NFL Draft Betting: Who Will Be the First Cornerback Drafted in 2024?

Gabriel Santiago
Gabriel Santiago@gps_onthemic
NFL Draft Betting: Who Will Be the First Cornerback Drafted in 2024?

The sporting action is largely geared toward basketball and baseball during this time of year, but for gridiron diehards, the 2024 NFL Draft can't come soon enough.

With the annual event taking place in Detroit for this season, football's draft (April 25-27) is very near. As always, there are myriad looming questions and storylines to dive into. Still, this draft is tougher to gauge than most. The opening round is projected to be quarterback heavy.

FanDuel Sportsbook has you covered with various NFL Draft odds. For the sake of this article, we'll dive into the defensive backfield. Specifically, there is an exciting crop of cornerbacks entering the NFL. There's a chance we see as many as six selected in the upcoming first round.

In 2024, we are expecting the first few taken to be offensive players. Still, with corner being such a vital position at the professional level, defensive backs are always in demand. So, in the First Cornerback Drafted betting market, what does the field look like?

Let's see what the numbers say ...

All NFL odds via FanDuel Sportsbook. Settlement for this market is based on position classification.

2024 First Cornerback Drafted
FanDuel Sportsbook Odds
Quinyon MitchellToledo-180
Terrion ArnoldAlabama+150
Cooper DeJeanIowa+1000
Nate WigginsClemson+2200
Kool-Aid McKinstryAlabama+7500
Ennis RakestrawMissouri+10000
T.J. TampaIowa State+10000

2024 NFL Draft Odds

First Cornerback Drafted

Quinyon Mitchell, Toledo (-180)

Standing at 6 feet and just under 200 pounds, Quinyon Mitchell of the Toledo Rockets already has the size and skills to compete on Sundays. He offers three years experience as a starter, two seasons of First-team All-MAC honors, and 45 total passes defended.

FanDuel Sportsbook is fairly confident Mitchell will be the first cornerback off the board this year in Detroit. Notably, he is the odds-on favorite (-180) in this market. Along with strong ball skills, Mitchell offers elite speed. At the 2024 NFL Combine, Mitchell ran a 4.33 40-yard dash, which was the second-fastest among all defensive backs.

It should be noted that Mitchell plays the game with rampant physicality and his strong build allows for that. At the NFL level, he will not be easily overpowered (especially against receivers). Basically, he is always ready and willing to make a tackle. His 20 reps on the bench press paced all corners at the recent combine.

If franchises are deterred from Mitchell due to him not playing in a Power Five conference, they really should not be. New York Jets standout Sauce Gardner seamlessly made the transition from the American Conference to the NFL, winning DROY just two seasons ago.

Terrion Arnold, Alabama (+150)

Departing Tuscaloosa at the same time as his coach and mentor Nick Saban, Terrion Arnold is another thoroughly complete cornerback. Arnold spent the better part of the past two years anchoring the perimeter for the Alabama Crimson Tide.

Through his past two seasons, Arnold has amassed 108 total tackles (7.5 TFL), 6 interceptions and 20 passes defended. He displays a natural football IQ in various coverages and maintains good size for the position. There is no doubt that Arnold is a real-deal athlete with a nose for the football.

Arnold is the only other player with relatively short odds (+150) in this market at FanDuel. Interestingly enough, many experts actually have Arnold coming off the board before Mitchell -- does that leave us with real value on the corner from 'Bama?

According to Pro Football Focus, Arnold will be the first defensive back drafted in 2024, going 13th overall to the Las Vegas Raiders. If the Raiders are not trading up for a signal-caller, Arnold makes plenty of sense for a team that just allowed a 66.7% completion clip to opponents. draft analyst (and former running back) Maurice Jones-Drew also has Arnold being selected before any other cornerback. Leap-frogging Vegas, MJD suggests the Denver Broncos will take Arnold at No. 12. From there, he has Mitchell selected 15th overall by the Indianapolis Colts (a sentiment that PFF echoes).

Cooper DeJean, Iowa (+1000)

A three-year star for the Iowa Hawkeyes, corner Cooper DeJean is one of the most dynamic athletes in the 2024 draft.

Despite being listed as a cornerback, DeJean lined up out wide on just 54.9% of his snaps last year. He did well as a "cash" style defender, logging significant time at safety and nickelback as well as inside the tackle box. DeJean can also return kicks if needed, averaging 11.5 yards per return (with one touchdown) on punts.

Growing up in the state of Iowa, DeJean also starred as a quarterback along with setting several prep basketball records. Simply, the guy seems to be a natural with any athletic event. That was on wide display for the Hawkeyes as DeJean snagged five interceptions over the past two seasons, taking two of those back for scores.

DeJean has solid height for a cornerback, measuring at just under 6-foot-1. That will allow him a fighting chance in man coverage at the NFL level. With elite ball skills, DeJean could more than likely be utilized on offense as well.

As the Tatum-Woodson Defensive Back of the Year, DeJean certainly has potential to thrive on Sundays. Still, he is considered a long shot (10-to-1 odds) at FanDuel Sportsbook to be the first cornerback chosen at the 2024 NFL Draft.

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The above author is a FanDuel employee and is not eligible to compete in public daily fantasy contests or place sports betting wagers on FanDuel. The advice provided by the author does not necessarily represent the views of FanDuel. Taking the author's advice will not guarantee a successful outcome. You should use your own judgment when participating in daily fantasy contests or placing sports wagers.