With the NFL season now officially over it is time to welcome every NFL fan to the NFL Draft season with our first mock draft of 2023!
***This mock draft does not include trades that will inevitably occur come Draft Day***
As always, we will keep you updated here at Ninety-Nine Yards right up until Draft Day. Let us know your opinions on Twitter @NinetynineYards.
You can find scouting report on 2023 NFL Draft prospects here!
Who is your team taking?
Chicago Bears – DE – WILL ANDERSON – Alabama
With the Bears rumoured to be committed to Justin Fields, ultimately, the Bears likely trade out of this pick. With the Colts sitting at 4, that could be a deal waiting to happen. Whether they stick and pick or trade out, the Bears have to get another franchise-changing player to kick-start their rebuild, Will Anderson is that.
Houston Texans – QB – BRYCE YOUNG – Alabama
Whether the Texans are ready for a rookie QB is a debate for another day. But, they have to get better at the position they have been missing since Deshaun Watson.
DeMeco Ryans is an Alabama alum and will know everything there is to know about Bryce Young as they get the best QB in this draft.
Arizona Cardinals – DT – JALEN CARTER – Georgia
Unless a lucrative trade offer comes their way, which is very possible, the Cardinals have an opportunity to come away with either of the top 2 talents in this class in Jalen Carter or Will Anderson.
Indianapolis Colts – QB – WILL LEVIS – Kentucky
This is a team who must leave the 2023 NFL Draft with a rookie QB. They have been fiddling about in the quarterback bargain basement for too long.
The Colts and GM Chris Ballard love players with traits, Will Levis, looks, feels and smells like a Colt.
Seattle Seahawks (via DEN) – DE – TYREE WILSON – Texas Tech
The Seahawks need more pass rush and they will have an opportunity to add to it here.
Tyree Wilson may be boom or bust, but he is exactly what the Seahawks draft. A player who has great measurables, traits and athletic testing that they can develop. The uniqueness will be too much to pass up.
Detroit Lions (via LAR) – DE – MYLES MURPHY – Clemson
The Lions hit a home run with their selection of Aidan Hutchinson in last year’s draft. But, they still need to add to the edge rusher room.
Myles Murphy is an athletic rusher who has a really high ceiling. If the Lions can develop him then they will have a really nice d-line room in Detroit
Las Vegas Raiders – QB – CJ STROUD – Ohio State
The options were already limited at quarterback after the Raiders made the decision to move on from Derek Carr. We can now stop with the Tom Brady rumours and the Raiders are massive in a hole.
The Raiders have to get younger and cheaper and they need to find a way of putting bums on seats in Allegiant Stadium. Developing a passer like CJ Stroud who fits Mcdaniels’ mould would certainly be a start.
Atlanta Falcons – RB – BIJAN ROBINSON – Texas
Get ready. What we know about how the Falcons draft is they want to get surefire, top prospects in the first round with not a lot of care given to positional value. Just think back to Kyle Pitts a couple of cycles ago.
Bijan Robinson is an elite, blue-chip prospect and with no other players of that calibre on the board, they call a full house on drafting skill position Bingo. The Falcons add to Kyle Pitts and Drake London and complete the holy trinity on offence.
Carolina Panthers – QB – ANTHONY RICHARDSON – Florida
Through previous decisions, it feels like the Panthers have boxed themselves into taking a QB in the 2023 NFL Draft. Drafting at #9 that likely means taking the last of the big 4 available or trading up.
Anthony Richardson is the QB with the best natural talents in this class. He can do it as a runner and as a passer. The problem is he isn’t quite ready yet.
With the hiring of QB whisperer Frank Reich, they will be hoping they can take the QB with the highest ceiling and develop him into a star.
Philadelphia Eagles (via NO) – CB – DEVON WITHERSPOON – Illinois
With potential free agents in their secondary, the Eagles are primed to attack the position in this year’s draft. The corner class is loaded but no one quite offers what Devon Witherspoon does.
A hard-hitting, physical player who has exceptional coverage ability, he is the type of player that Philadelphia will look to represent their franchise.
Tennessee Titans – OT – PARIS JOHNSON Jr – Ohio State
The Titans need to get better and if they are going to play the way they want to then they need to start investing back into the offensive line.
Paris Johnson Jr has versatility across the offensive line, he can play multiple positions and will hit all of the size measurables.
Houston Texans (Via CLE) – OL – PETER SKORONSKI – Northwestern
If the Texans get Bryce Young then they better make sure they protect him. Even with rumours that Laremy Tunsil may be disgruntled, they need to improve on the line.
Peter Skoronski is the ultimate versatile offensive lineman. Recruited as a center, playing tackle and the natural ability to play guard. The Texans get an insurance policy in case Tunsil gets traded or if they let Tytus Howard walk after the 2023 season, as well as a new lineman that they could kick out to RT or use a guard if needed.
New York Jets – OT – BRODERICK JONES – Georgia
The Jets struggled with their depth on the offensive line in 2022. They have guys, but you need more insurance in case of inevitable injuries.
Drafting Broderick Jones gives you cover in case Mekhi Becton won’t return and if he does you can kick Alijah Vera-Tucker back into guard. It gives the Jets improvement on the overall unit and more talent and options to play with.
New England Patriots – DE – LUKAS VAN NESS – Iowa
The Patriots like to attack the trenches early. Taking a traitsy player who has incredible upside.
The Patriots return all their edge rushers in 2023, one of the top units in the NFL.
Lukas Van Ness is a tough, physical, powerful defensive end, but he hasn’t played much football. The Patriots bank on their ability to fulfil his potential and allow him to learn from Matt Judon and other veterans before they leave in subsequent years.
Green Bay Packers – TE – MICHAEL MAYER – Notre Dame
Whether Aaron Rodgers stays or goes, they need more weapons in Green Bay. In the backstretch of the season, they can be happy with what they saw from their rookie wide receivers.
Here they take the best tight end in this class, Micheal Mayer, and give either Aaron Rodgers or Jordan Love a weapon over the middle.
Washington Commanders – CB – CHRISTIAN GONZALEZ – Oregon
This is a roster that doesn’t have a lot of holes. They just need to get better and figure out what they are doing at QB.
An area they will have to address this off-season is corner, as right now they don’t have a lot of star quality or depth.
Christian Gonzalez is an ultra-athletic corner who has also been productive. He is speedy, rangy and sticky and will challenge for CB1 instantly in Washington.
Pittsburgh Steelers – WR – JORDAN ADDISON – Pitt
The Steelers would have loved one of the top offensive tackles to have fallen to them here. But the board has not fallen their way. They need to attack the interior but it may be a bit early, chancing their hand with them sat there at the top of the 2nd round.
Instead, they reunite Kenny Pickett with his favourite college weapon Jordan Addison.
With Pickett as his QB in 2021, Addison won the Biletnikoff Award given to the best receiver in college football. If they can reproduce similar production, alongside George Pickens, then the Steelers’ WR room is shaping up nicely.
Detroit Lions – CB – JOEY PORTER Jr – Penn State
The Lions need help at corner and may even think about it at 6, depending on how their board is stacked.
Joey Porter Jr will slot straight in as a starter alongside Jeffrey Okudah and brings the physical, intense playstyle that Dan Campbell loves.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers – DB – BRIAN BRANCH – Alabama
The Bucs need help across both defence and offence, not to mention what they now do at quarterback.
This pick right now could go any way, but at some point, they will need to spend some resources on their secondary.
Brian Branch is a versatile secondary option who can play safety, corner or nickel. He is a hard-hitting, no-nonsense defender who does not miss tackles. He instantly upgrades the secondary in Tampa with expiring contracts.
Seattle Seahawks – DT – BRYAN BRESEE – Clemson
When Pete Carroll says that the Seahawks need to get better up front, he means it. They already got one traitsy defensive lineman at #5, but they have another one fall into their lap here.
Bryan Bresee is another high-upside player who will be a better pro than a college player. He needs some development but has the power, athleticism and versatility to be disruptive as an interior defensive lineman. If his medicals check out after missing game time over the last couple of seasons, then this would represent a great 1st round haul for Seattle.
LA Chargers – WR – JALIN HYATT – Tennessee
The Chargers need to add some explosiveness and dynamism to their receiver room. They need some speed which can stretch the field to make the most of what they have in Justin Herbert.
Jalin Hyatt is exactly that. A field stretching, speedster who is tricky going deep, the reigning Biletnikoff winner offers the exact skill set needed in LA.
Baltimore Ravens – WR – QUENTIN JOHNSTON – TCU
Another selection that is dependent on the QB situation. Presuming Lamar Jackson stays in Baltimore, he will be able to push his hand and dictate his terms a bit more.
The Ravens are desperate to add a productive receiver and just have not been able to find it. Rashod Bateman has looked promising but has not been able to keep healthy enough.
Quentin Johnston is the exact type of receiver Baltimore need. A tall, long, athletic true X receiver who will be able to catch balls that the rest of this receiver core can not; simply because of his size radius. He is physical but speedier than he looks and will add well-needed receiver production for the Ravens.
Minnesota Vikings – CB – KELEE RINGO – Georgia
It feels like every year the Vikings draft into their secondary early. Adding productive but extremely athletic players.
Kelee Ringo has had production on the biggest of stages in college and will absolutely dominate athletic testing through the combine and pro days.
The secondary simply needs to get better and the Vikings will need to keep throwing capital at it until it comes together.
Jacksonville Jaguars – TE – LUKE MUSGRAVE – Oregon State
Jacksonville did a great job surrounding Trevor Lawrence with talent last year and we saw the impact of having a legitimate weapon at tight end in Evan Engram did for them. Engram is a free agent this offseason but even if they bring him back they should still look to add another weapon to the room
Luke Musgrave is one of the premier athletes in this draft class who has blazing speed for his size. He has strong hands and offers great opportunities separating at all levels of the field.
New York Giants – WR – JAXON SMITH-NJIGBA – Ohio State
Daniel Jones was functioning with a non-existent wide receiver room this past season and the Giants simply can’t go into next season without adding weapons and thinking they can get similar production.
Jaxon Smith-Njigba is one of the top receivers in this class and is a consistent and reliable weapon who is a fantastic route runner.
Dallas Cowboys – LB – DREW SANDERS – Arkansas
The Cowboys linebacker room is uncertain with Leighton Vander-Esch and Anthony Barr needing new contracts and Micah Parsons moving to the edge full-time.
Drew Sanders is a hard-hitting, physical, tough linebacker who offers a great deal of blitzing ability. With great coverage skills, racking up tackles and having ball production, Sanders is exactly what the Cowboys need to add to their Dan Quinn led defence.
It may be too tempting for Jerry Jones to go back to his alma mater to pick up Drew Sanders.
Buffalo Bills – IOL – O’CYRUS TORRENCE – Florida
The Bills need help on the interior of their offensive line and if O’Cyrus Torrence is still on the board Buffalo will be sprinting the card in.
The best pure guard in this class, they get value and positional need at this pick.
Cincinnati Bengals – TE – DARNELL WASHINGTON – Georgia
Washington is a great fit for the Bengals. They need to shed some cap space which may mean they decide not to return Hayden Hurst. Even if they do they still need to add to the tight-end group.
Darnell Washington is the best blocking tight end in this class and will help in that regard, but he is also underrated as a passing option.
New Orleans Saints (VIA DEN<MIA<SF) – DE – NOLAN SMITH – Georgia
While the Saints have a boatload of needs on both sides of the ball they currently go into 2023, with a defensive line that isn’t getting any younger and isn’t getting any more explosive. the Saints pick up one of the speedier rushers in this class, who would be a steal at the back end of the 1st round.
Nolan Smith is an athletic edge rusher who has surprising power for his size. When on the field as part of the Georgia defensive line rotation, he has been both disruptive and productive. New Orleans needs to start to look at revamping their d-line. It starts here.
Philadelphia Eagles – DL – KEION WHITE – Georgia Tech
The Eagles add to their embarrassment of riches at the back end of the first round by picking up another defensive line player in Keion White.
Both versatile and athletic, White can play across the line and can even drop into coverage. He hits all the size measurables and will test extremely well being on Bruce Feldman’s preseason Freaks List.
White is relatively new to the position and will need some development, there is no better place in football to learn and develop than in Philadelphia.
Kansas City Chiefs – DT – CALIJAH KANCEY – Pitt
The Chiefs added George Karlaftis in the 1st round of the 2022 NFL Draft, noticing that their defensive line is getting older and they needed to start embedding some younger athletes to compete. Calijah Kancey paired alongside Chris Jones on the interior is menacing and will cause all sorts of problems for offences.
Kancey is on the small side but you can make a case that he is the best pure pass-rushing defensive tackle in this class. That d-line will be threatening and dangerous!
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