Ah, NFL Draft season. There’s nothing like it.
After quarterback Bryce Young canceled the remainder of his pre-draft visits last week, it was presumed that he would become the number one overall pick to the Carolina Panthers on Thursday night. The betting market swung that way, as Young became the clear favorite to be taken first overall.
Well, things have shifted a bit on Tuesday morning, and it’s presumably thanks to the following post on Reddit:
“Will Levis is currently +4000 to be the first overall pick. Well ladies and gentleman, he’s telling friends and family Carolina will in fact take him on Thursday. You’re welcome.”
The NFL Draft in 2023: pic.twitter.com/RUGhhxVnpm
— Ari Meirov (@MySportsUpdate) April 25, 2023
Is this accurate? Is it a smokescreen? It’s hard to say. While Young is still the heavy favorite according to FanDuel Sportsbook, Levis is slowly but surely creeping up into the mix. Here’s a look:
Odds to be the Number One Overall Pick
Bryce Young -1350
Will Levis +700
CJ Stroud +3000
Anthony Richardson +7500
Will Anderson +20000
Young canceling the rest of his visits only to not know where he’ll actually be taken would be an absurd change of events. However, crazier things have happened at number one overall.
In 2018, nobody knew Cleveland would take Baker Mayfield until they submitted the card. In 2019, the Cardinals selected Kyler Murray at number one just a season after taking Josh Rosen at pick 10.
Young brings everything you want in a quarterback to the table. He has a strong arm, is accurate, is mobile, and has played in a complex offense at the collegiate level. His only real knock is his size.
As for Levis, he’s an incredibly intriguing prospect with a sky-high upside. He has a rocket of an arm, is “mobile” like Aaron Rodgers is mobile (not like Lamar Jackson), and has experience playing in a pro-style offense during his time at Kentucky. He is, however, turnover prone, has inconsistent accuracy, and “nearly 1/4 of his passes were thrown to targets behind the line of scrimmage in 2022” according to PFF.
Maybe this was Carolina’s plan all along, or maybe it’s yet another NFL Draft smoke screen. We’ll find out at 8pm on Thursday.
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