NFL Draft: Betting market tips off another big pick, CJ Stroud goes No. 2 to Houston

·3-min read

There was one more big surprise in store For NFL draft prop betting, and it was with the second pick that was perplexing to everyone.

The Houston Texans took a quarterback after all. And the betting market tipped it off.

In the hour before the first round of the NFL draft started, the odds for the second pick went wild. Ohio State quarterback CJ Stroud, who was +900 to go with the second pick on Thursday evening, was suddenly -300. Then he was -400. The odds at BetMGM came down, then came back with Stroud at -2000 to go second overall. And then, shortly after that, it shifted to -2500. That's where the odds stayed until the minutes before the draft.

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Stroud went with the second pick, cashing a lot of late tickets. So much for all the other names that were linked to the Texans leading up to the draft.

Ohio State quarterback C.J. Stroud was picked with the second overall selection of the NFL draft. (AP Photo/Paul Vernon, File)
Ohio State quarterback C.J. Stroud was picked with the second overall selection of the NFL draft. (AP Photo/Paul Vernon, File)

CJ Stroud ends up being Houston's pick

Everyone seemed to get a turn being the favorite as the No. 2 overall pick of the draft.

For a while it was Bryce Young, when Stroud was favored to go first overall to the Carolina Panthers. In the two weeks leading up to the draft, the favorite bounced around.

Alabama pass rusher Will Anderson Jr. had a turn as the favorite to go No. 2. Kentucky quarterback Will Levis became the favorite a little less than a week before the draft. Tyree Wilson spent a bit of time as the favorite to go No. 2 at some sportsbooks.

It was back to Anderson on draft day. Levis started the day as the favorite. Then Anderson blew past him and was -350 to go second. Then in the hour before the draft, it swung to Stroud.

In one day, there were three different favorites to go with the No. 2 overall pick of the draft. Now you know why sports books can be perplexed by NFL draft prop odds.

Stroud didn't slip in the draft after all

That the second pick ended up being Stroud, a perfectly reasonable option who was rumored to be falling down draft boards, is fitting. In all the draft prop betting craziness, the obvious pick ended up being the right bet.

There were wild swings with many of the odds for the picks that BetMGM posted. There were changes in the favorites for all five of the top picks leading up to the draft.

There was a big mystery with the second pick, up until the final hour before the draft. The Texans, in desperate need of a quarterback, went with Stroud. That made sense all along, but there's a lot of time to kill between the end of the season to the draft, and there were a lot of rumors about everyone else being Houston's preference.

That led to sharp bettors who caught on to Stroud at the right time cashing some nice tickets.