As we edge closer to draft day, we thought we could make a mock draft full of hot takes, bold predictions & TRADES!
With Mock Drafts, it is about playing out scenarios rather than predicting. So here I take a look at some potential trades and how that would impact the first round of the 2023 NFL Draft.
As always, we will keep you updated here at Ninety-Nine Yards until Draft Day. Let us know your opinions on Twitter @NinetynineYards.
You can find scouting reports on 2023 NFL Draft prospects here!
Who is your team taking?
Carolina Panthers – QB – BRYCE YOUNG – Alabama
There is a decision to be made for the Panthers but in this scenario, they opt for the #1 QB on most experts’ board
Houston Texans – QB – CJ STROUD – Ohio St
Whichever of Bryce Young or CJ Stroud doesn’t go #1 – the Texans take the other
3. **TRADE** From the Cardinals
Seattle Seahawks – QB – ANTHONY RICHARDSON – Florida
First trade of the mock draft as the Seahawks move up a couple of spots. The Cardinals are actively shopping this pick and to guarantee that they get their guy the Seahawks pay the price to jump up. Seattle may have paid Geno Smith, but his contract means they could move on from him after the first year if they wanted to. Who knows when Seattle will pick this high again, so they have to take advantage. Anthony Richardson is the perfect guy to come in to learn from Smith and take over once he is ready.
Indianapolis Colts – EDGE – WILL ANDERSON – Alabama
Having been jumped in this mock draft scenario, the Colts opt out of taking a QB. With the top 3 guys off the board, there is a possibility that the Colts don’t like who is left. In that case, they should take the best player available and reassess their options, which could well be Lamar Jackson.
Arizona Cardinals – DT – JALEN CARTER – Georgia
With only a hand full of picks in the 2023 draft, the Cardinals need to collect picks and add good players onto what is possibly the worst roster right now in the NFL. Getting more picks from the trade helps, plus they stay in range for one of the top overall prospects.
6. **TRADE** From the Lions
Tennessee Titans – QB – WILL LEVIS – Kentucky
Another trade-up as the Titans move up with the Lions to get their QB of the future. The Titans jump teams like the Raiders who may also fancy taking Will Levis to secure their guy. Is Ryan Tannehill the long-term option? Will Levis opens up options, especially as they have shown they are not sold on last year’s pick Malik Willis
Las Vegas Raiders – CB – DEVON WITHERSPOON – Illinois
The Raiders have been doing their homework on this corner class and they have a pretty big need at the position. Witherspoon has fans as a top player on this draft and his physical, aggressive play style would fit in with the Raiders ethos.
Atlanta Falcons – EDGE – TYREE WILSON – Texas Tech
The Falcons have added to their D-Line in free agency opening up possibilities at this pick. The league is really high on Wilson and the Falcons have had the worst sack numbers in the NFL over the past 2 seasons. Plus, having a raw player learn from Calais Campbell is a great opportunity.
Chicago Bears – OT – PARIS JOHNSON Jr. – Ohio St
The Bears just need to pick good players while also protecting their best asset in Justin Fields. Those align here with Paris Johnson being one of the top players in the draft.
Philadelphia Eagles – EDGE – NOLAN SMITH – Georgia
The Eagles love adding in the trenches and there is nothing to suggest they won’t continue to attack the trenches with their early picks. Nolan Smith is a different type of rusher than that is already in Philly, he has veterans to learn from and the Eagles will love his leadership qualities
Detroit Lions – EDGE – LUKAS VAN NESS – Iowa
It is hard to see the Lions not liking Lukas Van Ness. A player that the NFL is really high on, he has top-10 potential and gives the Lions the opportunity to keep getting better on defence by adding to their pass-rush rotation
Houston Texans – CB – CHRISTIAN GONZALEZ – Oregon
Imagine a corner room with Derek Stingley and Christian Gonzalez! Creating a top-tier athletic defensive back room to be the cornerstone of their defence
New York Jets – OT – PETER SKORONSKI – Northwestern
The Jets need offensive line help but the question currently is at what spots? Luckily Peter Skoronski is still on the board and with positional versatility allows you to get your best 5 guys on the field.
New England Patriots – OT – BRODERICK JONES – Georgia
Who knows which way the Patriots will zig or zag in this year’s draft? But, they like taking offensive linemen early and they like them in the mould of Broderick Jones. Big and athletic, he would definitely help to sure up that line.
15. **TRADE** From the Packers
Pittsburgh Steelers – CB – JOEY PORTER Jr – Penn St
The Steelers have seen the top 2 corners go and also know that the Commanders will likely be exploring the possibilities of a corner at pick 16. Here they jump above them and draft a name that means a lot to the Steelers in Joey Porter Jr. Porter fills a need and if anyone was born to be a Steeler, it’s Joey Porter Jr.
Washington Commanders – CB – DEONTE BANKS – Maryland
A corner is an overwhelming need on this roster and Denote Banks fits what they need and how they have recently liked to draft. Washington has targeted athletes on defence in recent drafts and Deonte Banks is one of the top athletes at the corner position this year.
Green Bay Packers – WR – JAXON SMITH-NJIGBA – Ohio St
Wait, hear me out. The Packers did not once give Aaron Rodgers a weapon he so desperately needed and actively called for while in Green Bay. It boarded on frustration and anger for Rodgers that they didn’t. So.. imagine if in their first year with Jordan Love under center they finally draft a WR in round 1. You have to agree, it would be pretty funny.
18. **TRADE** From the Lions
Jacksonville Jaguars – DB – BRIAN BRANCH – Alabama
The Jags need to add in the defensive backfield and a host of corners have already gone off the board. Brian Branch fits perfectly into what they are trying to do on defence so they don’t take the chance that he falls to them having found a willing trade partner allowing them to move up for their guy.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers – OT – DARNELL WRIGHT – Tennesee
The Bucs have found themselves in a bit of a hole, eating up a bunch of dead cap from Tom Brady’s contract, not a lot of cuttable contracts and with players like Tristan Wirfs who they are going to have to pay! Right now it is about getting good players at valuable positions so you can push again next year. Wright and Wirfs would give them an OT pairing heading into the future
Seattle Seahawks – EDGE – MYLES MURPHY – Clemson
Seattle needs to get better across the defensive line and Myles Murphy is a steal at #20. A player who should be able to impact as a starter on day 1, you have to think the Seahawks are happy about their future success with their current outlook
LA Chargers – WR – ZAY FLOWERS – Boston College
The Chargers need to add some voltage. Zay Flowers is electric and explosive and will be able to kick-start this WR room into life.
22. **TRADE** From the Ravens
New York Giants – WR – QUENTIN JOHNSTON – TCU
The Giants are in desperate need at wide receiver, and seeing a couple of the top guys go, the Giants could get twitchy and decide they need to make a move to secure one of the top talents at the position. Quentin Johnston gives them a high-volume outside threat that they have been lacking in Big Blue
Minnesota Vikings – CB – KELEE RINGO – Georgia
The top tier of corners has flown off the board leaving the Vikings in a bit of a pickle. They need to add players to the defensive line but their most pressing need is at corner. Kelee Ringo is exactly what the Vikings have gone for recently at the position in long, athletic corners
Detroit Lions – DT – BRYAN BRESEE – Clemson
After trading back the Lions still pick up a top player and fill a need. in this scenario Detroit would have to ask themselves, can we move back, continue to collect capital and still get a player we really like. The Lions have shown they are happy to move around the board if the value calls for it and in this mock draft, they trade down from both of their first-round picks. The Lions have done really well with their draft capital and the extra selections they have picked up will allow them to keep adding depth and players for a playoff run.
Baltimore Ravens – RB – BIJAN ROBINSON – Texas
The Ravens have needs to fill and not a lot of 2023 draft capital to deal in. Unusually for them. The Ravens like to draft the best player available anyway and by trading back a couple of spots in this mock draft, it allows them to pick up some extra picks that they can use to further fill out their roster while also getting a premier, impact player in Bijan Robinson.
Dallas Cowboys – DL – ADETOMIWA ADEBAWORE – Northwestern
The Cowboys love a player with special athleticism and Adebawore may be too difficult for them to pass up. Dallas needs to add players to the interior of their defensive line and Adebawore, who projects best as a 3-tech, gives them versatility and even more juice.
Buffalo Bills – LB – JACK CAMPBELL – Iowa
Which direction the Bills go at the moment is hard to read. They have done their preparations on Jack Campbell though and with Tremaine Edmunds moving on, there’s a hole that needs plugged in their linebacker core.
Cincinnati Bengals – TE – DARNELL WASHINGTON – Georgia
This selection seems to have become the default in the mock draft cycle for the Bengals, but it just makes too much sense.
29. **TRADE** From the Saints
Carolina Panthers – WR – JORDAN ADDISON – USC
The Panthers did what they needed to do to secure the #1 pick in this year’s draft. But, in doing so they traded away a premium weapon in DJ Moore. While there are guys available through day 2, they are not anywhere near the level of Jordan Addison. So the Panthers decide to trade up in this mock draft to give their new QB a weapon.
Philadelphia Eagles – OT – DAWAND JONES – Ohio St
The Eagles have resigned Lane Johnson on the right side of the offensive line, but they still need to find his heir apparent. Dawand Jones is a mammoth of a right tackle who will be able to slot right in when inevitably the time comes for Lane Johnson to retire
Kansas City Chiefs – OT – ANTON HARRISON – Oklahoma
The Chiefs have moved on from Orland Brown and used some funds to bring in Jawaan Taylor. Does Taylor slot in at RT or LT? Who knows. But, Anton Harrison has the ability to play either side and gives KC their next instalment of bookend tackles
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