Fans, members of the media, and even some players are holding their breath in anticipation of the 2023 NFL Draft. Teams have and will mortgage the house, the kids, and the kitchen sink for that number one pick.
Trades getting tossed around and teams waiting for players, the process is similar to a regular day on the New York Stock Exchange floor. Here are our predictions for the entire first round of the 2023 NFL Draft.
#31 Kansas City Chiefs: Tucker Kraft (TE), South Dakota State
The Kansas City Chiefs will end their NFL draft with a bang by selecting Tucker Kraft from San Diego State University. Kraft is a tight end expected to be a reliable, ultimate weapon for the Chiefs.
Kraft was a four-year starter, hauling in 97 receptions for 1,266 receiving yards and 11 touchdowns.
#30 Philadelphia Eagles: Deonte Banks (CB) Maryland
Deonte Banks is a standout cornerback from the University of Maryland. Banks had a total of 78 tackles, four interceptions, and 15 pass breakups in his four-year tenure for the Terrapins.
He proved to be a formidable defensive force, and the Eagles will be confident in his ability to add value to the team's defense.
#29 New Orleans Saints: BJ Ojulari (DE) LSU
BJ Ojulari is projected to be drafted by the New Orleans Saints. During his time as a defensive end for LSU, Ojulari totaled 32 tackles and 5.5 sacks.
He was named SEC's co-Defensive Player of the Week and led LSU to become the No. 1 defensive team in the Southeastern Conference. Ojulari is expected to help upgrade the Saints defensive line and is projected to be an excellent fit.
#28 Cincinnati Bengals: Darnell Wright (OT) Tennessee
The Cincinnati Bengals are expected to select Darnell Wright from the University of Tennessee with their first-round pick. The 6'6" 310 lb offensive tackle is a stalwart on the Tennessee offensive line, where he started 28 games over the past two seasons.
He was a key reason for the Volunteers' running game amassing over 2,700 total yards in 2019.
#27 Buffalo Bills: Drew Sanders (LB) Arkansas
The Buffalo Bills may look to make a move on Arkansas Linebacker Drew Sanders in the upcoming draft. Sanders is a 6'3" 255-pound prospect who put up impressive numbers during his time with the Razorbacks – 57 tackles, 4 sacks, and 1 interception in his freshman year.
His versatility, physicality, and college production are sure to make him a valuable asset to many teams and the Bills may be wise to snatch him up.
#26 Dallas Cowboys: Luke Musgrave (TE) Oregon State
The Dallas Cowboys are predicted to draft Luke Musgrave from Oregon State with their first overall pick. Musgrave won the Offensive Player of the Year award in 2021.
He has a career completion percentage of 64.4%, throwing for 7,903 yards and 71 touchdowns, as well as running for 1,252 yards and 17 touchdowns. Musgrave has proven to be a versatile, dynamic playmaker, and the Cowboys hope he can lead the offense to continued success.
#25 New York Giants: Joe Tippmann (OL) Wisconsin
The New York Giants have shown interest in drafting Joe Tippmann from the University of Wisconsin. Tippmann had an impressive college career totaling 54 touchdowns, 140 receptions, and 2,630 receiving yards over four seasons.
He is known for his speed and agility in the field, which would make him a great addition to the Giants. It remains to be seen if he will end up in New York this football season.
#24 Jacksonville Jaguars: Anton Harrison (OT) Wisconsin
The Jacksonville Jaguars drafting Anton Harrison from Oklahoma is potentially a great move and should pay dividends for years. Harrison is an explosive and powerful running back who can impact any offense.
During his college career, Harrison totaled 5,112 yards and scored 44 touchdowns on the ground. Adding the speedster to an already formidable Jacksonville backfield will help increase their chances of making a playoff run.
#23 Minnesota Vikings: Joey Porter Jr. (CB) Penn State
The Vikings are looking for a corner, and Joey Porter Jr. could be the answer. Porter Jr. is an NFL-ready talent. Porter Jr. can provide both size and physicality at the corner position.
His lack of interceptions may be concerning, but the 11-pass breakups he achieved last season show that he has the instincts to be a playmaker in the NFL.
#22 Baltimore Ravens: Bryan Bresee (DL) Clemson
The Baltimore Ravens likely will select Clemson University All-American Bryan Bresee with their first overall pick in the 2023 NFL Draft. Bresee has a promising college career with the Tigers, playing in 34 games, racking up 136 total tackles (96 solo), 17 sacks, 28.5 tackles for loss, and three forced fumbles.
Baltimore believes they have secured a generational talent in Bresee and are confident he will help lead the organization to success in the future.
#21 Los Angeles Chargers: Quentin Johnston (WR) TCU
The Los Angeles Chargers need help at the wide receiver position, so they should select Quentin Johnston of TCU. Johnston has consistently provided elite numbers, such as 3.0 yards per run and over 1,000 receiving yards.
He will be a valuable asset to the Chargers as they look to build on an already solid squad and provide a much-needed boost to their offense.
#20 Seattle Seahawks: Lukas Van Ness (DE) Iowa
Lukas Van Ness from Iowa University should be a top priority for the Seattle Seahawks in the NFL draft. Van Ness is a gifted defensive lineman with the size and speed to make an impact in the league.
At 6 foot 5 inches and 272 pounds, Van Ness recorded 14 sacks in 899 snaps at Iowa.
#19 Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Bijan Robinson (WR) Texas
Tampa Bay has moved on from Leonard Fournette and may select the best running back available in the draft with their first-round pick. Texas' RB, Robinson, is a top-5 talent, averaging 6.3 yards per rush and 33 TDs.
Having a powerful RB alleviates the instability surrounding their QB position, which is currently filled by Baker Mayfield and Kyle Trask.
#18 Detroit Lions: Darnell Washington (TE) Georgia
Detroit Lions need to bolster their offense, and adding tight end Darnell Washington of Georgia could be a great addition. At 6' 7" and 264 pounds, Washington is a physical threat with great size.
His athleticism and pass-catching ability could add another dynamic element to the Lions' offense. Given the Lions tight-end issues in recent years, they should be looking forward to seeing what Washington can do for them.
#17 Pittsburgh Steelers: Devon Witherspoon (CB) Illinois
The Pittsburgh Steelers could use what cornerback Devon Witherspoon of Illinois. He shows great awareness and can close quickly on the ball. His 4.39 forty-yard dash time only adds to his appeal.
Witherspoon is exactly the type of corner that can help the Steelers improve their position. He'll provide great depth at the position, and he will learn and compete with the veteran corners on the team.
#16 Washington Commanders: Dalton Kincaid (TE) Utah
The Commanders have talent at every offensive position but at tight end. Logan Thomas has shown promise, and Jordan Kincaid is a great option. He had 16 catches for 234 yards and a touchdown against USC, and 70 catches for 890 yards and 8 TDs last season.
Kincaid could be the perfect addition to bolster Sam Howell and Jacoby Brissett's arsenals, giving them a reliable target to move the ball downfield.
#15 Green Bay Packers: Dawand Jones (OT) Ohio State
Dawand Jones of Ohio State is imposing with an 87⅞-inch wingspan and 374 pounds and only allowed pressure on 1.2% of his college snaps. He was an impressive 25-game starter and didn't give up a single sack in 12 games in 2022.
Adding a young, powerful offensive tackle like Jones is the perfect way for the Packers to improve their offense and build around young QB Jordan Love.
#14 New England Patriots: Michael Mayer (TE)
The New England Patriots need to draft Michael Mayer of Notre Dame because he possesses a complete set of tight-end skills. Mayer has a great sense of body control and vision to succeed as a pass-catcher and run-blocker and is versatile enough to flex out as a receiver or in-line.
Additionally, he can be a sturdy in-line blocker, topping off the skills with proficiency as a lead blocker in the run game.
#13 New York Jets: Paris Johnson Jr. (OT) Ohio State
Paris Johnson Jr. of Ohio State is what the New York Jets are missing. The Jets were sacked on 7.1% of their dropbacks last season, making it the 10th highest in the league. With the possibility of getting Aaron Rodgers, drafting an offensive lineman as the first-round choice is a good decision.
Johnson has 26 career starts and only allowed pressure on 2.4% of his snaps last season, showing he can protect the quarterback.
#12 Houston Texans: Jaxon Smith-Njigba (WR) Ohio State
The Houston Texans should draft Jaxon Smith Njigba of Ohio State to help fire up their offense. His college career stats of five receptions for 43 yards, averaged at 8.6 yards per game, demonstrate that he is someone who knows how to make the most of his opportunities.
Furthermore, Njigba’s athleticism and strong work ethic give him the potential to become a valuable asset to the Texans’ offense. His speed, vision, and ability to make plays at the right times make him an ideal fit for the Texans.
#11 Tennessee Titans: Anthony Richardson (QB) Florida
With Ryan Tannehill turning 35 this July, the Tennessee Titans should strongly consider drafting quarterback Anthony Richardson from the Florida Gators in the 2021 draft. His QB rating needs to improve drastically. He showed speed with 4.43 seconds in the 40-yard dash.
His impressive arm strength and seemingly untapped potential make Richardson a compelling choice for Tennessee and the perfect fit, as they wouldn't have to rush his development with Tannehill under contract for another year.
#10 Philadelphia Eagles (via NO): Broderick Jones (OT) Georgia
At 6 feet 5 inches and 311 lbs, Broderick Jones is the physical freak that can get the job done for the Philadelphia Eagles, who are fresh off a Super Bowl appearance in 2023.
Jones can protect the QB from some of the better sack artists in the NFL. The Eagles would be wise to pick up Jones.
#09 Chicago Bears: Peter Skoronski (OT) Northwestern
The Chicago Bears should draft offensive tackle Peter Skoronski from Northwestern University in the upcoming NFL Draft.
Skoronski is a strong and agile prospect, as evidenced by his combined results of a 5.16-second 40-yard dash, 34.5-inch vertical, 9 feet 7 inches on the broad jump, 7.8-second 3-cone drill, and 30 bench press reps. Skoronski would be a great addition to the Bears’ offensive line.
#08 Atlanta Falcons: Myles Murphy (DE) Clemson
The Atlanta Falcons should choose Myles Murphy in the Draft as he had 18 sacks and 31 Tackles for loss. By utilizing his talent, the Falcons can drastically improve their pass rush, ranking last in sacks and pressure last year.
Murphy's skill set will improve the team's pass rush and help the team contend in the future.
#07 Las Vegas Raiders: Christian Gonzalez (CB) Oregon
Christian Gonzalez is a great cornerback with impressive size (6'1", 196 lbs) and length (32" arms) and what the Las Vegas Raiders need. The Raiders had an inefficient defense last year, ranking 30th in defensive efficiency and 25th in yards allowed per pass (7.3).
Gonzalez is a perfect fit for the Raiders. He has the certified length, quickness, and skill to perform in both man and zone coverage.
#06 Detroit Lions (via LAR): Tyree Wilson (DE) Texas Tech
The Detroit Lions should draft Tyree Wilson from Texas Tech for several reasons. Defensively, the Lions allowed the second most yards per pass (7.9) and only ranked 20th in sacks per dropback (6.1%) last season. His 14 sacks over the past two seasons while at Texas Tech prove him a powerful pass rusher.
Wilson's already impressive stats and skill set suggest the obvious: Drafting Wilson is the right move for the Lions to make.
#05 Seattle Seahawks (via DEN): Hendon Hooker (QB) Tennessee
The Seattle Seahawks should draft Hendon Hooker from Tennessee. Hooker is an underrated option at quarterback - his 9.5 yards per attempt last season led the nation, and he threw two interceptions over 11 starts with a 69.6% completion rate, top 10 among passers.
After a torn ACL in his left knee, Hooker is ready to prove himself and develop as a potential franchise quarterback.
#04 Indianapolis Colts: Will Levis (QB) Kentucky
The Indianapolis Colts should strongly consider drafting Will Levis of Kentucky in the upcoming draft. Levis is renowned for his athleticism and great potential and comes with a strong college football record. In 38 games, he passed for 5,876 yards and threw 46 touchdowns to only 25 interceptions.
His accuracy and durability would be an asset to the Colts, and with the right coaching, he could be the cornerstone of the team’s future success.
#03 Arizona Cardinals: Will Anderson Jr. (OLB) Alabama
In the 2023 NFL Draft, the Arizona Cardinals should select Will Anderson Jr. Over the past three seasons with Alabama, Anderson dominated with an impressive 34.5 sacks and 134 pressures, both of which are the highest of any player in the FBS.
His versatility in coverage and ability to read the quarterback has made him a top target and the perfect addition to the already successful Arizona defense.
#02 Houston Texans: CJ Stroud (QB)
In the 2023 NFL Draft, Houston Texans could select quarterback CJ Stroud from Ohio State. During his time at Ohio State, Stroud completed 66.4% of his passes for a total of 7,203 yards, 75 touchdowns, and 11 interceptions. He also rushed for 512 yards as well.
If chosen by the Texans, he would be an excellent addition to the team, showing promise in his skill set and being able to fill their need for a quarterback.
#1 Carolina Panthers: Bryce Young (QB) Alabama
The Carolina Panthers will select QB Bryce Young from Alabama with the first overall pick in the 2023 NFL Draft. The 5-foot-10, 204-pound Young is a dynamic dual-threat QB with a keen eye for the passing game.
During his two seasons at Alabama, Young totaled 79 touchdown passes, an average of 39.5 TD passes per season, which is more than any Panthers QB has thrown over the past four years (17 TD passes was the highest).
Pittsburgh Steelers: Mazi Smith (DT) Michigan (2nd rd.)
The Pittsburgh Steelers should select Mazi Smith from Michigan, who is a 6-foot-3, 323-pound defensive tackle.
Smith has the strength, size, and power to provide a much needed boost to the Steelers' defensive line. With his ability to plug-and-play in the NFL, Smith is an excellent selection for the Steelers.
Houston Texans: Jalin Hyatt (WR) Tennessee (2nd rd.)
The Houston Texans are likely to select Mazi Smith, a wide receiver from Tennessee, because of his superior deep ball tracking ability and immense explosion. He posted a remarkable 18.9 yards per catch last season, and accrued an impressive 1,267 total receiving yards, 5th in the FBS.
With his capacity to create separation, he is well suited to add to the Texans’ passing attack.
Arizona Cardinals: Jahmyr Gibbs (RB) Alabama (2nd rd.)
The Arizona Cardinals should draft explosive running back Jahmyr Gibbs in the second round of the 2023 NFL Draft. Gibbs had an impressive college career, with 926 yards and seven touchdowns on the ground, and 44 receptions through the air in 2022.
Gibbs can be a game-changer for the Arizona Cardinals.
Indianapolis Colts: Julius Brents (CB) Kansas State (2nd rd.)
The Indianapolis Colts are predicted to choose cornerback Julius Brents from Kansas State in the 2023 NFL Draft. He performed exceptionally well during the Senior Bowl and the Combine and showed top-notch physical agility with a 41.5-inch vertical & 11-foot-6 broad jump.
During his college career Brents recorded 87 tackles and 4 interceptions, proving his ability to make plays on the ball. He would be an invaluable asset to the Colts secondary.
Los Angeles Rams: Kelee Ringo (CB) Georgia (2nd rd.)
With the 57th overall pick of the 2023 NFL Draft, the Los Angeles Rams should select cornerback Kelee Ringo from Georgia. Ringo brings blazing speed to a defense that is looking to rebuild after trading away Jalen Ramsey from last season. He recorded 4 interceptions, 18 pass breakups, 8 tackles for loss, and 41 combined tackles in two seasons with the Bulldogs.
His decision making needs work, but his athleticism and ball skills suggest he'll develop into an impact cornerback in the Rams’ secondary.
New York Jets: Brian Branch (S/CB) Alabama (2nd rd.)
The New York Jets need to select Brian Branch from Alabama, as his versatility could bring an extra layer of confidence to their defensive backfield. His size and speed will give their corners the ability to leave their man to play a little closer in the box than usual to help against the run.
His productivity will give them an injection of energy on defense and make the most of the talent he brings to the field.
Washington Commanders: John Michael Schmitz (C) Minnesota (2nd rd.)
With the final pick of the first round of the 2023 NFL Draft, the Washington Commanders might select John Michael Schmitz from the Minnesota Golden Gophers.
Schmitz has the power and blocking awareness needed to upgrade the Commanders' center position performance, which ranked 29th in run block win rate at 65.0% and yielded 48 sacks (seventh-most).
New England Patriots: DJ Turner (CB) Michigan (2nd rd.)
It's 2023, and the New England Patriots are on the clock in the NFL Draft. They need to select Michigan Wolverines cornerback DJ Turner. He posted a 40-yard dash time of 4.26 seconds at the combine, the fastest time this year. Turner has a great combination of speed and fluidity.
Turner had three interceptions and 18 pass breakups in the last two seasons, demonstrating his playmaking abilities.
Buffalo Bills: Riley Moss (CB) Iowa (2nd rd.)
The Buffalo Bills could choose Iowa cornerback Riley Ross with the 57th pick in the 2023 NFL Draft's second round. Moss finished his college career with 11 interceptions and 23 passes broken up over 54 games, and his ability to play in zone looks would fit the Bills' needs.
Buffalo ran a zone defense on 60% of their plays last season (10th most in the NFL) and could benefit from the additional depth of adding Ross.