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Who offers the best value to win the Heisman?

College football season is just getting underway, but it’s never too early to start thinking about who will win the Heisman Trophy. Predictably, Trevor Lawrence and Tua Tagovailoa enter the year as the betting favorites, but a lot can happen between now and the ceremony at the Downtown Athletic Club.

You’ll notice that neither Lawrence or Tagovailoa makes this list of bets we like. There’s just not enough value for either quarterback. Both players have a solid chance to win, but there’s nothing to get excited about at 2.5 or 3 to 1. If you’re a fan of the Tigers or Crimson Tide, by all means, put some coin on your favorite signal caller. The rest of us will look outside the top two favorites for opportunities to make real money.

Justin Fields at 16/1

Fields’ decision to bolt Georgia to become the starter at Ohio State this season could easy pay off with a Heisman Trophy win. If the Buckeyes are able to run the table in the Big 10, their athletic signal caller is going to get a ton of credit.

There’s no question about Fields ability to make plays with his feet. He’s going to give Ryan Day’s offense a lot of options. If he wants to take home the Heisman he’ll need to show he can throw the ball efficiently. His passing ability will be the difference between good and great for Fields this season. Fortunately, for him, the Ohio State offense keeps things very simple for its quarterbacks. It’s an ideal place for Fields to grow as a pocket passer.

Sam Ehlinger at 40/1

Diehard college football fans are dying to see Texas reemerge as a legitimate national title contender. Ehlinger’s play under center for the Longhorns has fans in Austin dreaming of a College Football Playoff berth in 2019.

If that happens, Ehlinger can go ahead and book his travel plans to New York City. He will be the player who makes Texas’ offense go on a week-to-week basis. He may not put up video game numbers like some other Big 12 quarterbacks, but if he gets the ‘Horns to college football’s final four then his statistics will take a back seat to his win total.

Shea Patterson at 36/1

A lot of what we just said about Ehlinger applies to Patterson as well. Urban Meyer’s departure from Ohio State gives Michigan a golden opportunity to take their place as the Big 10’s premier program. If the Wolverines are going to get over the hump this year, they will need Patterson to really elevate his game.

Patterson may not have quite as much athleticism as some other guys on this list, but he’s ideally suited to thrive in the Michigan offense. He knows where to throw the football and his accuracy can be a big weapon for Coach Harbaugh and his staff. If Patterson guides the maize and blue to the College Football Playoff, the Heisman Trophy might have his name on it.

Travis Etienne at 33/1

Lawrence is getting all the Heisman Hype at Clemson, but his teammate represents a much better betting option for you. 33:1 odds are way too long for arguably the most talented running back in college football.

We’re talking about a back who rushed for 1,658 yards last season on just 204 carries. That comes out to an average of 8.1 yards every time a quarterback handed him the football. Throw in 24 touchdowns and it’s easy to see why Dabo Swinney is excited about his running game this year.

The key for Etienne will be to outplay his own teammate. Clemson’s ability to dominate their regular season schedule might really work in his favor. There will be some games where Lawrence gets put on ice for the second half. The Tigers will lean on their ground game to finish out blowout victories. If Etienne gets those carries he’s got a legitimate chance to hit 2,500 yards rushing in 2019.

Imagine a scenario where hits that ambitious yardage total and finds the end zone 30 times. That would very likely make him the most valuable player on Clemson’s offense. Combine that with a berth in the College Football Playoff and Etienne has the ability to make you a boat load of cash.


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