2023 NFL Mock Draft 3.0 FINAL - 4/27/2023 | Brian Phlipot
1. Carolina Panthers: Bryce Young - QB (Alabama)
Carolina Panthers

When the Panthers intitally traded for the 1st pick in 2023, the general thought was they were moving up for QB C.J. Stroud.  Once April arrived, those thoughts started to shift toward Young and it looks like he will be the pick to lead the Panthers toward an NFC South championship.

Bryce Young
2. Houston Texans: Will Anderson Jr. - EDGE (Alabama)
Houston Texans

The Texans have left everyone wondering who they will select at #2.  Logic says they should take C.J. Stroud but the Texans laugh at your logic and instead go defense.  Anderson is a productive edge defender from Alabama who should be an immediate contender for DROY in 2023.

Will Anderson Jr.
3. Tennessee Titans: C.J. Stroud - QB (Ohio State)
Tennessee Titans

*** TRADE w/Arizona Cardinals ***

The Titans have been rumored to be in trade talks with the Cardinals looking to move out.  With Stroud on the board, its too good to pass up.  The current offensive make up of the Titans have not been able to keep up with the AFC heavy hitters and need to rattle the cages.

C.J. Stroud
4. Indianapolis Colts: Will Levis - QB (Kentucky)
Indianapolis Colts

The Colts are thought to be enamored with Will Levis which is surprising for a variety of reasons. Questions persist on his decision making and maturity but he is a physical specimen with a cannon for a right-arm who has shown flashes of great potential.    

Will Levis
5. Seattle Seahawks: Jalen Carter - IDL (Georgia)
Seattle Seahawks

I have thought for awhile that Jalen Carter would have a minor fall in the draft.  Considering he is thought to be the best player in the draft, I guess being selected at 5 could count as a fall.  He could fall further than this but I think Pete Carroll would be willing to take a chance on Carter and add him to a locker room with Bobby Wagner and Dre'mont Jones to help show him the way and keep him accountable to the defense.

Jalen Carter
6. Detroit Lions: Devon Witherspoon - CB (Illinois)
Detroit Lions

Smart. Tough. Physical. Traits that mesh well with Lions HC Dan Campbell.  Witherspoon steps into the #1 corner role vacated by former Lion, and previous #3 selection, Jeff Okudah.

Devon Witherspoon
7. Las Vegas Raiders: Christian Gonzalez - CB (Oregon)
Las Vegas Raiders

The Raiders bolster their secondary with elite speed and athletic ability in Christian Gonzalez to help lockdown the AFC West.

Christian Gonzalez
8. Atlanta Falcons: Tyree Wilson - EDGE (Texas Tech)
Atlanta Falcons

The Falcons have lacked a pass rush for years. Wilson is a late bloomer who plays with a fierce attacking mentality and finished the 2022 season scoring an 88.6 True Pass Set Pass Rush grade.  Medical concerns push him down the board a bit but he can be the game-changing talent the Falcons have been looking to fill at Edge for years.

Tyree Wilson
9. Chicago Bears: Peter Skoronski - OT (Northwestern)
Chicago Bears

Skoronski can play tackle or guard for the Bears, whom could use an influx of potential All-Pro talent.  Paris Johnson could be the guy who goes here instead but I think Skoronski is the better overall talent.  He is PFF's top graded pass blocker in the 2022 season (93.0).

Peter Skoronski
10. Philadelphia Eagles: Nolan Smith - EDGE (Georgia)
Philadelphia Eagles

I had Nolan Smith in this spot for my first mock draft of 2023 in March and I'm bringing it back!  The Eagles could go Bijan Robinson here but I just think investing in DL talent is what Howie Roseman will do Thursday Night.  Smith had a top 30 visit with the team and they're thought to really like Smith's ability and athletic traits.

Nolan Smith
11. Arizona Cardinals: Paris Johnson Jr. - OT (Ohio State)
Arizona Cardinals

*** TRADE w/Tennessee Titans ***

Kyler weeps tears of joy. The Cardinals trade back to provide some much needed protection for QB Kyler Murray.  Johnson has played guard and tackle at Ohio State but should be the starting LT day one for Arizona. 

Paris Johnson Jr.
12. Houston Texans: Jaxon Smith-Njigba - WR (Ohio State)
Houston Texans

DeMeco Ryans continues to build up the talent around its yet-to-be-acquired future QB with Ohio State WR Jaxon Smith-Njigba.  Prior to injuries shortening his 2022 season, JSN was borderline unstoppable operating from the slot.  His best game was when first round selections Garrett Wilson (OROY) and Chris Olave did not play in the 2022 Rose Bowl and Smith-Njigba went off for 347 yds and 3TD on 15 receptions.

Jaxon Smith-Njigba
13. Green Bay Packers: Dalton Kincaid - TE (Utah)
Green Bay Packers

History tells me this pick should be defense but they team does not have Brett Favre or Aaron Rodgers.  They need to add talent to the offensive side of the ball if they want Jordan Love to have any kind of chance at success.  Kincaid may be the best pass catcher in the entire draft class.  He transitions from receiver to runner so smoothly he generates YAC at will.

Dalton Kincaid
14. New England Patriots: Lukas Van Ness - EDGE (Iowa)
New England Patriots

The Patriots could go a number of way here and I have waffled between OL, CB, and Edge.  Ultimately landed on BPA at a premium position that fits the traits for a Patriots defender.  Van Ness is long (6'5", 34" arms, 11" hands), large (272lbs), and has an elite althetic profile (4,58 40-yd, 7.02 3-cone, and 9'10" Broad jump).  While he didn't start while at Iowa, he projects as a versatile puzzle piece for the legendary head coach. 

Lukas Van Ness
15. New York Jets: Broderick Jones - OT (Georgia)
New York Jets

Questions persist on current LT Mekhi Becton's health and future with the Jets.  With Aaron Rodgers officially traded to NY, keeping him upright should be high on the list of priorities.

Broderick Jones
16. Washington Commanders: Emmanuel Forbes - CB (Mississippi State)
Washington Commanders

Emmanuel Forbes has shot up draft boards as we have gotten closer to the draft.  Forbes is a playmaking machine and despite his smaller size (166 lbs), he isn't afraid to stick his nose into the run game.  He is one of the best zone defenders in the draft and fits nicely with the Commanders.

Emmanuel Forbes
17. Pittsburgh Steelers: Darnell Wright - OT (Tennessee)
Pittsburgh Steelers

The Steelers have a legacy situation staring at them with Joey Porter Jr. available but their needs at offensive tackle are just too large to ignore.  Tennessee RT Darnell Wright is considered to be one of the top high-floor tackles in the draft and can slot into RT immediately.

Darnell Wright
18. Detroit Lions: Calijah Kancey - IDL (Pitt)
Detroit Lions

The Lions need an interior disrupter to pair with 2022 first pick, Aiden Hutchinson.  Other than Jalen Carter, Kancey is the next best interior pass rusher with a blurry first step that places him into winning situations to dirty of pocket.  

Calijah Kancey
19. Tampa Bay Buccs: Bijan Robinson - RB (Texas)
Tampa Bay Buccs

I thought about QB here but thought Bijan Robinson might be the best choice moving forward for this team.  Baker Mayfield and Kyle Trask (or insert other potential QB) will need some help and what better help than possibly the best football player in the entire draft class?  Robinson is true 3 down back who doesn't have to leave the field and can have the offense schemed to him.

Bijan Robinson
20. Seattle Seahawks: Myles Murphy - EDGE (Clemson)
Seattle Seahawks

Murphy has seen his stock fall a bit this offseason but I think Seattle would gladly add him to their rebuilding defense.  Great value selection at pick 20.

Myles Murphy
21. Los Angeles Chargers: Quentin Johnston - WR (TCU)
Los Angeles Chargers

The Chargers need more juice in their passing game.  Taking a page out of the Cincinnati Bengals playbook to create their own WR Trio, adding Quentin Johnston should help open up the lanes for Keenan Allen and Mike Williams.  

Quentin Johnston
22. Baltimore Ravens: Deonte Banks - CB (Maryland)
Baltimore Ravens

There are a lot of WRs in the AFC the Ravens have to contend with weekly with some of the best in their own AFC North division.  While Banks has some work to improve fundamentally, he has shown the ability to adjust on the fly.  Having 4.35 speed helps too.

Deonte Banks
23. Minnesota Vikings: Anthony Richardson - QB (Florida)
Minnesota Vikings

The Vikings get their QB of the future who can sit behind Kirk Cousins.  Richardson is still raw but oozing with potential and rare traits that can help cover up where he might be lacking in passing-game recognition.  

Anthony Richardson
24. Jacksonville Jaguars: Joey Porter Jr. - CB (Penn State)
Jacksonville Jaguars

Jacksonville needs corner help and Joey Porter provides a long and physical press-man dynamic they've been missing since Jalen Ramsey.

Joey Porter Jr.
25. New York Giants: Brian Branch - S (Alabama)
New York Giants

The Giants could use secondary and IOL help in this draft.  The premium position of value is DB and Brian Branch provides some versatility at nickel corner and safety.  He could fill-in for the recently departed Julian Love.

Brian Branch
26. Dallas Cowboys: Michael Mayer - TE (Notre Dame)
Dallas Cowboys

Dallas has been linked to Michael Mayer for awhile now.  Mayer is the "do it all" tight end who will enable the Cowboys to play 11 or 12 personnel without tipping their hand.  He'll quickly become one of Dak Prescott's favorite targets.

Michael Mayer
27. Buffalo Bills: Zay Flowers - WR (Boston College)
Buffalo Bills

The Bills need someone not named Stefon Diggs who can command some attention from opposing defenses.

Zay Flowers
28. Cincinnati Bengals: Adetomiwa Adebawore - IDL (Northwestern)
Cincinnati Bengals

With the top corners, edge, and tight ends gone, the Bengals turn to one of their biggest needs, interior pass rush.  It is one of the team's glaring weaknesses from the 2022 season.  Adebawore played outside at Northwestern but is built to be a 3-tech DT.  He is basically Calijah Kancey but longer, faster, and more explosive.  Playing out of position creates a projection for teams and a likely slide to the end of the first round.

Adetomiwa Adebawore
29. New Orleans Saints: Bryan Bresee - IDL (Clemson)
New Orleans Saints

The Saints need DL help and Bresee is a former #1 recruit who blew onto the scene at Clemson as a freshman.  A powerful and quick player showed the ability to get up and down the line with ease.  A string of injury and personal tragedy has plagued him since that time and he never really recovered.  While still a solid player, his consistency suffered. 

Bryan Bresee
30. Philadelphia Eagles: Jahmyr Gibbs - RB (Alabama)
Philadelphia Eagles

The Eagles had some juice to their offense with RB Jahmyr Gibbs.  Gibbs is a breakaway, homerun threat anytime he touches the ball in space.  He'll be a huge asset to the passing and outside/boundary running schemes.

Jahmyr Gibbs
31. Las Vegas Raiders: Hendon Hooker - QB (Tennessee)
Las Vegas Raiders

*** TRADE w/Kansas City ***

The Raiders move up to get their future QB and can use the extra year to make sure Hooker is fully recovered from his ACL tear.  

Hendon Hooker
32. Pittsburgh Steelers: Mazi Smith - IDL (Michigan)
Pittsburgh Steelers Mazi Smith
TFH Top 32 Player Rankings