take Harrison Jr.?

Aside from some potentially franchise quarterbacks, a franchise wide receiver will be chosen early in the first round. Marvin Harrison Jr. picked up over 1,200 yards and 14 touchdowns in each of the past two seasons at Ohio State. Now, the son of the Hall of Fame wide receiver will likely be a top-five pick. But where will he suit up?

Right now, Arizona is the favorite to land Harrison Jr. at -195. If the draft plays out as expected with no surprises, the Bears, Commanders (Maye), and Patriots (Jayden Daniels) will all take QBs. That leaves the Cardinals at No. 4, meaning they will stick with Kyler Murray as the franchise QB and hand him an elite weapon in Harrison Jr.

But since when does the NFL Draft go as expected?

There are plenty of things that can happen, but we believe the most likely scenario is that the Bears will trade the top pick to Washington or New England, putting Chicago in position to grab Harrison Jr. at No. 2 or No. 3. FanDuel lists the odds of the Bears taking Harrison Jr. at +500. A 5-to-1 shot on a scenario that feels more like the second option for Chicago if they don’t take Williams? Yeah, we’ll take those odds.

Will J.J. McCarthy Slide?

Every year, there’s a QB who slides down, which is usually to the benefit of the team who takes him. Aaron Rodgers was a mid-first-round pick, two-time NFL MVP Lamar Jackson was the final pick of the first round, and we’ve seen plenty of winning QBs come outside the first several rounds.

J.J. McCarthy, who did nothing but win at Michigan, could realistically go anywhere from No. 7 to out of the first round. The favorite is Minnesota at No. 11 (+450). However, we like two longer shots. One is Atlanta (+1100). Desmond Ritter doesn’t appear to be the answer for the Falcons, and a new coaching staff could choose to go with a steady winner.

But some flashier playmakers could go in the top 10, leaving the Los Angeles Rams (+1100) with a shot to take McCarthy at No. 19. Sean McVay has a solid team returning next year, so he could choose the Wolverine to sit and learn under Matthew Stafford for a couple years before turning the reins over to him. With Green Bay successfully doing this strategy twice (with Rodgers and Jordan Love), don’t be surprised if other teams follow suit.

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