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Vegas: Saquon Barkley favorite to go No. 1 overall in draft

Saquon Barkley Heisman candidate and head coach James Franklin college football

After Saquon Barkley dominated the combine, reports emerged that he is a legitimate option for the Cleveland Browns at No. 1 overall in this year’s draft.

Las Vegas apparently is buying the hype, too. Bovada is taking bets on who’ll be the top pick of the 2018 NFL Draft, and Barkley is atop the heap.

As Michael David Smith of Pro Football Talk noted, “Barkley is the favorite at +170, meaning a $100 bet on Barkley going first overall would result in a $170 payoff if he does go first next month. After Barkley come four quarterbacks: USC’s Sam Darnold at +240, Wyoming’s Josh Allen at +400, Oklahoma’s Baker Mayfield at +550 and UCLA’s Josh Rosen at +700.”

Heck, one coach at the combine said he’d do something incredibly painful if it meant his team would be drafting this kid. So it’s not just hype right now — NFL people are falling head over heels for the Penn State product, and it’s not hard to see why.

Barkley could be the first running back to be taken No. 1 overall since Ki-Jana Carter, who was selected first in the 1995 NFL Draft out of Penn State. For the sake of everyone involved, let’s all hope that Barkley has a better NFL career than Carter did.