Vegas has weighed in with its opinion on the new frontrunner to be selected by the San Francisco 49ers with the third pick on the 2021 NFL Draft.
NFL insiders like Adam Schefter and draft experts like Mel Kiper Jr. have remained high on Alabama’s Mac Jones as the 49ers likely choice, despite mounting momentum behind the ascension of Ohio State’s Justin Fields to usurp him in that position.
The oddsmakers, however, have bent to the pressure of the betting public. Or, perhaps more aptly, they are paying closer attention to the prevailing public logic and subsequent buzz of Fields in a 49ers uniform come draft day.
Kyle Madson, of Yahoo Sports, reported that Fields is the betting favorite to become the next San Francisco 49ers quarterback as of Thursday, April 15 — edging into the lead just two weeks prior to draft night.
Based on odds released by BetMGM, Fields is now -140 to be picked in the third slot. Jones, on the other hand, has dropped to +110, while Trey Lance is a long-shot selection at +450 based on what oddsmakers are hearing.
Making Sense of the Odds: How Big of a Favorite is Fields to 49ers?
Gambling is not for everyone, though new partnerships recently forged with the NFL are likely to make the practice even more widespread than it already is.
For the uninitiated, the aforementioned odds mean the following:
- Fields (-140) means a $140 bet on the 49ers to select him would be required to net the bettor $100 in profit.
- Jones (+110) means a $100 bet on the 49ers to select him would earn the bettor a $110 return.
- Lance (+450) means a $100 bet on the 49ers to select him would win the bettor $450.
The shifting odds do not necessarily indicate a greater likelihood that the 49ers will draft Fields over the other two quarterbacks, although they could.
The line changes, however, certainly indicate a shift in public perception of who San Francisco is likely to select with the No. 3 pick on draft night, scheduled for Thursday, April 29. Bettors are betting more money more frequently on Fields in recent days, which means Vegas outfits that take bets must change the odds to ensure the integrity of their own profit margins.
Factors Pushing Fields to 49ers, at Least Along Betting Lines
49ers Head Coach Kyle Shanahan and General Manager John Lynch attended Fields’ second pro day in person on Wednesday, April 14.
It was reported that Fields would incorporate throws and drills specific to 49ers practices into the larger context of a more general pro day regimen.
That Fields decided to incorporate the activities into his workout for one of only two teams that chose not to attend his first public showcase is an indication of interest on both sides of the draft equation.
Big-time NFL personalities, past and present, have also taken to social media in recent days to express their opinions on who the 49ers should, or will, select at No. 3.
The likes of former San Francisco Cornerback Richard Sherman and former NFL All-Pro Joe Thomas, who played on the offensive line for the Cleveland Browns, are just a few of the names pumping up the idea that Fields is the quarterback of the future in the City by the Bay.