2023 NFL Mock Draft: Projected 31 first-round picks

Table of Contents

Merry Christmas! Today is one of the most exciting days of the year for NFL fans as they look forward to new opportunities as young, promising players join their favorite teams.

The 2023 NFL Draft seems incredibly important to the Eagles. The Birds are coming off a Super Bowl appearance and are looking to return next year, hopefully earning a ring this time. With two first-round picks, there are plenty of options. All things considered, here’s how the first round could shake out.

1) Carolina Panthers: Bryce Young, QB, Alabama

It seems written at this point. Unless Carolina is smoking for some reason, Bryce Young will be their franchise quarterback. The former Heisman winner’s accuracy, toughness and leadership will lead Carolina into a new era.

2) Houston Texans: Will Lewis, QB, Kentucky

A QB pass seems unlikely here. The question is which quarterback they go down. Will Lewis has the size and arm strength to thrive as an NFL quarterback.

3) TRADE Tennessee Titans (Via Arizona Cardinals): Anthony Richardson, QB, Florida

The Titans may be nearing the end of the Ryan Tannehill era, and this is a great draft to make big changes to the next big thing. Anthony Richardson has a sky-high ceiling and could develop behind Tannehill to eventually take over in Nashville.

4) Indianapolis Colts: CJ Stroud, QB, Ohio State

While Richardson and Levis could go ahead of CJ Stroud, the Ohio State signal caller is still the best quarterback in the draft for my money. Indianapolis has been a constant presence at QB since day one.

5) Seattle Seahawks (via Denver): Jalen Carter, IDL, Georgia

Jalen Carter might need a really solid organization to help him transition to the NFL. The Georgia star has no questions on the court, and Seattle’s locker room would be a perfect fit for him.

6) Detroit Lions (via Los Angeles Rams): Christian Gonzalez, CB, Oregon

The Lions miss the quarterback run and add a player in their second. Christian Gonzalez is the best cornerback in this draft and a one-day difference maker.

7) Las Vegas Raiders: Tyree Wilson, Edge, TTU

Will Anderson is the better prospect in my opinion, but the NFL seems to be really capitalizing on Tyree Wilson’s potential based on how much bigger and stronger he is than Anderson. Wilson is certainly a good player who will contribute right away as a quarterback and can bring pressure in the passing game off the edge.

8) Trade Philadelphia Eagles (via Atlanta): Will Anderson Jr., Edge, Alabama

If Will Anderson does go down, the Eagles will be aggressive in showing him up. Anderson is an incredible talent with great speed, power and advanced passing technique. Putting him in a rotation with Haasson Reddick and Josh Sweet seems a little unfair.

9) Chicago Bears: Paris Johnson Junior, OT, Ohio State

The Bears could go here for Bijan Robinson or maybe draft another wide receiver, but protecting Justin Fields should be the number one priority. Parisa Johnson is the best tackle in the class and would immediately give Fields a lot more security as a pass protector.

10) Atlanta Falcons trade (via Philadelphia): Bijan Robinson, RB, Texas

It seems a bit obvious at this point. Bijan Robinson is the best linebacker in the class and Arthur Smith loves to run the ball. The Falcons already have intriguing linebacker talent, but Bijan would help spark the offense.

11) Trade Arizona Cardinals (via Tennessee): Jackson Smith-Njigba, WR, Ohio State

The Cardinals are in a strange purgatory right now, and their best bet is to continue taking care of their franchise quarterback. Deandre Hopkins may be done in Arizona, and Kyler Murray will need a legitimate target when he returns from injury. Jackson Smith-Njigba is the top receiver in the draft.

12) Houston Texans (via Cleveland): Devon Witherspoon, CB, Illinois

DeMeco Ryan can build a defense in his image with Devon Witherspoon. The Illinois quarterback is a physical ball that will fit perfectly with Derek Stingley.

13) Green Bay Packers (via New York Jets): Quentin Johnston, WR, TCU

Now is the Jordan Love show, and the Packers need to take Love seriously with the talent. Quentin Johnston is a big receiver who can create plays after the catch. With all the space Christian Watson should create, Johnston should be able to thrive as a secondary receiver.

14) New England Patriots: Jordan Addison, WR, USC

The Patriots have been anemic offensively over the past year. Jordan Addison would be a dynamic option for Mac Jones and company.

15) New York Jets (Via Green Bay): Michael Myers, TE, Notre Dame

The Jets will be up against Aaron Rodgers next year and should get as many weapons as possible. Michael Meyers is a pro ready for tight ends and should make an impact as a pass catcher on day one.

16) Washington linemen: Broderick Jones, OT, Georgia

Washington needs talent where they can get it. Broderick Jones is an excellent offensive lineman and would immediately give them a great tackle to protect Sam Howell’s (?) blindside.

17) Pittsburgh Steelers: Darnell Wright, OT, Tennessee

The Steelers must continue to build around Kenny Pickett. Darnell Wright is a great all-around blocker who could help the Steelers offense take the next step.

18) Detroit Lions: Brian Branch, S, Alabama

The Lions are drafting another quarterback to continue building their incredible young defense. Brian Branch is a do-it-all quarterback that would pair with CJ Gardner Johnson and make for a formidable safety duo.

19) Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Peter Skoronski, OL, Northwestern

Adding quality players at any position is a priority for the Bucs right now as they begin their Brady hangover. Peter Skoronski will be a 10-year professional linebacker or tackle. He would fit in perfectly with a team on the brink of a rebuild.

20) Seattle Seahawks: Joey Porter Jr., CB, Penn State

The Seahawks find another tall, athletic cornerback to pair with Tyreek Vulen as they continue to rebuild their defense.

21) Los Angeles Chargers: Deonte Banks, CB, Maryland

The Chargers could stand to add more speed to their secondary. Deonte Banks is an extremely athletic linebacker and could quickly fill the top cornerback position in this second stretch.

22) Baltimore Ravens: Lucas Van Ness, Edge, Iowa

The Ravens always favor front sevens, and Lucas Van Ness feels like a Raven. He’s physical, athletic and a raw passer they could develop into an impact guard.

23) Minnesota Vikings: Hendon Hooker, Quarterback, Tennessee

Right now, it feels like someone is going to draft Hendon Hooker in the first round. After a stellar season cut short by an ACL injury, Hooker is poised to become one of the starting quarterbacks. Despite being an older, injury-prone prospect, Hooker has been heavily favored by NFL teams to lead the tapes and locker rooms. Minnesota may be looking beyond the Kirk Cousins ​​era, and Hooker could be their next hope.

24) Jacksonville Jaguars: Kelee Ringo, Cornerback, Georgia

Jaguars add speed with Kelee Ringo. Ringo is the top cornerback in the draft and would fit Jacksonville’s defense perfectly with his size and athleticism.

25) New York Giants: Zay Flowers, WR, Boston College

The Giants are the surprise of the playoffs and should continue to rise. They are a phenomenal running team, but need more juice in the passing game. Zay Flowers is an excellent deep threat and would be a welcome weapon in the Giants offense.

26) Dallas Cowboys: Darnell Washington, TE, Georgia

The Cowboys always know when to add more weapons to their offense. Darnell Washington is functionally another offensive lineman as a blocker and has tremendous potential in the passing game. He would be dangerous in Dallas’ offense.

27) Buffalo Bills: Myce Murphy, Edge, Clemson

The Bills keep swinging and missing edge rushers, and that will hurt them in the playoffs. Here they add a reliable player in Murphy to provide solid play on the wings.

28) Cincinnati Bengals: Cam Smith, Cornerback, South Carolina

The Bengals know they are in direct competition with the Chiefs and Bills every year for a spot in the Super Bowl. The only way to counter them is with more defensive figures. Cam Smith is a big, tall cornerback who could be useful in slowing down their AFC rivals.

29) New Orleans Saints (via Denver): Nolan Smith, Edge, Georgia

Nolan Smith is difficult to predict positionally in terms of the draft. On the one hand, he is a very athletic defender who could play all over the defense. On the other hand, he’s smaller, wasn’t very productive, and has a foot injury. The Saints need speed in defense and would be delighted to see Nolan drop that far.

30) Philadelphia Eagles: Jahmir Gibbs, Running Back, Alabama

The Eagles still need a legitimate threat in their offensive backfield. At this point in the draft, Jahmir Gibbs would be a godsend. Not only does Gibbs have household potential on every touch, he’s also one of the best quarterbacks to come out of college football in a long time.

31) Kansas City Chiefs: Jalin Hyatt, WR, Tennessee

Patrick Mahomes had one of the best and most impressive quarterback seasons ever in 2022. With no real long-range threat, Mahomes threw for over 5,200 yards, won an MVP and a Super Bowl. Now the bosses can pose a real threat to his job. Jalyn Hight might be a one-trick pony right now, but it’s a really good one.

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