The 2023 NFL Draft starts tomorrow, and this may be the most confusing draft to predict. However, I am going to do my best to navigate you through my predictions, and the best draft bets you should place.
Bryce Young, QB, Alabama
The Will Levis talks is just smoke and mirrors. The only reasoning for Levis getting a big push in odds for #1 is that he told his friends and family he was going 1st overall. That is just not true. Carolina didn't trade up to take Levis, they traded up to take the best QB in this year's draft: Bryce Young
Will Levis, QB, Kentucky
Now this is where it gets really interesting. Are the Texans going to take a QB? This has been a question since the end of the regular season, and quite honestly, I don't have the answer, or even the slightest clue as to what they're going to do.
BUT, I'm going to go with the Texans taking a QB at two. It's either a QB now or never, and they can get an elite pass rusher still at pick #12. There's a lot of hype around Will Levis, and despite me not understanding why, I think the Texans will select him. Stroud has become a huge liability, and Richardson is the biggest boom or bust in the draft. Houston can't afford to take that risk. Levis is the safer pick.
3. TEN (Traded with ARI)
CJ Stroud, QB, Ohio State
With Stroud still on the board, this position has gotten very interesting for a lot of teams. Obviously, Arizona is doing everything they can to get out of this pick, but with Anderson still on the board they will be happy to take him. HOWEVER, the Titans, a team that has been in talks since the beginning of trading to 3, could now take CJ Stroud. This was a player that Tennesse didn't expect to get, and it could really screw up the Colts at the next pick. So, lets, screw Indy and have Tennesse trade up to 3 and snag Stroud!
Anthony Richardson, QB, Florida
Oh no Colts, WHAT HAPPENED!!! Your boy, Levis got snagged at 2. The Titans just f*cked you at 3. What are you going to do? Truly a tough spot for the Colts, but they are 100% getting a QB. With Richardson as the only QB left (Hooker doesn't qualify as a top 10 prospect), the Colts will select him at 4.
I can't see the Colts with Richardson. They can't see THEMSELVES with Richardson, but they have no other option. Take a chance I guess.
Will Anderson, Edge, Alabama
Alright, back to reality. Seattle is going defense, so it's your choice between Will Anderson, Jalen Carter, or Tyree Wilson. As a Detroit Fan, and praying for Will Anderson to go to Detroit, it just makes sense that he will get selected the pick before the Lions. So as much as I hate in, the Seahawks will take the best player in the draft: Will Anderson.
Tyree Wilson, Edge, Texas Tech
Ooof, that was a shot right to the gonads, but the Lions have a lot of options. Detroit has been rumored to not even have Jalen Carter on their draft board, and I think that is a great decision. Carter does not fit the culture that Campbell and Detroit are building.
So, with Carter out of contention, the Lions can either select the best corner in the draft (Witherspoon), or the debatable best edge rusher in the draft (Wilson). I want it to be known that I do not think Wilson is better than Anderson. No idea what they're smoking over at ESPN if they believe that.
Anyways, it's a CB heavy draft. Lions also have the 18th pick where they can select a CB there, so I have the Lions getting Tyree Wilson.
Devon Witherspoon, CB, Illinois
Raiders, if they were smart would get some big boys up front to protect their new fragile QB, but they're just not all there in the cranium. Raiders have a chance to get a game-changing defensive player and I don't think they're going to pass up on it.
Vegas ranked 29th in passing defense last season, so they need help in the secondary. I have the selecting in my mind, the best CB in the draft: Devon Witherspoon.
Christian Gonzalez, CB, Oregon
Let's just stop the talks of Bijan going to Atlanta. It's not happening, and if the Falcons select him at 8, then its hasta luego to their next 3 years.
Atlanta can either select Carter or Gonzalez. Let's go with Gonzalez, and have Jalen Carter continue to drop in the draft! There is always that one guy who falls in the draft, and this year it is going to be Carter.
Jalen Carter, DT, Georgia
I don't think Chicago can pass up on a projected top 5 pick at #9. Yes, I know Chicago needs OL and that is their priority, but there isn't much distinction between the top O-lineman and the 10th best O-lineman in this draft. For that reason, I think Chicago can afford to wait until the second round to get their Offensive lineman.
Bijan Robinson, RB, Texas
After a Super Bowl runner-up season, the Eagles can easily become the most talented team with 2 first round draft picks this year. There is a lot of hype around Bijan Robinson going to Philly, and although they need lineman, I can't see the Eagles passing up on this level of star power.
Eagles may only have 1 or two seasons left being at the top, so I have them going all out in this draft. Bijan Robinson will join the Eagles to make them the most explosive offense in the league.
Paris Johnson Jr., OT, Ohio State
After trading with the Titans at three, Arizona is finally up in this draft. It also should be mentioned that the Titans had to trade probably a couple more draft picks with the Cardinals to get to 3.
With the two best pass rushers and the two best corners off the board, I see Arizona selecting an offensive player. Obviously a talented like Smith-Njigba would be a great addition to a team that is so bad on offense, but in reality, the Cardinals will be the worst team next year in the NFL.
They are 100% in rebuild mode, and selecting a position that doesn't have the longest shelf life in the NFL is not how you rebuild. You rebuild from the bottom up, so I have the Cardinals selecting Paris Johnson Jr. from OSU. Johnson is more NFL ready than Skoronski in my opinion.
Jaxon Smith-Njigba, WR, Ohio State
Name me three Texan wide receivers. You can't! The Texans are going all out on offense this year and adding the unanimous #1 WR in the draft to help their new rookie QB out. This is actually a great pick for the Texans, and I hope this is how it works out this way!
Dalton Kincaid, TE, Utah
With Aaron Rodgers gone, it just makes sense that GB will now finally select a 1st round offensive player. This has been something that Rodgers has been begging for since day one, and the Packers have just ignored him.
This is what we call a gut shot to Rodgers from GB. A going away present if you will. GB really wanted JSN, but with him off the board the Packers can go two ways. Either get the speedster Zay Flowers, or take a risk on the freakiest TE we've ever seen.
With a young and inexperienced QB, it is much easier to complete passes to TE's, so I have Green Bay selecting Dalton Kincaid.
Darnell Wright, OT, Tennessee
If you correctly predict the Patriots 1st round selection in the comments, then I'll give you 50 bucks. I have no idea what Bill is up to. They could select a kicker for all we know.
I gotta think they go Oline here, but who is the real question. You know Bill is going to pick a sneaky guy that no one's ever heard of or is far down everyone else's board. Let's go with Darnell Wright, who is a freaky natural OT.
Broderick Jones, OT, Georgia
The Patriots wild pick at 14 makes the Jets happy as they select Broderick Jones to help protect their new QB. Skoronski continues to fall due to his lack of athleticism and scouts continue to question whether he's able to play tackle in the NFL.
Anton Harrison, OT, Oklahoma
I don't even know who's starting at QB for the Commanders. Sam Howell? You have to go Offensive Line here to protect your scared and inexperienced QB. Washinton was also allowed the 7th most sacks last season, so this should help with that weakness.
Joey Porter Jr., CB, Penn State
Honestly a dream come true for Pittsburgh. They get a local kid, a fantastic corner, and it helps fill their gaps in the secondary.
If Porter isn't available, then they will most likely select an offensive lineman.
Calijah Kancey, DT, Pittsburgh
Lions better not select an RB here, or a TE. This pick really scares me that Detroit will do something stupid, but I think they ultimately select defense. They need a corner, but I think they will worry about that later and will select Kancey to create the best DL in the NFL.
I also like Bryan Bresee at this spot, but a lot of places I looked have Detroit taking Kancey over Bresee.
Nolan Smith, LB, Georgia
With talks about Devon White wanting out of Tampa, what better player to replace him than Nolan Smith. Smith is an absolute animal and has the ability to start right away and fill the void that White left.
Deonte Banks, CB, Maryland
Seattle got their man at 5 in Will Anderson, and now they have the ability to keep on reloading on defense. Banks is a great corner and is a tough player to pass up at this spot. He would be a great addition opposite of last year's Seahawks pick, Tariq Woolen.
Michael Mayer, TE, Notre Dame
Just keep giving Herbert more targets. Chargers should really start worrying about their defense, but I think they are so obsessed with their aerial attack that they select Mayer here.
A lot of people have Mayer as their #1 TE, and I think the Chargers will be happy to get him at this position.
Lukas Van Ness, Edge, Iowa
Not entirely sure what Baltimore is going tot do here. I was thinking of a wide receiver, and although they signed Odell, he's not going to solve all of their problems. I also have no idea what Lamar is up to.
I'm just going to play it safe and have the Ravens select an elite pass rusher in Van Ness.
Myles Murphy, Edge, Clemson
If the Vikings select Hooker here, then I called in on our Bettor in Green Podcast, but I just really can't see them passing up on a defensive player after having one of the worst defenses in the league.
They could go secondary here, but I like them to select the big pass rusher in Murphy.
Peter Skoronski, OT, Northwestern
Did you forget about Skoronski, because I certainly did! Well, it is not too late to send him off to the Jaguars. It's never a bad idea to get more protection for Lawrence, and if Skoronski falls all the way to 24, then the Jags will be very happy.
Zay Flowers, WR, Boston College
GIVE DANNY DIMES SOME HELP! Giants have sucked in their passing game, and now they just signed Jones to a massive contract. They need to give him some help, but also can't afford to take the risk on Johnston. Flowers is the safe play here for the Giants.
Bryan Bresee, DT, Clemson
Everyone and their mother has Dallas selecting a TE at this position, but unfortunately in my mock, Kincaid and Mayer are off the board. I highly doubt Dallas will then take a risk on Darnell Washington here.
I'm also hearing rumblings of a running back for Dallas, but unfortunately Robinson is gone, and Gibbs is too similar of a back to Pollard, so I have them stacking their D-line with the best interior DL left in the draft: Bryan Bresee.
Brain Branch, C/S, Alabama
Buffalo was in talks with possibly getting a running back, but I think they reload their secondary. Poyer and Hyde are getting old and had suffered some injuries, and to be quite honestly, I don't even know if they are on the roster anymore.
So, I like Branch as the Bills selection because he is the best safety available and can play slot corner as well. A versatile player that will help Buffalo immensely.
Jahmyr Gibbs, RB, Alabama
I really don't like this pick from Cincy. I would rather them select an offensive or defensive lineman, but the Bengals are in win now mode, and after losing Perine, I would not be surprised if they get Gibbs here.
Will McDonald IV, EDGE, Iowa State
Not a whole lot left for the Saints here. Everywhere I looked they're going defensive line, so let's just give them the best available edge rusher left in McDonald.
From my research, Saints are really thin on their d-line, so I guess this is a good pick. Honestly have no idea what they're doing here.
DJ Turner, CB, Michigan
The eagles got their RB, now they go secondary. Instead of picking the best available in Forbes, Philly takes a chance on star Michigan CB, DJ Turner.
Is this a biased pick you may ask, and the answer is yes. Michigan is going for 5 consecutive years with a player drafted in the first round, can't break the streak this year!
Adetomiwa Adebawore, Edge, Northwestern
With the departure of Frank Clark, another Michigan Man, the Chiefs need another pass rusher. Adebawore is the freakiest Edge player remaining and might be the freakiest in the entire draft. The Chiefs can afford to be risky since they're the Chiefs, and I love this pick for them!
Notable Players Left Out:
Since this is no way near a perfect draft, however it is damn good, here are a couple players who I left out that might go in the first round:
Jordan Addison, WR, USC
Emmanuel Forbes, CB, Mississippi State
Quentin Johnston, WR, TCU
O'Cyrus Torrence, OG, Florida
Darnell Washington, TE, Georgia
Hendon Hooker, QB, Tennessee
Mazi Smith, DT, Michigan
I have crossed some state borders, sat in traffic, parked outside of a Target, but I finally placed my favorite draft bets for tomorrow!
I have classified each bet into four categories based on of unit size.
CIN to draft Jahmyr Gibbs first (+900)
DAL to draft DL first (+450)
Levis to go #2 (+145)
Stroud to go #3 (+275)
IND to draft Richardson (+350)
LV to draft CB first (+115)
Houston to draft Smith-Njigba (+650)
NYG to draft WR first (+150)
Jalen Carter o6.5 draft pick (+290)
Michael Mayer 2nd TE drafted (+155)
A total of 7 units were deployed, and I love all of them. I am very very worried that Vegas knows something that I don't, but a couple of these lines were too good to be true!
Good luck on all your bets. I hope this was useful, and I hope your team drafts the player you want!