Much has been made about which QB the Panthers will elect to go with come draft day and rightfully so; the decision between Bryce Young & C.J. Stroud is a tough one. For me, I have them graded out almost identically and it’s so close with Young getting the slight edge. But you just can’t ignore the physical size difference of these two men, especially when you consider the damage quarterbacks take in the NFL. If Bryce was 6’3″ and not 5’10”, the pick would be him; he’s not & the pick is C.J. Stroud.
C.J. Stroud is NFLDraftCity.com’s #1 Ranked Quarterback.
The Texans will have an easy decision when they go on the clock; whichever quarterback between Young & Stroud go #1, they’ll be taking the other at #2. Will Anderson, Jr. will get some strong consideration with this pick, but Houston simply cannot pass on the talented franchise quarterback. Davis Mills will provide some healthy competition for Bryce early on, which is always a good thing for a new QB.
- Bryce Young is mentioned as one of NFLDraftCity.com’s 2023 NFL Fantasy Football targets.
- NFLDraftCity.com’s NFL Player Comparison for Bryce Young is Drew Brees.
The Cardinals are a team in apparent disarray. Kyler has been dealing with numerous injuries, coaching staff is turning over, star players are requesting trades out of Arizona – all is not well in the desert. You would imagine the Cardinals would try to trade this pick for a supposed King’s ransom because that’s what it should take for them to move off of this spot and miss out on Will Anderson, Jr. who is a generational talent. In this mock, they get stay put and get the best player in the draft.
- Will Anderson, Jr. is NFLDraftCity.com’s #1 Ranked Prospect.
The Colts will look to finally put an end to the washed up veteran quarterback carousel they’ve been on the last few years and finally nab their franchise signal caller. Anthony Richardson is certainly the sexier pick here, but he’ll need a couple years before you can rely on him to carry a franchise so, the Colts elect for the seasoned, more NFL ready prospect in Levis.
- Will Levis is NFLDraftCity.com’s #3 Ranked Quarterback.
The Seahawks could certainly use an edge rusher and will look at a few in this spot, but they simply cannot pass on 20 year old Anthony Richardson’s potential. Since they’ve got another 1st rounder and this isn’t even their own pick, you’d have to imagine they don’t anticipate picking this high again in the near future making it imperative to capitalize on their unique position. Richardson will be able to sit behind Geno Smith for a year or two and take over the reins at the appropriate time.
- NFLDraftCity.com’s NFL player comparison for Anthony Richardson is Cam Newton.
- Anthony Richardson is one of the draft’s youngest players at just 20 years old.
- Geno Smith’s new $105m contract only contains a fully guaranteed 1st year at $27m and the team can cut him after this season only costing Seahawks an additional $13m in total.
While his talent and physical gifts are undeniable, there are certainly more questions surrounding Carter than most, if not all other prospects in consideration to go in the top 10. Something special is brewing in Detroit and they have a clear need at DT and a defense that could certainly use an influx of talented playmakers. Carter definitely fits the bill – but are the Lions and Jalen Carter the right culture fit?
- NFLDraftCity.com’s NFL Player Comparison for Jalen Carter is Albert Haynesworth.
- A legitimate concern can be made of Carter’s decision not to workout at the combine and then show up to his pro day 10 pounds heavier and injure himself, preventing him from completing his workout.
Do we believe the reports about the Raiders removing Jalen Carter from their draft board? I don’t entirely, considering how talented the DT is, I can’t imagine anyone simply removing him from their draft board however, I can certainly understand valuing him a little less in this spot. Ultimately, I see the Raiders addressing their most pressing need at Cornerback and selecting Devon Witherspoon.
- Devon Witherspoon is NFLDraftCity.com’s 4th Ranked Cornerback.
The Falcons have had a busy offseason adding impact players in free agency & trade to shore up a defense that struggled this past season. They seem intent on giving Desmond Ridder a shot and will look to continue adding playmakers to the defense early on in the draft. Nolan Smith is quickly rising up draft boards after his impressive showing at the combine (4.39 forty), and tantalizing skillset. In my edge rush rankings, I have Nolan Smith as the 12th best pass rusher in this draft, but what do I know? While he certainly is able to do things on the field that make your eyes light up; he doesn’t do them as consistently as other guys in this draft and he’s also not the biggest guy at 6’2” 238. I still think he has loads of potential, just a bit of a project. I do get the sense that some teams may be willing to take on that project with an early pick in the first round.
- NFLDraftCity.com’s NFL Player Comparison for Nolan Smith is Bruce Irvin.
- Nolan Smith is NFLDraftCity.com’s #12 Ranked Edge Rusher.
The Bears have a lot to look forward to next season with the table seemingly setting up for a breakout year from Justin Fields. They’ll look to strengthen the odds of that by adding arguably the best offensive lineman in the draft in Paris Johnson, Jr. to keep him upright. While Pete Skoronski will definitely get consideration here, Johnson, Jr.’s dynamic athletic ability & meanstreak will make him too tough to pass up on.
- NFLDraftCity.com’s NFL Player Comparison for Paris Johnson, Jr. is Trent Williams.
- Parison Johnson, Jr. is NFLDraftCity.com’s #1 Ranked Offensive Tackle.
The Eagles find themselves in a very fortunate & unusual position – playing in the super bowl this past season and now picking in the top 10 of the corresponding NFL draft. Thanks to some shrewd draft maneuvering last season, Philly is in position to take one of the best players the 2023 draft has to offer in Brian Branch. The Crimson Tide standout has been projected by numerous outlets to go deep into the 20’s – I think it’s highly doubtful he makes it past 17 and could go in the top 10. Eagles will look to continue to replace some free agents lost in the offseason and are in a good position to improve.
- NFLDraftCity.com’s NFL Player Compairson for Brian Branch is Eric Berry.
- Brian Branch is NFLDraftCity.com’s #1 Ranked Safety.
Tennessee has been rumored to be interested in moving up in the draft, although I find that to be a questionable decision given the trajectory of this football team. Like the Cardinals, the Titans appear to be a team closer to rebuilding than contending. They took a mini swing on Malik Willis last year that looks like a miss and Ryan Tannehill had an abysmal season in 2022. They seemingly ‘lost’ their trade with Philly for A.J. Brown which led to the firing of their GM, who was also responsible for the Isaiah Wilson pick a couple years ago, which was embarrassing. Ultimately, I think the Titans just need a win and getting Skoronski in this spot is a big win.
- Peter Skoronski is NFLDraftCity.com’s #2 Ranked Offensive Tackle.
The Falcons have had a busy offseason adding impact players in free agency & trade to shore up a defense that struggled this past season. They seem intent on giving Desmond Ridder a shot and will look to continue adding playmakers to the defense early on in the draft. Tyree Wilson has been projected to go as high as #2 in this draft by some draft “experts” and for the life of me, I just can’t wrap my head around the love for this player. He is certainly physically gifted, but the tape just doesn’t scream top 10 player to me. I gave him a 3rd round grade and I think he’ll disappoint whichever team selects him higher than that.
- Tyree Wilson is NFLDraftCity.com’s 15th Ranked Edge Rusher.
- Tyree Wilson is listed on NFLDraftCity.com’s 2023 Draft Buyer Beware List.
- NFLDraftCity.com’s NFL Player Comparison for Tyree Wilson is Carlos Dunlap.
While it’s possible this pick could end up being involved in an Aaron Rodgers deal, I would imagine the Jets are doing what they can to prevent that from happening. The Jets have invested heavily in the offensive line and it’s still a concern however, they may elect to cross their fingers and hope a player like Mekhi Becton develops like they’d hoped OR they could take Darnell Wright in this spot. I think the smart decision is to elect for the latter and proactively address the problem with one of the best offensive linemen in the draft.
- NFLDraftCity.com’s NFL Player Comparison for Darnell Wright is Penei Sewell.
- Darnell Wright is NFLDraftCity.com’s #3 ranked Offensive Tackle.
Leave it to the Patriots to take a player that wasn’t on anyone’s radar this high and get a really good player in B.J. Ojulari. Make no mistake about it, B.J. is worthy of this selection even if nobody is talking about him. He’s one of the most refined & explosive pass rushers in the draft and exactly the kind of hard working, intelligent players Bill Belichick loves to draft.
- NFLDraftCity.com’s NFL Player Comparison for B.J. Ojulari is Matthew Judon.
The new chapter in Green Bay will require playmakers to help ease the transition from Aaron Rodgers to Jordan Love. Will the Packers ignore their need for skill position help like they did when Aaron Rodgers was their starting quarterback and they picked Jordan Love as his successor instead? Maybe they look at Hendon Hooker, here. Just Kidding. There will be plenty of options for the Packers in this spot, including a possible trade down. I think Zay Flowers is the most gifted receiver in this draft and should provide an immediate impact his first year in the NFL.
- Zay Flowers is NFLDraftCity.com’s #1 Ranked Wide Receiver.
- NFLDraftCity.com’s NFL Player Comparison for Zay Flowers is Antonio Brown.
Washington will have their pick of one of the top CB’s or OT’s remaining on the board and they elect to go with the long & speedy cover corner in Oregon’s Christian Gonzalez. I could see them taking a very long look at one of the remaining Tackles or Dalton Kincaid as well in this spot OR possibly trade down.
- NFLDraftCity.com’s NFL Player Comparison for Christian Gonzalez is Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie.
- Christian Gonzalez is NFLDraftCity.com’s 5th Ranked Cornerback.
The Steelers have pressing needs on the offensive line, cornerback, linebacker and edge rusher – with 4 picks in the top 80, they should be able to address all four spots nicely. Here, they start with cornerback Joey Porter, Jr. The Penn State product and son of former Steelers’ Legend, is a physical cornerback with shutdown capability and a terrific athlete. After losing Cam Sutton in the offseason, the position should receive heavy emphasis in the early stages of this draft.
- Joey Porter, Jr. is NFLDraftCity.com’s #3 Ranked Cornerback.
- NFLDraftCity.com’s NFL Player Comparison for Joey Porter, Jr. is Aqib Talib.
The 2022 Lions’ defense was essentially the worst in the NFL – it makes sense to address it early and often in this draft. There’s a big hole in the middle of the unit that will be expected to be filled by the explosive & versatile defensive lineman, Calijah Kancey. Detroit doubles down on impact defensive linemen that should cause a trickle effect, improving the other levels of their defense. The Lions have an enviously talented offensive line and using back to back picks making their defensive line a strength would elevate the trenches in Detroit to be the envy of the league.
- NFLDraftCity.com’s NFL Player Comparison for Calijah Kancey is John Randle.
The Bucs after Brady is a peculiar position.They’re not really in a spot to get a franchise quarterback at #19; could they take Hendon Hooker here? I think it’s too early for him at this pick so, what do they do? It all depends on where they believe they stand in the grand scheme of things. If they still think they can be a competitive team, a win-now player like Bijan could make sense – I think the Bucs are a team on the outs and hated making this pick for them. I think they’d be better off with a complete teardown and try to trade down, but being in the weak NFC South might be giving them too much false hope.
- NFLDraftCity.com’s NFL Player Comparison for Bijan Robinson is Jahvid Best.
The Seahawks made a luxury pick, nabbing their franchise quarterback of the future with their first pick. Now, onto more pressing matters; an edge rusher. Myles Murphy has gotten no love from draft pundits and he should. He’s one of the more polished pass rushers in the draft and a true 3-down lineman. He’ll be a starter on day one.
- NFLDraftCity.com’s NFL Player Comparison for Myles Murphy is Chandler Jones.
After a six-month investigation stemming from disgruntled former coach, Brian Flores’ racial discrimination lawsuit against the NFL in which he accused the Dolphins of being racist and intentionally losing games, the league concluded neither of those accusations to be true. However, in the midst of the investigation the league found the Dolphins and owner Stephen Ross guilty of tampering with Tom Brady & Sean Payton resulting in a $1.5m fine, the stripping of their 2023 1st round pick and 2024 3rd round pick.
- The Miami Dolphins’ first selection in the 2023 NFL Draft is #51 of the 2nd round.
The Chargers may have more pressing needs at Safety and Defensive Tackle, so a player like Adetomiwa Adebawore of Northwestern will get strong consideration here. The Bolts do need a tight end and could use another receiver and they get essentially both in Dalton Kincaid. The Utah product had taken a backseat to Michael Mayer & Darnell Washington in the lead up to this month but, more and more folks have realized Kincaid may very well be the best of the talented TE group in this draft. Kincaid is a dynamic receiver and draws comparisons to Zach Ertz. He can block pretty well too.
- Dalton Kincaid is NFLDraftCity.com’s #1 Ranked Tight End.
Is there a light at the end of the tunnel of the Lamar Jackson saga? The Ravens recently adding OBJ certainly bodes well for the idea of Lamar returning to the Ravens for at least this coming season you would think, but who really knows. I can’t remember a more tumultuous offseason between a quarterback and a team since Aaron Rodgers & the Green Bay Packers in 2021, 2022 & 2023… Anyhow, the Ravens maybe need a quarterback, perhaps, and seemingly no longer need a wide receiver so, addressing the secondary it is. As long as Ozzie Newsome is still involved with the organization, I trust the Ravens to make the right decisions. Taking cornerback Cam Smith, will end up being one of the best picks in the draft.
- Cam Smith is NFLDraftCity.com’s #1 Ranked Cornerback.
The Vikings have arguably the best receiver in the NFL already in house, but aside from Justin Jefferson, the cabinet is bare. The Vikings have some other questions to answer regarding the future of Kirk Cousins and their immediate plans for Dalvin Cook, but let’s assume they plan on scoring points and being competitive this season; Jordan Addison will help them do that.
- Jordan Addison is NFLDraftCity.com’s #3 Ranked Wide Receiver.
- NFLDraftCity.com’s NFL Player Comparison for Jordan Addison is Stefon Diggs.
The Trevor Lawrence era in Jacksonville is in full effect and they’ll look to continue investing in protecting their franchise quarterback by replacing the departed Jawaan Taylor with the massive tackle from Ohio State, Dawand Jones. At 6’8” 374 pounds, Jones is an athletic freak with the potential to be an outstanding lineman in the NFL. While not as polished or refined as the top 3 tackles taken earlier in this draft, Jones is equally as talented and will be a terrific player for the Jags.
- NFLDraftCity.com’s NFL Player Comparison for Dawand Jones is Orlando Brown, Jr.
The Giants had a busy offseason that started with re-signing Daniel Jones, franchising Saquon Barkley and trading for Darren Waller. They were also active in free agency, nabbing one of the better players available in Bobby Okereke. With their first round pick they’ll look to address their secondary or offensive line and go best player available with Banks here.
- NFLDraftCity.com’s NFL Player Comparison for Jordan Addison is Stefon Diggs.
This might be the pick I was most indecisive on; is it Bijan Robinson or Michael Mayer or someone else? The Cowboys cut Ezekiel Elliott and let Tight End Dalton Schultz take an uber ride down to Houston, and then proceeded to franchise tag Tony Pollard, but he’s coming off a broken leg. Ultimately the decision on the pick comes down to availability; there are a handful of free agent running backs the Cowboys could plug into their lineup, including a still available Zeke, but there aren’t any impact TE available. So with the 27th pick in the 2023 NFL draft, the Dallas Cowboys select Michael Mayer. The Jason Witten comparisons aren’t unwarranted; Mayer is as polished, technical & as dependable as they come at the position. While it’s certainly no guarantee Mayer will have the career Witten had, he’s a super safe pick.
- Michael Mayer is NFLDraftCity.com’s #3 Ranked Tight End.
The Bills need to replace Tremaine Edmunds so, Drew Sanders will get a very long look here and he’s the pick I would go with however, they also need a Right Tackle and Jones’ upside may be too good to pass up on this late in the 1st round. Quentin Johnston & Jaxon Smith-Njigba could get some serious consideration here as well.
- Broderick Jones is NFLDraftCity.com’s #8 Ranked Offensive Tackle.
The Bengals are poised to continue to make noise in the AFC North and have been inconsistent in keeping Joe Burrow’s jersey clean. They added Orlando Brown, Jr. to protect Burrow’s blindside and that apparently ruffled Jonah Williams’ feathers to the tune of a trade request. It remains to be seen what will happen with him. At tight end, the Hayden Hurst experiment last season was a decent one, but he’s gone to Carolina. With needs at Offensive Line and Tight End, they get essentially both in the massive 6’7” 270 pound Darnell Washington. When he’s not making one handed catches that look like he’s catching a tennis ball or hurdling defenders; Washington can operate as essentially a 6th lineman.
- If the Bengals trade Jonah Williams – that would impact this pick.
The Saints have maintained their refusal to enter the rebuild stage ever since Drew Brees retired and will look to take advantage of a weak NFC South after optimistically adding Derek Carr to serve as their answer at quarterback. There are concerns and uncertainties with their aging star players, Michael Thomas & Alvin Kamara on & off the field. The Saints could go in a number of directions with this pick, including Guard Steve Avila or Running Back Jahmyr Gibbs. They pick again at #40 so, they take the best player available in Lukas Van Ness. The defensive line is a serious need for New Orleans and getting Van Ness, whom many project to go in the top 15, at #29 is a huge dub.
- NFLDraftCity.com’s NFL Player Comparison for Myles Murphy is Chandler Jones.
I could easily see the Eagles going with Linebacker Drew Sanders with this pick, but after missing out on Jalen Carter with their 1st pick, they secure one of the most explosive & dynamic defensive lineman in the draft in Adebawore. The Northwestern product is a supreme athlete and a force anywhere on the defensive line and ran a blazing 4.49 forty yard dash at 6’2″ 282 pounds.
- Adetomiwa Adebawore is NFLDraftCity.com’s #1 Ranked Defensive Tackle.
The Chiefs are in a great position to get a really good player in this spot and will certainly look at the remaining receivers available, but they need to replace Frank Clark who is still a Free Agent. Mahomes could certainly use another playmaker on offense aside from Travis Kelce, but they’ll be able to add 1-2 in the next few rounds.
- Felix Anudike-Uzomah is NFLDraftCity.com’s #9 Edge Rusher.
- NFLDraftCity.com’s NFL Player Comparison for Felix Anudike-Uzomah is Tamba Hali.