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Best bet for first CB selected in 2023 NFL Draft

We break down which CB will be drafted first in the NFL Draft.

COLLEGE FOOTBALL NOV 19 Illinois at Michigan Photo by Joe Robbins/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

The 2023 NFL Draft will begin with the first round at 8 p.m. ET on Thursday, April 27. The remaining six rounds will take place on Friday and Saturday.

Several cornerbacks expect to have their names called on Thursday, as players like Devon Witherspoon, Christian Gonzalez, Joey Porter Jr., and others are projected to be selected in the first round.

The question is which cornerback will go first? Here’s what oddsmakers say. NFL Draft odds courtesy of the DraftKings Sportsbook.


DraftKings has 18 cornerbacks listed in the “First OL Selected” prop. Here are the top five:

  • Devon Witherspoon: -210
  • Christian Gonzalez: +170
  • Joey Porter Jr.: +1800
  • Deonte Banks: +3500
  • Emmanuel Forbes: +3500

*Odds as of Friday, April 21.

Best bet

The odds tell the story. This year’s first CB selected is a race between Devon Witherspoon of the Illinois Fighting Illini and Christian Gonzalez of the Oregon Ducks. Witherspoon is a small favorite, but it wouldn’t be shocking to see Gonzalez be selected first.

In fact, plenty of analysts have Gonzalez listed as the top cornerback prospect in the draft. That doesn’t necessarily mean he’ll be selected first, as it comes down to which team is picking along with preference and defensive style.

Of course, I’m talking about the Detroit Lions, who reportedly like Witherspoon with the sixth overall pick. That’s why he’s favored as the first CB selected at DraftKings.

However, the Lions have plenty of positions to fill. There’s still a chance they draft Gonzalez over Witherspoon. Either that, or Detroit could go running back (hello, Bijan Robinson), quarterback (especially if one slides), or another defensive position altogether. A trade could swing things too.

Due to all of that uncertainty, Gonzalez seems like the best bet at +170 odds. He’s the top CB prospect on the board. There’s an outside chance he gets selected even before the Lions are on the clock at No. 6.

Basically, the Lions need to take Witherspoon over Gonzalez at No. 6 in order for the former to cash this bet. There are too many scenarios where that doesn’t happen and Gonzalez is scooped up first.

Pick: Christian Gonzalez