- Clelin Ferrell was selected fourth overall in the 2019 NFL Draft by the Oakland Raiders
- A pick that was viewed as a reach by some, Ferrell has still been getting the respect of most sportsbooks at +1000 to win Defensive Rookie of the Year
- But one book is shorting the Clemson prospect. Is there any value at jumping on his odds?
If you asked ten NFL scouts what they thought of Clelin Ferrell heading into the draft, you’d have done more consulting than Mike Mayock and Jon Gruden.
After famously sending their scouts home a week before the 2019 NFL Draft, the pair went out and grabbed Ferrell with the number four pick.
While it seems to be consensus that Ferrell is and will continue to be a good player, not everyone is considering his high draft status when setting NFL Defensive Rookie of the Year odds.
2019 NFL Defensive Rookie of the Year Odds
|Player||Odds at BookMaker|
* Odds taken May 7, 2019
With Bookmaker giving double the odds of others, is this a great spot to put down a value bet on Ferrell?
Can Ferrell Give Gruden What He Needs?
The last five edge rushers to win Defensive Rookie of the Year averaged over 11.5 sacks between them in their inaugural season.
The Oakland Raiders barely had over 11.5 sacks as a team last year. (Seriously, they finished with 13.5). So they could desperately use a DROY-type impact from Ferrell, considering they’ve added little else to their sorry defensive line this year.
— CBS Sports Network (@CBSSportsNet) September 20, 2018
But that poor supporting cast ultimately makes Ferrell an unattractive play to win this award.
Even though past winners like Joey Bosa, Von Miller and Shawne Merriman were stud rushers, they joined teams with other great options too (Melvin Ingram, Elvis Dumervil and Shaun Phillips respectively). Ask Vic Beasley how easy that first season is without any help.
Vic Beasley, a rookie, led the @AtlantaFalcons with 4 sacks in 2015.
— NFL Network (@nflnetwork) June 26, 2016
Did Mayock Made the Right Call?
Let’s pretend these two TV personalities turned franchise runners have given us a good reason to trust their process, which at this point, is still unclear.
Their 2018 trades suggested a long rebuild, but bringing in the unhinged Antonio Brown and Vontaze Burfict, along with keeping Derek Carr suggests that youth will not be served. Even if they did get the best pass rusher in the draft, most of these kids don’t make an early impact.
NFL rookie sack leaders through Week 6…
4.5 — Bradley Chubb (Broncos)
4 — Darius Leonard (Colts)
3.5 — Derwin James (Chargers)
2.5 — Kenny Young (Ravens)
2 — Seven players
— Kyle Fredrickson (@kylefredrickson) October 16, 2018
Playing linebacker or safety at the NFL level is similar to college, just at a much faster speed against more complex offenses. But for most rushers coming out of college, it’s vastly different. You’re no longer the best athlete on the field.
Every down you’re battling against grown men, who know how to use leverage and won’t fall for the same move twice.
Is There Value in These Odds?
Instead of looking at Ferrell getting +2000 as a generous gift from BookMaker, ask yourself why their odds for the linebackers are so short? On average, at other sportsbooks, Devin White is getting +950 and Devin Bush is getting +1300. Just because BookMaker is the outlier, doesn’t mean they’re wrong.
Linebackers win this award. Go find the value bets on them elsewhere.
Let's have fun and keep it civil.