February 9, 2023

Byte Class Technology

Byte Class Technology & Sports Update

2023 NFL Mock Draft: Raiders add protection for future QB; Cowboys, Packers add offensive playmakers

Georgia

• Jr

• 6’3″

/ 300 lbs

Projected Team

Chicago

PROSPECT RNK

3rd

POSITION RNK

1st

GM Ryan Poles said earlier this week that the Bears would have to be “absolutely blown away” to take a quarterback No. 1 overall. In my opinion, that’s a smoke screen as Chicago tries to persuade as many QB-needy teams as possible to move up. Ultimately, the Bears likely trade back, but with the draft still three-plus months away — plus the fact that multiple potential suitors have to hire new head coaches — let’s keep them at No. 1 for now. They can’t go wrong with Jalen Carter or Will Anderson Jr., but Carter’s ability to dominate from the interior makes him the top selection.

Alabama

• Jr

• 6’0″

/ 194 lbs

Projected Team

Houston

PROSPECT RNK

2nd

POSITION RNK

1st

The Texans should absolutely be nervous about a team jumping them for a quarterback, but in this mock they get their guy. And that guy is Bryce Young, whose poise, vision and accuracy outweigh his historically small stature (relative to successful NFL quarterbacks). Some teams may be scared away by Young’s lack of size, but his skillset warrants being the first quarterback taken.

Alabama

• Jr

• 6’4″

/ 243 lbs

Projected Team

Arizona

PROSPECT RNK

1st

POSITION RNK

1st

It doesn’t matter who the new GM and HC are come draft time: getting Will Anderson Jr. at No. 3 is a steal. He’ll immediately upgrade a defense that just lost future Hall of Famer J.J. Watt to retirement.

Ohio State

• Jr

• 6’3″

/ 218 lbs

Projected Team

Indianapolis

PROSPECT RNK

4th

POSITION RNK

2nd

The Colts have swung and missed (and missed again, and missed once more) at quarterback since Andrew Luck shockingly retired right before the 2019 season. After trying their luck with veterans via free agency, they’re now picking high enough in the draft where it would be surprising if they didn’t select a signal-caller. C.J. Stroud showed in the College Football Playoff semifinals that he’s not just a pocket passer, beating the nation’s best defense with his legs time and time again as he firmly established himself in the QB1 conversation.

Clemson

• Jr

• 6’5″

/ 275 lbs

Projected Team

Seattle

PROSPECT RNK

5th

POSITION RNK

2nd

The Seahawks need to beef up their defensive front, and the best defensive prospect available at this point is Myles Murphy. His size (6-foot-5, 275 pounds) and athleticism will make him a disruptor wherever he lines up.

Georgia

• Soph

• 6’2″

/ 210 lbs

Projected Team

Detroit

PROSPECT RNK

18th

POSITION RNK

3rd

The Lions defense played much better the second half of the season, but it still needs more upgrades if it’s going to become a consistent contender in the NFC North. Kelee Ringo’s size, length and speed overshadow his lackluster interception total (four the past two seasons), although he did combined for 15 pass breakups in that span.

Ohio State

• Jr

• 6’6″

/ 310 lbs

Projected Team

Las Vegas

PROSPECT RNK

6th

POSITION RNK

3rd

With the Raiders reportedly exploring trade options for Derek Carr — and releasing him if none come to fruition — a new QB will be under center in Las Vegas in 2023. My guess is it’s a veteran, since the Raiders have the offensive skill players to compete in the AFC. With that in mind, Las Vegas adds protection for its future signal-caller in the form of Paris Johnson Jr., who was dominant at left tackle for the Buckeyes this season after moving over from right guard.

Texas Tech

• Sr

• 6’6″

/ 275 lbs

Projected Team

Atlanta

PROSPECT RNK

30th

POSITION RNK

5th

The Falcons ranked last in the NFL in sack percentage in 2022 (3.61%), which was actually better than their performance in 2021 (3.03%). Simply put, they need an alpha edge rusher to make plays in the backfield. Tyree Wilson, who racked up a combined 27.5 tackles for loss and 14 sacks the past two seasons at Texas Tech, can be that player.

Kentucky

• Sr

• 6’3″

/ 232 lbs

Projected Team

Carolina

PROSPECT RNK

23rd

POSITION RNK

2nd

The Panthers need a franchise quarterback in the worst way, and they’ll fall in love with Will Levis’ traits. Despite a frustrating season due to a porous offensive line, lackluster skill players and him being banged up, Levis has the skill set to to become a really good NFL quarterback.

Penn State

• Jr

• 6’2″

/ 194 lbs

Projected Team

Philadelphia

PROSPECT RNK

17th

POSITION RNK

2nd

With James Bradberry set to become a free agent, the Eagles will likely be looking for a younger, cheaper alternative. They find it with Joey Porter Jr., a long cornerback with NFL pedigree.

USC

• Jr

• 6’0″

/ 175 lbs

Projected Team

Tennessee

PROSPECT RNK

25th

POSITION RNK

3rd

The Titans have shown they’re not willing to pay top dollar at wide receiver (see: A.J. Brown), and while they took Treylon Burks 18th overall last April, they still need more firepower in the passing game. Jordan Addison’s pristine route-running and ability to gain consistent separation will complement Burks’ style well.

TCU

• Jr

• 6’4″

/ 215 lbs

Projected Team

Houston

PROSPECT RNK

23rd

POSITION RNK

2nd

Pairing Quentin Johnston, potentially the No. 1 wide receiver in this class, with Bryce Young would immediately provide this offense with some firepower, especially with running back Dameon Pierce coming off an impressive rookie campaign. Not only would opposing defensive backs have to keep up with Johnston, but they’d have to deal with his 6-foot-4, 215-pound frame with the ball in the air.

Northwestern

• Jr

• 6’4″

/ 315 lbs

Projected Team

N.Y. Jets

PROSPECT RNK

19th

POSITION RNK

4th

If there was one team most likely to go after a veteran quarterback, I’d pick the Jets. I mean, the owner just said that was the “missing piece” and that he’d “absolutely” pay up for one. With that in mind, whomever the Jets sign needs to be protected, and with Mekhi Becton’s injury history, getting a top offensive line prospect would be smart. Peter Skoronski’s measurables are nothing to write home about, but he’s versatile and technically sound. He’ll get the job done at a high level.

Georgia

• Soph

• 6’4″

/ 310 lbs

Projected Team

New England

PROSPECT RNK

21st

POSITION RNK

3rd

The Patriots could stand to bolster the offensive tackle spot with Isaiah Wynn set to become a free agent and veteran Trent Brown coming off a disappointing campaign. And even if Broderick Jones doesn’t start right away, he’ll add quality depth before establishing himself as a force up front. He has all the tools to succeed; he just needs to refine them.

Notre Dame

• Jr

• 6’4″

/ 265 lbs

Projected Team

Green Bay

PROSPECT RNK

25th

POSITION RNK

3rd

Aaron Rodgers, Jordan Love, doesn’t matter. Whoever is under center for Green Bay in 2023 would benefit from Michael Mayer’s blocking prowess, reliable hands and ability to get open in the biggest of moments. He’d be an immediate upgrade over impending free agent Robert Tonyan.

South Carolina

• Jr

• 6’0″

/ 188 lbs

Projected Team

Washington

PROSPECT RNK

12th

POSITION RNK

2nd

The Commanders have a formidable front — especially with Chase Young being back — and linebacker Jamin Davis made significant strides in his second season. What the stout defense doesn’t have, however, is a shutdown corner. Kendall Fuller is a nice player, but he’s not going to consistently contain the likes of CeeDee Lamb and A.J. Brown. Cam Smith could develop into that type of cover guy, as his length and instincts will translate well to the next level.

Oklahoma

• Jr

• 6’5″

/ 315 lbs

Projected Team

Pittsburgh

PROSPECT RNK

26th

POSITION RNK

4th

As long as T.J. Watt is healthy, the Steelers defense will be just fine. Anton Harrison will help ensure Kenny Pickett stays clean in the pocket, Najee Harris has holes to run through, and George Pickens has time to get open.

Clemson

• Soph

• 6’5″

/ 305 lbs

Projected Team

Detroit

PROSPECT RNK

34th

POSITION RNK

4th

The No. 1 high school player in the country a few years ago didn’t have his best season in 2022, but the Clemson product still has everything you want in a formidable interior disruptor. Having Bryan Bresee and Aidan Hutchinson along the line will alleviate pressure on the second two levels of the defense.

Texas A&M

• Jr

• 6’3″

/ 195 lbs

Projected Team

Tampa Bay

PROSPECT RNK

14th

POSITION RNK

1st

Instead of paying Mike Edwards, the Buccaneers draft his replacement. Antonio Johnson is a downhill bruiser who can also cover, be it as the deep safety or in the slot.

Florida

• Soph

• 6’4″

/ 232 lbs

Projected Team

Seattle

PROSPECT RNK

19th

POSITION RNK

4th

Geno Smith deserves to be re-signed as the Seahawks starting quarterback for 2023. But after that? Who knows. So, the Seahawks use the second of their first-round picks to select Anthony Richardson, the super athletic yet very raw product out of Florida. He’ll need to sit for at least a year, but if he can develop some consistency as a passer, his physical ability will make him a difficult dual-threat to defend.

Baylor

• Jr

• 6’4″

/ 358 lbs

Projected Team

Jacksonville

PROSPECT RNK

20th

POSITION RNK

3rd

Several Jaguars defensive linemen are set to become free agents in 2023. They have to play Jonathan Taylor, Derrick Henry and Dameon Pierce twice per season. Need I say more?

Ohio State

• Jr

• 6’1″

/ 200 lbs

Projected Team

N.Y. Giants

PROSPECT RNK

25th

POSITION RNK

3rd

It’s looking more and more like the Giants and Daniel Jones are going to agree to some sort of extension. To truly know if he’s the franchise quarterback, they have to surround him with high-caliber skill players. Jaxon Smith-Njigba, who may have been the consensus No. 1 wide receiver if he didn’t get hurt, fits the bill.

Texas

• Jr

• 6’0″

/ 220 lbs

Projected Team

Baltimore

PROSPECT RNK

16th

POSITION RNK

2nd

While still productive, J. K. Dobbins just doesn’t look right after all of his knee issues. If the Ravens retain Lamar Jackson and draft Bijan Robinson, they’ll form a duo that no defense is going to have an easy time containing.

Florida

• Jr

• 6’5″

/ 347 lbs

When you have Justin Herbert and are in a division with Maxx Crosby and Chris Jones, having quality offensive linemen is imperative. O’Cyrus Torrence was a standout at Florida after transferring from Louisiana, and there’s good reason to believe he’ll continue to improve at the NFL level.

LSU

• Jr

• 6’0″

/ 205 lbs

Projected Team

Dallas

PROSPECT RNK
POSITION RNK

Boutte is an interesting prospect. He dominated in 2020, was limited to six games in 2021 due to injuries and then endured a slow start this past season. He ended up finishing relatively strong but decided to return to LSU for another season … that is until he changed his mind and declared for the draft weeks later. Regardless of his roller coaster of a college career, Boutte flashed his potential as an after-the-catch playmaker with a penchant for finding the end zone (14 touchdowns in first 16 career games). Without a clear No. 2 wide receiver, Dallas could certainly use someone like him.

Oregon

• Soph

• 6’2″

/ 201 lbs

Projected Team

Cincinnati

PROSPECT RNK

26th

POSITION RNK

4th

Christian Gonzalez was a decent prospect at Colorado, but his lack of playmaking ability was a tad concerning. Gonzalez put those concerns to rest this past season at Oregon, when he recorded a team-high four interceptions to go along with seven pass breakups. The Bengals could plug in Gonzalez for impending free agent Eli Apple and not miss a beat.

Illinois

• Jr

• 6’0″

/ 180 lbs

Projected Team

Minnesota

PROSPECT RNK

35th

POSITION RNK

7th

Devon Witherspoon, coming from one of the best defenses in all of college football, will bring a tenacity and physicality that Minnesota could use in the secondary, especially with Patrick Peterson set to become a free agent.

Arkansas

• Jr

• 6’5″

/ 233 lbs

Projected Team

Denver

PROSPECT RNK

29th

POSITION RNK

4th

A quiet two seasons at Alabama from Drew Sanders gave way to a first-team All-American campaign with the Razorbacks. Lining up all over the field, Sanders stuffed the stat sheet with 103 tackles (13.5 for a loss), 9.5 sacks, three forced fumbles and an interception. He’ll update a solid Broncos defense that traded away Bradley Chubb.

Alabama

• Jr

• 6’0″

/ 193 lbs

Projected Team

Buffalo

PROSPECT RNK

13th

POSITION RNK

3rd

Jordan Poyer will be 32 by the start of next season, so if the Bills wanted to let him walk in free agency, Brian Branch would be a viable replacement. Not the most heralded on the Alabama defense, Branch did a little bit of everything for the Crimson Tide.

Syracuse

• Jr

• 6’5″

/ 322 lbs

Projected Team

Kansas City

PROSPECT RNK

28th

POSITION RNK

5th

After failing to reach a long-term deal last summer, the Chiefs franchised tagged Orlando Brown Jr.. If they’re not willing to make him the league’s highest-paid offensive tackle, they could look to replace him with the versatile and experienced Matthew Bergeron.

Alabama

• Jr

• 5’11”

/ 200 lbs

Projected Team

Philadelphia

PROSPECT RNK

15th

POSITION RNK

1st

This would be a slam dunk for the Eagles. Let Miles Sanders walk in free agency and replace him with the do-it-all running back that is Jahmyr Gibbs.